Ritchie Blackmore

Ritchie Blackmore

:"For the rugby league footballer of the same name, see Richie Blackmore (rugby league)"Infobox musical artist
Name = Ritchie Blackmore

Img_capt = Blackmore, right, performing with Candice Night
Landscape =
Background = non_vocal_instrumentalist
Birth_name = Richard Hugh Blackmore
Alias =
Born = Birth date and age|1945|4|14|df=yes
Weston-super-Mare, England
Died =
Instrument = Guitar, bass, mandolin
Genre = Hard rock, heavy metal, blues-rock, folk rock, neo-medieval
Occupation = Musician, Songwriter
Years_active = 1960 – present
Label = Tetragrammaton, Warner Bros., Polydor, BMG, Pony Canyon, Yamaha Music, R & C
Associated_acts = Deep Purple, Rainbow, Blackmore's Night
URL = [http://www.blackmoresnight.com/ blackmoresnight.com]
Notable_instruments = Ritchie Blackmore Signature Stratocaster

Richard Hugh "Ritchie" Blackmore (born April 14, 1945 in Weston-super-Mare, England) is an English guitarist, who was a founding member of hard rock bands Deep Purple and Rainbow. He left Deep Purple in 1993 due to a growing rift between Blackmore and other members in spite of renewed commercial success. His current band is the Renaissance influenced Blackmore's Night. He was ranked 55 on Rolling Stone's 100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time in 2003. [cite web
url=http://www.rollingstone.com/news/story/5937559/the_100_greatest_guitarists_of_all_time |title=The 100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time |date=August 27 2003 |publisher=Rolling Stone


Early life

Blackmore was born in Weston-super-Mare, England, but moved to Heston, Middlesex at the age of two. He was 11 when he got his first guitar. His father bought it for him on certain conditions: "He said if I was going to play this thing, he was either going to have someone teach it to me properly, or he was going to smash me across the head with it. So I actually took the lessons for a year – classical lessons - and it got me on to the right footing, using all the fingers and the right strokes of the plectrum and the nonsense that goes with it." [Interview with Ritchie Blackmore by Alexis Korner for the BBC Radio One Guitar Greats series, first broadcast on 6 March 1983.] Whilst at school he did well at sports including the Javelin. Blackmore left school at age 15 and started work as an apprentice radio mechanic at nearby Heathrow Airport.

He was influenced in his youth by early rockers like Hank Marvin and Gene Vincent, and later, country pickers like Chet Atkins. His playing improved and in the early 1960s he started out as a session player for Joe Meek's music productions and performed in several bands. He was member of instrumental combo The Outlaws and backed Heinz (playing on his top ten hit "Just Like Eddie"), Screaming Lord Sutch, Glenda Collins and Boz among others. While working for Joe Meek, he got to know engineer Derek Lawrence, who would later produce Deep Purple's first three albums. With organist Jon Lord he co-founded hard rock group Deep Purple in 1968, and continued to be a member of Deep Purple from 1968-1975 and again from 1984-1993.

The first Deep Purple years, 1968-1975

Blackmore co-founded the hard rock group Roundabout in 1968 with Chris Curtis (vocals), Dave Curtis (bass), Jon Lord (keyboards), and Bobby Woodman (drums). Later on the name was changed to Deep Purple and vocal, bass and drums were changed. It was Blackmore's idea to call the band Deep Purple, after his grandmother's favorite song. Rod Evans (vocals), Nick Simper (bass) and Ian Paice (drums). The band had a hit US single with its remake of the Joe South song "Hush". After three albums Evans and Simper were replaced by Ian Gillan (vocals) and Roger Glover (bass).

The second line-up's first studio album, "In Rock", changed the band's style, turning it in a hard rock direction. Blackmore's guitar riffs, Jon Lord's distorted Hammond organ, and Ian Paice's jazz-influenced drums were enhanced by the vocals of Ian Gillan, who Blackmore has described as being "a screamer with depth and a blues feel."

The next release was titled "Fireball" and continued in the same hard rock style established on the previous release, with Blackmore's guitar remaining a prominent feature of the band's style.

