The Moody Blues Co-Founder and Keyboard Player Mike Pinder Dead at 82

Mike Pinder was the last living member of The Moody Blues' original lineup

<p>Scott McKinney/UPI/Shutterstock</p> Mike Pinder at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction in in Cleveland in April 2018

Scott McKinney/UPI/Shutterstock

Mike Pinder at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction in in Cleveland in April 2018

Mike Pinder, who co-founded the legendary rock group The Moody Blues and was the last living member of the band’s original lineup, has died. He was 82.

Moody Blues rocker John Lodge announced Pinder’s death on Facebook, writing that the family of the musician — who was known for playing the keyboard and the Mellotron — had asked him to share a message.

“Michael Thomas Pinder died on Wednesday, April 24th, 2024 at his home in Northern California, surrounded by his devoted family. Michael's family would like to share with his trusted friends and caring fans that he passed peacefully. His final days were filled with music, encircled by the love of his family. Michael lived his life with a childlike wonder, walking a deeply introspective path which fused the mind and the heart,” the statement read.

It continued: “He created his music and the message he shared with the world from this spiritually grounded place; as he always said, "Keep your head above the clouds, but keep your feet on the ground." His authentic essence lifted up everyone who came into contact with him. His lyrics, philosophy, and vision of humanity and our place in the cosmos will touch generations to come.”

Pinder helped found The Moody Blues in 1964, and left the group 14 years later, after the release of the album Octave in 1978.

He later explained that he made his exit in order to focus on having a “normal life” outside of the spotlight.

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<p>Gijsbert Hanekroot/Redferns</p> Mike Pinder performing in Amsterdam in March 1972

Gijsbert Hanekroot/Redferns

Mike Pinder performing in Amsterdam in March 1972

“It was as easy to leave as it was to start the band,” he told “It was just a decision in my life, you know? I left the group to lead a normal life, and I realized that if I put so much energy into writing a song, why not put that same amount of energy into raising a family and holding a marriage together, which is exactly the reason why I decided to give it up.”

Pinder told the outlet he’d been playing instruments since he was 3 years old, and that The Moody Blues name was his idea, inspired by a Duke Ellington piece called “Mood Indigo.”

The musician, who had a career with Atari after his time in the band, released two solo albums, and was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a member of The Moody Blues in 2018.

“I am happy that we finally got inducted for our fans’ sake. As I have said for the last 30 years, ‘the fans are my hall of fame,’” he wrote on his website at the time. “All the band brought their children and grandchildren and that was magic. The grandchildren got to see that the music has remained relevant and impactful for 50 years.”

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