[hand] [face]
The Original Deep Purple Web Pages
The Highway Star

Steve Morse helps set new record

Before the Purple gig on May 1 in Wroclaw, Steve Morse joined the croud of six thousand other guitar players to set the new world record at the Thanks Jimi Festival. The official tally was 6,346 people playing together Hey Joe, more than tripling the standing record for the “Largest Guitar Ensemble” of 2,052 set last year in Concord, California.

The event took place in the historic center of Wroclaw, Poland — a city which has taken on the title of “Wroclaw Guitar City”. In fact mayor Rafa Dutkiewicz was among those playing, as was Steve Morse and festival founder and director, Leszek Cichoński. Cichoński is a well-known musician and music educator in Poland and the festival was an outgrowth of one of his educational programs and has taken place annually since 2003.

Steve commented about the event:

I played onstage at a town square, for the Guiness Book Of World Records. The most guitar players playing ‘Smoke On the Water’. For sure, if they don’t get the world’s record, something is seriously wrong, because there were 6,000 people in front of us, with guitars, playing it! At the end of the song, they all held up their guitars, mostly acoustic, and it looked like we were in a forest. Nothing but guitars for as far as you could see. We also played ‘Hey Joe’, which Stan sang, and everybody played along with that one. Last year, they had 1,800 plus people playing along with that song. In the middle of the song today, they brought the volume way down, and you could only hear the background singers and the thousands of acoustics playing C, G, D, A, E… After that, I don’t know how the gig could be any more intense. But, it was. The crowd was totally into everything, and when they sang along on ‘Smoke’, it was the loudest ever. A lot of them were at the town square earlier, and they knew it for sure! Fantastic crowd.

The next attempt on the record will be held this weekend in Mainz, Germany, and once again Smoke On The Water will be the tune of choice.

Thanks to Blabbermouth and Ultimate-Guitar.com for the info.

30 Comments to “Steve Morse helps set new record”:

  1. 1
    Tracy Heyder aka Zero the Hero says:

    Great to see Steve heading up that event….He’s a GREAT AMBASSADOR in representation of the Greatest Rock Band this Planet has ever seen. “DEEP PURPLE”. God bless him for taking over…..Maybe Ritchie will set a World Record with the Largest Collection of ‘Lute Players’ playing ‘Play Minstrel Play’…..


  2. 2
    HZ says:

    Now, this is cool! 🙂

  3. 3
    HZ says:

    My dear friend Tracy – what a malicious guy you are 🙂 . Loving riff composed by Blackmore and celebrating Morse playing it, but just need so hard not to give credit to his composer and master through ridiculing his other musical achievements. How important for us to mention that “lute part”, that will surely make Blackmore a little bit less composer of SOTW, and his credibility will be decidedly smaller because of your comment. Thank you very much. Please, continue.

  4. 4
    Tracy Heyder aka Zero the Hero says:

    Nothing was malicious about my entry….just an observation. My point though if you are interested is this…..In all honesty, it would have been much more very cool and well received if Ritchie had made an appearance…..but I think we all know how that goes….
    “Smoke on the Water” is a Deep Purple song. Yeah Ritchie came up with the riff, but the Band put the Purple finishing touch on it, along with the Lyrics. The Idea for this famous classic had nothing to do with Ritchie. As a matter of fact, I’ll bet that had they just made bogus lyrics for it and didn’t relate it to the now historic event that it is about, it probably wouldn’t be the classic that it is. It wasn’t even recognised when Machine Head came out. It wasn’t until ‘Made in Japan’ that it was given credit. Ritchie didn’t even want it on the record….

    Steve Morse is the Guitarist in Deep Purple whom still Plays it. Ritchie isn’t in Purple and he doesn’t play it anymore. Probably never will.

    Thus my point being that Steve is awesome for going out of his way to partake in the Purple related event (something Ritchie would never do) and deserves recognition for it and as far as the Lute……that’s Ritchie’s decision….I didn’t make it up…..


  5. 5
    Sami says:

    Good for Steve, good for the six thousand other players. If you take Ritchie’s riff & solo away from SOTW, what’s left…nothing much I say. Speaks volumes of the man’s contribution to the song!! Anyways, these kind of events are great fun…I’m off to lute-lessons now, take care.

