Glenn Hughes held a séance with Ritchie Blackmore in Clearwell Castle
Glenn Hughes: When I got the gig as bass player in Deep Purple I was only aged 21. We went to Clearwell Castle to work on the Burn album. Ritchie rigged up to my room with hidden speakers. In the middle of the night I woke up to the sound of all these ghost noises. I was scared shitless! The next night me, Baz Marshall [Purple roadie] and Ritchie held a séance. Baz was a farmer and he'd recently lost one of his cows. We started the séance and suddenly the room echoed with the sound of a cow mooing. Only this time it wasn't a wind-up! Blackmore freaked and ran out. When it came down to it, he was a bit of a scaredy-cat. But Ritchie was the king of the prank - we all know that. Even today, at 62 years old maybe, he always carries a water pistol around with him. I have it on the greatest authority.
Classic Rock Magazine, U.K. November 2007
What will happen in the world of Graham Bonnet in the next couple of years? Any plans to retire?
Graham Bonnet: No fucking way. Well, I'll be a lot older! In three years I'll be 63! I'm just waiting to get a cool wheelchair.
I feel the same as I did when I was 18. I haven't changed at all and I'm still the same person just with a different shell. On the inside I'm still the same Graham who is stupid, loves music, but hates the business. But I love the money, when it comes to me. I'm going to keep going until someone tells me I can't sing anymore. Then I'll start to write songs with whomever.
MetalRules.com, November 2007 [For the full interview click here]
During all these years have you been in contact with Yngwie?
Graham Bonnet: Yeah about four years ago, he called me and we were going to do a show in Japan, just one show to do some songs from the album we were both on. And this was going to be for a hell of a lot of money, I mean It was like a million US dollars for one show! I said, what?? Are you sure?? His wife who is his kind of manager, said oh no, he doesn't need this and he doesn't need to be with your band anymore. She said it's not enough money because he can make a million dollars for just walking down the street! [laughs] She said that, Yngwie never said that.
I would play again with him any day. We are not enemies. We came in and met like all families do, we fight and we get fed up with each other and you see each other every day and it's like what can we do to make the day interesting, I know, let's have a fight! That's all gone now, it's water under the bridge, way yesterday. He and I can speak just like this and it's no big deal. He's got a great career for himself and he's done very well and I'm proud of it. And he deserves it because he's one of the best guitar players in the fucking world! We were very lucky to have him in our band when we formed. He has never lost it as far as I know.
MetalRules.com, November 2007
You've done recently some shows under the name Alcatrazz with completely new line–up and if I've understood right everybody haven't been too pleased about it?
Graham Bonnet: I hadn't heard from them for 10-15 years and I had never seen anything on any website about them and as soon as I put up this thing about reforming Alcatrazz... They told me they had this plan and it was just complete lie. But because I did this they said they are going to get a lawyer and get every penny I had, which isn't a lot so they're welcome to it, they can take my $10 [laughs]. As far as I'm concerned, Jimmy and Gary can go out and call themselves Alcatrazz, I don't care. No problem!
MetalRules.com, November 2007
Did Cozy at anytime ever suggest to you about joining Rainbow? You and Cozy would have made a great rhythym section for Rainbow, and maybe, just maybe.... kept Ritchie in check!
Neil Murray: It was never suggested that I join Rainbow - I wasn't known as a hard rock bassist until I'd been in Whitesnake for a few years, and even then my style was quite different to the Jimmy Bain/Roger Glover/Bob Daisley style that was suitable for Rainbow's music. Later in the 80s, I became more versatile, since rock music in general, including Whitesnake, wasn't looking for Jack Bruce/Andy Fraser-type playing, but even then I didn't play with a pick, which seemed to be essential.
If Cozy couldn't keep Ritchie in check, no-one could! Anyway, isn't it the case that Cozy left because Rainbow was going too poppy, so in fact Ritchie was 'in check' too much, in Cozy's eyes!
