Chris Martins Piano SOUND

jaik

New Coldplayer
Coldplayer
Joined
Mar 28, 2013
Messages
25
We often spoke about Chris' Piano - the Yamaha GT20 - in this forum.. It sends MIDI signals to the backstage, where a great piano sound is implemented.

At some threads we already discussed, that Native Instruments could be used for that. For my CP tribute band that we found some weeks ago, I use "The Giant" from NI, at other threads I read, the New York Grand Piano (also from NI) is used.

But yesterday I found this interesting link (2nd video):

http://link.brightcove.com/services/player/bcpid31183220001?bclid=31196924001&bctid=31268882001

After around 1 min, the friendly guy explains that they use a very untypical solution for Chris' piano sound. But unfortunately, he doesn't want to tell us anything else about the device...

Here are some pics:










Has anybody an idea, about which device we are talking here? Google hasn't got one single useful search result for "Mp 9000 rac"...

Cheers,
Jan
 

cheeetaz

Owner of a Phil signed ID
Coldplayer
Joined
Jan 11, 2012
Messages
2,846
Thanks for the video, interesting stuff.
 

patriklindgren42

Coldplayer
Coldplayer
Joined
Jul 9, 2013
Messages
69
That rack module is probably custom made and very old, but I think I know where his piano sound is coming from. Chris's acoustic live piano sound is probably coming from a Kawai Mp9000 Stagepiano, thats probably why it stands Mp9000 rac on that strange thing. This Kawai stagepianos has a couple of concert grand piano sounds. Miller said that Martin's piano sound came from an old keyboard he used and thats the Kawai I guess.
You can also hear him play this keyboard in 2000 right before they released Parachutes just search on youtube when they play Trouble. The only thing that is different today when they got this sound transfered into the rack so he could play it on the Yamaha GT20s is that it is a little bit more compressed and has more sustain & reverb but as you probably can hear it's the same sound. Maybe you can get this sound on a Mp6or Mp10 as well.
Hope this will help!
Cheers!
Patrik
 
Last edited:

Coldplayfan1294

Registered Coldplay Fan
Coldplayer
Joined
Jun 6, 2011
Messages
577
That rack module is probably cumstom made or very old, but I think I know where his piano sound is coming from. Chris's acoustic live piano sound is probably coming from a Kawai Mp9000/Mp9500 Stagepiano, thats probably why it stands Mp9000 rac on that strange thing. This Kawai stagepianos has a couple of concert grand piano sounds. Miller said that Martin's piano sound came from an old keyboard he used and thats the Kawai I guess.
You can also hear him play this keyboard in 2000 right before they released Parachutes just search on youtube when they play Trouble. The only thing that is different today when they got this sound transfered into the rack so he could play it on the Yamaha GT20s is that it is a little bit more compressed and has more sustain & reverb but as you probably can hear it's the same sound. I even think you can get this sound on a Mp6or Mp10 as well.
Hope this will help!
Cheers!
Patrik
The irony of that is hilarious. So Chris plays a digital Yamaha upright, that emits the sound of a Kawai -- two brands in direct competition with each other. I checked out some MP9000 covers on youtube and it does sound extremely similar to what you're saying, so nice job.
 

jaik

New Coldplayer
Coldplayer
Joined
Mar 28, 2013
Messages
25
From my first view: Seems you are right here :) Thanks a lot!

So that seems for me, as if I have to stay at my "Giant Piano" sound at first... But it's a short time til christmas ;)

If anyone has an idea / solution how this sound could be created by a computer via MIDI, I would be really thrilled. But from my point of view - correct me if I'm wrong - the only way would be resampling the piano...

Cheers,
Jan
 

nathondetroit

Coldplayer
Coldplayer
Joined
Jan 27, 2011
Messages
135
Correct me if I'm wrong, but this is a HUGE breakthrough, yeah?? If you search "Coldplay piano sound", you will find forum after forum going through the paces on this topic. In the end, everyone seems to say "It's an upright with a bit of reverb."

Chris plays the sound from a Kawai Mp9000 - End of story!

Thanks guys:)

P.S.

