Michael Pinnella

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Michael Pinnella
Pinnella performing in Novara, 2007
Background information
Birth nameMichael Pinnella
Born (1969-08-29) August 29, 1969 (age 49)
Point Pleasant Beach, New Jersey, U.S.
Genres Progressive metal, neoclassical metal, power metal
Occupation(s)Musician, songwriter
Instruments Keyboards, piano
Years active1994–present
Associated acts Symphony X

Michael Pinnella (born August 29, 1969) is a keyboard player, most notably for the band Symphony X. He has released two solo albums, titled Enter By the Twelfth Gate (2004) and Ascension (2014), of mostly instrumental, classical-styled progressive metal. Michael is one of two Symphony X members to appear on all nine of the band's albums (the other being Michael Romeo).

Symphony X American progressive metal band

Symphony X is an American progressive metal band from Middletown, New Jersey. Founded in 1994, the band consists of guitarist Michael Romeo, keyboardist Michael Pinnella, drummer Jason Rullo, lead vocalist Russell Allen and bassist Michael Lepond.

Progressive metal is a fusion genre melding heavy metal and progressive rock that combines the loud "aggression" and amplified guitar-driven sound of the former with the more experimental, cerebral or "pseudo-classical" compositions of the latter.

Michael Romeo American musician

Michael James Romeo is an American guitarist and a founding member of the progressive metal group Symphony X. He is one of two members to appear on every Symphony X release.



Michael Pinnella with Symphony X live at Wacken Open Air 2016 Symphony X - Wacken Open Air 2016-AL8936.jpg
Michael Pinnella with Symphony X live at Wacken Open Air 2016

Pinnella was born in Point Pleasant Beach, New Jersey and was encouraged since childhood to follow music. When he was four years old, he started taking piano lessons. He was heavily influenced by classic composers like Mozart, Beethoven, Chopin, and Bach.

Point Pleasant Beach, New Jersey Borough in New Jersey, United States

Point Pleasant Beach is a borough in Ocean County, New Jersey, United States. As of the 2010 United States Census, the borough's population was 4,665, reflecting a decline of 649 (-12.2%) from the 5,314 counted in the 2000 Census, which had in turn increased by 202 (+4.0%) from the 5,112 counted in the 1990 Census.

Johann Sebastian Bach German composer

Johann Sebastian Bach was a German composer and musician of the Baroque period. He is known for instrumental compositions such as the Art of Fugue, the Brandenburg Concertos, and the Goldberg Variations, and for vocal music such as the St Matthew Passion and the Mass in B minor. Since the 19th-century Bach Revival he has been generally regarded as one of the greatest composers of the Western art musical canon.

When he was about 11 years old, he started to practice more seriously. Later in his youth, he was impressed by Yngwie Malmsteen and asked his parents to buy him a keyboard. When he got into college, he studied piano performance, theory and composition, and other musical courses. Other influences came from progressive/metal bands from the 1970s (Emerson, Lake & Palmer, Deep Purple, Black Sabbath) and from the 1980s (DIO, Ozzy Osbourne).

Yngwie Malmsteen Swedish musician

Yngwie Johan Malmsteen is a Swedish guitarist, songwriter and bandleader. Malmsteen first became known in the 1980s for his neoclassical metal playing style in heavy metal, and has released 20 studio albums in a career spanning almost 40 years. In 2009, Time magazine rated Malmsteen as number 7 among the 10 greatest electric guitar players of all time.

Emerson, Lake & Palmer English progressive rock band

Emerson, Lake & Palmer (ELP) were an English progressive rock supergroup formed in London in 1970. The band consisted of keyboardist Keith Emerson; singer, bassist, guitarist and producer Greg Lake; and drummer and percussionist Carl Palmer. With nine RIAA-certified gold record albums in the US, and an estimated 48 million records sold worldwide, they were one of the most popular and commercially successful progressive rock bands in the 1970s, with a musical sound including adaptations of classical music with jazz and symphonic rock elements, dominated by Emerson's flamboyant use of the Hammond organ, Moog synthesizer, and piano.

Deep Purple English rock band

Deep Purple are an English rock band formed in Hertford in 1968. The band is considered to be among the pioneers of heavy metal and modern hard rock, although their musical approach changed over the years. Originally formed as a progressive rock band, the band shifted to a heavier sound in 1970. Deep Purple, together with Led Zeppelin and Black Sabbath, have been referred to as the "unholy trinity of British hard rock and heavy metal in the early to mid-seventies". They were listed in the 1975 Guinness Book of World Records as "the globe's loudest band" for a 1972 concert at London's Rainbow Theatre, and have sold over 100 million copies of their albums worldwide.

When Pinnella finished college, he started teaching piano in a music store. One of the fellow teachers at the store was friends with Michael Romeo from Symphony X. In 1994, he was hired by the band as a keyboardist.

He is currently working in East Brunswick, NJ when not touring or recording.

Pinnella's nephew, Chris Pinnella, is a vocalist who worked with Trans-Siberian Orchestra.

Trans-Siberian Orchestra American progressive rock band

Trans-Siberian Orchestra (TSO) is an American rock band founded in 1996 by producer, composer, and lyricist Paul O'Neill, who brought together Jon Oliva and Al Pitrelli and keyboardist and co-producer Robert Kinkel to form the core of the creative team. The band gained in popularity when they began touring in 1999 after completing their second album, The Christmas Attic, the year previous. In 2007, the Washington Post referred to them as "an arena-rock juggernaut" and described their music as "Pink Floyd meets Yes and the Who at Radio City Music Hall." TSO has sold more than 10 million concert tickets and over 10 million albums. The band has released a series of rock operas: Christmas Eve and Other Stories, The Christmas Attic, Beethoven's Last Night, The Lost Christmas Eve, their two-disc Night Castle and Letters From the Labyrinth. Trans-Siberian Orchestra is also known for their extensive charity work and elaborate concerts, which include a string section, a light show, lasers, "enough pyro to be seen from the International Space Station", moving trusses, video screens, and effects synchronized to music.


Pinnella uses the following equipment:


2004 Enter By the Twelfth Gate Studio

See also

Related Research Articles

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<i>The Damnation Game</i> (album) 1995 studio album by Symphony X

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