Yahoo Cozy Powell Group, October 2007
If the opportunity arose, would you like to take part in a Rainbow reunion?
Joe Lynn Turner: Of course, and I think I'm the most obvious choice. First of all, I've talked to Ronnie [James Dio], he won't do it... ever. If Ronnie's not going to do it, who're you going to get, Doogie? Who's gonna sing 'Street of Dreams', who's gonna do all that stuff? That's me. I think I should be A) the obvious choice and B) we should do a reunion. I always felt that Ritchie and I had another really good record in us, and we should have had one more record and that would have been it.
MetalRules.com, October 2007 [For the full interview click here]
On Second Hand Life, there's a track called 'Stroke of Midnight' that was originally written for Deep Purple. Can you tell us more about how that song ende up being in your solo album?
Joe Lynn Turner: Ritchie Blackmore emailed me out of the blue. Well, first he called me to go to the Christmas party and I was like "Aaaah, really? I'm in the studio, sorry, I can't go.". But I wanted to, I hadn't seen him in years and I was very impressed that he [called me], I was like "Oh, okay, something's happening here.". He said "Look, the world... the fans should hear the song." It's a great song, it's a signature Blackmore riff, it's a killer Blackmore riff and I think Karl [Cochran] played it great. So Ritchie emailed me three or four times and we went back and forth deciding this and that. He also wanted me to do an other song that was dropped, from the Purple days, but I didn't have any room for it on the album. I think the album flows better this way, maybe next time.
MetalRules.com, October 2007
On joining RAINBOW and later BLACK SABBATH
Ronnie James Dio: With a guy who played guitar like Ritchie [Blackmore] did and still does, and was a genius and who had this dark demeanor, it was perfect for me to get into a place where I could start writing darker and heavier things that I always wanted to do. Then SABBATH was absolutely the perfect vehicle for me — I could write as dark as I wanted to and that's where I've wanted always to be. That's why it's more pleasurable for me to be back in this band than it would be to be in RAINBOW, because that was a bit too bitsy and picky for me, with too many minds on it. (In HEAVEN AND HELL), we all feel the same and everybody know what's right and what's wrong without have to discuss it a whole lot.
The Ithaca Journal, August 2007
Has there been any discussion about doing a Heaven and Hell album?
Ronnie James Dio: Well, there's always discussion about that. When we wrote the three songs for "The Dio Years", it went so well for us that it became obvious that it'd be pretty damn easy for us to do that. But we never said a thing about it because we wanted to put a timeline on this. Unlike the war, we have a timeline. So when we finish in December, that's it.
I have commitments with DIO; I know Tony and Geezer have things to do, and I know SABBATH's 40th anniversary is coming up, too, so I'm sure they'll do something with that as well. But we wanted to put some finality to this. It's a lot better this way. Should something happen down the line, well... there we are. But I can understand the question because we did those three songs and people think, "Hell, SABBATH haven't even done one in the time they've been back together." I think they actually did do one or two, but whatever they've done certainly didn't reach the quality, I think, of what we did on these three tracks. So people want more, but you know, we have to be careful with all of this. I love my own band a lot, and I don't want to not play with them again. DIO did an album called "Magica", and our next album is going to be a double-album: "Magica 2" and "3". I wanna finish it before I quit this damn business. So the last thing on my mind is doing another SABBATH album at this point.
Decibel Magazine, June 2007
Can you explain the removal of Ritchie Blackmore's face from the band's Machine Head T-shirts?
Roger Glover: When Ritchie left, that was the best thing he ever did apart from joining in the first place. I've an enormeous amount of respect for him, but love and hate are very close things. He sued us for releasing some official bootlegs, despite having cashed his cheque from the proceeds. He forbade us from using his image [on Purple merchandise], which we thought was incredibly petty. Our choice was to change them or cease selling the shirts, so we changed them. It was as simple as that.
Classic Rock Magazine, May 2007