Ian Gillan Calls Ex-Deep Purple Guitarist Ritchie Blackmore “A Difficult Bugger”

Ian Paice tells TeamRock, “Towards the end of Ritchie’s tenure, every night there were four people up there on stage who were trying and one who wasn’t. It was very obvious. And the audiences for smaller and the gigs crappier. All this depressive stuff came from one guy he didn’t want to play. And at this moment Ritchie announced he was going, and after a couple of days of: What the hell do we do now?’ It was like a big weight being lifted off out shoulders.

Talking about his late great keyboard bandmate Jon Lord, who died in 2012 at the age of 71 Paice says he could drink and drink but never seemed drunk and would tells the same stories over and over but still always had the band in stitches. Interestingly Paice and Lord were brothers-in-law when they married twins.

The article chronicles the typical tensions in any band that stuck it out this long (the group started in 1968) but especially between that singer and guitarist – Ian Gillan and Ritchie Blackmore. The pair had so much trouble recording their 1973 album “Who Do We Think We Are” that they didn’t even whisper a word to each other. Gillian ads “Whenever Ritchies names is mentioned these days, all I think about are the good times. Having said that, he was a difficult bugger.”

Their 20th studio album “Infinite’ was released April 7 – by John Beaudin

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John Beaudin has been in major market radio (Edmonton, Vancouver & Calgary) for 33 years and a music journalist since 1989. He graduated from Broadcasting school as a news man so he would have the skills to write about the artists that inspired him since he bought his first album, “Madman Across The Water” by Elton John as a teen. In the 80’s Beaudin was the host of the syndicated radio show “The Cross Canada Report” which had two version (Rock and A/C). Beaudin was also asked to be a judge at the Juno Awards (Canada’s answer to the Grammys) Twice. He has anchored every position in radio including morning and afternoon drive and was a Program and Music Director for The Breeze and California 103 in Calgary. He currently hosts the popular Lovesongs at QM-FM in Vancouver and on iHeartRadio.

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