Does anyone else find it strange that Miller won't say the keyboard type but "Mp9000 Rac" is written right on the front?
 

nathondetroit

Coldplayer
Coldplayer
Joined
Jan 27, 2011
Messages
135
Mp9000 Examples

Just a few examples of Coldplay using the Kawai Mp9000:

Miller describes it as a "Fender Rhodes sized instrument". This is definitely what he was talking about:)

Trouble (Live @ Jools Holland 2000):

[ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=21s4PFNZoiw"]Coldplay - Trouble (Live Jools Holland 2000) - YouTube[/ame]

Trouble (Live @ Glastonbury 2000):

[ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HVldBcVEcK0"]Coldplay Trouble Live 2000 - YouTube[/ame]

Till Kingdom Come (Live in Toronto 2006, Twisted logic Tour):

[ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nBXvl7thiDM"]Coldplay - Till Kingdom Come & Ring Of Fire (Toronto 2006) HD - YouTube[/ame]

It's pretty funny that a keyboard from 1999 was the heart of the entire Viva Tour (And almost certainly MX too). It just goes to show that there's no point to getting caught up in gear, because even millionaires just find a simple sound they like and stick with it.
 

patriklindgren42

Coldplayer
Coldplayer
Joined
Jul 9, 2013
Messages
69
Im so glad that this was popular thread :)

jaik, I think there is a couple way of doing this. Kawai Mp9000s concert grand sound is sampled from a Kawai EX concert grand piano, so you can of course sample the sounds digital from the keyboard. Coldplay's Mp9000 piano has been auction out to the fans or something I think, but if they had a couple of them they maybe took the electronics from the keyboard and made a custom rack for it (like a compact keyboard without keys in a rack format if you know what I mean) or otherwise they just sampled it and inserted it into the rack with a computer written stripe where it stands Mp9000rac just to mark it ;).
http://www.kawai.de/mp9000_en.htm

Here is the way I did it: When I saw that the sound is based of a Kawai EX Concert Grand I searched for the best sample library for that instead of buy an ancient keyboard (but if I get my hands on one I probably buy it ;))
This is what i find http://acousticsamples.net/keys/kawai-ex-pro

I bought this plug in and player (it requires an iLok) and a started to tweak the sounds and now it sounds identical (depends on the various EQ setting Coldplay has on the liveshow) I added some ambience, Exciter, EQ and Compression.
So I now play my Coldplay songs with this sound Live on a sport bar once a week :)
 
Last edited:

nathondetroit

Coldplayer
Coldplayer
Joined
Jan 27, 2011
Messages
135
Im so glad that this was popular thread :)

jaik, I think there is a couple way of doing this. Kawai Mp9000s concert grand sound is sampled from a Kawai EX concert grand piano, so you can of course sample the sounds digital from the keyboard. Coldplay's Mp9000 piano has been auction out to the fans or something I think, but if they had a couple of them they maybe took the electronics from the keyboard and made a custom rack for it (like a compact keyboard without keys in a rack format if you know what I mean) or otherwise they just sampled it and inserted it into the rack with a computer written stripe where it stands Mp9000rac just to mark it ;).
'I have a friend called Dave Nally who is a complete genius… He is a guy who works for a company called Funky Junk in London and he gutted that keyboard for us and built us a couple of rack units. ' -Miller

You're exactly right. Its the actual instrument inside a custom rack, not a sampled version of the keyboard.
 

jaik

New Coldplayer
Coldplayer
Joined
Mar 28, 2013
Messages
25
Im so glad that this was popular thread :)

I bought this plug in and player (it requires an iLok) and a started to tweak the sounds and now it sounds identical (depends on the various EQ setting Coldplay has on the liveshow) I added some ambience, Exciter, EQ and Compression.
So I now play my Coldplay songs with this sound Live on a sport bar once a week :)
Sounds really really interesting... Would you show us an example? :)
 

patriklindgren42

Coldplayer
Coldplayer
Joined
Jul 9, 2013
Messages
69
It's really cool to have a stagepiano (Kawai Mp9000) in a rack format that goes to another Digital piano (Yamaha GT20) I guess Chris liked the hammer touch and look of the GT20.
You can hear that the sound has being a little processed over the years if you compare The Scientist live from Montreal 2002 and The Scientist Live from the Mylo Xyloto tour.
With my new Kawai EX Pro sample library I finally got the sound that reminds most of the sound from Live 2003 concert (A Rush Of Blod To The Head Tour) When I play Politik, The Scientist and Life Is For Living It Sounds kind of exact ;)
I think this have to do with the fact that Kawai Mp9000 is sampled from a Kawai EX Concert Grand and my new plugin player is also sampled from that same concert grand.
I just decreased keynoises, pedal noises to make it sound cleaner. Then I increased the tone, sustain, compression and added some exciter and a small concert hall reverb. I did some EQ as well, but very little to keep the whole 88 keys really balanced :)
I can upload a video when I use this sound in short. I have a youtubechannel, just search for "moonchild89" I have som Coldplay covers there. One has an original sampled Fix You organ and an explanation on how I did it, so you dont have to buy an old Korg Triton Rack ;) The piano I use is a Yamaha CP300, like the one Chris Martin used on absolute radio.
Cheers!
Patrik
 

Crss

Coldplayer
Coldplayer
Joined
Mar 1, 2013
Messages
59
since 2002 to MX Chris has used "New york concert grand (or Akoustik piano)" and "The Giant" from Kontakt, Native instruments, actually "Kawai Mp9000" is doesnt used by Chris.

