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

Purple rocks Toronto

Just back from a fabulous evening at the Molson Amphitheater in Toronto seeing the greatest rock band in the world. What a night. After a loud and rather boisterous Ted Nugent (shooting a flaming arrow into his guitar), Purple took to the stage welcomed by a very enthusiastic crowd of about 8,000 and, like the other shows, went straight into "Woman >From Tokyo" and never looked back from there. I won't bore you with the set list details but I will say I was impressed not only by their musicianship but their sheer energy and obvious enjoyment at being on stage.

I've been a fan for 30 years and each time I see them they just seem to get better. Mr Gillan looks fantastic (it looks like he shed at least 30 lbs) jumping all over the stage like someone half his age and as at the other shows he was barefoot.

I noticed during one of the songs Jon was doing a mock bull fight with one of the roadies, obviously he was having ball. As always his playing was outstanding with his tasteful solos. Paicey and Roger were rock solid once again providing the platform for Jon and Steve to weave their magic.

The show was basically a greatest hits performance except for "Fools" which most of the crowd didn't know and at that point most of them sat back in their chairs. But by the next song everyone was in fine voice (including yours truly) and stayed there right to the end with fist after fist being punched into the air.

I was in seventh heaven watching my heroes with my 19 year old son Craig standing shoulder to shoulder with the old man singing every word and air drumming every fill (we are both drummers by the way). The only thing that could have made the night complete is if my younger brother Scott could have been there with us (he's also a huge Purple fan) but he lives all the way in Scotland. Oh well there's always next year.

For those who have yet to see the concert make sure you get out there and buy your ticket because it will be money well spent.

We hung around for about half an hour to watch Skynyrd and all in all they were not half bad but NO DEEP PURPLE.


Jim Irons

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