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I have to ask what Steve Morse brings to Deep Purple that Ritchie Blackmore did not?

Ian Gillan: You get divorced and then you get remarried and then someone asks you how you compare the new wife with the old wife – you’re question is kind of like that. I could put the answer in sexual terms but I don’t think that I had better. Everyone is different. I refuse to say anything bad about Ritchie as a guitar player. He was a monument, much the same way Jon Lord is. Ritchie is a phenomenal player and a great showman. We did have our fallings out with each other. We were kids and we were all assholes at the time. I think Ritchie and I were at loggerheads – I don’t want this to sound like a self-serving comment so I will have to qualify it. I do believe that Ritchie wanted to dominate the band. I didn’t want to dominate the band but I did want the band to be a band. I resisted Ritchie’s attempts to dominate Deep Purple. We didn’t enjoy the same vision.

I used to room with Ritchie and I actually have many, many fond memories of that time. I think after all these years we are old enough and ugly enough to let those dogs lie. I just don’t want to say bad things about Ritchie as it is all in the past. However, Steve Morse goes on stage and performs brilliantly. He was voted Best Guitar Player by Guitar Player Magazine for five years on the trot. On the 6th year, Steve was asked to step aside because he had won it too many times. Steve comes on stage and no matter what his personal problems may be – we all have them because it is difficult being on the road. You have two families; your family and your musical family. Steve plays electrifying every night and he has phenomenal skills. He gets on the bus after the gig and he is the funniest guy you have ever met in your life. Steve brings things to the band that are entirely different than the things Ritchie brought. You can’t compare the two as guitar players but you can compare them behind the scenes. They have some similarities – banjo players always do. Steve’s energy and enthusiasm behind the scenes are incredible. His sensitivity to writing music – particularly to Roger Glover were just marvelous. I think you can regard the whole thing as that was the old family and this is the new family.

Jeb Wright, Classic Rock Revisited January 2006

There are rumours that Deep Purple mark III would reunite. That's you, Ritchie Blackmore, Jon Lord, Glenn Hughes and Ian Paice. What is of it where? You've had some problems with Blackmore in the past including some fights.

David Coverdale:There was some talkin' about it. I don't take it too seriously. Jon Lord is retired. Yes, there were indeed some problems with Ritchie, but it's a long time ago. There was a lotta frustration concerning the way in which Deep Purple felt apart. Moreover his Rainbow and my Whitesnake were each others direct competitors. That backstage have sometimes gotten out of hand. I have become however milder and more judicious. I think that goes for him too. I can now listen to an old album like 'Burn' without thinking back to all the situations with the band then. I am very proud with what with we have put down. And Blackmore is an extra-ordinary guitarist. I cannot say anything else. Possibly we must simply do together something again. I would love to repair the old links anyway. I realise myself more than ever that he gave me then, being a nobody, an enormous chance getting me into Deep Purple. I had hardly any experience. Thanks to that faith I'm now who I am. For that I gladly would like to thank him.

Aardschok, The Netherlands January 2006

You also knew Cozy Powell through Rainbow, who's also now unfortunately gone. Do you still keep contact with the people from the past who are still alive?

Graham Bonnet: Haha, I still keep in contact with the ones that aren't alive, I think. I remember when Cozy died, when I heard the news over the phone. Don Airey called me. I went out in the backyard and I looked over the hills and there was a rainbow and it was really close. It was the weirdest one, I went all cold. I said is that you Cozy? It was very weird, it was like a sign.

Rock United Finland May 2005

What are you thoughts on Cozy Powell?

Bob Daisley: I got on very well with Cozy too. He was a bit of a larrikin [laughs]. I was a bit intimidated by Cozy. As you know I have always been a big Jeff Beck fan & I knew that Cozy had played with Jeff Beck. We were mates & it was a very sad thing when he died. I had spoken to Cozy only days before his death & we were talking about the possibility of Rainbow doing another album together with the classic line-up with Ritchie, Ronnie, Cozy & myself & I'm not sure what keyboard player they would have used, but not long after that Cozy was killed in the car crash & all thoughts & ideas of a Rainbow reunion went straight out the window, which was very sad.

