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Jon Lord public lecture


Jon Lord will deliver a lecture on improvisation and musicianship at the University of the West of Scotland on Thursday, 24 February 2011. The lecture will take place at 2pm in the Brough Hall, Paisley Campus. The lecture is free and open to all UWS students as well as members of the public but seats are limited so please apply quickly to book your place.

The lecture will cover Jon’s career and especially focus on improvisation and musicianship which was a key part of his position in Deep Purple and something that is still at the centre of his performances today.

Those wishing to attend the lecture should complete the online registration form and will be notified by email if have been given a place.

Thanks to Michael McMillan for the info.

24 Comments to “Jon Lord public lecture”:

  1. 1
    purplepriest1965 says:

    Again, its out of my budget.

    Hopefully PRO SHOT DVD s will come our way more and more now.

    Isnt it time for a Jon Lord autobiography?

    Well, at least , sitting besides Gillan and Lordy at a teatable in The HiltonHotel, he signed my inlaycover of Pictured Within : )

    I can almost die happy, hehehe

  2. 2
    Big AL says:

    Aren’t JL and RB kicking around the idea of collaborating again? Has anyone heard any more of this?Those working together,the possibilities could be endless.

  3. 3
    Eddie6string says:

    One for Youtube Methinks!

    I hope this discourse touches on the Tone selection for certain tracks along with the reasons on Why & How they were selected.

    Leaky anorak time.

  4. 4
    Svante Axbacke says:

    @2 I don’t think they have discussed anything. As far as I remember, JL has only answered the question, “would you work with RB again?”, with a reply along the lines of, “I wouldn’t have anything against it”.

    Personally, I have a feeling nothing will happen unless a third part brings them together.

  5. 5
    HZ says:

    They need to team up together for final hard rock statement, even if it’s only remembering good old days from DP, Rainbow and JL projects. If they have some riffs and tunes generated during their “classic – renaissance” period, they should work them out as “Lord Blackmore” group or something. I’m sure that they can have any hard’n’heavy singer they want – for instance Bruce Dickinson would participate on last hard rock project of his childhood heroes, not to mention others – but they (read Ritchie) need some “go ahead kick”.
    Hopefully they’ll do it for fun only, if not something else more serious.

  6. 6
    Svante Axbacke says:

    If JL and RB do something together, I am pretty sure it won’t be hardrock.

  7. 7
    purplepriest1965 says:

    Although I really crave for ROCK, I d be glad whatever style they(would)choose.

    But time s running out.

    With their talents it should not be difficult to pull of something without longterm obligations, still record one album, a DVD and leave us oldtimers very satisfied. : )

  8. 8
    Roberto says:

    @6 I hope it would be something different than Hard rock….they have played that things for 35 years…

  9. 9
    Big AL says:

    @ 6 I disagree on that one. I think collectively that there is some hard rock waiting to come out. MAybe thats what RB needs, I hear he does some strat work on his latest release. Maybe its getting time to let the badger loose.

  10. 10
    T says:

    I agree with Svante.

    If Blackmore and Lord were to collaborate, it would be something classically-tinged. I would be up for a concerto grosso for classical guitar and keyboard… But more likely would be something along the lines of “Under a Violet Moon,” one of the few Blackmore’s Night songs to feature keyboards prominently.

    I do believe Blackmore has more rock in him, but it would have to be on his own terms. By his own admission, he is tired of the attitude, volume, and craziness of the industry and the crowds in that genre. Given his “no looking back” philosophy, a Blackmore-Lord-Paice reunion isn’t in the stars. However, I do foresee Blackmore’s Night with heavier guitar along the lines of “Fires at Midnight” and more frequent, longer electric solos.

    The guitar work in “Journeyman” on the latest album shows he has not lost interest in the Stratocaster.

    In my opinion, Blackmore’s Night sounds a little hollow at times becaues it lacks proper keyboard work–be it harpsichord, pianoforte or a nice Hammond organ–rather than the facsimile keyboards used. The times the keyboard was more up front, the songs worked well. That Jon Lord has never had a part surprises me to this day.

    Frankly, I think Blackmore was such a hellion for so long that he now enjoys his peace and quiet and more power to him.

  11. 11
    Rascal says:

    The question is ………….why should they do anything together? It may please a few fans, but on a personal level how desparate are they to record together? They have nothing to prove invidually or collectively.

    A quick fumble together for cash maybe?

  12. 12
    Eddie6string says:

    Poor Jon!

    He gets a news slot to with a lecture he’s going to deliver & it’s swamped with comments about Himself & the ‘Black one’ possibly working together.

    Well, who am I to rock this particular boat? – As I understand it, with few exceptions, Ritchie’s decisions to work with one party or another has been governed by what he perceives to be right for the music he chooses to create.

    There may be a glimmer of hope if it’s deemed that the ‘Fairy Dance’ music has run it’s course & working with JL would produce something New & Fulfilling.

    Would be good to hear them produced by Jeff Lynne because of his knowledge of the Classical & Rock blend that such a union would undoubtedly touch on!

    Thinking of Jon’s keyboard sound, How many live intros to ‘You Fool No one’ are there available – I have three I think?

  13. 13
    purplepriest1965 says:

    @ 11

    I m glad they are not like Johnny Rotten.

  14. 14
    T says:

    The reason for the lack of posts concerning the topic at hand is because most people are not musicians and have little interest in the mechanics of improvisation. Keep in mind that the Lord appearance is a “lecture”–not a performance, although I would be surprised if no keyboard were on hand to demonstrate the concepts.

