Roland on Stage with American Idol


Los Angeles, CA, March 27, 2013 — Season 12 ofAmerican Idol is well underway, with a new season of contestants vying to reach the top spot and international stardom. Led by Music Director Ray Chew, the Idol house band backs up every Idolperformer on live television, covering an enormous range of musical styles to perfection throughout the year. Performing before TV audiences of 20 million and beyond is a pressure-packed gig. To help achieve the musical excellence that audiences have come to expect from this top rated show, keyboardist Russell Graham and drummer Rex Hardy Jr. rely on Roland instruments to instantly deliver the top-level sounds and versatility they need every time.

In his duties as second keyboardist on Idol, Russell Graham uses two JUPITER-80 synthesizers, plus a VP-770 Vocal & Ensemble Keyboard for vocoder sounds. “Over the course of the past year I’ve come to lean very heavily on the JUPITERs, not only for their sound quality and sonic richness, but also for the speed of programming,” he said. “I find the touchscreen navigation to be extremely intuitive and well thought out. I can do simple tweaks quickly, or I can go a few levels deeper and really get ‘under the hood’ of the sound.”

Drummer Rex Hardy Jr. employs the flagship TD-30KV V-Pro Series V-Drums set while working onIdol. In addition to its great feel, he loves the ability to have quick and easy access to an incredible variety of drum and percussion sounds. “Using the Roland TD-30 gave me more versatility with sounds,” he said. “Considering we play so many different styles of music on Idol, the TD-30 allows me to explore all types of sounds and feels that make each song sound authentic.”

Rex has expanded his TD-30KV with an additional PD-108-BC V-Pad for a side snare, plus a PDX-8 V-Pad for even more triggering options. “I have three to four main kits that I’ve set up to fit what we normally do on Idol,” he said. “There are a few times where I may have to set up an ’80s rock kit or electronic disco kit, depending on the songs week to week. Being able to have options is amazing!”

To learn more about Rex and Russell and the Roland gear they use to perform on American Idol, visit the Roland U.S. Blog or watch them perform live during the show!

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About Roland Corporation:
Roland Corporation is a leading manufacturer and distributor of electronic musical instruments, including keyboards and synthesizers, guitar products, electronic percussion, digital recording equipment, amplifiers, audio processors, and multimedia products. With more than 40 years of musical instrument development, Roland sets the standard in music technology for the world to follow. For more information, visit