Cider Mag Winter 2015 Issue 52 - Page 54

Justin Hayward At The Flying Monkey By Mike Jackman H aving been a huge fan of The Moody Blues for 20-plus years, it was a treat to see their golden voiced frontman Justin Hayward perform an intimate acoustic show at The Flying Monkey in Plymouth, NH on August 19th. With house capacity at just under 500 seats this was a dream come true for any impassioned listener. Having been in popular music for almost five decades, The Moody Blues are pioneers of symphonic and prog rock and have had a storied and illustrious career. With such a deep catalog to choose from, Hayward dug up and presented several nuggets not heard in a long time. Hayward kicked the show off onstage by himself with the moody and celestial "Blue Guitar”, which is a real gem from a side project he fronted with fellow Moody Blues member John Lodge during the band's mid 1970's hiatus called Blue Jays. A lush and dreamy song that 54 • CIDER MAG • immediately brought me back to my childhood, I knew I was in for a night of both hits and rarities. The Moody Blues occupy a very special place in my history and musical education. My dad first played them for me as a six year old and they have been part of my journey ever since. I would have been content hearing lesser known tracks like "Forever Autumn" and "You Can Never Go Home" all night but understood he also had to play hits like "I Know You're Out There Somewhere" and "Your Wildest Dreams”, which were nonetheless superb. The hits were recognizable but took on a new dynamic being stripped down and presented acoustically. At 68, Hayward's voice is still strong and one of the most beautiful and underrated of any band to come from the 60's. It was evident on songs like "Tuesday Afternoon" and the moving "Watching and Waiting." A Winter • 2015