Deep Purple's next album was titled "Machine Head". The band originally intended to record the album at a casino in Montreux, but the night before recording was to begin the casino hosted a Frank Zappa concert (with members of Deep Purple in attendance) at which an audience member fired a flare gun which ignited a fire inside the building and the casino burned down. The entire tragedy is documented in the lyrics of what was to become Deep Purple's historic anthem "Smoke on the Water".

In 1973, shortly after the release of the album "Who Do We Think We Are", Ian Gillan and Roger Glover left Deep Purple.

They were replaced by former Trapeze bassist Glenn Hughes and an unknown singer named David Coverdale. The album recorded by the new line-up was entitled "Burn".

Deep Purple continued to perform concerts worldwide, including an appearance at the 1974 'California Jam', a televised concert festival that also included many other prominent bands. At the moment Deep Purple were due to appear, Blackmore locked himself in his dressing room and refused to go onstage. Previous performers had finished early, and it was still not sundown, the time at which the band had originally been scheduled to start. Blackmore felt this would dull the effect of the band's light show. After ABC brought in a sheriff to arrest him, Blackmore agreed to perform. At the culmination of the performance he destroyed one of his guitars and threw several amplifiers off the edge of the stage. He also struck one of the ABC cameras with a guitar, and in recorded footage can be seen arranging for his road crew to set off a pyrotechnic device in one of his amplifiers, creating a brief but large fireball. The band quickly exited the venue by helicopter, avoiding fire marshals, police officers and ABC executives.

Deep Purple's next album, "Stormbringer", was publicly denounced by Blackmore himself, who disliked the funky soul influences that Hughes and Coverdale injected into the band. Following its release, he departed Deep Purple to front a new group, Rainbow, which was originally thought to be a one-off collaboration by Blackmore and the Ronnie James Dio-fronted band Elf, but was later revealed to be a new band project.

The first Rainbow years, 1975-1984

After Deep Purple, Blackmore formed the hard rock band Rainbow. The name of the band Rainbow was inspired by a Hollywood bar and grill called the Rainbow that catered to rock stars, groupies and rock enthusiasts. It was here that Blackmore spent his off time from Deep Purple and met vocalist Ronnie James Dio, whose band Elf had toured regularly as an opening act for Deep Purple.The band's debut album, "Ritchie Blackmore's Rainbow", was released in 1975. The band's musical style differed from Blackmore's previous band and much of Blackmore's inspiration came from his love of classical music to pair up with Dio's lyrics about medieval themes.

Blackmore fired every original band member except Dio shortly after the first album was recorded, and recruited a new lineup to record the album "Rainbow Rising".

For the next album, "Long Live Rock 'n' Roll", Blackmore kept the drummer Cozy Powell and Dio but replaced the rest of the band. Blackmore had difficulty finding a bass player for this record so he handled bass duties himself on three songs: "Gates of Babylon", "Kill the King", and "Sensitive To Light". After the album's release and supporting tour, Ronnie James Dio left Rainbow due to "creative differences" with Blackmore.

Blackmore continued with Rainbow and the band released a new album entitled "Down To Earth", which featured his ex-Deep Purple bandmate Roger Glover on bass. The album contained Blackmore's first chart successes since leaving Deep Purple, as the Graham Bonnet-fronted single "Since You Been Gone" (a cover of the Russ Ballard penned tune) became a smash hit.cite book| last = Frame| first = Pete| authorlink = Pete Frame | title = "Rainbow Roots and Branches." The Very Best of Rainbow ("liner notes")| date = March 1997] In 1980 Blackmore's Rainbow headlined the inaugural Monsters of Rock festival at Castle Donington in England. Bonnet and Cozy Powell would leave after this, Powell would go on to join former Deep Purple members in Whitesnake.

The band's next album, "Difficult to Cure", introduced vocalist Joe Lynn Turner. The title track from this album was an arrangement of Beethoven's Ninth Symphony, a personal favourite of Blackmore's.

Rainbow's next studio album was "Straight Between the Eyes" and included the hit single "Stone Cold." It would be followed by the album "Bent Out of Shape", which featured the single "Street Of Dreams". The song's video was banned by MTV for its supposedly controversial hypnotic video clip. [ [http://www.ritchieblackmore.com/ritchie_bio.html Blackmore's Night - Ritchie Blackmore Bio] ] The resulting tour saw Rainbow return to the UK and also to Japan where the band performed with a full orchestra.

