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Justin Hayward: “The Beatles were moving so fast – the rest of us were just trying to keep up !” – Photo 1 of 1 – LeaderLive

Justin Hayward: “The Beatles were moving so fast – the rest of us were just trying to keep up !” – Photo 1 of 1 – LeaderLive

Justin Hayward: “The Beatles were moving so fast – the rest of us were just trying to keep up !” – Photo 1 of 1 – LeaderLive
August 29
10:27 2017

AS the driving force behind sixties icons The Moody Blues, Justin Hayward penned classics like Nights in White Satin, New Horizons, Question, The Voice and Your Wildest Dreams, before his solo career brought a worldwide hit with the timeless Forever Autumn from Jeff Wayne’s Musical Version of The War of the Worlds.With the Moody Blues still very much a going concern, Justin is returning to the UK’s stages in September for a solo tour in support of his latest album release All The Way which brings together many of his best loved tracks from his work outside the group.“I’m always so thrilled to have the opportunity to tour in the UK, particularly at this time in in my career when no one knows what the future holds,” says Justin.“I’m bringing my ‘song writing’ guitars from home on the road with me, so the gigs will have the feel and sound of my music room along with the vibe I was feeling as I wrote the songs.“I’m look forward to singing and playing new songs and old songs, particularly Forever Autumn, which I only get to perform in my solo show.”With the Moody Blues famous for their symphonic sound and kitchen-sink production, Justin, 70, is seeing these forthcoming shows as a chance to present a more stripped-down side to his songwriting.“I love the big production of the Moodies but it is so loud and there’s a lot of material you just can’t do in that setting,” he says.“The one accusation that it always leveled at the Moodies is that we’ve been over produced and I think we have been. We made choices because we were always left to do what we wanted to do without any interference and that’s been a double edged sword. We were always true to our feelings but sometimes went a bit far and over thought things.“This kind of show is a joy for me as you can hear every nuance of the sound – you don’t have to beat people over the head with volume to get things right.”Formed in Birmingham in 1964, The Moody Blues starting out as a rough-housing R&B band, scoring a UK number one with Go Now before the departure of future Wings member Denny Laine and the arrival of Justin saw the band evolve through celebrated early experiments with orchestral rock and then morphing into polished 1980s hitmakers.They continue today as the core trio of founding drummer Graeme Edge, alongside Justin on vocals and guitar and bassist John Lodge and this year saw the band back out on the road in the US to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the release of their classic 1967 album Days of Future Passed.“I remember about two years ago I could see this anniversary coming up I was asked by Burt Bacharach to do a song with him at the Royal Albert Hall where I met a young musical director called Elliot Davies. I thought he might be the one to help recreate the album’s orchestral score,” recalls Justin.Back in 1967, the band had been asked to record an adaptation of Antonín Dvorak’s Symphony No. 9 for Decca’s newly formed Deram Records division in order to demonstrate their latest recording techniques, which were named “Deramic Sound” but instead the band (initially without the label’s knowledge) decided to focus on an album based on an original stage show that they’d been working on.“No one thought the album would be a success – it was a demonstration stereo record and none of the parts were kept. Elliot and I went about recreating a lot of the parts and we’ve been rediscovering the songs on the album,” says Justin.“I consider myself very lucky that I was in in London and able to be a part of the scene that summer,” he continues.“The Beatles opened the door and they were the leaders of a group of only about 100 people in London but it seemed like the whole town belonged to us and wanted to listen to us.“The clubs, the girls – everyone was so pretty and there was a feeling of love and community. There were drugs too and that was fine by me and it was a very optimistic time.“I only had a small room which I paid £8 a week for but it didn’t matter because I was in the middle of it. The Beatles were moving so fast and the rest of us were just trying to keep up and move through the doors they had opened.”A decade after that defining year, Justin found himself contributing to Jeff Wayne’s Musical Version of The War of the Worlds which spawned the huge hit Forever Autumn.The two-disc album remains a bestseller, having sold millions of records around the world, and becoming the 40th best selling album of all time in the UK.“It was a lucky day for me when Jeff called me,” laughs Justin. “We didn’t know each other but he rang and asked if I was the guy who sang Knights in White Satin.“I didn’t really do other people’s songs but he sent it round by courier and there was a young kid there from the record company making a cup of tea and he said to me ‘you should do that’.“I knew that Forever Autumn was a lovely song but when I’d recorded it none of us heard anything for about a year. When we made it I remember thinking ‘who on earth is going to buy this?’

Source: Justin Hayward: “The Beatles were moving so fast – the rest of us were just trying to keep up !” – Photo 1 of 1 – LeaderLive

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Martin Nethercutt

Martin Nethercutt

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