Wings and Moody Blues Co-Founder Denny Laine Dead At 79

Wings Guitarist

Photo: Hulton Archive

Denny Laine, a co-founder of The Moody Blues and Wings, has died at age 79. His wife Linda Hines shared the sad news on the guitarist/songwriter's Facebook page.

"My darling husband passed away peacefully early this morning. I was at his bedside, holding his hand as I played his favorite Christmas songs for him. He’s been singing Christmas songs the past few weeks and I continued to play Christmas songs while he’s been in ICU on a ventilator this past week," she began the sad message. "He and I both believed he would overcome his health setbacks and return to the rehabilitation center and eventually home. Unfortunately, his lung disease, Interstitial Lung Disease (ILD), is unpredictable and aggressive; each infection weakened and damaged his lungs. He fought everyday. He was so strong and brave, never complained. All he wanted was to be home with me and his pet kitty, Charley, playing his gypsy guitar."

"Denny was so very thankful to all of you who sent him so much love, support and the many kind words during these past few months of his health crisis-it brought him to tears. I thank you all for sending both of us love and support. It was my absolute honor and privilege to not only be his wife, but to care for him during his illness and vulnerability," she continued. "Thank you to Dennys surgeons, doctors, specialists, physical therapists and nurses at Naples Hospital for working so hard to help him. Thank you for your compassion and support for me during these past several emotional months."

"My world will never be the same. Denny was an amazingly wonderful person, so loving and sweet to me. He made my days colorful, fun and full of life-just like him," Hines ended her message. "Thank you sweetie for loving me, for all the laughter, friendship, fun and for asking me to be your wife. I will love you forever."

Laine co-founded the Moody Blues in 1964 with Mike Pinder and Ray Thomas. He sang on the band's first big hit "Go Now" and was part of the band until 1966, when he was replaced by Justin Hayward. He spent the rest of the '60s playing solo as well as in a variety of bands including the Electric String Band, Balls, and Ginger Baker's Air Force. 

In 1971, Laine cofounded Wings with Linda and Paul McCartney. He was part of the band until it broke up in 1981 and was the only constant member outside of the McCartneys.

After Wings disbanded, Laine continued his career as a solo artist and released his last album, The Blue Musician, in 2008. In 2018, he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame with The Moody Blues.

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