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Quotes from and about Ritchie Blackmore and Rainbow

Ritchie Blackmore is touring the UK with Blackmore's Night shortly. If he turned up at one of your shows, would you let him jam with you?

Ronnie James Dio: Of course, if he wanted to. I have nothing but the greatest of respect for Ritchie. I've always said he's a genius. He gave me my greatest opportunity [with Rainbow] and to have a guy like that playing with you would be an honour. If he asked me [to jam with Blackmore's Night] I might. But I don't think it would be something I'd look forward to.

Classic Rock magazine - September 2005

An album of your recordings from the sixties was recently released. It is called "Getaway". The material is very interesting and reflects well your work at that time. How do you remember this period?

Ritchie Blackmore: Yes, I have this album. I have nothing to do with this release. All compositions were recorded in the sixties and seventies. It's strange that there are two or three songs where I'm not playing the guitar. It's amazing that they put me there as a guitarist, even though I definitely didn't play there.

Metal Hammer, Poland - February 2006

How do you think Ritchie would have behaved at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame 2016, had he been there on the night?

David Coverdale: You know, it was an amazing scenario, but I know Ritchie, and he probably would have caused trouble by pulling out a water pistol and squirting everybody! [laughing] But it was absolutely obscene that he wasn't there, but I made sure, and I got a thank you from him and his wife when they saw a recording of it. But you know, he doesn't give a shit, and he knows he was responsible for the majority of the music there, and its true; none of us, none of us would have been on that stage without Ritchie Blackmore, none of us.

Eon Music October 2020

David Coverdale Explains Why He Refused to Join Rainbow (excerpt from Greg Prato's book titled "Touched by Magic: The Tommy Bolin Story")

David Coverdale: When Ritchie Blackmore decided to go [from Deep Purple], Ritchie had invited me to go with him to do the Rainbow project. But I felt uncomfortable about it – I didn't think it was appropriate. And that's what led to some abrasive aspects of Ritchie's and my relationship for a while, unfortunately. When we had a meeting without Ritchie, my recommendations were number one, Jeff Beck, number two, Rory Gallagher, and number three, this guy called Tommy Bolin, which no one had really heard about.

Brave Words June 23, 2020

Playing on so many albums and working with so many great musicians, is there a certain time period, not counting Deep Purple, where you feel you had the most fun?

Don Airey: 1980 with Rainbow. We had some huge hit singles and it doesn't get any better than that. Big crowds everywhere we went and it was a fantastic band. Roger Glover and Cozy Powell was an amazing rhythm section and Ritchie was playing the best he'd played since “Machine head” and we had Graham Bonnet, who was just such a brilliant front man. He was unique. We played Donnington and Ozzy was there and he said to me after that it was the greatest performance by a singer he ever saw. He said that to me subsequently 20 years later.

Access Rock, Sweden - February 5, 2014

You've also played with some really interesting guitar players, Michael Schenker, Ritchie Blackmore and Gary Moore. All three known of as being difficult to work with. Could you rank them?

Don Airey: It's really hard for me to say who's the best, because my experience with them all is that you've gotta be so on your toes when you're around people like that. Their difficulty is part of the creative process. Ritchie used to play a game, but what he did was get everybody “keyed up” so to speak. That's where the title of my new solo album comes from. Get them on edge and that's how you get the best out of people.That's how he works.

Access Rock, Sweden - February 5, 2014

Ronnie James Dio touring with ELF in 1972 about Ritchie Blackmore

Ronnie James Dio: We were kind of scared of working with Ritchie. We didn't approach him for the first two or three days on the tour. We knew Roger and Ian and Jon Lord very well, but we tried to stay away from Ritchie 'cause we heard that he will occasionally throw a can at you or something. One night, we were kind of cowering in a corner and he sat down and said, 'Hello Ron, I haven't met you yet, have I?'

Ronnie James Dio touring with ELF - November 8, 1972

David Coverdale has made more revelations about his experience with Deep Purple's induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2016.

David Coverdale : It was really ugly what went down. I heard that their manager was doing everything he could to stop Glenn [Hughes] and I from making a speech. Jon Lord's daughter was not there, which we were surprised to see. But when they turned around and refused to go after being announced as inductees if Ritchie Blackmore was allowed to attend, it was just a mockery.

None of them would have been on that stage without Ritchie. Knowing him, he would have walked in with a fucking water pistol and started a fight. But it was an obscenity that he wasn't there. I know for a fact that Deep Purple would not have been Deep Purple without Ritchie, Jon and Ian [Paice]. That was the beginning and [so] should it always be.

Loudwire - April 3, 2019

What will remain of Deep Purple when the "The Long Goodbye Tour" is over?

Ritchie Blackmore: To me their farewell tour can be not long enough, because as long as they play mainly my songs it brings money in my till. The various tribute bands also bring some spare change. But also Whitesnake with their "The Purple Tour" helped too. And Glenn Hughes is on tour this fall with an all Purple tracks show.

Eclipsed Magazine, Germany 2018

From which musicians have you learned the most?

Graham Bonnet: I think of Roger Glover in the first place. I debuted as a rock singer on 'Down To Earth'. Roger has coached me very well. He told me what was expected of a hard rock singer. A very nice man, by the way. I had not seen him for decades, until I recently went to a performance by Deep Purple. It did me good to see those men still at work. After the show I walked into the dressingroom. "Roger, are we still friends?" I said. His smile spoke volumes. Everything is still good between us. It was also great to see Don Airey again, which of course I worked with at the time. What a giant he is. Pop, rock, jazz, classical music, he is in control of everything.

I was also very fond of Cozy Powell. During the tour with Rainbow, Ritchie Blackmore often took the flight. Roger and I drove along with Cozy in one of his fast cars. We've experienced breakthrough adventures, but it was a treat to get together. My relationship with Ritchie has never been close. There was always a distance. I have never even spoken to him since I left Rainbow. I have tried to get in contact with him, but he did not responded. It is apparently a chapter that he has closed, or that he no longer wants to be reminded of. It is regrettable, but apparently thaa part of the past is very sensitive.

Aardschok Magazine, The Netherlands - October 2018 issue