Fifty years ago today, Apollo 11 lifted off from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida en route to the moon. This mission was the inspiration for the fifth album from The Moody Blues,To Our Children's Children's Children.
The album opens with the sound of a rocket one blasting off, which leads into the song "Higher and Higher." To achieve the sound of blast-off, NASA sent the band the sound of a rocket taking off, but, as bassist John Lodge and drummer Graeme Edge explain, it wasn't what they had in mind.
John Lodge and Graeme Edge of The Moody Blues talked about the rocket sound on the beginning of their 1969 album, To Our Children's Children's Children:
JL: "They sent it to us and it was like SFX, and that was it."
GE: Bear in mind, over the to of it I'm saying, 'Blasting! Billowing! Bursting forward...' doing the full Shakespeare SFX."
JL: "So we decided to make our own rocket sound and we actually dropped a piano off the top of a building and recorded it as it hit the ground and that's part of the sound on the beginning of To Our Children's Children's Children."
"Higher and Higher" was the Moodies first full length song written by Edge, who was responsible for writing the short spoken-word interludes that appeared at the beginning and end of previous albums. The words were then recited by keyboardist Mike Pinder.
To Our Children's Children's Children was one of the albums listened to, on cassette, by the crew of Apollo 15 in 1971.
Retired Moodies member Graeme Edge paid a visit to Lodge when the Royal Affair Tour -- with Lodge, Yes, Asia and Carl Palmer's ELP Legacy -- played Clearwater, Florida on Friday, near where Edge lives.