Dream Theater keybroadist Jordan Rudess spoke in an interview with 8dio and explained how he was influenced by some legendary bands and musicians.

Interviewer asked:

“During your student years, you turned from classical piano to progressive keyboards. What made you switch?”

Jordan responded:

“Yeah, the reason I changed was because… in my teenage years, people started to turn me on to groups like Yes and Genesis, King Crimson and Pink Floyd – and I was very, very interested.

I was aware of all the harmonies that I heard, that Keith Emerson was using in his music, but I didn’t… I wasn’t aware of that kind of power.

So to hear that all together – his fusion of his harmonic synths, he used a lot of suspended chords and chords just built on fourths, plus this powerful sound, and that was like – a good driving force for me to start moving in a different direction.

So as they say, the straw that broke the camel’s back was that the teacher at Juilliard was very intense, to me she was like, annoying – she demanded that I memorize everything. I said, ‘I don’t have time for this. I don’t want to do it.’ So that’s when I left.”

He continued and said:

“Going back to my initial progressive rock years and all the keyboardist that I looked up to – initially learning about pitch bending. I grew up in a world where it was just the piano and pressing the notes. It hits the strings and, that was it!

So when I started to hear things like – I think the first time I really got turned on to pitch bending was hearing [Yes and The Moody Blues keyboardist] Patrick Moraz playing on an album called ‘Refugee’ [1974].”

Click here to entire interview. Here’s the source of the statement: Ultimate-Guitar.