January 24, 2008

Deep Purple!

Donald B. Hawthorne

What a surprise to find Jonah Goldberg mentioning this morning a unique version of the song Smoke on the Water originally by the rock'n'roll band, Deep Purple, in one of his posts on The Corner.

If Deep Purple can make The Corner, then it can make Anchor Rising!

Now I know something about Deep Purple, having seen them in concert many times over the years and having over 30 CD's of their music. (Did you even know there were that many? And did you care!) For me, it all began back in the 1972-73 school year when Smoke on the Water (and Stairway to Heaven) were new songs played at my high school senior prom.

So, for a trip down memory lane, here are some other YouTube videos of the song, Smoke on the Water:

First found on the studio album, Machine Head, Smoke on the Water reached even greater popularity when it was one of the songs on Made in Japan, a 1973 album many consider one of the greatest live albums of all time. A quintessential version of the song, which they say had no remixing done to it.

Here is a video clip of the band performing the song in 1973, with what was called the MkII lineup of Blackmore, Gillan, Glover, Lord and Paice.

After Gillan and Glover were replaced as members of the band by Coverdale and Hughes, Deep Purple performed the song when they headlined the California Jam near my hometown in 1974.

When Bolin joined after Blackmore left the band for the first time, this version of the song was performed in Japan in 1975.

The MkII lineup reformed in 1984 and this is a 1993 version of the song.

More recently, two versions are here and here (the former has some nice guitar riffs at the beginning and the latter with Ronnie James Dio and an orchestra) where Morse replaced Blackmore after the latter's second and final departure.

For when you are feeling Lazy (Catch the first 3+ minutes of keyboard playing here and the walking bass line later on; and you thought Deep Purple was only about lead guitar playing! Earlier live version of Lazy is here.) and like a Child in Time, then sit back and enjoy this live version of another classic song from the MkII era, Highway Star, recorded during their Made in Japan tour and the opening song of MkII concerts. An early live version of the song is also here.

Okay, enough already. Now you can return to thinking about dismal budget deficits and how you live in a place where many in leadership positions in the state of Rhode Island act like they are Perfect Strangers. What a Black Night we face; it is as if people in the state are Haunted by unresolved legacy issues. It's enough to make each of us say that Sometimes I Feel Like Screaming.

Guess that leaves us no choice but to go Space Truckin'.

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Hey, conservatives are human - they can headbang with the best.
I'd just love to see what would happen if some of the Texans and NRA supporters who attend Ted Nugent's GOP fundraisers ever read any of the Huge Nooge's lyrics. Does Mike Huckabee know the bass line on "Wango Tango?"

Posted by: rhody at January 24, 2008 2:04 PM

Ah yes, reminds me of high school in Portsmouth circa that period, cruising around in friends' Camaros, ingesting things and listening to our favorite cruising albums on the tape deck (often still 8 tracks in those days): the aforementioned "Made in Japan"; "Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere" by Neil Young and "Who's Next" by you know Who. ;-)

Posted by: Tom W at January 24, 2008 2:47 PM


Who's Next (1971) is one of the greatest albums of all time and one of those albums we listened to all the time back then.

Here is a link to Won't Get Fooled Again, one of the great rock anthems of all time. Seeing it brings a chill. Of the many bands I saw live over the years, The Who were as good as any. Such raw energy.

Now add in a few albums like Aqualung by Jethro Tull (another 1971 album!) and any of those Led Zeppelin albums from the first album in the late 1960's through Physical Graffitti (1975) and you have some great music! The Zeppelin show I saw at the LA Forum in the mid-1970's was another one of those memorable moments in live music. Especially their roughly 45 minute acoustic set. Here are some of their songs from that era. One of my particular favorites.

Throw in a few Credence albums for fun, too! I also enjoyed the Guess Who.

Even softer albums from the era like Moondance by Van Morrison, Sweet Baby James by James Taylor, and Tapestry by Carole King were outstanding. They just didn't play as effectively in that Camaro with your buddies, did they!

A few years later, there were separate blues club shows with Muddy Waters, John Lee Hooker (where Carlos Santana shows up), and BB King. Fine stuff indeed!

Posted by: Donald B. Hawthorne at January 24, 2008 6:54 PM


How could I have forgotten to mention Aqualung? To this day I've been known to throw the CD in the car and crank it up (ditto Thick As a Brick) ... though not with my better-half in the car; her taste in music is, well, softer and less metallic than mine!

