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Ray Thomas RIP

On Thursday, 4 January 2017, the world lost Ray Thomas, founding member of the Moody Blues. Thomas sang and played flute, and was responsible for writing a number of the band's most memorable songs. He was 76.

by Jon Davis, Published 2018-01-05

Ray ThomasRay Thomas and Mike Pinder were the core founders of The Moody Blues in 1964, having worked together in a number of earlier bands. With Days of Future Passed, Thomas began contributing his own songs, notably "Another Morning" and "Twilight Time." His flute became one of the band's distinguishing trademarks. On later albums, several of Thomas's compositions became Moodies staples, including "Legend of a Mind," "Dr Livingston, I Presume," "Nice to Be Here," and "For My Lady."

During the Moodies' hiatus, Thomas released two solo albums, From Mighty Oaks (1975) and Hopes Wishes and Dreams (1976). After the Moodies resumed activity, his songwriting contributions were much less frequent, though he did pen "Veteran Cosmic Rocker," which serves as a sort of theme song for both the band and for Thomas himself. He continued to sing lead vocals on a number of the band's songs, though his contibutions tended to diminish as the albums relied more on synthesizers.

In 2002, his declining health led to his retirement, and revealed in 2014 that he had been diagnosed with prostate cancer, the illness which claimed him in the end.

Filed under: Obituaries

Related artist(s): The Moody Blues

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