James Stewart Bain

January 25, 2016

Jimmy-Bain-Rainbow

As if this year hasn’t been rough enough already with the passing of so many rock musicians, we now have to report that Jimmy Bain died over the weekend.  He was working up to the end according to his current Last In Line bandmates, rehearsing for a big rock cruise with Def Leppard headlining. To many of us of course he was, alongside Cozy Powell, the bedrock of the classic Rainbow line-up (seen above with Jimmy in the middle), working with them through arguably their greatest heavy rock period, including the Rising album.  I can recall us scurrying through back-pages of the music papers to try and find out about his early band Harlot when he first got chosen by Ritchie (who had apparently seen the band on one of his trips to London) so we could report it in Stargazer. And the first hearing of Stargazer and Light In The Black remain with us to this day.
It always struck us as odd that his stay with Rainbow was relatively short, but when Ronnie Dio also departed, the pair reunited for several Dio albums during the Eighties which Jimmy also helped write.
We never met Jimmy – beyond pestering him for a few autographs of course, which he was always happy to provide – but he will always be fixed in our minds from that awesome 1976 tour and the subsequent On-Stage recordings.

 

Deep Pockets?

February 1, 2016

According to Music Business Worldwide, a music industry newsletter, Deep Purple (Overseas) Ltd has appointed administrators. This means the business will continue to trade but will be protected from creditors until a buyer or buyers for the business are found. It also includes HEC, the  company set up by Deep Purple’s original managers back in 1968 (and which DP(O) succeeded.) So if there are any well heeled fans out there…!  Quite what this means for the time being I’m not sure, or indeed for the existing arrangements and future archive plans of Universal and Warners.

 

Darker Than Blue

January 26, 2016

Please can everyone note that the bootlegs coming out of Japan with the DTB logo on are NOTHING TO DO WITH US. Neither does use of the logo mean we have approved these in any way or guarantee any sort of quality (although I assume that is the reason they have pulled this trick.)  The people doing them first used the DTB logo a couple of years ago on a couple of titles but we assumed they’d gone away and didn’t worry too much about it (in fact I think we mentioned it on this site). However another load has now appeared in Japan.  Obviously it is very difficult for us to take any action as being bootleggers they are not easy to trace.  We have asked people in Japan to see if they can help and will try to take appropriate action if we get any leads.

Tokyo Budokan

January 21, 2016

and other venues make up Deep Purple’s seven date May tour of Japan which is now confirmed.  Full dates are on the tour list for 2016, and we will update if more are added. Thanks to Masaki Tanaka for the information.

Tokyo Nippon Budokan

2016 and all that

January 6, 2016

Always a good start-back office chore is a careful sweep through the in-tray, which had crept up to 450+ emails over the winter break.  And it does help bring things into focus.
Of course the music scene has rightly been mourning the death of Lemmy, one of rock’s great characters apparently according to the TV.  I suppose that’s because most of the mainstream press didn’t really understand his music or playing ability.  I still get shivers down my spine recalling that first eponymous Motorhead 12″ single on Chiswick Records which I bought close to release date back in 1977.

Lemmy and Ian Gillan

Lemmy auditioning on nose jug for the Gillan band.

Somehow I never did get the see them live in those early days (and they did tour with Purple as recently as 2007), but had been a big Hawkwind fan and met Lemmy at one of those weird all night rock events at the Queens Hall in Leeds.  I’ve no idea how but we ended up being allowed into the hospitality room for the concert performers and Lemmy conned a nice button badge off my brother’s jacket. All he can recall was being sat by the side of the stage watching the show when a naked American woman came over and sat beside him. “Oh well, I’d best get on and wobble these around a little,” she explained after a while before we realised it was Stacia.
Funnily enough I was doing some vinyl sorting last week and checked my mint copy of their second album, signed by all the band… except Lemmy himself.  Mind you he was busy telling us how much grass he’d smoked during the day so perhaps it didn’t seem quite the moment to get all fanboyish!
Lemmy was always respectful of what he called Deep Purple’s place as the originators of hard rock (and one of the first to use pyrotechnics, at the California Jam).
Closer to home, we also lost our mate Martin Lilleker who has been suffering from Alzheimer’s for several years.  Martin was one of those irreplacable and unique cogs in the local community music scene; he wrote music columns for the local press for decades, ran a label for a time, helped manage and played live a bit too.  In recent years he also documented the scene magnificently across two thick paperbacks on the history of Sheffield bands going back to the early 60s.  I helped him with a few bits for these and when I bemoaned the poor design of the first book’s cover he let me have a free hand on book two and was brave enough to go ahead with an admittedly quite eye popping montage!  It’s guys like Martin which make living in Sheffield just that little bit more enjoyable and we’ll miss him.
Looking forward it’s amazing how much enjoyment people get looking back, if the flurry of excitement about a new audience tape of Deep Purple from back in Feb 1972 at the Dagenham Roundhouse is to go by. The owner had got in touch with us in the lead-up to Christmas but seemed unable to wait to see if this could be done officially and pushed it out into the pirate networks instead. Amazing that new recordings can still emerge after forty plus years. It seems churlish to point out (as one expert did) that the cover photo is from the night before…!

