Posts Tagged ‘deep purple’

Chas Hodges RIP

September 24, 2018

Another Deep Purple connection severed with the news of Chas Hodges’ death. It has been interesting to read the details of his long career, and let’s face it it’s hard not to have enjoyed some of his hits with Chas and Dave which always bring a smile when they’re on the radio, and made him a household name. In the early days of delving into Deep Purple’s history, discovering The Outlaws and tracking down their singles was mandatory, mainly to hear what the fledgling guitar work of Ritchie Blackmore was like rather than Chas’s bass playing I must confess (though he was apparently one of the first in the UK to own an electric bass).

Outlaws.jpg

It was always a red letter day when we found a new picture of the four piece for the collection (that’s Chas on the right in this vintage shot, and Gillan drummer to be Mick Underwood in front of course). The famous clip of him and the band in Live It Up is worth a look if you’ve not seen it, Chas on a twelve string.

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Chas would later join a more progressive rock / country outfit in 1970 called Heads Hands & Feet, who actually supported Deep Purple at some shows in the UK in early 1971. Roger wasn’t well one night, and Chas deputised as the show had already begun. He also turned up on that great all-star rock blues jam session Green Bullfrog the same year to cement his place in the Purple family tree.
The Guardian have done a good obituary and I can do worse than link to that.

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Eighty minutes max.

August 31, 2018

Deep Purple‘s current American tour set list seems to have settled down. It’s always hard to rely 100% on initial reports as not everyone is familiar with the newer titles Stateside (one had them playing three Infinite tracks!) but the following seems to be what they’re doing:

Highway Star / Pictures of Home / Bloodsucker / Strange Kind of Woman / Sometimes I Feel Like Screaming (not played on the first night but added thereafter) / Uncommon Man / Lazy / Knocking at Your Back Door / Perfect Strangers / Space Truckin’ / Smoke on the Water. Hush (encore)

So five tracks off Machine Head and nothing off the current album. But this is what happened on their last U.S. trip, as they could feel the atmosphere dropped when they tried new stuff, so we should not be too surprised. European fans can feel a bit smug but it’s a bit of a shame for dedicated fans who do know the new stuff, maybe they ought to do a couple of advertised solo shows for them with the new material? The Deep Purple set is around 80 minutes, with support Judas Priest doing around 75 mins. There is an opening band, Temperance Movement. Dates are on our gig diary. Thanks to Tim Summers and others. Do let us know if you spot any changes. SR.

Make room…

August 3, 2018

It is the silly season after all. Since 2000, Machine Head (which is on my mind as I am working hard to wrap up the new book!) has been reissued on vinyl by Rhino, EMI, Back to Black, Universal and Warners, in a choice of clear, black or purple vinyl. And those are just the ones I know about.  So please forgive me if I can’t get too excited by this and the accompanying set of similarly coloured vinyl reissues of that part of the Deep Purple catalogue which Universal now control. And I own 25 copies of Machine Head, so must be their target market! What saner heads must think I can only guess.

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Anyhow, if you missed them before, here’s your chance again.  Of course they’re remastered, although one suspects this just means a new master has been cut rather than anything more substantial (and I’m not certain remastering technology has developed that much in the three years since the last one!). And sure this work will have been done at Abbey Road, but only because that’s where the tapes are stored and copied. And yes they’re in a nice shade of purple, but then again so was the Machine Head reissue six years ago.  It is also limited, not really a big surprise as most reissue vinyl is these days. The sales people calculate the likely market and profit, an appropriate number are pressed, and then the run is closed.  It does seem to me major labels are quickly killing off this market; does the world need a reissue on vinyl of the first Now That’s What I Call Music LP?  Because there is one. I spotted it in Sainsbury’s last week.

Of course the set looks nice in the pack shot (let’s hope the sleeve scanner has remembered to remove the Record & Tape Exchange price stickers this time too!), but sadly they would just get squeezed onto our shelf, spine out. Maybe my £126 would be better spent on some more shelving.  

Any variations here? Well they’ve added the Mk 4 label to Last Concert, which also seems to have been pressed in black and purple vinyl (check the inner bag below where someone has forgotten the Photoshop mask)!  But you can pick up a nice original import press for only a few dollars more.  Or there is a very spiffing original first press minty looking copy of In Rock down at my local second hand shop. At least there is some history behind that.

