[% META title = 'Ian Gillan, Interviews' %]

Dave's note: Arik kindly translated this telephone Interview with Ian Gillan from the newspaper's tranlation of Ian's original banter. I've tidied it up, formatted it and fixed any tense problems and unintentional malapropisms.



Interviewer's remark:

Israeli fans still remember how during a concert Ritchie Blackmore the legendary guitarist left the stage and never returned,

At last you can see smiling faces in the band says Gillan, all the tension and suffering are gone. Deep Purple finished the tour, and found a new substitute: Steve Morse, last week we gave one show with the new guitarist, and he blew the crowd away.

Q: It's a little bit strange that this interview should promote the new album with Ritchie Blackmore?
A: I must be completely honest with you: the only reason that I'm ready to promote this album is that I'm the only Deep Purple member that could be reaced by telephone right now! I'll try to do my job the best way I can, and express my opinion about this album, the truth is that I'm not an adherent of live albums, and not very keen on this one.
Mostly, I hate: live albums that include old stuff, that recorded in the past and released on previous live albums, the audience has an inclination to conservatism [Ed: If only you knew!]. If you release one good live album, it is considered that all your live albums are good, and this is silly,
Q: I understand that you meant the "Made in japan" album, that album is considered the best live album in the history of music.
A: Truly, after that one, a few more live albums were released and they are not worth the raw material that they are printed on. I think "Nobody's Perfect" is the most shameful album that we ever released I can't justify his existence! Over the years we made some wonderful albums, but we also made some to be ashamed of.
Q: Tell me about the new album.
A: When I came back to the band in 1993, after the album the" battle rages on" we decided to spend a year together and write a new stuff and to try to rebuild the band, of course we didn't know that ritchie was going to leave us at that time. I honestly didn't like the fact that Ritchie was leaving the band, but I'm only one of five, so I didn't want to rock the boat and make waves. We started to work to schedule, and decided not to break up.
Q: Ian, are you against this album or what?
A: I think that this album is important for all Deep Purple fans, just because it's the last album with Ritchie Blakmore. That's the only reason that I keep this album. I didn't listen to it yet, but yesterday I visited a club and the DJ played bit for me; I think the producer did an excellent job.
Q: Why did the band repeat old stuff again and again instead of adding new stuff. Especially live?
A: I think i'ts a very important issue. Ritchie did not allow us to perform new songs! The truth is that ritchie repeated himself during 25 years.
Q: How did you, Roger, Jon, Ian decide to cut off from Ritchie Blackmore?
A: He started to disgust us all, so one day I decided to ignore him. I did things, and said things that I thought were good for Deep Purple, without referring to him at all. He almost had a heart attack. He started to understand that we were all enjoying life. He didn't like it. Then one day during a successful tour he announced: thats it the tour is finidhed. He ordered the crew to pack. Fortunately we weren't scared, and I told the staff not to follow up Ritchie's order.
I thought if the banjo player is going home, its no reason to end the party. We all decided to search for a new banjo player. The truth is that we had do this a long time ago. We realized that all these years we were just the black megalomaniacs accompaniment.
Q: Any plans for a new album?
A: Yes, sure, right after Christmas we are going into the studio. We have tons of new ideas, with the new guitarist we will process all the new stuff.
Q: Do you think that your fans will accept the fact that the band have a new guitarist? Ritchie Blackmore has a unique sound and nobody can simulate him, you will still have to play old songs during gigs. I'd like to remind you that previous new guitarists (like Tommy Bolin) was a total failure. [Ed - discuss!]
A: I can speak from last weeks exexperience, the crowd just love him, he was great,
Q: Thats reminded me that during the show in Israel, Ritchie just left the stage and the rest of the band continued playing without a guitarist. He even refused to play the final song: "Smoke on the Water". That nearly caused a riot. I can remember Roger was close to tears that evening.
A: Yes, I heard about a Ritchie incident in the Holy Land, it was luck for me that I wasn't in Deep Purple at that time. It's terrible, those are the kind of things gave us bad name, what a pity.
Q: In your autobiogrphy book you close with the words: many journalists ask me : are you going to finish you career in deep purple shadow? I say: I'm going to finished my career in the light of deep purple. Ritchie left the band, do you feel that the band will still be around for many more years?
A: During the long years that the band has existed, for long time we did everything to destroy the band!!! We devoted a lot of time to "family feuds", the dirty laundry always washed outside, and we created an image problem and negative pablic opinion. I still think that we can bring the band to a big days like we use to 20 years ago. We must cherish the good times we have, in few years we will be very old (we are pretty old now), there are alot of good and positive things that can be done. I would rather live in d.p light than d.p shadow.
Q: The other band members, are they feel the same?
A: Oh yes. I've never seen Roger Glover and the other members so happy, last week he hugged me with much affection on the hotel staircase the place that we where in. He said that he can't wait for Christmas to finish,in order to start recording our new album. We will finish this recording in January. A month later we will have 3 concerts in florida, in March we are touring the far east, it will be a try to go back to a recipe that we have 25 years ago, write songs, tour with them and then record them.
Q: Will there be a tour of Israel again? In spite of the bad impression that the band left here you are still very popular.
A: personally, I want to visit israel with d.p, I can guarantee that from now on, nobody will receive less than 100 percent of what the band could give............