Dagenham Deep Purple 1972

Deep Purple, Spontaneous Combustion, Licensed Bar AND A CAR-PARK! We used to know how to have fun in the Seventies.

Talking of history, a few people have pointed me to a copy of Wait For The Ricochet currently selling on ebay. Or rather not selling, as the owner wants £1,001.86 for it.  Since I went to have a peep (just to see if it was for real) ebay now keep asking me if I’d like “to take another look?”!  I wouldn’t mind but the cheeky sod wants £2.75 postage as well…  I added it as a watched item just to get his hopes up.
Hopefully this year we’ll get it back into print, but the priority right now is in finishing the follow-up, Fire In The Sky. And tracking down the current owner of the E-Type Jag Jon drove down to Montreux in. It’s all in the detail!
With the fun and games over the Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame still ongoing, it’s good to see friends and fans of the late Cozy Powell have been able to organise things with far less aggro, and are putting up a blue plaque in the town of his birth, Cirencester. It’s very short notice, but if you’re free on January 7th then there is a public unveiling at the Corn Hall at 2.30pm with Brian May doing the honours. People like Bernie Marsden, Don Airey and Neil Murray will be there. It looks as if the long-mooted documentary on Cozy is also now in the works. The man himself would have been 70 next year.

Cozy Powell

As for ‘works’ we’re fairly confident the major labels are now about sorted when it comes to the Deep Purple classic era catalogue. The bizarre Universal LP box set (below) looks a real dog’s dinner, but I’m told better things are on the way with the return to catalogue of most of the regular albums (incredibly many have been off the shelves for some years now).  There are also plans afoot with regards to other areas of the catalogue about which more as the year unfolds.  I have had meetings with some of the people involved and it looks quite promising.

Deep Purple vinyl box 2016

Switch off your G5, reissue of the year award 2016 is surely a given!

Some of you have also got the Rainbow gigs to look forward to.  I guess we can’t really call it a reunion when only one member is coming back, but for everyone who missed out it looks as if more shows will follow in 2017. A souped up version of the first album is also due, though as the mutli-tracks are still lost there isn’t too much scope for content.
The first pics of the new Rainbow came through recently, reminding me of that excitement back in 75 when shots of the first group emerged and were being posted about by people to reproduce in fanzines etc. I shall not be hurrying to repeat the experience this time round!

Rainbow new lineup 2016

Rainbow 2016, I recognise one of them…

As for Purple themselves it’s still good to listen to play bits and pieces off Now What so hopefully the band can again produce something of interest when they start recording in the next few weeks (will the first one into the studio hide Don’s ELP collection?).
I’ve got my plate full with design work to wrap up on three books this month, so I’d best fire up InDesign and get cracking. But before I do, here’s a few anniversaries coming up in 2016 to make everyone feel that little bit older!

10th anniversary of Rapture Of The Deep

20th anniversary of Purpendicular

25th anniversary of the Slaves & Masters world tour

30th anniversary of the Seventh Star album with Glenn Hughes

35th anniversary of Whitesnake’s Don’t Break My Heart Again hit single.

40th anniversary of Deep Purple Mk 4’s final concerts.

Deep Purple Liverpool 1976

Deep Purple making a racket at Liverpool in 1976 (courtesy Alan Perry)

45th anniversary of Fireball.

50th anniversary of Art Gallery by The Artwoods.

