Deep Purple Tickets
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Deep Purple, after going through a string of changes and variations frommembers to even the music genres series surfaced as a true institution of the British hard rock community; once credited in the Guinness Book of World Records as the globe's loudest band, their revolving-door roster launched the careers of performers including Ritchie Blackmore, David Coverdale, and Ian Gillan.
Deep Purple was formed in Hertford, England, in 1968, featuring guitarist Blackmore, vocalist Rod Evans, bassist Nick Simper, keyboardist Jon Lord, and drummer Ian Paice. The group was first appeared as a session band for ex-Searchers drummer Chris Curtis but quickly went their own way, touring Scandinavia before beginning work on their debut LP, Shades of Deep Purple.
The most pop-oriented release of their career, the album generated a Top 5 American hit with its reading of Joe South's Hush. The Book of Taliesyn followed (in the U.S. only) in 1969, again reached the U.S. Top 40 with a cover of Neil Diamond's Kentucky Woman. With their self-titled third LP, Deep Purple's hopes rose, with the new density in their songs as Lord's characteristically inclined keyboards assumed a much greater focus.
Soon after the album's release, their American label Tetragrammaton folded, Evans and Simper got fired. The band then recruited singer Ian Gillan and bassist Roger Glover from the ranks of the pop group Episode Six.
The revamped Deep Purple's first album, 1970's Concerto for Group and Orchestra, set a fusion of rock and classical music. When the project, which was recorded with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, received a tepid response, Blackmore took charge of the band, leading them towards a heavier, guitar-dominated approach which took full advantage of Gillan's powerful vocals. Resultantly, in 1970's Deep Purple in Rock paved the beginning of the group's most creatively and commercially successful period. At home, the album sold over a million copies, with the successive non-LP single Black Night. 1971's Fireball was also a shattering success, giving a hit with Strange Kind of Woman. Plans to record the follow-up at the Casino in Montreux, Switzerland, were ruined after the venue burned down during a live appearance by Frank Zappa, but the experience inspired Deep Purple's most enduring hit, the AOR staple Smoke on the Water.
The song, featured on the multi-platinum classic Machine Head, reached the U.S. Top Five in mid-1972 and positioned Deep Purple among rock's elite; the band fused with the 1973 studio follow-up Who Do We Think We Are and the hit Woman From Tokyo. However, due to creative differences between Blackmore and Gillan, the latter left the group, and was swapped by Glover, including singer David Coverdale and bassist/singer Glenn Hughes for 1974's Burn. After completing 1974's Stormbringer, Blackmore left Deep Purple to form Rainbow with vocalist Ronnie James Dio; he was replaced by was ex-James Gang guitarist Tommy Bolin, who made his debut on Come Taste the Band. All the changes clearly took their toll, however, and following a farewell tour, the group dissolved in 1976 with Coverdale going on to form Whitesnake; Bolin died of a drug overdose later in the year.
The classic lineup of Blackmore, Gillan, Lord, Glover, and Paice reunited Deep Purple in 1984 for a new album, the platinum smash Perfect Strangers; The House of Blue Light followed three years later, but as past tensions resurfaced, Gillan again left in mid-1989. Onetime Rainbow vocalist Joe Lynn Turner was recruited for 1990's Slaves and Masters before Gillan again rejoined to record The Battle Rages On..., an apt title as Blackmore quit the group midway and was temporarily replaced by Joe Satriani.
In 1994, Steve Morse took over the guitar slot; the revitalized group returned to the studio for 1996's Purpendicular, which proved a success among the Purple faithful. 1998's Abandon followed, as well as a 1999 orchestral performance released the following year as Live at the Royal Albert Hall. Deep Purple, the same year released a four-disc set Shades: 1968-1998, which collected hits, demos, live takes, and unreleased tracks from throughout the years.
In the late '90s and early 2000, the archival releases and collections of DVDs (Total Abandon: Live Australia 1999, In Concert with the London Symphony Orchestra, Bombay Calling, and New Live & Rare) were launched. Despite the numerous lineup turmoil during their career, Deep Purple survives well in the 21st century.
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