[ d e e p P u r . p l e ) The Highway Star

Deep Purple deserves the utmost of respect

What is up with sticking the masters of rock on the same bill with southern boys who were the headliners no less? I am not knocking Skynyrd as they too are talented in their realm of musical style but c'mon.....seriously folks.....Deep Purple opening up for Lynyrd Skynyrd? Whose idea was this anyway and why? Deep Purple belongs in the headliner position no matter what!!! They have most definitely earned their place in the rock and roll world over the years. [OK, so you 'suffered' a bit from this, but consider how many new potential fans DP are playing to on this tour? Had DP headlined their own tour at smaller venues they'd have been playing to converts. Exposure is good. With a bit of luck, next time around they'll be able to attract enough people to do their own headlining tour. Rasmus ]

Their S.P.A.C. show was great but it sure did not give the true effect of their abilities. They were just getting warmed up and the show was over. Their stage set up and the time frame in which they had to perform gave me the feeling of them being rushed. They never got into their real classics such as "Child In Time", "Strange Kind Of Woman", "Space Truckin'", and newer hits such as "The Battle Rages On".

Jon Lord, without a doubt, always was and always will be, the master of the keyboards, didn't even have his whole live performance stage gear including the B-3 that he always performs with. That was an insult all by itself. Jon was not given any time to treat us to his beautiful and melodic as well as ass kicking solos that he has presented to us in the past. Ian Gillan's voice was absolutely incredible though. His range and voice is still very strong and had no problem covering the old tunes or any of the tunes for that matter. My feelings on the Blackmore issue are that of yes, he does belong back with his buddies to give it that true grit Deep Purple sound and image but it was obvious that the band has had no set backs with Steve Morse filling Ritchie's shoes.

Roger Glover's bass playing and mucho stage inspiration were as solid as ever never missing a riff or the essential bottom end. And who could forget last but not least Mr. Ian Paice. Again, with Deep Purple's allotted performing time frame Ian Paice was robbed of his pounding yet technical drum solo that he has always shared with the true Deep Purple fans at previous concerts in which Deep Purple was the headliner just as they should have been for this and all other shows. Regardless, he still played with clean and crisp chops on every tune and kept the band in perfect time.

My Deep Purple roots go way back so regardless of all the negatives that I felt were present, I did enjoy the show to the best of my abilities. Being a musician myself I appreciate good music and have great respect for seasoned players such as the members past and present in Deep Purple. I cannot say enough about these guys. They were the ones that set the rules and foundation for rock and roll that other bands have tried to rip off with no success. Deep Purple has and always will be my favorite rock and rollers. Let's hope that the concert promoters and others that are involved within this industry see the light and put this band back on top and keep them there where they belong.

A Devoted Hardcore Deep Purple Fan,

Greg Piekarz

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