Difference between revisions of "Rhodes piano"

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[[Image:Rhodes Piano - Stage Mark I - Seventy Three (1970).jpg|thumb|256x256px|Mark I, 73-key "stage" model, 1970.]]
 
[[Image:Rhodes Piano - Stage Mark I - Seventy Three (1970).jpg|thumb|256x256px|Mark I, 73-key "stage" model, 1970.]]
  
The '''Rhodes piano''' is an early electromechanical piano invented by Harold Rhodes which saw a lot of use in 1970s jazz, soul, and rock music. Like a conventional piano, keys are pressed which moves a hammer, however, unlike a piano with strings, the hammer strikes a thin metal tines which are amplified via an electromagnetic pickup plugged into an external keyboard amplifier and speaker. This gives the instrument a very unique sound.
+
The '''Rhodes piano''' is an early electromechanical piano invented by Harold Rhodes which saw a lot of use in 1970s jazz, soul, and rock music. Like a conventional piano, keys are pressed which moves a hammer, however, unlike a piano with strings, the hammer strikes a thin metal tines which are amplified via an electromagnetic pickup plugged into an external keyboard amplifier and speaker. This gives the instrument a very unique sound that also is slightly different for each instrument due to different levels of maintenance.
  
Harold Rhodes produced a small teaching piano in 1946, and, in 1959, he started a joint-venture compant with Fender and build a 32-key "Piano Bass." In 1965, the company was sold to CBS, and they released the full-sized 73-key Mark I model. In 1970, a stage model was made, then, in 1979, the Mark II was released. The Rhodes fell out of favor in the 1980s as synthesizers became more popular (the Yamaha DX7 even had a patch that simulated the Rhodes), and the last model to be made under CBS was the Mark V in 1984. In 1985, the company was closed down and later sold to [[Roland]] in 1987 who released the MK 80 which Harold Rhodes did not contribute to or approve of. Harold Rhodes bought the rights from Roland in 1997, but, due to poor health was unable to release a new model and died in 2002. The Mark 7 was released in 2007.
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The piano was developed by Harold Rhodes who based it on a small teaching piano he built in 1946. In 1959, Rhodes entered a joint-venture with [[Fender]] and built a 32-key "Piano Bass." In 1965, the company was sold to CBS, and they released the full-sized 73-key Mark I model. In 1970, a stage model was made, and in 1972 an 88-key model was made. Then, in 1979, the Mark II was released. The Rhodes fell out of favor in the 1980s as synthesizers became more popular (the Yamaha DX7 even had a patch that simulated the Rhodes), and the last model to be made under CBS was the Mark V in 1984. In 1985, the company was closed down and later sold to [[Roland]] in 1987 who released the MK 80 which Harold Rhodes did not contribute to or approve of. Harold Rhodes bought the rights from Roland in 1997, but, due to poor health was unable to release a new model and died in 2002. The Mark 7 was released in 2007.
  
Although I grew up in a family where music was frequently playing, nobody was trained in instrumentation, so I never knew much about the technical details of music, but I did listen to a lot of classic rock so I heard the Rhodes quite a bit. I remember seeing the term "Rhodes" on synthesizers, but I didn't know what that meant. As an adult, I noticed that really enjoyed the sound of electric pianos, and, after seeing the term Rhodes again at age 39, I decided to research it. Upon learning about the instrument, I sought out other songs that used it and got a better feel for the timbre of the keyboard.
+
Although I grew up in a family where music was frequently played and heard plenty of songs which used the Rhodes piano, nobody was trained in instrumentation, so I never knew much about the technical details of music or how to identify the sound. I remember seeing the term "Rhodes" on synthesizers, but I didn't know what that meant. As an adult, I noticed that really enjoyed the sound of electric pianos, and, after seeing the term Rhodes again, I decided to research it to get a better ear for the keyboard's timbre.
  
 
==Songs==
 
==Songs==
Songs in this table feature the Rhodes piano.
+
Songs in this table feature the Rhodes piano. Songs almost never credit the specific model of Rhodes, and frequently use the term "electric piano," which makes it difficult to distinguish the Rhodes from other electronic keyboards like the [[Wurlitzer]].
  
 
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{| class="wikitable sortable"

Revision as of 13:10, 14 June 2019

Mark I, 73-key "stage" model, 1970.

The Rhodes piano is an early electromechanical piano invented by Harold Rhodes which saw a lot of use in 1970s jazz, soul, and rock music. Like a conventional piano, keys are pressed which moves a hammer, however, unlike a piano with strings, the hammer strikes a thin metal tines which are amplified via an electromagnetic pickup plugged into an external keyboard amplifier and speaker. This gives the instrument a very unique sound that also is slightly different for each instrument due to different levels of maintenance.

The piano was developed by Harold Rhodes who based it on a small teaching piano he built in 1946. In 1959, Rhodes entered a joint-venture with Fender and built a 32-key "Piano Bass." In 1965, the company was sold to CBS, and they released the full-sized 73-key Mark I model. In 1970, a stage model was made, and in 1972 an 88-key model was made. Then, in 1979, the Mark II was released. The Rhodes fell out of favor in the 1980s as synthesizers became more popular (the Yamaha DX7 even had a patch that simulated the Rhodes), and the last model to be made under CBS was the Mark V in 1984. In 1985, the company was closed down and later sold to Roland in 1987 who released the MK 80 which Harold Rhodes did not contribute to or approve of. Harold Rhodes bought the rights from Roland in 1997, but, due to poor health was unable to release a new model and died in 2002. The Mark 7 was released in 2007.

Although I grew up in a family where music was frequently played and heard plenty of songs which used the Rhodes piano, nobody was trained in instrumentation, so I never knew much about the technical details of music or how to identify the sound. I remember seeing the term "Rhodes" on synthesizers, but I didn't know what that meant. As an adult, I noticed that really enjoyed the sound of electric pianos, and, after seeing the term Rhodes again, I decided to research it to get a better ear for the keyboard's timbre.

Songs

Songs in this table feature the Rhodes piano. Songs almost never credit the specific model of Rhodes, and frequently use the term "electric piano," which makes it difficult to distinguish the Rhodes from other electronic keyboards like the Wurlitzer.

Title Artist Player Published
Angela (Theme from Taxi) Bob James Bob James 1978-09-12
Babe Styx Dennis DeYoung 1979-09-??
Dreams Fleetwood Mac Christine McVie 1977-03-24
Everything In Its Right Place (synthesized?) Radiohead Jonny Greenwood or Philip Selway 2000-10-02
Get Back The Beatles Billy Preston 1969-04-11
Just the Way You Are (synthesized?) Billy Joel Billy Joel 1977-09-29
Killing Me Softly With His Song Roberta Flack Roberta Flack 1973-08-01
My Slumbering Heart Rilo Kiley Jenny Lewis 2002-10-01
Riders On the Storm The Doors Ray Manzarek 1971-04-??
Shake a Tail Feather (The Blues Brothers soundtrack) Ray Charles Ray Charles 1980-06-20

Media

Links

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