Jordan Rudess is an American progressive rock keyboardist who is best known as a member of the progressive metal band Dream Theater. In addition, Rudess is well recognized as a member of the Magna Carta-signed band Liquid Tension Experiment.
Keyboard Magazine wrote about him:
“Calling Jordan Rudess a legend is an understatement.”
He was born on November 4, 1956, in Great Neck, New York, USA. Jordan was raised in a Jewish family in Great Neck, New York.
His piano talent was recognized by his second-grade teacher. During an interview, Rudess said:
”I would go in and be very attracted to the piano and play – and one day the teacher called up my mother and said “Jordan is playing the piano very beautifully” and my mother was like “what are you talking about he doesn’t play the piano.”
Jordan later added:
”The teacher was like “yes he does, he plays” so – I started in the classroom and then, when my mother found out that I was starting to play it, naturally she bought a piano and I started taking lessons.”
At age 9, Jordan entered Juilliard School of Music (a performing arts conservatory that is located in the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts on the Upper West Side of Manhattan, NYC), taking part in the Pre-College Division for classical piano training.
Jordan was part of a studio project assembled by bubblegum pop impresarios Jeffry Katz and Jerry Kasenetz, the people behind The 1910 Fruitgum Company (the group’s Billboard Hot 100 hits were “May I Take A Giant Step”, “Simon Says”, “Goody Goody Gumdrops”, “1, 2, 3, Red Light”, “Special Delivery”, “Indian Giver”, and “The Train”) and The Ohio Express.
In 1994, Rudess joined the Dregs, and he formed a “power duo” with Rod Morgenstein (an American music educator and drummer who is best known for his work with the jazz fusion band Dixie Dregs and with the rock band Winger). The chemistry between the two was so strong during this jam that they decided to release a studio and a live record.
Before joining Dream Theater in January 1999, Rudess connected with bassist Tony Levin of King Crimson and Peter Gabriel, Mike Portnoy and John Petrucci of Dream Theater, and recorded 2 albums with “Liquid Tension Experiment.”
Jordan has been the full-time keyboardist in ”Dream Theater” since the recording of 1999’s Metropolis Pt. 2: Scenes from a Memory. Rudess has recorded 9 other studio albums with ”Dream Theater,” including:
- 2019’s Distance over Time;
- 2016’s The Astonishing;
- 2013’s Dream Theater;
- 2011’s A Dramatic Turn of Events;
- 2009’s Black Clouds & Silver Linings;
- 2007’s Systematic Chaos;
- 2005’s Octavarium;
- 2003’s Train of Thought;
- 2002’s Six Degrees of Inner Turbulence.
Moreover, Jordan has appeared on the live albums Live at Budokan, Live Scenes From New York, Score, Live at Luna Park, Chaos in Motion, and Breaking the Fourth Wall.
In 2010, Jordan launched the software company Wizdom Music geared toward creating tools and applications for the enhanced creation of music.
On September 24, 2010, he released the song “Krump,” which was an electronica “single” released on iTunes. It featured the use of the new Roland Gaia, Roland’s more recent keyboard.
In 2011, Jordan was voted “Best Keyboardist of All Time” by Music Radar Magazine.
On October 28, 2013, Rudess appeared on the Ayreon album, The Theory of Everything.
Some of his guest appearances are:
- Steven Wilson – Insurgentes (2008-2009);
- Ricky Garcia – Let Sleeping Dogs Lie (2008);
- K3 – Under A Spell (2007);
- Behold… the Arctopus – Skullgrid (2007);
- John-Luke Addison – Multiple Valences;
- Neil Zaza – When Gravity Fails (2006);
- Daniel J – Losing Time (2005);
- Neal Morse – ? (2005);
- Jupiter – Echo and Art (2003);
- David Bowie – Heathen (2002);
- Prefab Sprout – The Gunman And Other Stories (2001);
- Scott McGill – Addition by Subtraction (2001);
- Paul Winter and The Earth Band – Journey With The Sun (2000);
- Rhonda Larson – Free as a Bird (1999);
- Kip Winger – This Conversation Seems Like A Dream (1997);
- Nóirín Ní Riain – Celtic Soul (1996);
- Annie Haslam – Blessing In Disguise (1994);
- Tom Coster – Did Jah Miss Me? (1989);
- Vinnie Moore – Time Odyssey (1988).
His live albums are:
- 2019 – Distance Over Time
- 2014 – Breaking the Fourth Wall
- 2013 – Live at Luna Park
- 2008 – Chaos in Motion
- 2006 – Score
- 2004 – Live at Budokan
- 2001 – Live Scenes from New York
His studio albums are:
- 2016 – The Astonishing;
- 2013 – Dream Theater;
- 2011 – A Dramatic Turn of Events;
- 2009 – Black Clouds & Silver Linings;
- 2007 – Systematic Chaos;
- 2005 – Octavarium;
- 2003 – Train of Thought;
- 2002 – Six Degrees of Inner Turbulence;
- 1999 – Metropolis Part 2: Scenes from a Memory.
His solo albums are:
- 2009 – Notes On A Dream;
- 2007 – The Road Home;
- 2006 – Prime Cuts (compilation);
- 2004 – Rhythm Of Time;
- 2002 – 4NYC (live);
- 2001 – Feeding the Wheel;
- 2000 – Unplugged (live);
- 1999 – Resonance;
- 1997 – Secrets Of The Muse;
- 1993 – Listen;
- 1988 – Arrival.
Jordan Rudess is married to Danielle Rudess.
He said that his favorite bands include – G.Flores, Aphex Twin, Autechre, Jimi Hendrix, King Crimson, Emerson Lake and Palmer, Pink Floyd, Genesis, Yes, and Gentle Giant. His influences as a keyboardist are Patrick Moraz, Rick Wakeman, and Keith Emerson.
In 2010, he composed “Explorations for Keyboard and Orchestra,” his first classical composition. This composition was premiered in Venezuela on November 19, 2010, by guest conductor Eren Başbuğ and the Chacao Youth Symphony Orchestra.
After the release of his Listen solo album, Rudess gained international attention in 1994 when he was voted “Best New Talent” in the Keyboard Magazine readers’ poll.
Jordan has made guest appearances on albums for singers and rock legends like Kip Winger, Vinnie Moore, and David Bowie.
Jordan Rudess – Net Worth
Rudess earned most of his wealth from selling his albums, sponsors, and selling tickets to his concerts. Also, he has a YouTube channel that has more than 83,000 subscribers. In addition, Jordan sells merch on his website jordanrudess.com. Therefore, Jordan Rudess has an estimated net worth of $26 million.
READ THIS NEXT: Who is Richie Kotzen?