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Unveiling

July 9, 2018

Montreux 4th July 2018 – Plaque Unveiling Ceremony at the Former Grand Hotel.

 

Ian Gillan by the plaque

Tim Summers has managed to pen us a few words about the event itself, for more see the two posts below…

With the proceedings due to kick off at 11 am, we hopped off the train at Territet with about 25 minutes to go and strolled across the street to the building itself. We struggled to recognise it at first due to it being covered in scaffolding; one reason for having the plaque located round at the unobstructed rear entrance – actually this made sense as this was where the mobile studio was parked – and it meant that we could hear the speeches (and not get run over!) shielded from the relatively busy road to the front.
As we arrived tables of food and drinks were being set up opposite the rear entrance, and a copy of Machine Head stood on a podium to the side, with a picture of the mobile studio parked there some 40-odd years previously on the wall at the other side. The good folk of Montreux made us feel very welcome, and we chatted with just the occasional craning of the neck to peer down the road to see if there was any sign of any Purple people arriving. Roger had promised to attend together with “whoever else he could drag along”. As 11 am approached, a sleek looking people carrier was sighted at the bottom of the slope; it drove up to the car park barrier and the doors opened – Roger was first out, followed by Ian Gillan and Paicey. They ambled up the road in the style of a royal walkabout, stopping to shake hands and chat with people in the assembled throng (of probably around 100 people).
Once at the top they went inside the foyer (which was open) and we followed them in – it was kind of awe-inspiring to be in such an historically significant building. They were happy to chat, pose for photos and sign anything thrust in front of them, and after a little while we ventured back out into the sunshine for the unveiling. There were speeches, including one from Paicey, who said that this was the first time he’d been back to the building since he finished work on the Machine Head album. He actually explained in terms I could understand the necessity of all that climbing out of windows/across balconies business too.
The plaque is a nice thing – not the sort of blue metal affair I was imagining, but rather a laser-etched glass creation, with a (surprisingly effective) button to back-illuminate it on command. As well as including a contemporary picture of the band from the time of recording the album, the plaque details the significance of the album and building too. I spoke to its Italian creator, and he said that he wanted to make something special for a band as important as Deep Purple.
Montreux itself is quite an amazing place, and it really comes alive for the annual music festival. Later in the day Roger did a sort of Q&A about the significance of it all, the fire and the recording of the album, and we spotted him again later just walking down the street (probably returning from the soundcheck for that night’s gig). Paicey summed up the sort of intertwined nature of the band and place in his closing remarks about the recording of Machine Head here: “Looking back on our career, probably one of the the most important 3 weeks of our lives”. –Tim Summers (thanks to Keith Sharp and Ian Edwards for the photographs).

Below, Keith’s picture of the plaque in situ. The text is a bit clunky but you should have seen it before we re-wrote it! It was supposed to have the album title and name off the sleeve too, not sure where those went…  But a very swish item which does the band proud.

Montreux Plaque 2018

Einem Meisterwerk

June 15, 2018

Deep-Purple-In-Rock-German-sales

Just to let people know that there will be a German edition of the Deep Purple book Wait For The Ricochet later this year. Published by Hannibal, it will look very similar to the original, with the same illustrations and format.  If anyone is interested, the title can be pre-ordered already from the publisher’s own site.  Hard to believe but the album is 48 years old this very month, and was of course a massive seller in Germany where it topped their album charts for weeks. If you do not have this book yet, the English edition is back in stock through the publisher’s own shop.  And their follow-up devoted to Machine Head and titled Fire In The Sky is now not far away.

The publishers would like to thank Lutz and Andreas for their help in making this German edition possible.

Drawing skills

June 8, 2018

Never Before sing a long lyrics from German magazine Bravo, 1972

The researchers for the upcoming Machine Head book have put a call out for a couple of items in case anyone in DTBland can help…

[1] Has anyone got a good clean scan of the album review from America’s Creem magazine in 1972? It most likely appeared in the May or June issue but might have slipped to Oct or Nov (they have checked other issues).

[2] In a similar search they are trying to source a good clean scan of the single review from the Australian music magazine Go-Set, printed in the Oct 6th 1973 issue. A contact there has kindly sent all the issues from microfilm but this page is too faded to use.

