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Ray Thomas (born 29 December 1941, Stourport-on-Severn, England) is an English musician, best known as the flautist and as a singer and composer in the rock band, The Moody Blues. In the 1960s, Thomas joined the Birmingham Youth Choir. He began singing with various Birmingham blues and soul groups, including the Saints and Sinners as well as the Ramblers. Taking up the harmonica, he then started a band with bass guitarist and future Moody Blues bandmate John Lodge. The two performed together in El Riot and the Rebels. After a couple of years, keyboardist and friend Mike Pinder, another future Moody, joined as well. Thomas and Pinder (sans Lodge) were later in a band called Krew Cats. El Riot and the Rebels had once opened for The Beatles in Tenbury Wells; the Krew Cats formed in 1963 and played in Hamburg and other places in Northern Germany, possibly at some of the same venues which the Beatles had played although this is unconfirmed. Thomas and Pinder then recruited guitarist Denny Laine along with drummer Graeme Edge and bassist Clint Warwick to form a new, blues-based band.