“Oh, Prince of Peace
We need you now
Give us a sign
To show us how
Locked in her room
The lover mourns her betrayer [It's such a shame, he took the blame]
Seems even Love possesses Treachery, too
But how can love be cruel? [He's doin' time]
[He's doin' time, ain't it a crime]
[It's such a shame, he took the blame]
Seems this old world
Has lost its way
On such a torn
And troubled day”
From Doin’ Time by Justin Hayward
For Christmas 1977 Santa brought me a batch of Moody Blues albums a mixture of the band’s music and solo projects like this one from Justin Hayward. What fascinates me is that 33 years later I am getting the same records as 1977 but now mastered on CD... and this a year after I got Paul McCartney Live 33 years later after Wings Over America! Spooky! So it looks like a box set of Parallel Lines is due next Christmas or Moving Hearts Live!
This year’s Christmas gifts reflect a year when I re-discovered The Moody Blues, thirty three years on. I pretty much dismissed them in between but those seven core albums from 1967 to 1972 are very underrated when Mojo and Uncut relive the best of seventies music. Innovative, original, blending instruments and genres upon which they added questioning searching lyrics. Don’t tell me Queen hadn’t heard The Moody Blues when Bohemian Rhapsody was conceived!
Anyway, this Lyric For The Day is taken from Justin Hayward’s 1977 album Songwriter. Hayward has never suggested any Christian connection, unlike band mate John Lodge who has a long running Baptist thread sown through him, but here he invokes the Prince of Peace to break into an old world that’s lost its way and seems torn and troubled. Indeed there are hints of Jesus taking the blame for the humanity that is imprisoned. As Christmas day fast approaches, this cry of Hayward’s is almost a O Come O Come Emmanuel. He knows the need, hopes for some Saviour and sees treachery as close acquaintance of love! It’s the yearning and cry of Christmas!