Simon Robinson. My thanks to factoid checkers and news editors Mike Richards, Martin Ashberry, Tim Summers, Vince Chong, Mark Maddock, Matthew Kean and Ian Gillan’s surprise dinner guest – Britney Spears.

Will they stay or will they go?

December 22, 2015
Boring Presentation

After trying to explain the Deep Purple family tree to the panel, the head of the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame decides to put their induction back another year.

Much energy has been expended, not least by this site and others, on the subject of the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. Now they have finally condescended to offer Deep Purple an induction, let’s expend a little more!
Many people feel there has been more than an element of snobbery about the selection panel, with Deep Purple “overlooked” and belittled about their musical achievements (‘One-hit wonders’ was a jibe which showed their ignorance last time.)
Now that they have got around to the band, the fun and games will probably start. As sole remaining founder member Ian Paice spoke to Billboard magazine about the honour.
“It’ll be interesting, won’t it? It’s a somewhat complicated situation. The personalities that are involved didn’t always get on terrifically well, so that has to be taken into consideration. I don’t think there’ll be anybody swinging at anybody else – I think there’s a possibility that some people just won’t be there. We may all turn up and be happy on the night and it’ll go wonderfully well, or two or three people will be studiously ignoring each other.”
“If they ask us to play there, who’s gonna play what? Who’s prepared to play what, and with who? As we’ve been blessed with so many virtuoso players in the band over the years, it might have been easier to take us individually to be inducted rather than as a band. It’s not a band of four or five guys who have stayed together throughout their career and are asked to do something. It’s more complex than that. So we’ll just have to make a decision of what’s right for us, not what’s right for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.”
The situation gets more complex as the induction ignores the Mk 4 line-up, and all reunion era musicians. So it’s not even a recognition just for the original era, as without Tommy Bolin how can it be? I certainly listen to Come Taste more than Burn or Stormbringer.

Deep-Purple-Mk-5

It also seems a huge snub to Steve Morse in particular, who has been with the band longer than Ritchie now (I think, I just tried doing the maths!). Ian Gillan in particular has reacted to that, and posted on his website.
“Putting the past shenanigans to one side, the induction is not – in clear fact – for Deep Purple. It is an arbitrary selection of past members, which excludes Steve Morse and Don Airey; both of whom have been with the living breathing DP for a very long time. Obviously this is very silly, and so my response is quite simple: ‘Thank you very much’.”
“And what a coincidence… This morning I got an invitation to a wedding from some dear old friends. Unfortunately my family was not invited and they said that I would be required to sit next to my ex (we divorced decades ago) at the wedding feast.
They were shocked when I called to thank them and decline the invitation.”
Using my Gillan Thesaurus this sort of suggests he doesn’t want to do it without Steve and Don, but might reconsider if they get invited. But it could also mean he doesn’t fancy sitting next to his ex-guitar player! Still if the inductors can forgive him calling them ‘arrogant and rude’ a while back, maybe the inductees can sort something out in time.
Meanwhile Glenn Hughes has already booked a cab, and cranked up his positive waves:
“There’s a lot of mumbo jumbo from other members, but I’m excited. I don’t have anything to say negative about this. And more importantly this is really important to the fans of the band Deep Purple, the four or five decades this band has been around making music. It’s a grand step in music history for anyone. There’s only so many people who get into the Hall of Fame.”
The ceremony takes place on April 8 ceremony at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn. We’ll leave the last word to Ian Paice: “I haven’t seen [Coverdale] in a long time, but I don’t have any problem with David. And after all this time, I don’t have a problem with Ritchie. I really hope he’s happy in what he’s doing. At the end of the day we’re far enough along in our lives now that I just hope everybody’s having a good time. The crap that went on before, that’s what it is – it’s before.”

You can read Billboard’s take on it all here

http://www.billboard.com/articles/news/6813617/deep-purple-rock-roll-hall-of-fame-induction-interview

Simon Robinson. Thanks to Tim Summers and Stephen Clare.

June / July

December 18, 2015

… seems a long way off right now but the talk of a Scandinavia tour we mentioned a while back has now firmed up into a wider European visit to follow, taking in a number of regular festivals through June and July, across in Italy, Germany, Poland and Austria.  It’s taken me a while to collate the info people have kindly sent in but we’ve now added 17 shows to the date list pageBig thank you to Richard Borg, Bengt Johnasson, Lutz Reinhert, Svante Axbacke and all at http://www.deep-purple.it/  for their help.  If you spot any more do let us know.

