New York-based pianist Marco Benevento connects with West Coast producer Richard Swift, reconnects with old keyboard (and singing voice) on new album
KEYS GURU Marco Benevento’s secret weapon on his upcoming album Swift can be traced back to his childhood, and the first keyboard he ever owned. When he was eight years old, his parents bought him a Casiotone 8000. It would travel around with him from place to place and eventually reside with the rest of his gear at his new home in Woodstock, New York.
One night, entertaining a local music shop owner and his wife at dinner, the store owner spied the vintage keyboard and remarked that he believed he had the drum machine that paired with it at his store.
“He couldn’t turn it on because it had a weird, multi-pin connector that goes to the back of the keyboard when it gets its power,” recalls Benevento. “So he hadn’t tested it. I was like ‘Man, I’ve had that keyboard since I was a kid. I’d love to hear that drum machine!’. He brought it over not long after and plugged it in, ran it through an amp and we were both like ‘This is the best drum machine in the world!’ It sounded so cool! It’s a Casiotone RC1 and it has to run through the Casiotone 8000.”