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Keyed Up

Don Airey at the Westfalenhalle, Dortmund, Jun 10, 2009. Photo: Nick Soveiko CC-BY-NC-SA.

Don Airey’s new solo album is set to be released in February. Full press release follows:

‘Keyed Up’, the new studio album from renowned keyboard maestro Don Airey will be released through Music Theories Recordings, a division of Mascot Label Group on 17 February 2014 [Cat. No. MTR 7408 2]. This is Don’s fourth studio set, and his third to be released through the label. The album features many of Don’s friends and peers and, sadly, represents one of the very last times that Gary Moore recorded a guitar part. He – a long time associate of Don – features on ‘Adagio’ and also on ‘Mini Suite’, which is dedicated to his memory.

Don said, “I loved having the responsibility of pulling together the sessions at Chapel Studios. The album was basically laid down live, no overdubs, no redoing – we don’t do filesharing. There are wonderful musicians on this record, I call them ‘the band that never was’, as it’s a true pleasure to work together but opportunities are so limited. Being in a band like Deep Purple, especially with the success we’ve had this year, should be enough; but I need another outlet. Some of the music is straight ahead rock, a tribute to where I’ve come from, but there’s variety – ‘Blue Rondo A La Turk’ was the piece I played on my first radio performance aged 14. There are plenty of weird sounds too, most from the Hammond; a lot of it wasn’t planned, I just got carried away with the moment!” The band on this record was Don Airey on Keyboards, Darrin Mooney [Primal Scream] on drums, Laurence Cottle on Bass, Rob Harris [Jamiroquai] on guitar and Carl Sentance [Vocals]. Guest performers include the aforementioned Gary Moore, Graham Bonnet, Simon MacBride, Alex Meadows and Tim Goodyer. The engineer was the amazing Ewan Davies.

The tracklisting of the album draws from throughout Don’s career and also takes in some of his influences, with twists upon familiar themes. Don has performed with a host of the most important bands in the rock canon, from Cozy Powell to Colosseum II to to Sabbath to Rainbow to Ozzy Osbourne and of course, ultimately to Deep Purple, via sessions for innumerable peers and this experience and panache illuminates ‘Keyed Up’. This is an album that wears its virtuosity easily and never loses sight of its sense of fun, ‘Claire D’Loon’ anyone? ‘Difficult To Cure 2013’ is a version of The Rainbow favourite re-arranged to include Beethoven’s double fugue, whilst the ‘Godbox’ referenced in the seventh track was Fats Wallers’ nickname for the Hammond organ.

What: Don Airey — Keyed Up
When: February 17, 2014
Where: Music Theories Recordings
Track listing:

  1. 3 In The Morning
  2. Beat The Retreat
  3. Blue Rondo A La Turk
  4. Solomon’s Song
  5. Claire D’Loon
  6. Flight Of Inspiration
  7. Inside
  8. The Godbox
  9. Difficult To Cure 2013
  10. Mini Suite
    a) Lament/Jig
    b) Restless Spirit
    c) What Went Wrong
  11. Adagio
  12. Grace


  • Don Airey — keyboards
  • Darrin Mooney — drums
  • Laurence Cottle — bass
  • Rob Harris — guitar
  • Carl Sentance — vocals

Thanks to Chris Hewlett for the info.

11 Comments to “Keyed Up”:

  1. 1
    al says:

    cannot wait for this one Don!

  2. 2
    Dpfender says:

    Great to hear. To have additional playing by the greatest guitarist ever is an unexpected surprise.

  3. 3
    Les Hedger says:

    I will get this!!

  4. 4
    purplerapture says:

    Someone wanna clue in Dpfender, Don Airey plays keyboards, Steve Morse plays the guitar, LOL.

  5. 5
    Tracy(Zero the Hero)Heyder says:

    As much as I am looking forward to this release, I am especially exited about the 2 songs featuring Gary Moore. Thanks Don for thinking about him and showing your appreciation of working with him and even dedicating ‘Mini Suite’ in his memory. 2014 brings us some great stuff. Flying Colors 2 now this. What next???


  6. 6
    MacGregor says:

    Yes, I will be very interested in the Gary Moore tracks. Moore & Airey go way back to the Colosseum 2 band days. The late 70’s if my memory serves me well, a very progressive & fusion sort of band. I always wondered why Moore didn’t ever tread that path again, he seemed to abandon that style of playing & venture into the more straight ahead guitar playing, that he proved to be very successful at! Cheers.

  7. 7
    Dave Smith says:

    Someone wanna clue in purplerapture, Don Airey plays keyboards, Gary moore plays guitar (on 2 tracks on this album) LOL
    I believe that’s what dpfender was stating… : )

  8. 8
    Dpfender says:

    Thanks for clearing that up, Dave. I don’t understand what PR thought I meant?!

  9. 9
    Mike Bowen says:

    I am sitting listening to the album now and to say I’m impressed is an understatement. I’m a massive Colosseum II fan, Electric Savage was one of the first lp’s I ever bought. For years I hoped Don & Gary might revisit that era and to hear this new version of Lament is very special indeed. I admit I had a lump in my throat. Thank you so much Don, this really is brilliant.

  10. 10
    Hristo says:

    7. Inside
    8. The Godbox

    This is actually one song named “Inside The Godbox”… so 11 songs not 12 🙂

  11. 11
    Gabriel O. Gonzalez says:

    Excellent album! Brilliant music forever!!

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