The Keytar is the bastard offspring of a keyboard and a guitar, well actually it’s just a keyboard with a handle. The instrument was pretty cutting edge when it came out but shortly after it became kind of a laughing stock. Some bands never let go and one of the dorkiest instruments of all time has enjoyed a surge in popularity in recent years. Here’s a few bands who make the Keytar cool, followed by a video of me schooling The Morning After‘s Brian in a Keytar showdown.
My band The Russian Futurists travelled to Japan with Toronto band Woodhands and it was on that trip that I got to witness the fury of the Keytar. Dan Werb (keytar) now plays in Ark Analog while drummer Paul Banwatt plays in The Rural Alberta Advantage.
This Brooklyn duo is another example of badass Keytar usage. I first saw them at Sneaky Dees and they destroyed the place with distorted Keytar madness and a sweaty dance party.
Everyone thinks of the hit song “Whip It” when they hear the name Devo but that is actually a pretty tame song for them. The bands roots lie in punk and no-wave and they’re a lot cooler than that song would lead you to believe. Poor quality but awesome performance on Letterman.
Bobby Brown is one of the last true R&B gangstas. He’s always been a bad dude (even in New Edition) but his thugged-out behaviour would make current R&B singers run for the hills (ok maybe not R Kelly). Check out the sexy Keytarist in his backing band.
Here is a clip of Brian and I butchering the keytar we borrowed from Toronto band Goodnight Sunrise.