The new york concert grand is used for all the songs on live shows and The Giant is used to play "Clocks".

If you compare the sounds of "new york concert and the giant" with the chris piano sound are the same.

The songs recorded on studio version, Chris doesnt use the NY and TG.
Example: The piano that you listen on "paradise" and "Lost?" is the "Berlin concert grand".

Look this:

w.ww.youtube.com/watch?v=GveC6rBN9pU
(AROBTTH era)

w.ww.youtube.com/watch?v=xVONtQleonw
(X&Y era)

w.ww.youtube.com/watch?v=Y1x9Gb6oDlY
(Viva era)

w.ww.youtube.com/watch?v=C_hWU_Ju6hs
w.ww.youtube.com/watch?v=6QrfcHoZa5Y
(MX era)

w.ww.youtube.com/watch?v=R4YTog-hOgU
(The giant)

(Delete the dots in the links)
In all the videos are the same piano sound, except clocks.

Download this piano sounds and test them.

:)
 

nathondetroit

Coldplayer
Coldplayer
Joined
Jan 27, 2011
Messages
135
since 2002 to MX Chris has used "New york concert grand (or Akoustik piano)" and "The Giant" from Kontakt, Native instruments, actually "Kawai Mp9000" is doesnt used by Chris.

The new york concert grand is used for all the songs on live shows and The Giant is used to play "Clocks".

If you compare the sounds of "new york concert and the giant" with the chris piano sound are the same.

The songs recorded on studio version, Chris doesnt use the NY and TG.
Example: The piano that you listen on "paradise" and "Lost?" is the "Berlin concert grand".

Download this piano sounds and test them.

:)
There are certainly many ways to get a similar sound. There are many threads on this topic, and software is the easiest way for players to match that sound. Unfortunately, this thread shows a video where Coldplay's piano technician reveals the hardware running Chris' rig. Have they tried other equipment at times? I'm sure, but this looks like their permanent set up. No software running Chris' piano.
 

patriklindgren42

Coldplayer
Coldplayer
Joined
Jul 9, 2013
Messages
69
since 2002 to MX Chris has used "New york concert grand (or Akoustik piano)" and "The Giant" from Kontakt, Native instruments, actually "Kawai Mp9000" is doesnt used by Chris.

The new york concert grand is used for all the songs on live shows and The Giant is used to play "Clocks".

If you compare the sounds of "new york concert and the giant" with the chris piano sound are the same.

The songs recorded on studio version, Chris doesnt use the NY and TG.
Example: The piano that you listen on "paradise" and "Lost?" is the "Berlin concert grand".

Look this:

w.ww.youtube.com/watch?v=GveC6rBN9pU
(AROBTTH era)

w.ww.youtube.com/watch?v=xVONtQleonw
(X&Y era)

w.ww.youtube.com/watch?v=Y1x9Gb6oDlY
(Viva era)

w.ww.youtube.com/watch?v=C_hWU_Ju6hs
w.ww.youtube.com/watch?v=6QrfcHoZa5Y
(MX era)

w.ww.youtube.com/watch?v=R4YTog-hOgU
(The giant)

(Delete the dots in the links)
In all the videos are the same piano sound, except clocks.

Download this piano sounds and test them.

:)
Check this links out:
[ame="[MEDIA=youtube]dA5WCdSgksM[/MEDIA]"]Behind The Eyes - YouTube[/ame]
[ame="[MEDIA=youtube]hNwaOkigevY[/MEDIA]"]It must have been love - Pianosolo - YouTube[/ame]

Someone that plays a Kawai Mp9000 with the concert grand patch and it is the same sound as Chris use.

