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Dizzy Reed 101: Everything You Need to Know About Guns N’ Roses’ Keyboardist

Dizzy Reed
Ethan Miller, Getty Images

Dizzy Reed, Guns N’ Roses keyboardist: 1990 – Present

Guns N’ Roses Discography: Use Your Illusion I & II (1991); “The Spaghetti Incident?” (1993); Chinese Democracy (2008)

Non-GNR Discography: The Dead Daisies (self-titled); the Dead Daisies, Revolución; Johnny Crash, Unfinished Business

Pre-Guns N’ Roses: Darren “Dizzy” Reed has been playing keyboards since he was a kid growing up in Colorado. In the mid-’80s he relocated to Los Angeles where his funk-pop band the Wild enjoyed some local success. It was during his time with the Wild that Dizzy befriended Axl Rose, who reportedly always envisioned adding keys to the Gunners’ sound. During the Use Your Illusion sessions Reed got the call that changed his life, and he’s been working with Rose ever since.

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Post-Guns N’ Roses: Aside from Rose, Reed has enjoyed the longest tenure as a member of Guns N’ Roses, having served as the Gunners’ keyboardist consistently since his recording debut with the band in 1990. With encouragement from GNR 2.0 drummer Matt Sorum, Reed also developed into an auxiliary percussionist and background vocalist, making him the band’s most valuable “utility infielder.” Reed’s bluesy keyboard feel has led to guest spots on several albums over the past 25 years, including appearances on Motorhead‘s Hammered and albums from Guns N’ Roses alums Slash, Gilby Clarke, Tommy Stinson and Duff McKagan.

Right Now: Alongside his ongoing Guns N’ Roses gig, Reed is a member of supergroup the Dead Daisies and has his own covers band, Hookers & Blow. He’s also rumored to have a solo album nearly completed.

GNR Reunions: Dizzy has shared the stage with both Duff and Izzy in recent years when they’ve guested at Guns N’ Roses shows.

See Guns N’ Roses and Other Rockers in the Top 100 Albums of the ’90s

You Think You Know the ’92 Guns N’ Roses / Metallica Tour

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Next: Everything You Need to Know About Steven Adler

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