Mk 3 Reunion rumours

Glenn Hughes has raised the subject of a Mk 3 DP reunion in a few interviews over the last couple of weeks (including a new Glenn Hughes interview done in France last month we’ve posted).  Don’t go raiding the holiday money fund just yet though, as there are no firm plans. What is safe to ay from the stories is that GH is up for it were it to happen, and that he and DC have chatted about the subject together. They got as far as making tentative approaches some time ago, but clearly it would need a certain guitarist to come on board before anything serious could develop. And Ritchie? Well you never know do you. Who would have put money on him a couple of months ago doing a William Shatner album session?! And it would be one way of avoiding any personal issues between him and IG, having a bit of rock fun and generating some income.
Glenn explained his thinking recently, talking to VH1 radio:
“When I was in the band in the ’70s, let’s just say I joined the band a very bright-eyed and bushy-tailed Northern chap like David and I left the band, very sort of, let’s just say I was overserved at the bar,” he said. “And I’ve made my amends with everybody but I’d like to have a jam with the guys again as a sober man and somebody who knows how to deal with his life on a daily basis. That’s the way I’d like to do it. I think Purple Mk. III is the last reunion of the iconic bands from the ’70s. You know, The Who have come back and even Zeppelin did one show. So Mk. III would be a huge… for the fans it would be monumental.”
It’s likely that there would be some big offers for the project from promoters too, both in America – this is the line-up that did the business there on tour in 1974 don’t forget – and Europe (where it might be viewed as freshening up a franchise which has now been touring largely the same core set for 25 years), It’s not difficult to imagine the Japanese promoters going ballistic to secure a line-up which featured Ritchie and never played Japan.
Currently of course DP are still on the road, and it would be difficult to envisage two bands of the same name touring. You can’t help wondering that were RB to give it a thumbs up, how tempting it might be for Ian Paice, who has kept his hand in on some of the Mk 3 material during these tribute shows he keeps doing.
Jon Lord was asked for his thoughts late last year when the rumours were again doing the rounds and aimed to be a steadying influence before the story get totally out of hand, saying he felt it might be a wish too far. “Yes, I would love to play with Ritchie again, but don’t read anything into that as far as Mk. III is concerned.” Mind you, there seems to be an open invite for RB to take part in the planned studio recording of The Concerto, so who knows where that could lead? Interestingly Jon also raised the concern over DCs voice at present, and we’ll have to see how he handles the upcoming Whitesnake tour. To me I think if Black Country takes off the way it deserves to on the live circuit, then this is more likely than anything to put Mk 3 fantasies on hold (especially as BCC are actually very close to the spirit of Mk 3 in many ways, certainly that was my feeling about their debut album). Indeed seeing the way the Mk 3 story was quickly gaining momentum this past week GH was quick to put out a couple of quick statements to try and calm speculation, fearing it might impact on Black Country’s fortunes.
Good heavens, this is starting to sound like the old ‘reunion rumours’ we ran in Darker Than Blue back during most of the early eighties!

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39 Responses to “Mk 3 Reunion rumours”

  1. Steele Says:

    I saw MKIII on the American Burn tour and it was great! I’m a huge MKIII fan. But their success has to be attributed to riding on the coat-tails of the then still very hot Machine Head and Made In Japan. At that time, when Burn came out, Made In Japan was still a huge hit in the US (it got a bit of a slow start over here) and carried over from it’s release in 1973 past Who Do We Think We Are. Even as Burn came out people were flocking in huge numbers to their US concerts, as Made In Japan and the live version of Smoke On The Water still fresh in the fans’ minds. Not to take anything away from MKIII. The concert was great. As you all know they played mostly the Burn album plus some MKII hits. I don’t know if the average fan here was confused or not (maybe expecting a Made In Japan set list), but they were energetic.
    One marketing problem they might have (but I doubt it), is that as popular as that line-up was, they made only two albums and had no hit singles. How do you explain/justify that to the general American concert goer? I don’t think you have to but there will always be talk about “not the Smoke on the Water line-up”.
    For those of you that are worried about DC’s voice, remember that Hughes is still singing very strong and sings almost 50 percent of the Purple material, and takes the high notes. So DC will only need to be strong in his lower, natural range. I hope he still has that. Leave the Gillan screaming to Hughes. Don’t the egos between the two will be a problem unless Hughes buries Coverdale night after night (which could happen).
    If they do reunite, I personally would like to see them record one album, and then tour, playing all of Burn, a couple from Stormbringer tunes and some new material. I think they could write together. The latest Hughes and Coverdale material has been strong – much stronger than the current DP IMHO.
    I know I’d pay the big bucks to see them again, the first band I ever saw in concert. Sweet memories! Astrodome, Houston Texas, Friday Night, August 30th 1974

  2. Tony b Says:

    Yes short and sweet would be nice! I was just thinking about how expectations are always too high when bands reform since glory days. Things are very much in the moment for all bands I guess and trying to recreate it would be impossible. Please discuss!

