Friday, March 19, 2010

Jordan Rudess, keyboardist of Dream Theater



Jordan Rudess (born November 4, 1956) is a Julliard trained keyboardist most famously known as a member of the progressive metal band Dream Theater.


Jordan was recognized by his 2nd grade teacher as an exceptional piano player, and was immediately given professional tuition to enhance his prodigious talents. By the age of nine he entered the prestigious Julliard School of Music Pre-College Division for classical piano training, but by his late teens he had grown increasingly interested in synthesizers and progressive rock music. Against the advice and wishes of his parents and tutors, he decided to turn away from classical piano and try his hand as a solo prog rock keyboardist.

After performing in various projects during the 1980s, he gained national attention in 1994 when he was voted “Best New Talent” in the Keyboard Magazine readers’ poll after the release of his Listen solo album.Two of the bands who took notice of the up and coming young star were The Dixie Dregs and Dream Theater, both of whom invited him to join their respective bands. Jordan chose the Dregs primarily because being a part time member of the band would have less of an impact on his young family, a choice he wasn’t given with Dream Theater.

During his time with the Dregs, Jordan formed a so-called “power duo” with drummer Rod Morgenstein. The genesis of this pairing occurred when a power outage caused all of the Dregs’ instruments to fail except Jordan’s, so he and Rod improvised with each other until power was restored and the concert could continue. The chemistry between the two was so strong during this jam that they decided to perform together on a regular basis (under the name Rudess/Morgenstein Project or later RPM) and have since released a studio and a live record.

Jordan encountered Dream Theater once again when he and Morgenstein secured the support slot on one of Dream Theater’s North American tours.

In 1997, when Mike Portnoy was asked to form a supergroup by Magna Carta Records, Jordan was chosen to fill the keyboardist spot in the band, which also consisted of Tony Levin and Mike’s Dream Theater colleague John Petrucci. During the recording of Liquid Tension Experiment’s two albums, it became evident to Mike and John that Jordan was precisely what Dream Theater needed. They asked Jordan to join the band, and when he accepted they released their then-keyboardist Derek Sherinian to make way for Jordan.

Jordan has been the full-time keyboardist in Dream Theater since the recording of 1999’s Metropolis, Pt. 2: Scenes From a Memory. He has recorded 5 other studio albums since then; 2002’s Six Degrees of Inner Turbulence, 2003’s Train of Thought, 2005’s Octavarium, 2007’s Systematic Chaos and 2009’s Black Clouds & Silver Linings. In addition, he has appeared on the live albums Live Scenes From New York , Live at Budokan and Score-20th Anniversary Tour.

While most keyboard players in rock bands tend towards bringing numerous keyboards on stage, Rudess took full advantage of the possibilities offered by the Kurzweil K2600xs during his usage from the 1990’s to 2004. Often sampling sounds from other keyboards, Rudess creates a series of setups, each of which maps different sounds to different layers and key ranges of the keyboard controller; these setups are then arranged in the order they will be required for a gig, and cycled through one at a time with a control pedal.

While Rudess’ physical method of changing live setups will more than likely remain the same, his choice of hardware to implement this changed as of 2005. Citing a need for better tour support and more current technologies (his Kurzweil 2600’s maximum sample memory of 128 MB had become insufficient for his touring needs) Rudess switched keyboard endorsements from Kurzweil to Korg’s new flagship Korg Oasys workstation (which supports up to 1.5gb of sample memory [1]), which he uses on tour with Dream Theater along with a Receptor and a Haken Continuum triggering a Roland V-Synth and a Synthesizers.com Modular.

Studio Equipment

* Korg Oasys
* Haken Audio Continuum Fingerboard
* Muse Research Receptor
* Kurzweil K2600xs fully loaded 88 note weighted keyboard
* Kurzweil K2600 Rack modules
* Kurzweil K2000VP keyboard
* Kurzweil PC2 rack
* Minimoog
* Roland V-Synth
* Synthesizer.com Modular Synth


Virtual Instruments

* MOTU Mach 5
* MOTU MX4 Soft Synth
* Korg Legacy
* Spectrasonics Atmosphere
* Spectrasonics Trilogy
* Spectrasonics Stylus
* Native Instruments Komplete 2
* Native Instruments Absynth
* Native Instruments B4
* Native Instruments Guitar Rig
* Native Instruments FM7
* Native Instruments Pro 53

Live Rig

* Korg OASYS 88
* Freehand Systems Music Pad Pro
* Muse Receptor
* Synthesizers.com Custom Modular Synth
* Haken Continuum Fingerboard
* (2)Roland V-Synth XT
* Lap Steel Guitar
* Mackie 1604VLZ Pro Mixer
* APS Power backup
* Glyph and Iomega Hard drives

Discography

Solo albums

* Arrival (Cassette) (1988)
* Listen (CD) (1993)
* Secrets of the Muse (CD) (1997)
* Resonance (CD) (1999)
* Feeding the Wheel (CD) (2001)
* 4NYC (CD) (2002)
* Christmas Sky (CD) (2002)
* Rhythm of Time (CD) (2004)
* Notes on a Dream (CD) (2009)

With Dream Theater

* Metropolis, Pt. 2: Scenes From a Memory (CD) (1999)
* Live Scenes From New York (DVD/3CD) (2001)
* Six Degrees of Inner Turbulence (2CD) (2002)
* Train of Thought (CD) (2003)
* Live at Budokan (2DVD/3CD) (2004)
* Octavarium (CD) (2005)
* SCORE (2DVD/3CD) (2006)
* Systematic Chaos (CD) (2007)
* Black Clouds & Silver Linings (CD; 3CD/DVD) (2009)

Project Albums

* Rudess/Morgenstein Project (CD) (1997)
* An Evening with John Petrucci and Jordan Rudess (CD) (2001)
* Rudess/Morgenstein Project - The Official Bootleg (CD) (2001)

With Liquid Tension Experiment

* Liquid Tension Experiment (CD) (1998)
* Liquid Tension Experiment 2 (CD) (1999)

Guest Appearance

* Vinnie Moore - Time Odyssey (1988)
* Noirin Ni Riain - Celtic Soul (1996)
* Explorers Club - Age Of Impact (1998)
* Rhonda Larson - Free as a bird (1999)
* Paul Winter and The Earth Band - Journey With The Sun (2000)
* Scott McGill - Addition by Subtraction (2001)
* Prefab Sprout - The Gunman And Other Stories (2001)
* David Bowie - Heathen (2002)
* Jupiter - Echo and Art (2003)
* Neal Morse - ? (2005)
* Daniel J - Losing Time (2005)
* Steven Wilson - Insurgentes (2008)
* Neil Zaza - When Gravity Fails (Not yet released)

Other

* Speedway Boulevard - Speedway Boulevard (CD) (1981)
* Steinway to Heaven - Chopin’s “Revolutionary Etude (Op. 10, No. 12)” (1996)

Source : last.fm

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