By the mid-1980s, Blackmore and his former Deep Purple bandmates had reconciled past differences and a reunion of the successful "Mark II" lineup took place. A final Rainbow album, "Finyl Vinyl", was patched together from live tracks and "b" sides of singles.

The second Deep Purple years, 1984-1993

In April 1984, it was announced on BBC Radio's Friday Rock Show that the "Mark Two" line-up of Blackmore, Gillan, Glover, Lord, and Paice was reforming and recording new material. The band signed a deal with Polydor in Europe and Mercury in North America. The album "Perfect Strangers" was released in October 1984. A tour followed, starting in Perth, Australia and wound its way across the world and into Europe by the following summer. It was the highest-grossing group tour of the year. The UK homecoming proved mixed as they elected to play just one festival, 'The Return of the Knebworth Fayre', at Knebworth Park on 22 June 1985. Despite poor weather conditions, an audience of 80,000 attended the show that also featured Scorpions, Mama's Boys and Meat Loaf amongst others. BBC Radio One broadcast the set.

In 1987, the line-up recorded and toured in support of the album, "The House of Blue Light". A live album, "Nobody's Perfect" was released in 1988. A new version of "Hush" (sung by Gillan, who had not yet joined the band when the original recording was made), was also released to mark the band's twentieth anniversary. In 1989, Ian Gillan was fired from the band because of a poor working relationship with Blackmore. His replacement was former Rainbow vocalist Joe Lynn Turner. This lineup recorded one album titled "Slaves & Masters" (1990). Blackmore and his bandmates were disappointed with the efforts of the album and tours.

Neither the album nor the tour were critically or commercially successful. Following its conclusion, Turner was fired from the band. Both Jon Lord and Ian Paice argued that Deep Purple needed Ian Gillan as the band's frontman. Blackmore relented and Gillan returned prior to recording "The Battle Rages On" in 1993. During the support tour in late 1993, tensions between Gillan and Blackmore reached a climax and Blackmore left the band permanently. His last show with the band was in Helsinki, Finland on 17 November 1993.

Gillan said: "Joe Satriani came in at the last minute. Blackmore walked out and the tour was taking off to Japan... it was all very dramatic. He said: 'Alright, that's the end of the band,' and assumed because he left that we were going to fold up." Satriani was asked to join full time but had to decline as he was tied into a long recording contract. A permanent replacement for Blackmore was eventually found in another guitar legend, Steve Morse of Dixie Dregs, who joined the band in 1994.

Ian Gillan, who had been Ritchie Blackmore's roommate during the early days of the band, stated in a 2006 interview that Blackmore had "turned into a weird guy and the day he walked out of the tour was the day the clouds disappeared and the day the sunshine came out and we haven't looked back since."cite news | url=http://knac.com/article.asp?ArticleID=5166 | title= Child In Time: An Interview With Ian Gillan |publisher=KNAC | date=Dec. 25, 2006 | first= Charlie | last= Steffens | accessdate = 2006-11-04] Gillan noted that after Blackmore "walked out, things picked up and recovered unbelievably, remarkably well and the band's in great shape now". He added that "there are certain personal issues that I have with Ritchie, which means that I will never speak to him again. Nothing I'm going to discuss publicly, but deeply personal stuff."

The second Rainbow years, 1993-1997

Ritchie Blackmore reformed Rainbow after leaving Deep Purple a second time in 1993. This Rainbow line up with singer Doogie White lasted until 1997 and produced the album "Stranger in Us All". In the years Rainbow was together, Blackmore was the only consistent member. "Stranger In Us All" failed to measure up to the critical and commercial acclaim of previous releases, possibly due to the grunge movement at the time and was not particularly well publicised. In 1996, he appeared on the tribute album to Hank Marvin and The Shadows "Twang" on Stings Pangea label with a rendition of Gerry Lordan's Apache.

The Blackmore's Night years, 1997-present

In 1997, Blackmore and his fiancée Candice Night formed the Renaissance-inspired pop group Blackmore's Night. They have also performed the music for Magi Quest, a live simulation game located along the east coast. Their debut album "Shadow of the Moon" (1997) was an instant success, particularly in Europe. In subsequent albums, particularly "Fires at Midnight" (2001), there was an increased incorporation of rock guitar into the music, whilst maintaining a folk rock direction.