    But seeing Glenn H do Sail Away on his last solo tour which got me moving in many ways had me thinking what could it be like with Coverdale Blackmore Hughes Lord Paice just one more time.

    Of course the Blackmore interview on DTB website recently shows no interest in any DP reunion from him. But what can you really glean from a man who advised about ‘codswallop soup’?! As they say round here, I was that daft booger who looked it up on the Internet until I realised it was just another Ritchie Blackmore interview windup.

    Reminds me of a bit in the Charlesworth DP biography when DP were in Denmark in 1968. Ian Paice and Blackmore wound up the local journalists when asked about their musical influences, saying that Wally Thud inspired them.

  3. aussie paul Says:

    Yes simon, it is strange that I’m living in Dublin!! And why you may ask?
    Tell you what though, if Mk3 get back together in some shape or form.. I’ll throw another shrimp on the barbie!!

  4. Ian Dunbar Says:

    Believe me, this MkIII reunion WILL happen!

  5. aussie paul Says:

    As much as I love deep purple, and have since the age of 11, I think the reunion in 84 was enough to kill the legend that the band had built up since 76. As I was born in 1968, I was way too young to see the band in their prime, but I was at the show in Sydney in 84 (when George Harrison came onstage – what a night, a 16 yr old headbangers dream!), seen the band twice since then, but I just don’t see Mk3 getting together at all. A one off show would be magic but could it really happen with so many egos involved on one stage, managers, contracts, etc?? David’s voice is shot and I for one would be expecting a show on par with their heyday, would we all not be disappointed with (any)thing less? I came away from the Sydney gig a very happy young man but I feel that they should have done that one world tour and left it at that, with their names, reputations, etc. intact. To me a Mk3 show/reunion of sorts will cheapen the bands name more than it already is. Leave the memories of growing up to brilliant albums and shows to memories.None of the band are the same people they were in the 70’s, neither would the performances be if they did get back together.
    Just an opinion of an Aussie living in Dublin! But then again, stranger things have happened…

    • simon robinson Says:

      …than an Aussie living in Dublin?! I think it’s a truth almost universally acknowledged that the DP Reunion could have been handled better by all concerned, as was shown by the way it quickly tailed off in terms of commercial and artistic success after the record-breaking 1985 tour. Maybe a Mk 3 effort could learn from those mistakes and work by keeping it short – and sweet?

  6. Dave Stoddard Says:

    I will regret to my dying day that I didn’t go and see MK3 in 74 – a reunion would be the gig of the century for me if it ever happened.
    I remember sending Glenn an e-mail the last time this story went around along the lines of – If a MK3 reunion is a no go, how about a Coverdale/Hughes album and tour ? – now there’s a gig i think a lot of us would welcome !

    • simon robinson Says:

      Yep, they were very very good (sorry Dave!), and certainly quickly convinced me and other doubters on that UK tour, mainly I think to Blackmore’s new rabid approach to it all (though Mk 2 remain my favourites). As a few have pointed out, perhaps Glenn has been tapping into a deep well here for the purposes of plugging his book / album / tours, but good to at least to air the idea, and fascinating to see what everyone thinks of it. I reckon Black Sheep would work well in a Mk 3 set for one thing, while the idea of Sail Away done live could be worth the price of admission alone. And as Mike Edwards says further down, there could well be unfinished business between Gillan & Iommi while this is going on. Then after that they all get back together for the climactic 35 minute Mandrake Root tour and take the roof off the Croydon Fairfield Halls.
      My thought originally was for a sort of lean mean version of the band, with GH on vox/bass, RB on gt, IP on drums and JL on kybs. They would take the name MACH3 (get it?) to avoid any problems. So if this ever happens, you know where they nicked it from! But as Tony B. says on one comment, time is of the essence. Someone reminded me that Jon turns 70 in a couple of months…

  7. frodster Says:

    Blackers will insist that MK3 feature ‘Black Sheep Of The Family’ in the set list before signing up for a tour! I will be happy if they give the MK2 songs a wide berth for this occasion.

  8. Chris Oberst Says:

    Mk III is my favorite lineup and I’d love to see it happen.
    My only cause for optimism is that I don’t believe there’s a chance in hell Ritchie would do it. Which, of course, means that he’ll likely sign up for it at the earliest opportunity!
    If it did happen, I think it would have to only be for a few special shows. I can’t see Coverdale/Hughes and Ritchie playing nice for much longer than that.

