Ian Ferguson

Ian Ferguson seventies.jpg

Ritchie Blackmore Guitar Technician and Road Warrior, Ian “Fergie” Ferguson, passed away July 22, 2019 peacefully at his home in Minneapolis due to complications from pneumonia. Fergie was born in Glasgow but relocated to London and eventually Los Angeles, and during that time became a much sought after guitar technician for multiple bands and artists in both touring and recording capacities. He worked with a plethora of very varied acts including Deep Purple, Rainbow, Black Sabbath, Yngwie Malmsteen, Scorpions, The Cult, Little River Band, Metallica, Lauryn Hill, Indigo Girls and Heart among others. After retiring from the music industry Fergie moved to Minneapolis, Minnesota, where he entered the nursing profession. He was married to his most loving wife, Colleen. He will be missed by many friends, family, road warrior companions and artists across the globe.

David K. Tedds

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Simon adds: my thanks to David for penning this for us and arranging for two photos from his families collection to show here. While pictures of the musicians are common, action shots of the roadcrew are much less easy to find. David knew Fergie well during the 1980s and 1990s and tells me Ian was apparently not one to go on about his rock and roll past, and one of his medical co-workers, finding out who Fergie once worked for was quoted in the local Minnesota paper as saying: “You’re telling me that a guy I worked beside for four years did this?!” 

I think Ian is first credited on Deep Purple’s Made In Europe album, assembled as we know from the final Deep Purple Mk 3 concerts in April 1975. Ritchie Blackmore’s previous guitar tech Ron Quinton had died in a road accident in August 1975 so Fergie had a tough act to follow but did it well. So when Blackmore left to form Rainbow, Ian was quickly recruited for the tours. Many older fans will recall seeing him busying himself about on the stage in the run up to and during those classic early Rainbow Rising concerts. Fergie was credited last on the Down To Earth album and then in 1979, Ronnie (who’d recently jumped ship from Rainbow) helped recruit him to work with Black Sabbath (which turned out to be even more dangerous than Rainbow, Fergie was injured in a crowd riot at one of their gigs in 1980).  Thanks also to Tim Summers, Pericle Formenti.


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