Geoff Downes

Numa Piano
Having just completed another major USA TOUR with the band, YES, I can't begin to say how great it's been having the addition of the mighty Sledge as part of my keyboard rig. I first saw this baby at the NAMM Show earlier in the year, and was hugely impressed by it, and I consider it to be one of the finest additions to the keyboard world for some time. Words to express: deep, powerful, reliable, sweet-sounding, intuitive - the Sledge has got it all. If you haven't got one by now, wise up - you won't regret it, I promise you! The addition of the Sledge to the keyboard rig has been a real innovation. It's a very intuitive device. The Sledge really blew me away. It's great for lead lines. In addition to great analog mono sounds you get really fat, rich, polysynth stuff as well. It's been very useful having something as comprehensive as this. The Sledge has a lot of multi-purpose operational things that as a programmer I find to be very intuitive. You have a very detailed, instant way of editing parameters with a control panel; rather than scrolling through countless windows. It means it's an all encompassing synth with sufficient knobs to be able to create new sounds very quickly. It's a great machine!


An English rock keyboard player and songwriter for the bands Yes and Asia, and formerly of The Buggles, during which he played multiple keyboards to achieve a New Wave technopop sound.

He was once entered for the Guinness Book Of Records for performing with the most keyboards (twenty-eight) on stage in one performance.

In 1976, he met Trevor Horn while auditioning for pop singer Tina Charles' backing band. They continued to work together, eventually forming The Buggles, recording a worldwide hit single in 1979 ("Video Killed the Radio Star"). It was Island Records' first number 1 in the UK, and the video of the song subsequently became the first ever to be played at the launch of MTV on August 1981.

The success of The Buggles led to Downes and Horn joining Yes for the (Drama) album and the associated tour in 1980. Downes was the first member of the band to have completed a music degree. Yes split at the beginning of 1981, and Downes subsequently joined forces with Yes' Steve Howe, Carl Palmer (from Emerson, Lake & Palmer) and John Wetton (from King Crimson) to form 'Asia'.

In addition to recording and touring with Asia, Downes has also recorded a number of solo albums and collaborated with many other artists.

Downes has continued to release sporadic solo albums over the years, mainly under the name The New Dance Orchestra. They include the critically acclaimed 1986 double album The Light Programme, in addition to Vox Humana, Shadows & Reflections, along with a few others.

He currently lives in South Wales with his long-term partner.

On September 28, 2010, he reunited with Bruce Woolley and Trevor Horn as the band The Buggles, performing The Lost Gig to "raise funds for the Royal Hospital for Neuro-disability".

Geoff kick's off 2013 on tour with Yes..