  9. Ian Douglas Says:

    The point I think fundamentally for me is Deep Purple was progressive and innovative – one can chart with pride and joy the development from Shades to Come Taste (which incidentally had some of my all-time favourites). Then the so-called reunion but it was always just Mk2.2; 2.3 right up to 2.-? Yes, Morse might be great but the material isn’t there album-wise and what do they do on stage except recreate the old material not even substantially reworked. So give another part of the mix a go I say. Hughes is brilliant – just listen to his take on Mistreated on the Soulfully Live cd set – awesome even with JJM on guitar… What a find for Mk3, as was David. So yes enjoy the Past but Move Forward also – there may yet be a good album to uncover to compliment the stage numbers. Cheers all I know whatever the divergence of views we are all One Brotherhood!

  10. frodster Says:

    We could guess the MK3 Setlist. Blackers does ‘Soldier’ in B’night.
    ‘Sail Away’ crystalizes the sound of line up. Whether that finger-clicking
    music will keep RB interested… unless the guys agree to playing ‘Black Sheep of The Family’ at this late stage of the game?

  11. John Says:

    I don’t think any of them would want to expose themselves to the potential rifts and court cases that can happen when you get two versions of the same band. Whatever the intentions, precedent says these kinds of arrangements usually end in tears. I think if David/Glenn/(Jon)/(Ritchie)/(Paicey) wanted to play Mk3 material together they should go out under a different name, maybe ‘Stormbringer’ (along the same lines as the Iommi/Dio ‘Heaven and Hell’ band). But another (and I think better) approach is for a one-off short, but magical egos-aside tour featuring current lineup plus David, Glenn, RItchie, Jon, Nick in appropriate and cool permutations, ending obviously in everyone on stage for Smoke. Enjoy it, make tons of cash (!), then put the egos back on and back to the day jobs.

  12. woytek Says:

    Two DP on the road ? No, no, no

  13. Tony b Says:

    I’d love to see it but I guess it may never happen. Time is of the essence here as the people involved get older, (which) makes it less likely to happen. Plus all the other questions, most already raised. I was thinking of how Ritchie would get on with DC – as here is another DP singer he didn’t get along with, mainly (in the) years after leaving DP (or get along with the rest of the band!). Paicey may find it difficult squaring it with the current DP. Then expectations will be high with the obvious disappointments if it doesn’t match them.
    Great if it happened though!

  14. Michael Edwards Says:

    This is likely a non-starter, but it would be nice to see something “new” breathed into the brand. And, if it frees Gillan up to work with Iommi and Geezer Butler, all the better! Give me Mk. III and Born Again pt. 2.

  15. Andy Says:

    In which month of Sundays should I eat my hat while hell freezes over?

    But yes, Id go along if it happened.

  16. Bill Pierce Says:

    I doubt David would do that, his voice is fine. He just sings a little different now, (but) he can still sing like the Purple days no problem, remember The River Song! But who knows, I don’t want to hear vocal battles on stage again, that’s for sure. Big problem that, remember Made in Europe? Lord have mercy, Glenn doing all that hooping and hollering, but like he said, he is a sober man now, so who knows. Ritchie and Paicey will have the final say. They did have some fine moments though!! Sail Away is a masterpiece, as is Stormbringer (the track). We’ll see

    • Jason Hillenburg Says:

      We’re listening to two different singers. Like Gillan, Coverdale’s voice is in terminal velocity. That’s nothing against either man. They have punished their voices to entertain us for many, many years.

      Past glories are just that. Past.

  17. Damian Says:

    I wonder if Deep Purple could also do “You Keep On Moving” as Jon & Glenn did this at the “Child line” charity gig in 2009. If only as a reminder of the entire Deep Purple legacy. You can but dream ….
    as I doubt if Blackmore would be happy with this!

  18. peter l crisp Says:

    It’s a tough one with both Whitesnake & BCC with a second album due, and both bands are riding high and now as popular as ever, could not see it happen, and with “Ritchie” doin’ his thing to me that’s the only stumbling block, I hope I am wrong but I see very little chance.

  19. nrmc Says:

    Please do not think so much! The project must be revived quickly as possible! It would be interesting to many fans. If I may suggest something in this regard, it should be a worldwide tour. I keep my fingers crossed from Slovakia.

  20. vince chong Says:

    The timing is a little off for Glenn as he does have a lot going at the moment. On the other hand everyone is not getting any younger and time may be right for Blackmore to grab the limelight again after a relatively low profile Blackmore’s Night [ been about 15 years ] . I certainly have no probelms supporting both lineups at the same time , Deep Purple and Deep Purple mk 3 with Paicey doing the honours at the drums. I have always envisioned this as a final tour scenario but the present is a good time as any !

