Rick Wakeman

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Richard Christopher Wakeman (born 18 May 1949) is an English keyboard player, composer, and songwriter. He is known for being the keyboardist for progressive rock band Yes, as the keyboardist for Ozzy Osbourne, his solo career, and later as a contributor to the BBC Television comedy show Grumpy Old Men.

He had classical piano training and was a pioneer in the use of electronic keyboards and in the use of a rock band in combination with orchestra and choir.[citation needed] He hosted a regular radio show on Planet Rock until December 2010. Throughout his solo career, Wakeman has produced over 100 solo albums that have sold more than 50 million copies.[1] In November 2010, Wakeman was awarded the Spirit of Prog award at the annual Marshall Classic Rock Roll of Honour Awards.[2]


Early life

Rick Wakeman was born on 18 May 1949 in the west London suburb of Northolt to Cyril Frank and Mildred Helen Wakeman.[3][4] He attended Wood End Infants School in 1954, followed by Drayton Manor Grammar School in 1959.[5] He purchased his first electronic keyboard at the age of 12.[6] In 1968, Wakeman secured a place at the Royal College of Music, where he studied piano, clarinet, orchestration and modern music. He left a year later in favour of session music work.

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