Raymond Thomas was an English multi-instrumentalist, flautist, singer, founding member and composer in the English progressive rock band the Moody Blues.
25 Facts About Ray Thomas
Ray Thomas's grandfather was a Welsh miner and went on to become a carpenter and a wood-carver, at one stage working on the church where Thomas later got married.
Ray Thomas's father taught him at the age of nine to play harmonica, and this sparked his interest in music.
Ray Thomas quit schooling at the age of 14, and briefly left music to work as a toolmaking trainee at Lemarks.
Ray Thomas was inspired to learn the flute from a grandfather who played the instrument.
Ray Thomas shared lead vocals with Laine on "23rd Psalm" which was recorded in 1964 but remained unreleased until 2014.
Ray Thomas then suggested his and Pinder's old bandmate John Lodge as a permanent replacement and recruited Justin Hayward to replace Laine.
Ray Thomas's flute became an integral part of the band's music, even as Pinder began to use the mellotron keyboard.
Ray Thomas stated that a number of his compositions on the band's earlier albums were made in a studio broom closet, with himself writing songs on a glockenspiel.
Hayward has spoken of Ray Thomas's learning transcendental meditation in 1967, along with other members of the group.
Ray Thomas wrote and sang lead vocal on "Floating" and "Eternity Road".
Ray Thomas wrote and sang "And the Tide Rushes In", reportedly written after having a row with his wife, and was credited with co-writing the album's final track "The Balance" with Edge, while Pinder recited the story.
Ray Thomas released the albums From Mighty Oaks and Hopes, Wishes and Dreams after the band temporarily broke up in 1974.
Ray Thomas took featured lead vocal on Graeme Edge's song "Going Nowhere".
Ray Thomas is credited with tambourine, harmonica or saxophone on The Other Side of Life, but it is unknown how many, if any, instrumental contributions of his ended up on the released version of the album, and at this point he was largely relegated to the role of a backup singer.
Ray Thomas contributed his first ambient flute piece in eight years; however, his health declined, and his last album with the group was Strange Times, to which he contributed his final composition for the group, "My Little Lovely".
Ray Thomas provided a co-lead vocal with Hayward and Lodge on their song "Sooner or Later ".
Ray Thomas had been suffering from cerebellar ataxia, which affected his balance and made performing impossible.
Ray Thomas released his two solo albums, remastered, in a boxset on 24 September 2010.
In October 2014, Ray Thomas posted this statement on his website:.
Ray Thomas played flute on the track "Simply Magic" on John Lodge's 2015 album 10,000 Light Years Ago and recorded with Moody Bluegrass.
Ray Thomas died on 4 January 2018, six days after his 76th birthday, at his home in Surrey.
I'm really pleased that Ray Thomas was around to know we'd be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
Ray Thomas was posthumously inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, as a member of The Moody Blues, in April 2018.
The 1972 video for "I'm Just a Singer " features Ray Thomas playing the baritone saxophone, although Pinder says on his website that this was just for effect in the video and that Ray Thomas did not play saxophone on the recording.