Musical style

With Deep Purple and Rainbow, Blackmore almost exclusively played a Fender Stratocaster. He is also one of the first guitarists to use a "scalloped" fretboard where the wood is shaved down between the frets. It requires the player to play with a lighter touch as pressing hard will cause the note to sound sharp. The result is increased control of vibrato and bending at the cost of making chordal playing more difficult.

One of Blackmore's best-known guitar riffs is from the song "Smoke on the Water". He plays the riff without a pick, using two fingers to pluck the D and G strings in fourths. In the TV program 'Classic Albums Live', he demonstrated the proper way to fingerpick the riff while remarking that everyone is mistakenly told to use the pick. In the same video he also plays the low G with his left thumb, above the fretboard, as often used in fingerpicking.

In his soloing, Blackmore combines blues scales and phrases with minor scales and ideas from European classical music. His resulting style has been referred to as "neo-classical" and has been emulated by many modern heavy metal guitarists. While playing he would often put the pick in his mouth to play with his fingers.

He has two guitar solos ranked on "Guitar World" magazine's "Top 100 Greatest Guitar Solos" ("Highway Star" at #19 and "Lazy" at #74, both from the album "Machine Head"). [ [http://guitar.about.com/library/bl100greatest.htm 100 Greatest Guitar Solos - Tablature for the greatest guitar solos of all time ] ]

Gear set up

During the 1960s Blackmore played a Gibson ES-335 but switched to a Fender Stratocaster after seeing Jimi Hendrix playing one in concert. He bought a second hand model from Eric Clapton's roadie. Since then and right up until his Blackmore's Night project Blackmore has used Stratocasters almost exclusively. The middle pickup is screwed down and not used, with only the bass and treble pickup selector set. Blackmore has also occasionally used a Fender Telecaster Thinline during recording sessions.

In the 70s, Blackmore used a number of different Stratocasters. However, around the time of the Long Live Rock 'n' Roll album, Blackmore found one particular Strat that was his main guitar up until Blackmore's Night. Like most of Blackmore's guitars, this Strat had its fingerboard scalloped. The pickups in it have been changed quite a few times, as described below. Blackmore added a strap lock to the headstock of this guitar as a conversation piece.

His amplifers were originally 200W Marshall Major stacks which were modified by Marshall with an additional output stage (generated approximately 278W) to make them sound more like Blackmore's favourite Vox AC-30 amp, cranked to full volume. Since 1994 he has used Engl valve amps. He has cited that one of his reasons was that his Marshall heads did not sound as good as the Engls at low volume.

Blackmore frequently used effects during his time with Deep Purple and Rainbow, (despite claims to the opposite). He used a Hornby Skewes Treble Booster in the early days. Around the time of the Burn sessions he experimented with an EMS Synthi Hi Fli guitar synthesizer. He would sometimes use a wah-wah pedal and a variable control treble-booster for sustain. Moog "Taurus" bass pedals were used during solo parts of concerts. He also had a modified Aiwa TP-1011 tape machine built to supply echo and delay effects. The tape deck was also used as a pre-amp. Other effects that Blackmore used were a Schulte Compact Phasing A, a Unicord Univibe, and an Octave Divider.In the mid 80s he also experimented with Roland guitar synths. A Roland GR-700 was seen on stage as late as 1995-96, later replaced with the GR-50. Guitar synths are also used quite a bit in Blackmore's Night. As an example, Blackmore plays with a slide over what is probably an organ patch in the beginning of Way to Mandalay.

His strings used during his tenures with Deep Purple and Rainbow were "Picato" brand (.010, .011, .014, .026, .038, .048)Blackmore has experimented with many different pickups in his Strats. In the early Rainbow era they were still stock Fenders, later Dawk installed overwound, dipped, Fender pickups. He has also used Schechter F-500-Ts, Velvet Hammer "Red Rhodes", DiMarzio "HS-2", OBL "Black Label", Bill Lawrence L-450, XL-250 (bridge), L-250 (neck) and since the late 80s he has used Lace Sensor (Gold) "noiseless" pickups.Blackmore's gear was modified by John "Dawk" Stillwell of Dawk Sound Limited [ [http://www.dawksound.com Dawk Sound] ] Dawk modified his Marshall Majors as well as his Fender Stratocasters. Dawk designed the Master Tone Circuit that was installed in all the guitarist's guitars. Dawk worked for Elf with Ronnie James Dio when Elf toured with Deep Purple.