London, December 2015

December 15, 2015

It’s a while since we’ve made the trek to London, but as this was the only show we decided to make an effort.  Finding the venue wasn’t too hard and as the drive down was done in good time despite the inclement weather up North we nipped in to the hotel to dump our gear and then set off for the hall. We got there around 3.00pm so decided to park up near the entrance and see what was happening.  Half the fun these days of going to shows is meeting up with other fans and we passed the time chatting and getting the layout of the place.
Round about four thirty we saw Roger and Ian Gillan arrive, and they greeted a few old friends. Ian came by to say hello and we had a quick word with Roger, who had brought his wife and two kids along to enjoy the evening (the youngest certainly has a look of him in his youth!).
Ian said his wife had gone on ahead to their villa in Portugal and he would be joining her after the show. When Ann asked him about the 2016 tour dates he knew nothing about them, but suggested this wasn’t unusual!
Inside we met up with Tim who had travelled down from Hull and Tonny who had made an even longer journey up from Plymouth. Eventually the house lights went down to reveal a brightly lit stage and after a little while Roger Glover sort of ambled on stage to pick up a sunburst Fender bass. We hadn’t expected a support act, and there seemed to be some confusion over what key their first number was in, but after they’d sorted this out the guitarist came to the mic and asked us to put our hands together for … The Madisons.

l-r Roger, Harvey and Tony. The Madisons

l-r Roger, Harvey and Tony. The Madisons

Sat in our corner we all sort of blinked, were we really seeing Roger’s first band live? They did team up about five years ago for a get-together according to Roger so despite the lack of rehearsal tonight (6/- admission guys) they romped through a couple of rock and roll standards (My Baby and Put On Your Red Dress’) with ease and the room responded with applause.  Harvey Shield on drums also handled the vocals and has clearly kept in trim – he lives in America these days, and has even done some acting for US TV.  Tony Barham kept the lead guitar going and seemed as amazed as we all were at what was going on.  As Deep Purple historians know, The Madisons were Roger’s first semi-pro group formed while he was still at school and led on to his first professional outfit.

Episode Six reunion, December 2015

Episode Six reunion, December 2015

After two songs there was a short break, before two more singers found their way on stage, Ian Gillan and Sheila Carter.  It was time for the main event, Episode Six.  While Roger had known about the evening for a while, Ian only realised it was happening the day before, and so rescheduled to be able to get along. Despite this last minuteness, as they launched into I Hear Trumpets Blow he managed to sing the words without a crib sheet, helped out by Sheila. At other times he had to busk it and help on the chorus, and at the end said a few heartfelt words to both the rest of the band and the audience. Considering he’d come off the back of a long Deep Purple tour and of course the big O2 Arena show two night before, it was good of him to juggle his schedule and his appearance was appreciated by everyone.
After a version of Morning Dew based on their single interpretation Ian left the stage and Roger then did Stand By Me with his daughter Gillian, who seems a natural.
We then had chance to see a guy called Pete Reglar. Pete was in at the very start of the Lightnings, working with Sheila and the others under the name Pete Jason and Shandy.  He gamely tackled one of their stage faves, That’ll Be The Day. Incredibly Pete also brought along his old note book into which he kept details of all the songs they did live, and the dates of their shows, and who sang what.
It was now time for a proper break.

Back row Tony, Harvey, Sheila and Ian. Front row Roger and John.

Back row Tony, Harvey, Sheila and Ian. Front row Roger and John.

The reason for the event was to mark the fiftieth anniversary of Episode Six signing their original Pye recording contract, and their first Pye recording session (the single came out early in 1966). It’s not the first time they have met up like this, some will recall photos of an earlier reunion in Kerrang, but being such an important anniversary they decided to make this a bit special, hiring a hall and proper gear. Once that was arranged, they made efforts to track down as many musicians and people connected with the band as they could.
My invite came via the Episode Six CDs we helped collate and put together almost twenty years ago, and which got played to death during the evening.  I have kept in touch with Sheila ever since and offered to provide an intermission slide show, which provided a lot of amusement for the audience. It was funny to see Ian’s reaction to a couple of particularly fey shots of him wearing just an open waistcoat and beads.  We’d put the show together from our archives, with Tonny also supplying some interesting new images from a fans collection he picked up not long ago.

