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Ian Paice solo shows

Demon's Eye in Poland

What a wonderful evening it was. Ian Paice had visited Poland already five times with Deep Purple, but had never had the chance to appear as a solo act so this was a very special debut for both Mr. Paice and the audience gathered in the Jan Kochanowski Theatre in Opole.

The whole event was held a s part of the 11th International Percussion Festival and Mr. Paice was the last drummer to perform during the festival and what an apt choice he was.

The show started on time at 6pm when Mr. Paice entered the stage with an interpreter and informed how the concert would proceed. The first part included some brilliant drumming from Mr. Paice and sort of Qs & As between the audience and the man himself which proved what a wonderful showman Mr. Paice is. He answered all the questions very patiently and clearly, he laughed with the audience and was definitely in a superb mood. He looked very well as if he hadn’t played all those dates this year. He’s in a great shape.

The second part of the show included five Deep Purple classics played by Mr. Paice accompanied by two Polish musicians (bass and keyboards) and an Irish guitarist who also managed the vocals. The set list consisted of: Hush, When A Blind Man Cries, Strange Kind Of Woman, Demon’s Eye (!) and Smoke On The Water. The audience enjoyed the show very much though the musicians playing with Mr. Paice definitely weren’t of his class. But the hottest part of the show was to come later…

Mr. Paice left the stage and that was when we all stood up and started singing the riff from the Black Night. It must have been really loud and convincing as Mr. Paice returned and started playing the drums. When he realised how strong our will to hear that song was he approched the mike and told us to sing entire words of the song and so we did (or at least tried our best). He looked very happy and moved by the audience’s spontaneous reaction. That was when I managed to jump on stage and take some photos of Mr. Paice only about 2m from the drum kit - that was magic, I was in seventh heaven!

But that’s not all. Soon Mr. Paice was joined by the bassist and keyboard player but there was no guitarist playing and suddenly, out of the blue some man in a suit jumped onto stage, took the guitar and started playing the riff and then even a short solo. As I could witness Mr. Paice’s reactions from a very short distance I could clearly see how happy and surprised he was. The audience definitely went mad and when the song was over everyone ran onto stage and surrounded Mr. Paice at once.

Long after the show Mr. Paice was still standing on stage giving autographs and talking to the fans. He was very, very patient and kind. I managed to have an autograph on my CD copy of PAL’s Malice In Wonderland (and to Mr. Paice’s nice surprise when he saw the album) and have a photograph with the man himself (taken by a friend of mine Ola - thanks again!)

What a wonderful evening it was. Sincere Thank You to Mr. Ian Paice for a great performnace and see you soon (I hope).

Bartosz Kazana

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