AS A MEMBER OF THE LOCAL BAND FLYTE TYME, HIS KEYBOARDS PROVIDED A DRAMATIC BACKDROP FOR SUCH MINNEAPOLIS SUPERSTARS AS ALEXANDER O’NEAL AND CYNTHIA JOHNSON, THE DIVA VOICE WHO LOFTED LIPPS INC TO THE TOP OF THE CHARTS WITH “FUNKYTOWN” IN 1980. HIS TRACK RECORD AS A COMPOSER AND PRODUCER INCLUDES “THE PLEASURE PRINCIPLE”, ONE OF JANET JACKSON’S BREAKTHROUGH HITS FROM “CONTROL” IN 1986.
Moir remains one of the core members of the Time, the band who played comedic and funky foils to Prince in “Purple Rain”, and the group now elevated to cult hero status in the new film, “Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back”. While still in college, Moir began playing with the outfit, which was retooled by Prince into the group fronted by Morris Day and featured another set of musical legends-in-the-making, bassist Terry Lewis and keyboard player Jimmy Jam.
After releasing tow stellar records (their self-titled first album and What Time Is It?) and barnstorming the country as the opening act for Prince, they hit their commercial stride with “Ice Cream Castle”, the album which featured both of their Purple Rain singles, “Jungle Love” and “The Bird”. Even Prince was taken aback by the group’s success. In 1986, he told a Detroit radio interviewer, “They were, to be perfectly honest, the only band I was afraid of. They were turning into, like, Godzilla.”
Buoyed by their success, Jam and Lewis left the Time to concentrate on producing, guitarist Jesse Johnson and front man Morris Day also enjoyed solo success, and Moir struck out on his own as well. He became the man behind the scenes of such records as “If You Were Here Tonight” by Alexander O’ Neal and Deniece Williams’ Dove Award nominated CD, “From the Beginning”, which featured Moir’s “All I need”.
In the years since, Moir has divided his schedule between roadwork with The Time (a reunion album in 1990 called Pandemonium yielded another hit single in “Jerk Out”) and writing and production work with some of the most stellar names in R&B. To date, Moir has collaborated with Gladys Knight and the Pips, Junior, Thelma Houston, Deja, Mica Paris, St. Paul, Ruby Turner, Cheryl Lynn, Force MDs and Patti Austin. He has received tow platinum and seven gold record awards for his work.
Years of forging hits for others convinced Moir to step out on his own into the limelight, and “This Side of Paradise” brims with the promise of the memorable compositions which have gone before. “Here”, he says, “I’m able to take a musical idea from conception all the way through to completion and express myself in ways I sometimes can’t when writing for others. Also, being able to step outside of the box that the music industry likes to place around people is empowering.” Songwriting remains first and foremost for him. “Songs, especially personal ones, are a reflection of thoughts and emotions a person feels about his or her condition at a particular time. The process of translating those thoughts and emotions into a musical from has always fascinated me,” he muses.