Metal Centre Poland September 2005

Twelve months ago there were a lot of rumours about a possible Rainbow reunion, obviously this didn't eventuate. Is that something you would consider given the opportunity?

Bob Daisley: It would be weird after all these years [laughs]. I think it would be a good idea but to be honest with you, I don't think Ritchie is even interested in playing rock anymore. Ritchie is & has always been into the medieval/folk music that he's playing now. I haven't spoken to Ritchie in a long time but I have heard that he doesn't even like to listen to any rock music anymore, so whether he would do it or not I don't really know.

Metal Centre Poland September 2005

Is it correct that you wanted to actually drive Roger Glover with the German titles into insanity?

Ritchie Blackmore: But, that is naturally also a reason. Roger asked me: "Why does it have to be always a German title?" I said: "Only, in order to get up your nerves, Roger." Roger wanted always to give all pieces a title. If I had composed an instrumental, he came immediately with titles. I told him: "Damned, I wrote it, and I call it, what I want! Not, what you want!"

Junge Welt, Germany 3 December 2005

Have you heard any of the Blackmore's Night stuff?

Ian Gillan: I have! I had to do an anomynous review. I heard his records and I listened to it very carefully. I do understand his love and I'm gonna pick my words very carefully here, but you know...I was doing a blind review and I suspected it might be Blackmore's Night and I said nothing. And the bloke said, 'Well, have a listen to this one!' What I did say was that the voice was very weak and the guitar sounded terrible. And then they played a Jeff Buckley track called 'Hallelujah' and I said, 'Now you're talking! There's and acoustic guitar, compare the difference! What was that? Ritchie?' 'Yes!' I know in my heart of hearts that Ritchie Blackmore is one of the great guitar players of all time. He's a fabulous technician and he's got incredible skills and he was a great showman. I have to talk about the positive things with Ritchie, because everyone talks about the negative things. He has all these qualities and all these skills and yet something is going on in his brain and I don't know what it is. But for a guitar player of that quality, to record such a crappy-sounding acoustic guitar...you just have to listen to Jeff Buckley and you hear how good an acoustic guitar sounds. Just listen to the vocal performances! Delivered quietly, but with such vibrant passion. Beautiful delivery! And as far as I am concerned, in my honest opinion, Ritchie is wasting his time! I know he's quirky, but I think I, like everyone else, would like to hear Ritchie play the guitar properly again. Not with Deep Purple, but he's got plenty of opportunities to do what he wants to do. I'm a huge fan of Ritchie and I would like to see that. So that's my opinion on that and I hope I didn't sound too negative.

Metal Shrine, Sweden November 2005

I recently read that Richie Blackmore said that he would like to do a one off show with you and the classic Mark II line up. Have you heard anything about that?

Ian Gillan: I've read that too, yes. He's dreaming! Why on earth would we do something with that guy...that brought the band to the edge of ruination. It's just ludicruos! We spent the last ten years rebuilding the reputation and the style and the quality of the music. There's no way on earth that will happen!

Metal Shrine, Sweden November 2005

How is Steve Morse doing? Because I know he´s sitting out on these TV appearances you're doing.

Ian Gillan: His wife has been very ill and he's nursing her back home. She's had three major operations and fingers crossed she's getting better now, but it is a slow recovery. She's very weak. So we're doing this promotion tour and suggested...well, our producer Michael Bradford, and he said he would love to come and fill in and he's a wonderful musician and I fell off my chair laughing...he's a big, huge black man from Detroit and he introduced himself to the tv producer yesterday, and he said "Hello, my name is Richie Moreblack!" (laughs). Everybody adores him. He's a lovely man. So we don't have Steve Morse, we have Richie Moreblack on guitar.

Metal Shrine, Sweden November 2005

Who decides which DIO songs to play?

Rudy Sarzo: Ronnie's very open, he's always open to suggestions. I suggested a couple, "Gates of Babylon" and I suggested "Rock'n'Roll Children". The thing is some songs we have to do, like "Rainbow In The Dark", which we love to do. But the great thing with playing with Ronnie is that there's so many songs to pick from. To do "Gates of Babylon", which he's never done before, that's a new thrill for me. Every year it's playing new stuff that isn't new but stuff from the past that hasn't been done for so long. There's not many bands that can do that.

Metal Rules.com, October 26, 2004