  6. 6
    Tracy Heyder aka Zero the Hero says:

    Thank you Moderators for posting my rant…..I believe it is very valid and Deep Purple is what this site is about….Not the one’s whom are gone. Though they do still have credence in the Purple World, and we will always give them the time of day, it’s about the Present….”DEEP PURPLE”…again….thanks. Long Live Deep Purple….!!



  7. 7
    purplepriest1965 says:

    @ 6

    Well maybe you should be glad because they refused my OPINION on this one.

    I ve been watching this a while now over the last months, this moderating thing

    I first felt wholeheartedly that certain things went too far and they were right to be apalled with how things went on here.

    But apart from the fact that I agree with certain standards its beyond me why they keep on posting certain stuff and dont post other stuff.

    I do not agree that this site is only about who is MK 8

    Otherwise we would miss out on lots of great information and links like the Jon Lord gig in Brasil!!!!

    Well, I suppose I could always retreat and read DPAS site instead?

    Have a nice weekend.

  8. 8
    stoffer says:

    Awesome job Steve, Long Live DEEP PURPLE–Past, Present and Future!!

  9. 9
    Tracy Heyder aka Zero the Hero says:

    Yeah, I’ve been denied of few entries also…..it’s what they said they would do and so be it…..

    Priest you never cease to amaze……

    I stated that ALL the past members are obviously important and should be given credence. But at the same time, I value the title of this Site…’The Highway Star’. It’s a Deep Purple site and yes All things Purple are valid and discussed but the fact remains the same….

    It all comes down to the few whom constantly aim their interest in ‘Certain Ex-Members’ that eventually monotanize the Same Old Stuff, over and over as though nothing else matters but the Ex-Member whom Left Deep Purple and has their own site to go Worship on……

    Meanwhile, PURPLE is Alive and WELL and that is a Great Thing…..


  10. 10
    HZ says:

    Tracy, it’s OK for you to celebrate Purple, but to make Ritchie’s contribution to SOTW so minimal and to say that riff is almost less important is in contradiction with common sense and reason, and with what every relevant music analyst has said 🙂 ; SOTW is all about that riff, nothing else. But as you wish – if disdaining Ritchie is what make DP great, then go ahead, say all bad words about his last musical achivement. And I’ve heard Ritchie playing SOTW in about 3 months ago in Zagreb, and Steve in about month and half ago in Dubai – to be honest, hearing it from Ritchie (which is only composer of that riff that’s celebrated so much) was incomparably more majestic then from Steve; and no fault in Steve, it’s just that master and founder of the riff knows his soul much better. Only my opinion. Hopefuly this site isn’t only about MK8 as only holder of DP legacy – because that’s just not true.

  11. 11
    elprupdeep says:


  12. 12
    Tracy Heyder aka Zero the Hero says:

    Wow, is it possible that what shows up on some people’s computer monitor is different than what is originally sent?

    You folks whom are so blinded by the lack of Blackmore in Deep Purple only are capable of comprehending smatterings of what is written. You totally blank out of your mind anything else…..The proof of this, lies in #7 and 10 above.

    I, in no way shape or form have ever minimized Blackmore’s contribution to Deep Purple. Yes, he was the Original Guitar and was responsible for the Riffs of His Day…..In those Days, the Riff was something that was much recognized and defined most Bands. Iommi had his with ‘Iron-Man’. Page had his with ‘Kashmir’. Clapton had his with ‘Cocaine’. Young had his with ‘Back in Black’, etc.

    I’m not slighting the Riff, but the Bands contribution to making the Riff a Song is what brought it to the light of day. Blackmore is on record stating how he hates and hated it back then and didn’t want it on the record. The friggin’ song and it’s popularity basically was an accident and didn’t even get noticed upon it’s first presentation on Machine Head. It wasn’t until the Live Version on ‘Made in Japan’ that it became what it is, due to another accident, whereby a Live album, which is usually a sellout for the Record Label turned out to be the Bands saving grace. The rest is history. To be honest, it isn’t all that great a Riff. Had it not been in the right place at the right time, we wouldn’t even be having this discussion. There are a zillion other riffs out there. It’s Timing. Timing is everything. It became what it became and lucky them. It definately isn’t my favorite Purple Riff. But I do give credit where it is due, and as a SONG, I give that credit to Deep Purple.