Plagiarism claim

Nick Simper, the bassist with DP Mk I, [ [http://com3.runboard.com/bdeeppurplefanforum.f26.t9537 claims] ] claims that he showed Ritchie Blackmore the riff from Ricky Nelson's "Summertime" and that it was the basis for the first Mk II Deep Purple single "Black Night." Roger Glover agrees in an interview with Rumba Magazine, November 1993 [ [http://home.swipnet.se/rogerglover/text/albums.htm (excerpt)] ,] and says that he (Glover) insisted that they write new words and put it out as the single the record company wanted them to make. In mitigation he claims that they were all drunk. Nick Simper also identifies It's a Beautiful Day's "Bombay Calling" as a tune "which Mark II borrowed, and turned it into "Child in Time"; Ian Gillan [ [http://deep-purple.net/review-files/asia2002/mumbai-gillan-interview.htm confirms] ] confirmed this in several interviews. It's a Beautiful Day in return borrowed Purple's "Wring that Neck" and turned it into "Don And Dewey" on their album "Marrying Maiden". Blackmore also confirmed some of these claims in a Japanese TV interview. [Ritchie Blackmore LEGEND OF THE PURPLE (1997), Japanese TV program [http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pLgF7BDch4M] ]

Personal life

Blackmore has a son, Jürgen R. Blackmore (b. 1964), from his first marriage with a German woman named Margrit. [ [http://www.jrblackmore.de/flames/en/bio_jr.html http://www.jrblackmore.de/flames/en/bio_jr.html] ] Their marriage ended in 1969. He married another German woman, called Bärbel Hardie in September 1969. His third marriage, in May 1981, to Amy Rothman, [ [http://ja.wikipedia.org/wiki/%E3%83%AA%E3%83%83%E3%83%81%E3%83%BC%E3%83%BB%E3%83%96%E3%83%A9%E3%83%83%E3%82%AF%E3%83%A2%E3%82%A2] Japanese WP, with source] ended after divorce in 1987 (they separated in 1983). He and bandmate Candice Night have been living together since 1991 (they first met in 1989). [ [http://candicenight.com/betweenus_archives/betweenus_07_2006.html http://candicenight.com/betweenus_archives/betweenus_07_2006.html] ] The couple currently resides in Mount Sinai, Long Island, New York, USA. In Fall 2008 Ritchie Blackmore and Candice Night plan to get married.


Pre Deep Purple

*1963 "Just Like Eddie" (Heinz)
*1989 "Rock Profile" (Ritchie Blackmore )
*1991 "Rock Profile Vol. 2" (Ritchie Blackmore)
*1991 "The Derek Lawrence Sessions Take 1"
*1992 "The Derek Lawrence Sessions Take 3"
*1994 "Dreams Do Come True - The 45's Collection" (Heinz)
*1994 "Take It! Sessions 63/68" (Ritchie Blackmore )
*2005 "Getaway - Groups & Sessions" (Ritchie Blackmore )

Guest appearances

*1971 "Green Bullfrog" (Green Bulfrog)
*1972 "Hands Of Jack The Ripper" (Screaming Lord Sutch & Heavy Friends)
*1973 "Hurry To The City" (Randy Pie & Family, SP)
*1974 "I Survive" (Adam Faith, "I Survive")
*1980 "Humanesque" (Jack Green, "I Call, No Answer")
*1990 "The Earthquake Album" (Rock Aid Armenia, "Smoke On The Water '90")
*1992 "Caché Derriève" (Laurent Voulzy, "Guitare héraut")
*1996 "Twang! A Tribute To Hank Marvin & The Shadows" ("Apache")
*1996 "All Right Now" (Sweet, "All Right Now By Now", recorded live 1976)
*1997 "In A Metal Mood - No More Mr Nice Guy" (Pat Boone, "Smoke On The Water")
*2003 "Und Dein Roter Mund" (Die Geyers, "Shepherd's Walk")

