It took me a while to do, but here is the translation of the above article:

The Moody Blues could have been one of the many groups that have a hit song and are forgotten immediately. But thanks to some happy accidents along the way, the quintet, now a trio, were able to forge a career for 46 years and are back tonight at Wilfrid-Pelletier.

"Just thinking back, it gives me the willies!" Moody Blues drummer Graeme Edge, on the other end of the line, admits with a burst of laughter. We are in 1966, the Moody Blues are penniless and without hope. Guitarist Denny Laine, singer of their only success ("Go Now"), has left the group, who are thinking seriously of disbanding. But their record company suggests that they record the New World Symphony by Dvorak with a symphony orchestra to illustrate the possibilities of the new stereophonic sound. With the complicity of arranger Peter Knight, the Moodies instead will record their own songs ("Nights in White Satin," "Tuesday Afternoon") on a symphonic album which stands today among the classics of rock history: Days of Future Passed.

Shortly after, Edge tells me, the Moody Blues are involved in a very long show at the Midem in Cannes. They should not be part of the television show, but another group has been held up, and so France sees them singing "Nights in White Satin" live on TV. The next day, the French are snapping up this song and the record company is out of copies. The Moodies will eventually meet the great Leo Ferré, who will give them a tip of his hat in his song “C’est Extra.” (My note: the Moody Blues and Nights in White Satin are mentioned in the lyrics to Ferré’s song.)

"He was a very nice gentleman and he said some wonderful things about our music," said Edge. “We were supposed to make music with him, but our respective agents bungled everything. France adopted us a good year and a half before anyone else. Besides, Justin (Hayward) and John (Lodge) – Editor's note: two other Moody Blues – by chance were living in France."

A lesson from the Beatles
The Moody Blues participated in the last UK tour of The Beatles and they learned a critical lesson. "These guys had no life,” remembers Edge. “They were not even allowed out of their hotel for a walk. It was horrible."

The Moodies then decided to keep a low profile, and an aura of mystery soon surrounded them, driven by their concept albums, their use of mellotron and sitar and texts that lend themselves to all kinds of interpretations. They were not protected from some of their more knowledgeable fans, however.

One of them entered the house of flutist Ray Thomas through the bathroom window, which gave the Beatles the inspiration for "She Came In Through The Bathroom Window." The Moody Blues sang "Timothy Leary" and "Om" and they became a kind of guru.

"We asked nearly the same questions as our fans, but because we asked them out loud, they imagined that we knew the answers,” says Edge. “It was common for that time: Steven Spielberg had already gained notice as a filmmaker who was making a film similar to his Close Encounters of the Third Kind and would imagine that from then on he could communicate with aliens and that it was all part of a vast conspiracy." (My note: Steven Spielberg made an early film called Firelight, which inspired Close Encounters.)

The Moody Blues have been linked to progressive rock of the early 70s. Yet their music, much gentler, was based on melodies and vocal harmonies rather than instrumental prowess. "But we were told that we have a little more of a rock sound on stage, which always makes me happy,” says Edge. “Our songs are our strength. If we had a long career, it was because we have very solid songs on which we can build. Today, there are six or seven songs that are essential for us to play, and we complete the program by choosing from about forty others."

And if one of the last three were to leave the Moody Blues, would that mean the end of the group? "I do not know if Justin and John would continue without me; I hope they would not," replied the drummer. “But without Justin and John, we could not continue because we do not do songs if the guy who sang them is no longer in the group."


The MOODY BLUES, Wilfrid-Pelletier, tonight, 19:30.
http://www.cyberpresse.ca...es-accidents-heureux.php