    In addition, most amateurs like to parrot established music, not write their own–much less improvise–hence the popularity of “tabs”. Back in the day, musicians would improvise during a concerto, for example, but it became standard for the composer to write out the solos. Even the best musicians may not be capable of the kind of creativity required for improvisation.

    To a certain degree, improvisation (ad libbing, “jamming”) cannot be taught. It is more experience than knowledge. Therefore, it would be interesting to see how Lord approaches it. Certainly he has some of the most vast experience in the business across a broad spectrum of styles.

    Some people cannot improvise without knowing ahead of time what chord is used, and what scales are compatible with that particular chord. It is also necessary for them to know the chord sequence in advance. Many musicians use reference books and “wheels” for that purpose. Having this knowledge beforehand can make the playing a little stale and require a lot of prep time.

    Others can play “by ear,” (some even have perfect pitch)and can anticipate where the music is going. The danger is that sometimes this works–and sometimes it doesn’t. This play-by-wire method makes for some more exciting playing–when it does work.

    I recall a professional description of a famous Blackmore solo note-for-note. The commentary suggested that Blackmore was playing in a particular key–for three or four notes–then changed keys momentarily in the middle of a measure before modulating into yet another–except that he used an accidental or two inbetween. The description was highly technical, and most likely, none of this entered Blackmore’s mind as he played. He simply improvised–and if it didn’t work, he did another take until he got what he wanted. At any rate, Blackmore is the king of breaking musical rules. It’s a part of what makes him great, and makes for some of the best improvisation.

    Ad libbing is more difficult for him today since the music he now plays is more traditional in structure and demands much more care than the haphazard method he used in Rainbow or Purple. He has to be a lot “better” today in order to improvise–a point with which not everyone will agree.

    In Purple, the structures were often very simple with a repeating bass line over a single chord for long periods of time–giving ample opportunity for “safe” improvisation. Cream did the same thing. Purple were masters of this to the point that it was no longer improvisation since they fell “into a groove” that could be more or less reproduced the next night. “Mandrake Root” and “Space Truckin'” are examples of this–some of the most exciting live moments captured on tape, be it Blackmore scraping the neck of the guitar across a speaker cabinet or Lord scratching the reverb springs on the inside of his Hammond. Purple took “improv” to a whole new level with this “barrage” approach. When the songs were new, it was muscially “dangerous” until a routine evolved–but even still, few could duplicate it to any competent degree. It’s a part of what made Deep Purple great.

    To me, Jon Lord rocking his Hammond back and forth under the strobe lights–looking like a fisherman on a trawler in a perfect storm–and Blackmore dancing his foot across the fretboard of his guitar is what I mostly think of when I hear the words “Deep Purple”. This is the kind of improvisation you have inside of you–or not. Theory can be taught. Application is another matter. It takes a lot of experimentation (experience).

    The current Purple lacks this quality in favor of more time for additional songs, despite some moments that have worked exceptionally well (“’69,” “Fools”, “Sometimes I Feel Like Screaming”). Morse is one of those rare people with tremendous musical knowledge AND who can apply it on the fly.

    I hope that a record of Lord’s appearance will be available at some point. I am curious as to which approach he takes: theoretical or subjective. Certainly improvisation is something that must be learned by doing, but it should still make for an informative evening.

  15. 15
    Andra Thompson says:

    I was at talk no music that was behind closed doors.Nothing new asked same old stuff Mark 2 is the real deal but we all know that.Got In Rock signed let him know my 8 year old daughter Abigail can play Smoke on keyboard and banjo,therefore future was bright. Jon laughed and said future bright indeed but I would soon be sick of it. A class act !

  16. 16
    Rascal says:

    @13 Me too

  17. 17
    Eddie6string says:


    Every word!!


    Then again – it’s never the same the second time – Like marriage & setting the perfect Bias in your Valve Amp – Improvisation is an art of the moment.

    Just off to listen to Lazy intro on MIJ.

  18. 18
    purplepriest1965 says:

    I m not sure if these link were already available, so….


    And another one from the same day :


    (Thanx to DPAS again)

  19. 19
    The Cat-That-Sleeps says:

    I agree that improvisation can not be taught. However, when I see how many musicians stick to the note-for-note solo on stage, so afraid of getting out of the secure path of the studio recording, I think that if someone can motivate them to be a bit more ‘let-go’, it wouldn’t be a waste of time. I’m desperate by the lack of creativity in general in rock music and if our big Jon could do lectures all over the world on how to be a bit more daring, it would be a blessing.

  20. 20
    T says:

    Thanks to purplepriest for the links. Interesting interview.

  21. 21
    purplepriest1965 says:

    No effort T.
    My pleasure.

    Interesting also maybe because of certain ” subtle anwers” from Mister Lord. : )

  22. 22
    Rascal says:

    improvisation should be encouraged.

    Although musicians should be warned – the mere uneducated listener who is not interested in techniques, extended solo’s and over the top ‘jamming’ can easily get bored with it all.

    No doubt Mr Lord has a section in his lecture entitled ‘muscianship isnt about massaging ones ego’.

  23. 23
    purplepriest1965 says:

    By now I understand that Sarabande will be played at Henley Festival this year.

    I wish he would come to the Netherlands as well.

  24. 24
    purplepriest1965 says:

    And then I read Jon will NOT be there at the festival.

    Probably too expensive for me anyway.
    The last time he did Concerto there you also had to wear suits and all.
    Was that 2007?

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