Blackmore's Night Discography

* "Shadow of the Moon" (1997)
* "Under a Violet Moon" (1999)
* "Fires at Midnight" (2001)
* "Ghost of a Rose" (2003)
* "The Village Lanterne" (2006)
* "Winter Carols" (2006)
* "Secret Voyage" (2008) Live Albums:
* "Past Times with Good Company" (2002) Compilation Albums:
* "" (2004) Live VHS/DVDs:
* "Shadow of the Moon" (1997)
* "Live in Germany '99" (2000)
* "Castles and Dreams" (2005)
* "Paris Moon" (2007)

Film appearances

*1991 "Deep Purple - Heavy Metal Pioneers"
*1995 "Rock Family Trees - Deep Purple"
*2002 "Classic Albums - Deep Purple's Machine Head"
*2006 "Rainbow - In Their Own Words" (archive footage)
*2008 "Guitar Gods - Ritchie Blackmore" (archive footage)

ee also

*Blackmore's Night
*Deep Purple
*Ritchie Blackmore Stratocaster

Further reading

*cite book|title=Rainbow Rising. The Story of Ritchie Blackmore's Rainbow|first=Roy|last= Davies|publisher=Helter Skelter|year=2002
*cite book|title=Rainbow - English Castle Magic|first=Martin|last=Popoff|publisher=Metal Blade|year=2005
*cite book|title=Black Knight - The Ritchie Blackmore Story|first=Jerry|last=Bloom|publisher=Omnibus Press|year=2006


External links

* [http://www.blackmoresnight.com The Official Ritchie Blackmore and Blackmore's Night website]
* [http://www.modernguitars.com/archives/003083.html 1975 Interview with Ritchie Blackmore on "Modern Guitars" Magazine]
* [http://www.thehighwaystar.com/interviews/blackmore/rb199102xx.html Interview with Ritchie Blackmore]
* [http://www.solidairrecords.com/AMR_interviews/blackmore.html Interview with Ritchie Blackmore about acoustic renaissance work]
* [http://www.rosshalfin.co.uk/blackmore/blackmore-page01.php A nice collection of photos - page 1]
* [http://www.rosshalfin.co.uk/blackmore/blackmore-page02.php A nice collection of photos - page 2]
* [http://www.jaixa-imaging.net/frame-blackmores-night.htm Blackmore's Night Concert photos]

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Игры ⚽ Нужно решить контрольную?

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Ritchie Blackmore — Ritchie Blackmore, 2009 Ritchie Blackmore, 1997 …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Ritchie Blackmore — Nom Richard Hugh Blackmore Naissance 14 avril 1945 (1945 04 14) (66 ans) à Weston super Mare, Royaume Uni Pays d’origine …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Ritchie Blackmore — Saltar a navegación, búsqueda Ritchie Blackmore Información personal Nombre real R …   Wikipedia Español

  • Ritchie Blackmore — Ritchie Blackmore, guitarrista de Deep Purple, Rainbow y Blackmore s Night. Músico influido por la manera de tocar la guitarra eléctrica de Jimi Hendrix, cuya técnica supo combinar con tonos clásicos en sus solos de guitarra (Bach, Mozart, etc.)… …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Ritchie Blackmore's Rainbow — Studio album by Rainbow Released August 4, 1975 Recorded February 20 to …   Wikipedia

  • Ritchie Blackmore's Rainbow — Saltar a navegación, búsqueda Ritchie Blackmore s Rainbow Información personal Origen Reino Unido Información artística Género(s) …   Wikipedia Español

  • Ritchie Blackmore's Rainbow — Album par Rainbow Sortie 15 août 1975 Enregistrement 20 février au 14 mars 1975 Musicland Studios, Munich Durée 36:54 Genre Hard rock …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Ritchie Blackmore's Rainbow — LP Rainbow Дата выпуска май, 1975 Записан 20 …   Википедия

  • Ritchie Blackmore\'s Rainbow — LP Rainbow Дата выпуска май, 1975 Записан …   Википедия

  • Ritchie Blackmore’s Rainbow — Студийный альбом Rainbow Дата выпуска май 1975 года Записан …   Википедия

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”