Here are some clips of Chris with that sound trough his Yamaha GT20:
[ame="[MEDIA=youtube]hTTAyt0b6XA[/MEDIA]"]Coldplay (Chris Martin) - Life in Technicolor II live NRJ Awards (HD) - YouTube[/ame]
[ame="[MEDIA=youtube]vNWCryln7xM[/MEDIA]"]Coldplay (HD) - Life Is For Living (Glastonbury 2011) - YouTube[/ame]
[ame="[MEDIA=youtube]g0TAQ6w_j20[/MEDIA]"]CHRIS MARTIN - Waiting For A Superman - COLDPLAY - Lyrics - 1080p - YouTube[/ame]
 
Last edited by a moderator:

patriklindgren42

Coldplayer
Coldplayer
Joined
Jul 9, 2013
Messages
69
I think I cracked the code check this out:
http://bimg1.mlstatic.com/vendo-piano-kawai-mp-9000_MLB-F-2798164486_062012.jpg

Look at the screen setting and compare it to Chris's rack, it is the same sound!
So buy a Kawai Mp9000 and you will get the sound if you modify it a little bit ;)
We finally reached the goal :)

Btw does anyone know if you kan play a piano trough another piano for example:
Kawai OUT to Yamaha IN and Yamaha OUT to Speaker system?
I have to say that this concert grand sounds a little bit outdated but it sounds great and thats what I love about it ;)
Cheers!
Patrik
 

Crss

Coldplayer
Coldplayer
Joined
Mar 1, 2013
Messages
59
Do you know if there is a sample of the kawai mp9000 piano?
 

jaik

New Coldplayer
Coldplayer
Joined
Mar 28, 2013
Messages
25
think I cracked the code check this out:
THX Patrik! That's exactly what I wanted to try when I'm at my big music shop :)

For my Yamaha CLP it is possible to send MIDI notes from the computer to the piano.

I'm just guessing right now, but in my opinion it is all the "magic" of the MP 9000 rac: They just use Chris' piano as "MIDI IN" and instead of having a Kawai 9000 in the rack, they just took all it's electronic and put it in a box... In my opinion this is no rocket science, but a great idea after all :)
 

Coldplayfan1294

Registered Coldplay Fan
Coldplayer
Joined
Jun 6, 2011
Messages
577
It's really cool to have a stagepiano (Kawai Mp9000) in a rack format that goes to another Digital piano (Yamaha GT20) I guess Chris liked the hammer touch and look of the GT20.

The piano I use is a Yamaha CP300, like the one Chris Martin used on absolute radio.
Cheers!
Patrik
I have a Yamaha NU1 (My pride and joy, in my avatar), which is the replacement for the GT20. I can quite easily see why Chris plays a GT20. The action is 100% authentic of an upright piano since it is a true upright action inside the piano.
I've owned both acoustic upright and now this NU1 and it's spot on. We've accomplished in this thread that Chris uses different sounds with his GT20, but I imagine the combination of the action, the nice cabinet, and its midi capabilities makes it an attractive piano to tour with, especially since he doesn't have to have it tuned. On top of that, it is half the weight of an acoustic upright, which is 245 lbs for the NU1 compared to about 450 lbs for a 44" acoustic upright. The NU1 is truly a dream to play. It doesn't have many voices, but that wasn't really the point of the piano. It's meant to be a 100% identical twin to a real upright in a nice and compact box. It does that amazingly. Plus, if voices are wanted, just use the midi capabilities.

Plus, it's nice to jam out late at night, which I couldn't do with my acoustic. I've thought about playing with midi but I am not that technological savvy. Never really messed with musical programs or connecting laptops to pianos, etc. Maybe some day though.
 

patriklindgren42

Coldplayer
Coldplayer
Joined
Jul 9, 2013
Messages
69
I know a guy in my hometown who is a complete genious when it comes to vintagesynths, he finds everything and he rebuild a lot of stuff aswell.
He could probably help me to find a Kawai Mp9000 keyboard and transfer it to a rack modul. You would probably need the keyboard and a empty rack enclosure, just take the electronics, inputs, pots and display and mount it into the rack i guess.
Than you can play Chris's live sound on any digital piano.

I tried the Yamaha NU1 at Yamaha piano center in Stockholm, "fantastic" piano, thats all I ask for. I loved the key and hammer action of it and the design, it almost looks like the GT20 but i guess the NU1 have improved and better mechanics and electronics.
The whole Avant Grand Series is probably an improvement over the Gran Touch Series.
 

patriklindgren42

Coldplayer
Coldplayer
Joined
Jul 9, 2013
Messages
69
Most of the Kawai mp digital pianos are discontinued, but I guess you can find them second hand and not to expensive :)
 
Last edited:
Top