skip navigation
Keith Emerson

Keith Emerson

| VIEW ALL

TCM Messageboards
Post your comments here
ADD YOUR COMMENT>

share:

TCM Archive Materials VIEW ALL ARCHIVES (0)

Recent DVDs

Emerson, Lake & Palmer: 40th... Live reunion show from the Prog Rock trio consisting of Keith Emerson... more info $8.95was $19.95 Buy Now

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

A flamboyant but gifted performer, songwriter and arranger, keyboardist Keith Emerson's classically-influenced rock music was a cornerstone of the legendary progressive rock trio Emerson, Lake and Palmer (ELP), which enjoyed worldwide fame in the 1970s and beyond. Born Keith Noel Emerson in the West Yorkshire town of Todmorden, England on November 2, 1944, he was drawn to classical music and jazz from an early age, and despite the lack of any formal training, began playing in bands in his teenaged years. He enjoyed his first brush of fame in 1967 as the keyboardist and chief musical architect of the Nice, a psychedelic rock act that folded jazz and classical elements into its aggressive instrumental compositions. While with the band, Emerson developed his enduring reputation for stage theatrics and aggressive treatment of his Hammond organ, which he would later hone with ELP. Having reached what he believed to be his creative limits with the Nice in 1970, Emerson then teamed with King Crimson bassist Greg Lake and teenaged drummer Carl Palmer from Atomic Rooster to form ELP, which was arguably one of the most successful progressive rock bands of the 1970s. His pioneering use of the Moog synthesizer...

A flamboyant but gifted performer, songwriter and arranger, keyboardist Keith Emerson's classically-influenced rock music was a cornerstone of the legendary progressive rock trio Emerson, Lake and Palmer (ELP), which enjoyed worldwide fame in the 1970s and beyond. Born Keith Noel Emerson in the West Yorkshire town of Todmorden, England on November 2, 1944, he was drawn to classical music and jazz from an early age, and despite the lack of any formal training, began playing in bands in his teenaged years. He enjoyed his first brush of fame in 1967 as the keyboardist and chief musical architect of the Nice, a psychedelic rock act that folded jazz and classical elements into its aggressive instrumental compositions. While with the band, Emerson developed his enduring reputation for stage theatrics and aggressive treatment of his Hammond organ, which he would later hone with ELP. Having reached what he believed to be his creative limits with the Nice in 1970, Emerson then teamed with King Crimson bassist Greg Lake and teenaged drummer Carl Palmer from Atomic Rooster to form ELP, which was arguably one of the most successful progressive rock bands of the 1970s. His pioneering use of the Moog synthesizer anchored the band's signature sound, which merged precise instrumentation with epic-length originals and radical reinterpretations of classical pieces by Mussorgsky, Bartok and Alberto Ginastera. Emerson issued a solo single - a cover of Meade Lux Lewis' boogie-woogie number "Honky Tonk Train Blues" - to modest acclaim in 1976, but did not fully commence on a solo career until ELP disbanded in 1979. His first solo album, Honky, was a light-hearted tribute to West Indian sounds, and he recorded brooding scores for the American thriller "Nighthawks" (1981) and Italian horror films for director Dario Argento, among others. But his work with ELP remained his most popular music project, and in 1991, the band reformed for a pair of albums and world tours that lasted until a second breakup in 1998. Emerson toured and recorded with his own group, the Keith Emerson Band, as well as reunions with the Nice and Greg Lake, until a series of personal problems forced him to curtail his musical efforts. Health issues, including nerve damage to his hands and colon cancer, as well as financial woes and alcohol-related depression, contributed to his death on May 10, 2016 from a self-inflicted gunshot at his home in Santa Monica, California.

VIEW THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Filmographyclose complete filmography

CAST: (feature film)

1.
 Moog (2004)
VIEW THE FULL FILMOGRAPHY

Please support TCMDB by adding to this information.

Click here to contribute