The Moody Blues drummer and co-founder Graeme Edge has died, aged 80

12 November 2021, 11:05 | Updated: 12 November 2021, 11:07

According to The Moody Blues frontman Justin Hayward, Graeme Edge was a "poet as well as a drummer". (Photo by Johnny Louis/Getty Images)
According to The Moody Blues frontman Justin Hayward, Graeme Edge was a "poet as well as a drummer". (Photo by Johnny Louis/Getty Images). Picture: Getty

By Thomas Curtis-Horsfall

Graeme Edge, the drummer and co-founder of The Moody Blues has sadly died at the age of 80.

Tributes are flooding in for The Moody Blues' longest-serving member, as his family confirmed that Edge had passed away recently.

The band's frontman Justin Hayward has paid tribute to his bandmate and friend, saying that he was one of the "great characters of the music business".

"Graeme's sound and personality is present in everything we did together and thankfully that will live on."

"When Graeme told me he was retiring, I knew that without him it couldn't be the Moody Blues any more." Hayward went on to say.

"And that's what happened. It's true to say that he kept the group together throughout all the years, because he loved it."

The Moody Blues drummer Graeme Edge (bottom right) has sadly died aged 80. (Photo by Chris Walter/WireImage)
The Moody Blues drummer Graeme Edge (bottom right) has sadly died aged 80. (Photo by Chris Walter/WireImage). Picture: Getty

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The Moody Blues are most well known for songs like 'Nights in White Satin', 'Go Now', 'Tuesday Afternoon', and 'Your Wildest Dreams'.

Graeme Edge was born in Rocester, Staffordshire, in 1941, and moved to Birmingham with his family shortly after.

It was in Birmingham where he'd found The Moody Blues, joining up with Ray Thomas and Mike Pinder.

Their most recognised lineup featuring Justin Hayward was assembled and finalised several years later.

The band's second album Days Of Future Passed is widely considered their greatest work, and established The Moody Blues as pioneers of progressive rock, merging rock and classical influences.

Though they continued to perform sporadically, The Moody Blues' final studio album December came out in 2003.

Their legacy as one of the great influential bands of our time was solidified when they were inducted into the Roll and Rock Hall of Fame in 2018.

Graeme Edge accepting The Moody Blues' induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2018. (Photo by Kevin Kane/Getty Images For The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame)
Graeme Edge accepting The Moody Blues' induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2018. (Photo by Kevin Kane/Getty Images For The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame). Picture: Getty

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Justin Hayward said once Graeme Edge decided to retire from The Moody Blues, the band wouldn't be the same without his presence and passion, so they decided to call it a day.

"When Graeme told me he was retiring, I knew that without him it couldn't be the Moody Blues any more."

"And that's what happened. It's true to say that he kept the group together throughout all the years, because he loved it."

Edge had been surrounded by music his entire life, with his mum working in silent movies as a pianist whilst his father, grandfather, and great-grandfather all worked as musical hall singers.

He was also active outside of his work with the Blues, releasing his first solo track 'We Like To Do It/Shotgun' in 1974 and his first solo album Kick Off Your Muddy Boots the following year.

Justin Hayward called Edge a "poet as well as a drummer", saying there would "never be his like again".

"Graeme and his parents were very kind to me when I first joined the group, and for the first two years he and I either lived together or next door to each other," Mr Hayward added.

"We had fun and laughs all the way, as well as making what was probably the best music of our lives."

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