Jean-Philippe Rykiel

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Jean-Philippe Rykiel (born 1961) is a French composer, arranger & musician, primarily a keyboard player. He has been blind since his birth, a result of negligence in the hospital incubator, and is the son of fashion designer Sonia Rykiel.


Rykiel exhibited musical precocity as a child, sitting in with jazz greats like Miles Davis[1] With his recognized talent, and strong connections, he could have been a famous child prodigy. When asked, at age twelve, "Why not put out an album?" he replied that he would wait until he was an adult, when his music might be evaluated purely on its merit, rather than having people buy the music of "that blind musician kid".[citation needed]

Rykiel first came to public attention via his synthesizer duets with Tim Blake as part of the Crystal Machine audio-visual project in the late 1970s, which staged large events involving music and laser-based light shows in France and Japan.[2]

Later he spent much time collaborating with world musicians, notably Malian singer Salif Keita,[3] Tibetan monk Lama Gyurme and Senegalese singer and percussionist Youssou N'Dour.

In 1992 Rykiel composed and performed music for the soundtrack of Les Pierres bleues du désert, dir:Nabil Ayouch

Rykiel and Blake reunited as Crystal Machine to perform at the Gong Unconvention Festival in Amsterdam in 2006.



  • 1982 Jean-Philippe Rykiel - (Musiza/Ariola)
  • 1991 Nunc Music (Quiet Days In Tokyo) - Takdisc/WMD
  • 2003 Under The Tree (Last Call)


  • 1994 Songs of awakening / Roads of blessings (The Lama's Chant) (w/Lama Gyourmé) - (Last Call/Narada/Takticmusic)
  • 1996 Souhaits Pour L'Eveil (The Lama's Chant) (w/Lama Gyurme) - (Last Call/Sony)
  • 2000 Rain Of Blessings: Vajra Chants (w/Lama Gyurme) - (RealWorld)



  1. ^ Tabarka Jazz Festival, Tunisia; 1973.
  2. ^ "Jean-Philippe Rykiel". Retrieved 2016-02-04.
  3. ^ "Salif Keita". Archived from the original (DOC) on 2012-08-29. Retrieved 2016-02-04.

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