The audience watch the intermission entertainment

The audience watch the intermission entertainment

There was even a bit of film; Tony (he was known as Tony Lander while in the band) had managed to dig out the super 8mm silent film from the old Deep Purple family tree show, and we also had the Beat Beat Beat footage courtesy of Dave Browne.  Although these are familiar to some fans, many in the audience were watching them for the first time. The band’s second guitarist Graham Carter (Sheila’s brother) now lives in America and couldn’t get across, but using skype he was able to see the hall and chat with the rest of the band.
Also there and enjoying it all was the band’s second drummer, John Kerrison. Although he couldn’t take part, he was pleased to be part of the occasion and it was good to meet up with him after so many years corresponding by email.

The grand finale (pic Tonny Steenhagen)

The grand finale (pic Tonny Steenhagen)

Tonny had the bright idea of getting all the band musicians together for an impromptu photo call and Sheila rounded everyone up.  It was really funny to see what was a quite laid back and relaxed event suddenly turn into a mad frenzy of cameras, iPads and mobile phones as dozens of people made sure they got a souvenir image.
We made sure to spend some time going through all the photos and memorabilia which Sheila had collated, and admiring some wall panels full of new shots she has unearthed. We did discuss the idea of a limited production book of some sort in the new year.
Amazingly Sheila had managed to dig out her original WEM Telstar electric organ which was positioned in pride of place in front of the stage. She told me years ago that it was somewhere in the back of her garage, so it was great to see it has survived. Whether it can be got back to working condition is something we’ll have to see.
Eventually, despite the excellent running buffet, our energy levels began to flag. I’d been up until midnight the previous evening trying to sort glitches in the slide show (the software crashed after two hours processing!) and our friend Tim needed to get his transport connection, so we made our farewells. The musicians were made of stronger stuff and were persuaded back up for another short set towards the end of the evening. Tonny had also stayed put and can fill us in on the close of the evening; “Harvey turned ceremony master of sorts and various permutations of the musicians ended up running through some songs like Red House, sung by Gillian, Summertime by a young Claudia, Great Balls of Fire sung by Harvey, Roger singing ‘Too Much Monkey Business’, etc. They did about another half an hour.”
We would like to say a big thanks to Sheila and Tony for inviting us, and hello to Tom Joseph and Tonny Steenhagen for braving public transport to get there.  The band have decided to open their own Facebook page to mark the occasion and act as a sort of gathering place for themselves and fans. This can be found here. The idea is to add a list of tour dates and material from their archives, and a new CD collection has also been set in motion about which more anon. Once the slide show from the event has had an audio track added it will also be uploaded to view.
Some people attending did take video enabled kit and I’m sure some of this will end up on the web (if it hasn’t already!). [I apologise that this has taken me a while to post but I stayed on in London for a couple of days of meetings (about which more anon) and when I got back had to clear a very full in-tray then get my print exhibition finished and hung at a local gallery…]

Scandinavia tour?

December 8, 2015

Deep PurpleIt looks like Purple are getting their 2016 shows lined up, and eagle eyed spotters (thanks to Tim and Matthew) have found three Scandinavian shows in June.
Two in Finland, Helsinki on the 10th and Oulu on the 11th, both supported by Urian Heep.  They are also playing in Denmark on the 17th at the Horsens Forum.  Let us know if you see any more dates.
I would assume this will be to promote their new album, which they are due to start recording in early 2016 in the US.

Nouvelle Review

December 4, 2015

Deep Purple Montreux fire Smoke On The Water

There is something fascinating about old newspaper archives and seeing how people got the news about important events. One of the avenues of research for the upcoming Machine Head book has been to see how they covered to story in the country, and this front page is from the Nouvelle Review. As this did not have a Sunday edition, the story is from the Monday after the fire (which happened 44 years ago today) and clearly it is still big news.  But not too big to squeeze some of the weekend sports stories off the front page! (And a reminder too of issues closer to home, with a brief report of an explosion in a Belfast restaurant as events there began to worsen.)  Coverage of the fire and the aftermath continued across page two and as late as May the following year the debate was still going on, and journalists were trying to get to the truth behind many of the rumours about the causes of the fire.  Read more about the book on the publisher’s sitehe


Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 4,550 other followers