Again, year by year, in an attempt to document all the keyboards the band used, AMAP, including settings, presets, etc. I don't count the stylophone here since it's played with a pen rather than fingers.
1971-1974: Hammond C-3 organs (Liar
and Now I'm Here
). Anybody could've played them. They were housed at most studios used by the band including De Lane Lea and Trident.
1975: A Wurlitzer EP-200 electric piano on You're My Best Friend
. It's sometimes been incorrectly referred to as a 'Fender Rhodes', which is a generonym.
1979: I suspect an e-piano was used for SASS
(middle-eight) since no synth in that era could quite make that sound. And of course, this is the year they began using keyboard synths: Oberheim OBX analogue-subtractive.
1980: Roland VP-330 for A Human Body
(the vocoder). On stage, Dr May played an OBX in Flash's Theme
(also video and of course the recording of the albums). Organ on Wedding
1981: OBX on stage by Fred and Brian, Jupiter 8 in their North American leg. No idea about Venezuela... As for Under Pressure
, it could either be the OBX or the Jupiter 8, and there's an organ (an actual one) as well. I suspect an e-piano on Cool Cat
but I'm not sure. I suppose Roger's solo album was done with mostly those two keyboards plus the VP-330 (which also had some nice strings).
1982: OBX and Jupiter 8 (most bass-lines are on the latter as well as the arpeggiator on Las Palabras de Amor
). There's also an OBX-A played by Morgan Fisher on tour, they could've bought it during or after the HS sessions. The synth solo on Life Is Real
is the Roland; for Action this Day
, it's definitely not the Jupiter, but I don't know if it's the OBX-A either, since that's the one Morgan played on stage and the solo doesn't sound as 'rich' as on the album. Maybe they used a sampler instead...
1983: The band probably replaced the OBX by the OBX-A for good, but kept using the Jupiter 8 for most things in both 'Strnage Frontier' and Brian's 'Starfleet Project' (played by Fred Mandel). New items: a Fairlight CMI-III sampler/workstation (Machines
), a Kurzweil K-250 (orchestral hits on KPTOW
extended version) and perhaps an OB-8 later on. For Break Free
, Madel played a Jupiter 8.
1984: On tour, Spike used the Jupiter 8 and two OBX-A's as well as a Yamaha CP-80 electric grand piano. Freddie's solo album was mostly done with K-250 and Fairllight. I don't know what was used by Rog for Thank God It's Christmas
but whatever it was sounds fantastic.
1985: They got a DX-7 which was used for many things since for e-pianos (OYOL, RMF, MBDM
), some strings (WWTLF, AKOM, OV, TSMGO, Scandal, WIAI
outro) and probably some more stuff. At Musicland Studios during the making of OV
you can see a Jupiter 8, a K-250 and a Fairlight. And I think there's also an Emulator II.
1986: Live - Emulator II+, DX-7 (x2), Jupiter 8. In the studio, probably the same as '85.
1987 - 1988: Roland D-50 and Emulator II+ (or III?) for most things. I suspect IWIA
comes from the Emulator since the DX-7 strings don't quite sound like that.
1989-1991: The Korg M1 became their main synth (Bijou, Mother Love, I Can't Live With You, Slightly Mad, Don't Try So Hard...
), but I suppose they used other things as well (e.g. Prophet, Kurzweil...).
1993-1995: Ensoniq ASR-10, Roland JD-800 and maybe some digital pianos (Too Much Love, My Life Has Been Saved
I also know they had a Kawai e-piano they sold to The Alarm in 1985. Was it ever used? Hard to tell.
Additions, corrections, etc, are appreciated.
John hated Hot Space. Fred's favourite singer was not Paul Rodgers. Roger didn't compose 'Innuendo.' Witness testimonies are often inaccurate. Wales is not in England. 'Bo Rhap' hasn't got 180 voices.