Box Set Commemorates Mellotronic Man Mike Pinder
By ANGELA DAWSON
Front Row Features
HOLLYWOOD—Growing up in Birmingham, England during and just after World War II, Mike Pinder would steal away to a wooden box in the backyard where he would lay down and stare up at the moon and the stars, imagining what it would be like to travel to different worlds. His love for all things celestial earned him the nickname Mickey the Moonboy.
As he grew older, Pinder developed a passion for music, playing guitar and piano, as well as writing and singing. He formed his first band El Riot and the Rebels as a teenager, but then joined the British army, where he wound up stationed in Germany. That’s where he first heard The Beatles on the radio. It was a life-changing moment for Pinder. He decided it was time to get out of the military and back into music. Luckily, he had a very understanding commanding officer, who released him due to a minor foot deformity.
Once free to return to England, Pinder got together with a friend, Ray Thomas, a flautist, and formed the Krew Cats. They soon added a drummer (Graeme Edge), a singer/guitarist (Denny Laine) and bassist (Clint Warwick), renaming themselves The Moody Blues in 1964. Their first album, The Magnificent Moodies, yielded the hit single “Go Now.” Other hits followed, including “Nights in White Satin,” “Tuesday Afternoon” and “Dawn (is a Feeling) on other albums.