We're thrilled to announce that Jordan Rudess of the progressive rock/metal band Dream Theater is featured on the upcoming Symphony North release!
Jordan and I have been friends a long time, sharing music, meals, and quite a lot more over the years. Early in 2018, as I began composing for The Bell Ringer, I had an idea: Why not ask Jordan to play on the record? Jordan has a busy schedule, but he kindly agreed.
One piece, in particular, seemed to make sense, too. A new rendition of an old Christmas carol favorite that I had written a frame around and on the main tune re-tooled it with a bluesy feel--a piano/voice song that a master pianist could really do something with. And I have to say, what Jordan did with my song is nothing short of amazing!
Can't wait for you guys to hear it!
And if you don't know much about Jordan, here are some details you won't want to miss:
Voted “Best Keyboardist of All Time” by Music Radar Magazine, Jordan Rudess is best known as the keyboardist/multi-instrumentalist extraordinaire for platinum-selling Grammy- nominated prog rock band, Dream Theater. At nine, he entered the Juilliard 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 counsel of his parents and tutors, he turned away from classical piano and tried his hand as a solo progressive rock keyboardist.
After performing in various projects during the 1980s, he gained international 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 that took notice of Rudess were The Dixie Dregs and Dream Theater, both of whom invited him to join.
In 2010, Rudess composed “Explorations for Keyboard and Orchestra,” his first classical composition. It was premiered in Venezuela on November 19, 2010 by the Chacao Youth Symphony Orchestra and guest conductor Eren Başbuğ. Rudess played all of the keyboard and synthesizer parts. A full symphonic recording of Explorations was released in December 2014 played by Poland’s Sinfonia Consonus.
Jordan’s interest in state of the art keyboard controllers is another area of his career in which he has achieved success. Jordan owns the successful App development company Wizdom Music, which has developed award-winning apps including: MorphWiz, SampleWiz, Geo Synthesizer, SpaceWiz, SketchWiz, Tachyon, Explores, EarWiz, JordanTron, HarmonyWiz, and GeoShred. MorphWiz won the first ever Billboard award for Best Music Creation App. Wizdom Music has also built apps for Intel, Microsoft and RIM.
He is Chief Music Officer at CME Music, creators of the acclaimed XKey mobile keyboard, as well as the Director of Music Experience for the London-based technology company, Roli Labs, creators of the Seaboard. Jordan has had the honor of being the keynote speaker at MacWorld, Microsoft Build Developer Convention and Project BBQ. In addition, he is the author of 2 keyboard technique books including his latest, “Total Keyboard Wizardry: A Technique and Improvisation Workbook”. Musicians all over the world subscribe to Rudess’ Online Music Conservatory, which offers a full range of courses in everything from harmony and rhythm to improvisation, ear training and technique.
So, whether you already know about Jordan and Dream Theater or if they're both new to you, trust me, his talent is rare; he's quite simply one of the best keyboard players currently working. And we couldn't be happier that he chose to be a part of what we're doing here at Symphony North.
That's it for now! Stay tuned for more!