Graeme Edge, Moody Blues Drummer and Co-Founder, Dead at 80

Graeme Edge, the co-founder and drummer for the iconic rock band the Moody Blues, has died at the age of 80. No official cause of death appears to have been shared at this time but the band's singer, Justin Hayward, memorialized his late bandmate in a Facebook post. "It's a very sad day," Hayward wrote. "Graeme's sound and personality is present in everything we did together and thankfully that will live on."

Hayward then went on to recall Edge's career with the classic group. "When Graeme told me he was retiring I knew that without him it couldn't be the Moody Blues anymore. And that's what happened. It's true to say that he kept the group together throughout all the years, because he loved it," he shared. "In the late 1960's we became the group that Graeme always wanted it to be, and he was called upon to be a poet as well as a drummer. He delivered that beautifully and brilliantly, while creating an atmosphere and setting that the music would never have achieved without his words. I asked Jeremy Irons to recreate them for our last tours together and it was absolutely magical."

The frontman continued, "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 - and despite us having almost nothing in common, we had fun and laughs all the way, as well as making what was probably the best music of our lives. Graeme was one of the great characters of the music business and there will never be his like again." Hayward concluded his post by writing, "My sincerest condolences to his family."

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Moody Blues bass player John Lodge also issued a statement on Edge's death, taking to Twitter to honor his fallen friend. Lodge began his post by sharing lyrics from the song "The Dream," which the band released in 1969. "When the White Eagle of the North is flying overhead," the lyrics read." Lodge continued, "Sadly, Graeme left us today. To me he was the White Eagle of the North with his beautiful poetry, his friendship, his love of life and his 'unique' style of drumming that was the engine room of the Moody Blues." He later added in a follow-up tweet, "I will miss you Graeme."