[3] Lastly (for now!) but perhaps most crucial has anyone got sufficient CAD skills to convert Simon’s rough sketch plan (and measurements – imperial!) of the Grand Hotel corridor studio circa 1971 into a presentable diagram? This can be a plan view or perhaps a 3D view like you sometimes see on those TV house alteration programmes. This is a for the love of it task but you would get a nice fat credit in the book.  Simon: “I am afraid I gave away my drawing board many years ago, my Rotring pens are all seized up, and attempts to do this in the Adobe software I use have been awful!”

Москва́

June 4, 2018

The setlist from Moscow last week gives an idea of the current set of dates: Highway star, Bloodsucker, Pictures of Home, Strange Kind of Woman, Sometimes I Feel Like Screaming, Uncommon Man, Lazy, Time for Bedlam, Birds of Prey, Knocking At Your Backdoor, Perfect Strangers, Space Truckin’, Smoke on The Water – Hush, Black Night
Time For Bedlam was dropped at the festival they did in Mexico, probably for time reasons, but otherwise this seems to be the show for the time being. So the new album content has dropped quite a lot, it looks like we caught them at the right time on the UK tour last year! Thanks to Mike Richards and Bo Olsson for the updates. All the upcoming dates are on our diary page.

And so Deep Purple begins

May 15, 2018

Pye_Studios

What did you do at the weekend just gone? Me I walked round to the shops for some bread rolls and a Saturday paper, did a bit of weeding in the garden and gave a talk on pre-War commercial street photography.

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What did Derek Lawrence do with his weekend just gone fifty years ago? Only produced (with the help of a BBC Sound Effects LP!) the first Deep Purple album Shades Of Deep Purple. Happy 50th Deep Purple!

Yes we know they did some shows before, and a few demos, but to me that trip to the Pye basement studios (at ATV house) near Marble Arch meant it all suddenly got real. How could they cut an album so quickly? Well they’d rehearsed and done most of the material either live or in previous groups, so it was all fairly well bedded in. Plus they were damn good musicians. And they had no more budget!

Derek did a bit more work on the Monday, cut and mastered the first (proposed) single later in the week, EMI got on board, and the rest is, well history. History which continues to prove fascinating for many, and music which has given millions pleasure over those fifty years.

The studio? Pye were there until 1989 in one guise or another, but the Sixties building where so many other great recordings were also made was demolished in 2003.

pyestudios

Fifty once

May 1, 2018

Classic Rock have pushed the boat out with a Deep Purple cover issue on sale now. Some of us have been admiring the cover art too, would look great as a poster. It’s actually quite a strange image, familiar but not quite right. The answer turns out that it really is a montage – Ritchie’s head is from a 1969 pic, the rest of him from Mk3 days! Frankenpurple.

Not been into town to buy a copy yet but several people have. Tom Dixon reckons “the angle this time is the justifiable, inarguable fact that shows “how the Deep Purple Family tree ruled rock” Inevitably for most of us there is nothing new but they do interview all the members (bar Morse, and Blackmore of course) and even do a ‘special’ on the Butterfly Ball. Airey gets a couple of pages too to expand on Moore in particular with a sidebar on Simon McBride as he has featured with Don a few times and is on his forthcoming album. Warhorse, and Captain Beyond get a brief appearance. Some nice period pics too. Nicely put together piece on the huge influence the band and its’ many members have had on rock.” There is a sample CD with the magazine featuring a few old Purple label tracks.

Funnily enough we were watching the lengthy Jeff Beck special on BBC4 TV the other day and were quite touched by the way Cozy Powell was bigged up when they came to talking about The Jeff Beck Group (and nice to see a bit of rare footage too). Jeff says he got his label to organise the auditions, and when he turned up they pointed Cozy out and said “forget the rest”, some of whom were already packing their drum sticks away! The show is on iPlayer.

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Purple Dates

April 26, 2018

Deep Purple Judas Priest.jpg

Deep Purple have announced another batch of concerts. They are kicking off in the third week of August in the USA, Cincinnati on the 21st and running right through to the very end of September. Tickets are on sale from today. The band then head over to Japan for five shows. Nothing listed for Tokyo yet but there is some leeway for them to add a show there. In total this means the group are doing around 50 shows in the year, which does suggest they are easing off the workload a little.

The American shows are in partnership with Judas Priest.

The diary page (see menu on right) is now updated, and our thanks to Lutz Reinart, Greg Tarlinton and Tom Dixon for the extra information.