Eddie Rayner is a keyboard player, a composer, a producer, well basically an all round musical legend.
Born Anthony Edward Rayner in Lower Hutt, Wellington, New Zealand in 1952, he started playing piano aged 12.
From 1974 until 1984 he played keyboards, composed and produced for the New Zealand supergroup Split Enz. Eddie was of such great importance to the band that on the 'True Colours' tour of Australia and New Zealand, when he fell ill and missed a show the audience was each refunded $4!
After Split Enz broke up in 1984, he went on to play as a session musician, most notably on Tim Finn's 'Before and After' and on Paul McCartney's 'Press to Play' album.
Another band that Eddie had a great influence on was New Zealand band Crowded House. He was a producer on their debut album 'Crowded House', and also co-wrote a song on that same album. For many years he was their keyboard player on the road, and also contributed keyboards to several tracks on their acclaimed 'Together Alone' album.
In 1990 he released an album with The Makers, a duo consisting of himself and vocalist Brian Baker. A second The Makers album, 'Hokey Pokey' was released in 1992.
Eddie is also a former member of the hugely successful local band Space Waltz.
1995 and he finaly released a solo album. Named 'Horse' this album is comprised instrumentals, all written and performed by himself.
1996 saw the release of 'Enzso', a collection of Split Enz songs which Eddie had arranged for performance by vocalists and the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra. Both the 'Enzso' album and tour earned acclaim from both critics and fans alike.
In 1998 'Enzso 2' had been released, once again using the best talent New Zealand has to offer, with the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, Sam Hunt, Dave Dobbyn and Dame Kiri Te Kanawa all recording versions of Split Enz songs. The album was released internationaly in 1999.
2002 has seen the release of a new solo album. Called 'Play It Straight' it is selection of new and old songs, and includes musicians such as Annie Crummer and Maurice Greer.
Rayner continues his work as an artist and composer and has most recently been producing records for the local and international markets, including Margaret Urlich and The Exponents.
He has also adjudicated on the APRA Silver Scroll and RIANZ judging panels and has contributed to the television series Showcase and Get Your Act Together.
More recently, Eddie is the Musical Director on NZ Idol. In this role, Rayner uses his considerable experience to organise the musical arrangements for every song performed on NZ Idol.
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