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A bathroom interview

We were waiting for Rod Evans, then five minutes later Rod Evans came in, dressed in a purple suit, with short hair and a big smile.

We introduced ourselves and I show him the magazine and the book, he asked me for a copy and i told him "of course".
Then the rest of the band came in, they recognize us inmediately, especially Geoff, who we already knew from Steppenwolf, we salute the bass player Tom de Rivera, who I already knew when he played at the "Cero, cero's" Camino Real hotel bar. I asked Rod evans for an interview, he accepted.

Conecte: What were the cause that you break up with Deep Purple in 1969?
Rod: Well, it is hard to say, because there were personal conflicts between Ritchie Blackmore and me, as you can see all the lineups that they've been through, during all this years, I didn't want to continue with them after two years.

Conecte: It was the ego.
Rod: Yes, there were an ego in Ritchie who liked the heavy rock and Jon Lord who preferred the classic. Ritchie was obsessed to be a guitarist like Clapton or Beck and to be a star.

Conecte: What happened after Deep Purple?
Rod: I called two men from Iron Butterfly and another from Johnny Winter's band and we integrated Captain Beyond for two or three years.

Conecte: Big stars in Mexico.
Rod: After Captain Beyond, I was tired of this all, I went back to school for five years, I studied medicine. Then one day Geoff called me and told me: let's rejoin Deep Purple we have the name, but i was in doubt, i wondered what are going to happen with the other guys. We talked with Jon Lord, who is with Whitesnake and with Ritchie who has Rainbow and they showed no interest in Deep Purple, so we rejoined the group, we played a few concerts and everything was great, there was a lot of people who came to see us... They remembered the songs.

Conecte: Until today, in what places have you played?
Rod: Well, we have been together three months by now, we have played in Texas, Amarillo, El Paso, San Bernardino and Mexico now, then we will play in Phoenix, Hawaii for five days. This is going for long you know, because we want to have more control about our destiny, not just going blind, you understand, we want to play a lot of concerts and make it by ourselves.

Conecte: And what about the audience, what's their reaction?
Rod: Excellent! Every concert they cheer us, and ask for more songs.

Conecte: Which songs are you playing?
Rod: We play everything: "Hey Joe", "Hush", "Highway Star", "Smoke On The Water" because everybody wants to listen to these songs, you know nobody wants another songs, there's a balance, the audience has been great and feel good that we were playing.

Conecte: What can you tell us about new songs or a new album.
Rod: Ok, we just started up this weekend to do that, because we were busy with the contracts, lawyers, etc. Maybe we will be recording by this month [october 1980] so we can release the album by November on a label which we will choose from several label offers.

Conecte: Do you have any idea about the songs?
Rod: This will be in another sense, because we have to change the music, it is more than we want to do, we'll do a 60% of Deep Purple and then we will change a little.

Conecte: What do you want to create in music?
Rod: Well we don't want to do something like The Who with Tommy, it's another concept, we want to write songs from what happened in our way. Of course the sound will change because of the new technics that are used today like the Polymoog and different effects in the studio, but without a doubt it will be oriented in the heavy metal sound.

Conecte: It seems that heavy metal is the most popular way from rock in the world. Isn't it?
Rod: No, I don't think so, but on stage it seems to work good. We can see The Who, they have been playing for 15 years, they talk about vanity.. and...

Conecte: Politics!
Rod: Yes, there are different sections in the music that are good. Then we have Bruce Springsteen with "Born To Run" and the difference with "Smoke On The Water" is big, and both songs are popular, it's hard to know what's most popular.

Conecte: Are you going to play something from Captain Beyond?
Rod: No, because we have deep purple material from 14 or 15 albums and it is not possible to include something from Captain Beyond. We will play a classic which was a tribute to Jimi Hendrix, where will be an introduction from Ravel's "Bolero" [? - Ed.] "Hey Joe": we've been playing this song before, and it is included in the "Shades Of Deep Purple" album.

Conecte: What happened with your long hair and dress image? You look more into the new wave.
Rod: Before I got into the hospital I had my hair down to my waist but I got tired of everything and I changed. I think that today nobody relates the long hair with a rock musician. I will keep my hair short.

Conecte: Do you have children?
Rod: No, the audience are my children (laughs).

Conecte: What bands do you listen to today?
Rod: Everything, new wave like: Dire straits... Jazz... Classic... I like Pink Floyd... Chicago... I really like a lot of things and I don't have a favorite one.

Conecte: Ok, you have to go to dinner... Thank you.
Rod: You're welcome...

Originally from Mexican magazine Conecte, October 1980. Translated from Spanish to English by Luis Alberto Salgado.

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