Keith Emerson

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Keith Noel Emerson (born 2 November 1944, Todmorden, West Yorkshire) is a British keyboard player and composer. Formerly a member of the Keith Emerson Trio, John Brown's Bodies, The T-Bones, V.I.P.s, P.P. Arnold's backing band, and The Nice (which evolved from P.P. Arnold's band), he started Emerson, Lake & Palmer (ELP), one of the early supergroups, in 1970. Following the breakup of ELP, circa 1979, Emerson had modest success with Emerson, Lake & Powell in the 1980s. ELP reunited during the early 90s. Emerson also reunited The Nice in 2002 for a tour. An album titled Keith Emerson Band Featuring Marc Bonilla was released in Aug/Sept 2008.



Emerson grew up in the seaside resort of Worthing, West Sussex, England. As a child, he learned western classical music, from which he derived a lot of inspiration to create his own style, combining classical music, jazz, and rock themes. Emerson became intrigued with the Hammond organ after hearing jazz organist Jack McDuff perform "Rock Candy" and it subsequently became his instrument of choice for performing in the late 60s. This blending of elements is illustrated in his participation in the 1969 Music From Free Creek "supersession" project, where Emerson performs with drummer Mitch Mitchell and bassist Chuck Rainey covering, among other tracks, the Eddie Harris instrumental "Freedom Jazz Dance".

In 1969, Emerson incorporated the Moog modular synthesizer into his battery of keyboards. While other artists such as The Beatles and The Rolling Stones had used the Moog in studio recordings, Emerson was the first artist to tour with one.

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