  21. António Moreira Says:

    The current lineup of Deep Purple seems more Gillan Band play old songs of Purple.
    Mk 3 Reunion could be great, for sure !

  22. Kevin Staden Says:

    Can’t see it happening myself. Glenn yes, Jon maybe, David maybe as a one-off, Paicey might be difficult due to his long time commitment with the current line-up…. and then we get to Ritchie. I think that is where it really does fall down the big no-no hole. Ritchie is very happy with what he’s doing, if he wanted to rock again I think we’d have seen it already. Coverdale was never his favourite, Hughes wasn’t much better either.
    MkIII produced some of my favourite Purple stuff, but there are too many ‘if’s’ in this one to see it happening. Shame.

  23. Mike Galway Says:

    Oh look, a flying Pig or a compassionate Tory………….

  24. Chris Hayward Says:

    I never saw MK3 play so I am all in favour of a reunion.

  25. Stathis Says:

    I’m very curious to see who’s going to manage and book that thing if it happens….

  26. Brent Dehn Says:

    Nothing could be better! Mk3 only ever came to Australia once in 1974 for the Sunbury festival, just before heading to Paris. I was too young to go to Sunbury. I saw DP Mk IV in 1975, Rainbow in 1976, both brilliant, so glad I went. Mk3 resurrection? Oh, yeah!!!!

  27. Bo Says:

    and I will add: Ian Douglas – I can only agree, I’m sad to say.

  28. Bo Says:

    I would LOVE it big time. Just to see RB and JL together will be more than I can dream of. If just Coverdale will accept that his voice is for blues-rock and NOT screaming rock, I’m sure he will fine.
    Yes bring it on in 2012 and let Gillan and Roger do their solo stuff. Then Paice can do Mk III. BCC is great but can’t match a Mk III one off tour.

  29. David Says:

    I hope it happens. It would be impossible to imagine two Deep Purple’s. They would happen would to come up with another name (like ‘MK 3’). Money may tempt Blackmore back (I think that’s why he’s on Shatner’s new album).

    • simon robinson Says:

      David – I very much doubt the fee for doing the Shatner album would have been massive enough alone to tempt Ritchie unless he just thought it was a fun thing to do!

  30. Roy Davies Says:

    I can see it all now; Mark III reforms. The band warm over the ‘Burn’ set as Ritchie doesn’t ‘rate’ the Stormbringer material and refuses to play it live.
    They do 14 dates in Japan, 12 in Germany and then announce just one date for the UK, as special guests at Download or in Hyde Park, where it pours down and there is no encore. Ritchie gradually loses interest and the US dates are pulled when he walks out after a fall out with Glenn over having to perform ‘Owed to G’.
    Let the legend lie guys, it’s not worth it!

  31. Jason Hillenburg Says:

    I just don’t see how anyone can really see this happening. David and, particularly, Glenn often use this carrot to drum up interest in their respective careers. Secondly, if a certain percentage of DP devotees can’t stand the condition of Ian’s voice at this juncture, have they listened to David lately?

    This isn’t 1985 anymore. A reunion of MKIII wouldn’t garner near the same amount of attention and cash that MKII did in the mid 80’s and whoever thinks otherwise should share whatever they’re smoking. MKIII has absolutely no relevance to the current music scene and, in all honesty, Glenn’s attempts to put such a reunion on par with Zeppelin reuniting for a show is puffery and nothing more. One classic and a second studio album that the DP community remains divided about the merits of does not constitute an enormous legacy. They remain the second, and possibly third, most important lineup in the band’s history. They made their reputation as a performing unit on the basis of one classic album and powerful live performances.

  32. Michail Vasilyev Says:

    Well, having the court decision (after Rod Evans’ bogus Deep Purple incident of 1980) stating that not less than 3 members of 4 original DP lineups (together) can name their project “Deep Purple”, we may witness another Deep Purple with Coverdale\Hughes\Blackmore or Lord or Paice, whatever…
    That would surely become a very important precedent in a musical history!

  33. Steve West Says:

    Mk3 doesn’t really rock my boat and although I’d probably sell my children to get a ticket to see them I fear they would not live up to my expectations. However, for those who would go even further for this monumental reunion I wish you all the luck in the world – as I’m sure you’re gonna need it!
    For me the prospect of Ritchie recording with Jon again on the planned Concerto album is far more likely and exciting…

  34. Ian Douglas Says:

    Bring it on! More than about time. No interest in the current lineup at all just doing mainly Mk 2 material and the same handful of songs. This could be really interesting!

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