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Kanazawa Shi Kanko Kaikan, Kanazawa, Japan
March 23, 2004

I'd been waiting for this evening ever since I became a Deep Purple fan as a schoolgirl. But to be honest, I had forgotten about the group until I happened to see the concert ad in the newspaper.
In my high school days, I dreamt of one day becoming Ritchie Blackmore's personal assistant. I saw Rainbow live when I was at college, and since then I just thought Deep Purple no longer existed and did not even dream of being able to see them one day.
The newspaper ad was repeated several times, meaning that the tickets were not selling well. I spent the days furious at the stupid Kanazawa rock public who obviously didn't know what a great band Deep Purple was, and waited, counting the days.
The day finally came, and I went to the venue with my younger brother and his mates from his school band, who used to cover Highway Star. The sight of many people - my generation - in business suits made me smile: this evening, they must have resolutely refused to stay late in the office for once. I bought the tour programme and a t-shirt, then waited for the show to start - which it did, punctually at 7PM. A sign of a grown-up professionalism?!
What made the show such an enjoyable experience for me was Ian Gillan's and Roger Glover's friendliness towards the audience. I don't know whether it was because the hall was smaller than the Tokyo one, or perhaps because I was in the 10th row, but I could feel everyone in the whole venue becoming one. They kept throwing picks into the audience, they waved endlessly towards the fans on their left and to the right, they smiled at us all the time, and Ian Gillan kept talking to us at length (not questioning the audience's ability to understand English.) What a kind, warm bunch of guys! Wondering if they would have acted like this 30 years ago, we waved back - we kept waving back. Not only their musical performance but the members' characters touched us the whole evening.
katamachi, Kanazawa's main nightlife area, is less than a hundred feet away, so the band must have been going down there after the show. Suppressing the urge to go and check it out myself, I cycled home, still stirred from the concert. I'm really glad that they came to play in Kanazawa as well as the usual major towns (Tokyo, Osaka and Nagoya.)
Oh, and I've just remembered the planned Rainbow concert in Kanazawa, when I was at high-school, was cancelled because at the show before, in Sapporo, the seats had collapsed and many had been injured, and so I had to travel to Osaka to see them...)
Yasuko Aizawa


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