Tim Rice-Oxley

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Tim Rice-Oxley
Tim Rice-Oxley Keane 2009-01-29 - 1.jpg
Background information
Birth name Timothy James Rice-Oxley
Born (1976-06-02) 2 June 1976 (age 37)
Oxford, England
Genres Alternative rock, piano rock, pop rock
Occupations Musician, composer
Instruments Piano, bass, keyboards, backing vocals, keytar, guitar, synthesizer, recorder, harpsichord
Years active 1995–present
Associated acts Keane, Mt. Desolation, Gwen Stefani, Kylie Minogue

Timothy James Rice-Oxley (born June 2, 1976), is a musician, producer, singer and multi-instrumentalist best known for being keyboardist, singer and songwriter in the British band Keane. In 2010 he formed a side-project, Mt. Desolation, with his Keane bandmate Jesse Quin.

Life and career[edit]

Tim Rice-Oxley playing his Yamaha CP-70 alongside drummer Richard Hughes during the January 2005 Tsunami Relief Cardiff concert

He was born in Oxford, England to Charles Patrick and Margaret Rice-Oxley.

He had piano lessons when he was a teenager but admitted to hating them and never practising pieces because they were all classical music which he found boring. After his parents stopped his lessons, he developed a liking for piano and so taught himself how to play, mainly because of The Beatles.[1] Later, Rice-Oxley would give Chaplin after-school piano lessons.

In 1994, he began studying for a degree in Classics at University College London, where Hughes studied Geography. Friend and guitarist Dominic Scott suggested to Rice-Oxley that they form a band and he agreed. The two asked Hughes to join on drums. While there, he met Chris Martin, who was creating demos at the time with Coldplay. Rice-Oxley was invited by Martin to join after listening to his piano playing during a weekend at Virginia Water in Surrey, but declined in order to concentrate on Keane with his friends.

Rice-Oxley lives in Polegate, East Sussex. He married his wife, Jayne Rice-Oxley, in February 2005. They separated in 2012. They have two daughters. Chaplin was the best man at their wedding.[citation needed]


In 1997, Rice-Oxley convinced Scott and Hughes to let Chaplin join the band. It was in this year that the band took the name "Keane".

During their stint in London, Rice-Oxley shared a flat with Chaplin in Stoke Newington and they attempted to raise money for rehearsal time. When Scott left the band in July 2001, Rice-Oxley started playing the piano. He continues to play bass; however now the parts are pre-recorded and are sampled in live gigs through an Apple Powerbook.

It was revealed in early 2010 that he was working on a side-project called Mt. Desolation along with his bandmate Jesse Quin,[2] which resulted in an album release and supporting tour.

Currently, he provides live and studio backing vocals for Keane, except for the studio songs Sunshine, This Is the Last Time (demo version) and Your Love where he sings the lead vocals, as well as some Under the Iron Sea DVD and Perfect Symmetry demos.


Tim Rice-Oxley is the principal songwriter for Keane and has composed all their songs.

In 2006, Rice-Oxley co-wrote the songs Early Winter, and The Girl Inside (unreleased) on Gwen Stefani's second solo album, The Sweet Escape. Early Winter has been performed by Keane live.

The song Perfect Symmetry from the album of the same name is considered by Chaplin to be one of the best Rice-Oxley has written.

In 2009, he co-wrote the song Everything Is Beautiful for Kylie Minogue's eleventh studio album, Aphrodite.[3]

Rice-Oxley composed all the songs for the side-project Mt. Desolation with Jesse Quin in 2010. That same year Rice-Oxley provided the main vocal in Keane for the first time on the song Your Love, which appeared on the album Night Train. Tim also sang the song live.

In 2013, Tim co-wrote the song Jump with Gary Barlow for the latter's solo album, Since I Saw You Last.

Alternate project[edit]

Mt. Desolation is an alt-country side-project that Tim formed with bassist Jesse Quin. The band also consists of members of Mumford & Sons, The Killers and The Staves. Mt. Desolation released their first eponymous studio album on October 18, 2010. The band toured the UK and Ireland in September 2010 and the US and Canada in October 2010. Tim and Jesse have not ruled out recording a second album.

Sea Fog Studio[edit]

Rice-Oxley built Sea Fog Studio at his home. The studio is so-called as it was named after the song Sea Fog from Keane's album Strangeland. Strangeland was recorded at the studio.


Rice-Oxley has cited his musical influences as Depeche Mode, U2, The Smiths, Simple Minds, Blondie, among others.


Rice-Oxley won an Ivor Novello Award for Songwriter of the Year in May 2005.

Equipment list[edit]


with Keane[edit]


  1. ^ "Keaneshaped - FAQ - About songs: The Way You Want It". Retrieved August 1, 2006. 
  2. ^ "Mt. Desolations official blog". Mtdesolation.com. Retrieved 2011-07-21. 
  3. ^ Brockington, Ryan (11 June 2010). "Kylie's 'Aphrodite' album is perfect". New York Post.