In addition to the others you mentioned, Santana had a good run then.

And I had a fondness for throwing on some Moody Blues when reading the de riqeur material of the time: Hesse; Carlos Castenada; HObbit / Lord of the Rings; Richard Brautigan. The MB's were also good for other activities too, but we won't go there. ;-)

By the time I was college (mid to late '70's) some folks in the dorms were calling me Mr. '60's because I was always borrowing oldies albums and copying them onto cassette. I never caught the disco fever, in fact hated it.

These days I've also become partial to the Big Band stuff and other music from the 1930's through WWII era. My wife has told me a number of times that I was born in the wrong decade, and I agree.

Posted by: Tom W at January 24, 2008 8:15 PM

Going through flashback city here.

Speaking of activities for which the Moody Blues were particularly suited, how could I forget Tubular Bells and Dark Side of the Moon?

Posted by: Tom W at January 24, 2008 8:17 PM

Deep Purple, The Who, Jethro Tull, Zeppelin....On Anchor Rising? I must be tripping!

One night I was at Lupo's enjoying Roomful of Blues, at around closing time Carlos Santana joined in! Unbelievable. A week later BB King rocked the place until well past closing, refusing to leave the stage until "he was done."

I think one of my favorites, Joey Ramone was a conservative. I'm almost sure.

Thanks for the memories. I'd still pay a lot of money to see Led Zeppelin. Can't say I'm not just a little evvious about the Forum show, must have been nice.

Tom, I just learned to play Thick as a Brick on a Martin I found used at Guitar center. I played it for days, still not sick of it.

Rock On!

Posted by: michael at January 24, 2008 8:43 PM

Actually, Tommy Ramone was the active Republican, although Joey did become a stock market junkie after the band broke up, inspiring him to write a song about Maria Bartiromo for his solo album.

Posted by: rhody at January 24, 2008 11:33 PM

What a great trip down memory lane. Would add the Eagles and Steely Dan into the more mellow mix. Pink Floyd has always been my favorite with Zeppelin a close second.
Only car speakers ever lost in battle were blown up by David Gilmour's guitar solo in 'Time' from Dark Side of The Moon. Although I'm sure I came close in blowing up the whole thing when blaring 'Hey Hey My My' by Neil Young a truly great Rock anthem meant to be played as loud as possible. lol
If memory serves wasn't Dark Side of the Moon the longest running album to appear on the billboard charts? Think so. Was on the charts for years. A timeless classic!

Posted by: Tim at January 25, 2008 7:05 AM

A few years later, I saw Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers for the first of what would be three times. They put on a fabulous live show.

Shine On You Crazy Diamond was another favorite Pink Floyd album of mine. I even liked their very first album with Syd Barrett!

Saw Neil Young several times. Once when he came on stage to join Bob Dylan in the latter's show. The other time was in a word-of-mouth-only showing at a converted movie theatre in the Bay Area the night before he took off to LA to start his tour in support of his This Notes for You album.

Growing up in LA, the Eagles were huge there but I only came to appreciate them later. Along with Gram Parsons and Emily Lou Harris, both of whom I really enjoy now.

Another great live band was the Allman Brothers, whom I also saw three times over the years. While I missed seeing Duane Allman, there was nothing like hearing Greg Allman wailing away on songs like Whipping Post and It's Not My Cross to Bear.

Saw Bonnie Raitt's first large arena performance after she hit it big. Other than her trite political commentary, it was a great show as well.

Two of the most memorable shows were the times I saw Ray Charles (with Robert Cray opening) and then Ella Fitzgerald. Like the Muddy Waters show, I just couldn't stop smiling during Ray Charles' show; it was so infectious. I saw Fitzgerald near the end of her life when she was frail and the doctor ordered her to sit on a stool on stage. She promptly tossed the stool to the side and stood to sing. And no matter how frail her physical body might have been, there was nothing frail about her voice, even then!

Such happy memories, a reminder of how good music can tell stories about life and lift the soul. We need to remember that there is more to life than politics, especially during an election year when we are surrounded by yet another group of mediocre candidates and all sorts of monied interests trying to coercively grab an ever larger share of our hard-earned monies, none of whom articulate a persuasive vision for the future of America.

Posted by: Donald B. Hawthorne at January 25, 2008 7:53 AM
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