    ONE MORE TIME….Read it all. I love Blackmore. I wish him well. I have all of his records (I Mean ALL!!!!). I wish he would return to Hard Rock as much as the next guy, but I don’t have any hard feelings for his decision one way or the other. I totally respect his and the rest of the bands decisions that have been made over the years. It’s been a volatile 40 years and tons of great music has spawned from it. All Different and All Great!!! But for those who wish to carry on like spoiled little brats whom didn’t get their way (regarding Blackmore) and continue to Bash Deep Purple because their little Boy Wonder Bailed out, you only continue to spread that toxic, vile selfish attitude for no positive reason other than to bring everyone else down to your unhappy level….

    So, Again, Steve did a Great thing joining the Other 6000 people who didn’t originate the Riff of SOTW. He is The Guitarist for Deep Purple, and that song is a Deep Purple Song, written collectively by the MK2 members, whereby 3 of which are still presently in Deep Purple. Steve represented the song as a Deep Purple Member, something Ritchie wouldn’t and didn’t do…..

    That’s it. I’m not complaining about Ritchie. I’m praising Steve. I’m sorry if in the Blackmore worshipping camp, it is derived that when one is happy with Deep Purple as they are, you find that an insult to your God……


  13. 13
    purplepriest1965 says:

    If Smoke On The Water isnt all that great a riff why on earth do THET keep playing it?

    And why on earth does MAINMAN STEVE, praised as a Mister Guitar in several USA guitar magazines not only keep on playing it but also attend a hysteria event for the dumb zillions of people who mainly think about Deep Purple in terms on only that song????!!!!!!

  14. 14
    purplepriest1965 says:


  15. 15
    Gary says:

    Congratulations to Steve Morse for such a great achievement ! He not only promoted the guitar as an instrument, he also promoted IMO the Greatest Band in Rock and Roll, that being DEEP PURPLE !, and its signature song, ‘ Smoke on the Water ‘.

    Ummm, Tracy ?…Just so you know, SOTW was composed by Ritchie Blackmore on a GUITAR, not a lute.

  16. 16
    Gary says:

    Ummm, Tracy ? I think you already knew that SOTW was composed by Ritchie on a guitar. My point being your comments constantly reducing one of the greatest GUITAR players in he history of Rock and Roll as merely a ‘ lute player ‘ is kind of…I don’t need to write it 🙂

  17. 17
    stoffer says:

    priest @ 13
    Deep Purple are recognised,like it or not, by SOTW.
    That is why they keep playing it and also because people (dumb zillions?) want to hear it, I myself can think of a great number of other DP songs I would rather hear. I think the MAINMAN STEVE shows up at these events because he a “team player” and what is good PR for Purple is good for the whole band, or doesn’t that concept work for you?

  18. 18
    Tracy Heyder aka Zero the Hero says:


    Could it be because I live in the land of the Present? I didn’t reduce Ritchie to merely a Lute player…..just as he brushed of Deep Purple, He picked up the Lute and joined his Merry Men all by himself. No help from me.

    Plus here again…..RE-READ WHAT I WROTE. For God’s Sake…..(I think I finally figured out the reason for the song “When A Blind Man Cries”). It’s due to the Blinders the Worshippers have on, which makes it impossible to hear or read anything but the whole point. Yes I even stated, THE MAIN RIFF WAS RITCHIE’S RIFF. The rest of the song, lyrics, bridge, middle, melody, was derived from the rest of the band, working through and adding to the RIFF. The Idea of the songs title and subject was Roger Glovers. It was a Band Song developed from a Blackmore Riff. That simple. The rest I stated above are also FACT. That simple.

    Priest: Again, you as with Gary read one sentence and discard the total message. Songs are about timing when it comes to their relevance in the Hit World. Surely you must agree with that. If it was so Great, why didn’t it explode upon the Machinehead Album release……It’s because it was a fluke, as even the Band fully understands. It just happened and as with ‘Oops I Did it Again’, which was a Huge Hit by Brittany Spears, would you call that a Great Song?……Of course not. Right place Right time, now it is a historic tune in that genre of music. I totally give Ritchie credit for his guitar virtuosity. Always have. He and Gary Moore are my top 2 favorite Guitarists. I like what they do. Gary Moore left Hard Rock a long time ago. At first it pissed me off. Now I am happy for him, doing what he likes to do and I totally get it, just as I accept Ritchie’s decision to join the Lute Band. I totally get it, and enjoy his present material. What I don’t get are all the disgruntled Blackmore Worshippers whom constantly bash Deep Purple for not sounding like it did when Blackmore was in the band that he left 15 years ago, when they have all the Blackmore music they can muster in listening to him play his Lute in his Lute band….

