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Saengerfest Park, Galveston, TX, USA
February 21, 2004

10:15 pm

Silver Tongue
Woman From Tokyo
I Got Your Number
Strange Kind Of Woman
Knocking On Your Back Door
Well Dressed Guitar
House of Pain
Airey keys solo

Machine Head set (Partial) 11:00 pm

Highway Star
Maybe I'm A Leo
Pictures Of Home
Space Truckin'
Airey organ solo
Smoke On The Water

encore 11:35 pm-11:40


I was so excited to hear them play again after 28 years. This time around, it was personal. They were my first concert experience back in 1972 in Stuttgart, Germany. I've seen them with Bolin, Hughes and Coverdale and could only have dreamed of seeing Gillan, Paice and Glover with the band again. I wasn't familiar with Morse and Airey but they were untouchable that night and I can honestly say, they really fit in from where I stood.
I left the concert during their second song. Too many pushy, mean drunks who surely didn't appreciate what I was hearing. I needed to enjoy this concert all on my own without any rude interruptions. I almost got squashed to death during a DP concert in Pittsburgh in 1976. (Guess I should have stayed in my seat instead of crashing the stage!) So this time I walked behind the stage area. More cops and drunks but not too bad. It was more or less an alley/walk way for Mardi Gras goers. I stayed there and listened to them for two more hours. I felt like a teenager again, rocking to Highway Star, Lazy and Smoke on the Water. It was personal and I knew they were playing just for me (sure).
I was armed with two pictures from 1972 in Stuttgart. I wanted autographs and was determined to get one! First I asked this Sheriff who was blocking one of the backstage areas. He didn't have a clue as to even who DP was yet alone the pic I had from 1972. He was more interested in the "unknown" heads on the pics. Then I stopped a young guy (with a backstage pass) who worked the sound area. He looked at the pics and was just as confused. Said he didn't recognize who that was (the pic of Ian Gillan). So I tried a few more times but everyone was just totally lost or just stuck on stupid. I almost gave up.
Then I seen a photographer there with a big camera and thought he was part of the band. Oh wow, someone important behind the stage area! Claimed his girlfriend "Mary" could probably get me an autograph, she knew the band. Sure, she knew them less than I did. She didn't recognize anyone on the pic either, hahahaha. So I was on my own, my personal journey. I was determined to get someone to sign these pics I've had for 32 years!
I did do it!
Before their encore, they came around back. Gillan was getting some air and Paice was standing there too. I yelled out, "Hey Ian" and Paice came over to me. A lot shorter than I expected but with a great smile on his face. I told him about the '72 concert in Germany and he signed both pictures, hugged me and gave me a kiss on my right cheek. I swore I would never wash my face again! They played another song (I was still in dreamland so can't remember much after that hug/kiss) and left the fest area. During their escape from Mardi Gras, I yelled back "Bye Ian" and Paice waved back to me.
My journey is over now. Thank you Deep Purple for the music I enjoy so much. See them if you can or go taste the band if you will.
Jackie Hardy

San Antonio and Galveston marked my ninth and tenth Deep Purple concerts since the Perfect Strangers your came to Dallas in 1985. They were also the third consecutive tour that has played San Antonio and the Houston area. Both shows were musically stunning - as good as any show I’ve seen them do. The performances were technically spot on and emotionally exhausting with the band in great form, having a ball and obviously loving every minute of the gigs. The big differences were in venue and playing time.
Scott Holman - read Holman's full review

What can I say? Continuing from the previous night (in San Antonio), we drove to Galveston, where the Purps were to headline the Marti Gras Festival.
The whole area was frantic and amazingly enough, completely devoted to the event. They totally shut down the town and commited to this occasion. Main roads barricaded. Police everywhere.
At our hotel, we found ourselves stuck within the perimeters that were uncrossable due to the main parade which began at 5:00 pm. We decided to grab early dinner and hang around until after the mayhem and try and make it to the stage before they went on. The parade ended at 7:00 pm and we started getting a little worried about whether we could get to the show before they started. While entering the main entrance, we could hear Thin Lizzy at about mid set. This place was a total mob scene. No one knew where to send us for our passes. We searched around for a short time and realized that we needed to head over to the concert area, if we planned on seeing them at all.
General admission, standing only and it was packed. We edged our way up to where we could at least see Thin Lizzy, from about 100 ft. back. They finished up and I saw that the crowd was thinning a little during change time. Miraculously, we inched our way all the way up to the front of the crowd, right in front of the stage. You couldn't have paid for better spots. By that time, a few short minutes later, blam! Here they come out. Perfect timing. They played a shorter set list than previous nights.
Surprisingly the sound was great at this outdoor setting. They were greeted very well by the onlookers. Great response to all tunes including the few Bananas tunes played. It didn't take long before the crowd began throwing their bead necklaces up on stage. During the whole show, it's was 'bob and weave' for the band. They were constantly ducking and even catching the beads. They played it off very well, but it was obvious that it was frustrating for them to concentrate on the music. Ian skipped a lot of the words to many of the songs due to dodging necklaces and throwing some back in fun. They each were hit with the necklaces, Ian in the head, Steve all over, including a couple hanging from his guitar. Even all the way back to the drum set and keyboard. Turning it into a fun time, they each picked a few of them up and put them on there necks.
It was a great show to attend since it was definitely different than the night before as far as the atmosphere and performance. They didn't use the video background for the Machine Head set and only played one encore tune. Mabe they thought it best to cut it short before the crowd got out of hand. I don't blame them.
My highlight was when they finished Smoke on the Water, and came to the front of the stage to walk off before the encore, Paicey threw out a drum stick and I jumped up and caught it. Yeah! Finally got one of his signed sticks (see photos).
The way things were going, I was actually surprised to see them come out for the encore. A great crowd, but a little unruly. Had I not seen them the previous night, I would have been a little disappointed with the shortening of the show, but for me it was great to see them two nights in a row and have the second night be so different.
For those that only saw them at this show, you missed out because they are really kicking ass at the normal venues. Still, they showed to be quite the professionals and did a great job. They took advantage of the totally casual atmosphere and pulled off a great show.
Ian was coughing quite a bit between songs, obviously having a little throat irritation, but managed to belt out the tunes like there was no tomorrow. My admiration to him was never higher. They jammed a little more and improvised a little more this night, I'm sure due to the situation giving them the leeway to play around a little probably more for their own entertainment. Great!
Whatever you do, don't miss them if you have the opportunity to catch them on this tour. They are the masters of their craft and still a force to be reckoned with.
Tracy Heyder


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