    You guys are all like broken records, clicking away, over and over, skipping along repeating the same lyric of the same old song, about how much you miss Ritchie. HE ISN’T GONE. He just isn’t in Deep Purple anymore.

    I guess because you are so selfish for your own personal tunnelvission of what Purple should sound like, you would rather they just quit when the Lute Player abandoned ship and not produced the awesome music they did without him. That’s like cutting off your nose to spite your face.

    I personally totally appreciate all that has been accomplished by the Purple of Today, and love the listen to the Purple of Yesterday as well. But I’m glad they continued on and as far as I’m concerned, there are as many Super moments from this present Purple as there have been by the past line-ups……


  19. 19
    HZ says:

    I didn’t read what Tracy wrote it’s to long – just in the end this word GOD which is totally opposite of what I wrote in term of Mr. Blackmore. Nevertheless Gary thank you to put it so smooth and short in comment number 16 – totally agree!! That’s essence.

  20. 20
    Gary says:

    Hi HZ,

    Thank you for the kind words, very much appreciated 🙂

    Yeah Tracy gets long-winded and convolutes his points, but I did agree with his last paragraph.

    But for the life of me I can’t figure out this ‘ lute ‘ thing he goes on about. True, Ritchie does indeed play a lute in BN from time to time, but mostly he plays guitar- both acoustic and electric.

    Maybe there was some obscure movie called ‘ LUTEMAN ‘ made years ago that had a negative effect on Tracy ?

  21. 21
    Svante Axbacke says:

    Re: the lute. I think it is what some of us are referring to as a “joke”. RB used to play banjo, now he plays the lute.

  22. 22
    Gary says:

    Ahhhhh…thanks, Svante 🙂

  23. 23
    purplepriest1965 says:

    Maybe I should come out of the closet and admit , perhaps thanx to the promotion of Tracy, I m yearning to buy loads of thights from now on.

    I allready bought Craft sports underwear in black because I was freezing my balls off last winter..

    It feels damn good and it sure looks sexy, so what the hell is the problem?!

    So again, I get bored shitless after a few BN songs but still think HE is the ONE and I m gonna knock myself out in thights

    Tracy, come on……

    Give it your best shot

    I know you cant

  24. 24
    Tracy Heyder aka Zero the Hero says:

    Priest I already said all there is to say……

    Plenty though. Obviously enough to lure you out of the closet (Your words not mine)……..

    Maybe there should be a ‘Coming Out Party’ for you. Ritchie can loan you a pare of his tights and ‘Play Minstrel Play’…..


  25. 25
    Tracy Heyder aka Zero the Hero says:

    Owe I forgot one thing…..

    I’m sure you would prefer ‘Rainbow Colored’ Tights…..


  26. 26
    Lot says:

    And what about the lute ? 8)

  27. 27
    Krelke says:

    Official => 6407 😉

  28. 28
    Serpiente says:

    Escribo en español, mi idioma nativo por comodidad. He leído atentamente la diatriba entre los foristas y debo decir que la vida de un músico deja de ser suya en cuanto sube al escenario, y Blackmore no será jamás la excepción. Prototipo del guitarrista Neo-clásico, dueño de un humor explosivo en escena, inspirador de legiones de ejecutantes (6.000 de los cuales estuvieron tocando SOTW), mago de las cuerdas, quizás todo esto puede hacernos recordar que ÉL y solamente ÉL pudo crear el gérmen de la gran academia musical contemporánea que es DEEP PURPLE hoy en día. Y aquella ofensa de sacar su rostro de las t-shirts de Machine Head, es un despropósito total. Desde Venezuela reciban el saludo de otro alumno del gran MAN IN BLACK, su amigo.


  29. 29
    purplepriest1965 says:

    How many people on board understand Spanish?
    If necessary a translation, please…..

    Thanx and Adios.

  30. 30
    Tracy Heyder aka Zero the Hero says:

    More than you think Priest…..

    Funny how you skipped over…#25 to point out the uncomprehendable….



Add a comment:

Preview no longer available -- once you press Post, that's it. All comments are subject to moderation policy.

||||Unauthorized copying, while sometimes necessary, is never as good as the real thing
© 1993-2024 The Highway Star and contributors
Posts, Calendar and Comments RSS feeds for The Highway Star