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Introducing the unknown

Another article from the New Musical Express issue from September 29, 1973. This one unveils the new Deep Purple lineup that became known as Mark III.

Purple, introducing the… err… unknown Mr. Coverdale

Tony Stewart at the unveiling of the new Deep Purple

PURPLE RECORDS took the press down to Clearwell Castle on the Welsh-English border last week to meet their new singer boy. The name of this new Deep Purple front man? David Coverdale.
Well, he was 22 last Saturday, comes from Saltburn-by-the Sea, with a rich Northern brogue as resplendent as the piles of chemical waste around Middlesborough. Just lately he’s been working in a boutique, and occasionally singing with a semi-pro bunch of locals who called themselves the Fabulosa Brothers.

Continue reading in My Things – Music history for those who are able to read

Once again, many thanks to Geir Myklebust for his work on preserving these vintage articles online.

5 Comments to “Introducing the unknown”:

  1. 1
    Uwe Hornung says:

    Great article, thanks to Geir, Tony Stewart was always very insightful with Purple:

    “Alongside ex-Trapeze singer-bass player Glenn Hughes, whose ability incidentally almost deterred Coverdale from attending the audition, this is Purple’s new vocal front, which – states the group’s publicist — will operate in a similar way to the Blackmore-Jon Lord partnership.

    In effect, the inference is that Hughes and Coverdale will strive to equal, or even outdo, one another — as the guitarist and organist are noted for attempting — with resulting better music. ”

    I never saw it that way, but of course you could and it’s a perceptive viewpoint.

  2. 2
    Gregster says:

    Yo, that was a good read imo. Unusually unbiased, direct, & to the point.

    Bands are a strange grouping of people, & it’s a wonder that we haven’t had even more Mk’s in DP lol !

    Peace !

  3. 3
    Uwe Hornung says:

    In the later 70ies, the New Musical Express was my preferred rock mag. Which was strange in a way because they regularly slammed the bands I liked (Purple, Status Quo, Judas Priest, Kiss) and gushed about Punk and New Wave, always having a tone of derision when writing about hard rock/heavy rock/heavy metal. Still, the writing was so good – they panned bands with style and from a certain point onward I actively searched out bands the NME had reviewed harshly … and what can I tell you, I nearly always liked the bands they extremely disliked. In that way, they were very reliable and shaped my record collection.

    Continuous bad reviews in the NME led me to Judas Priest for instance. I remember a review of JP’s ‘Diamonds & Rust’ from their Glover-produced ‘Sin After Sin’ album


    and it went something like this:

    “This truly horrible version of the Joan Baez song is ample retribution for what she has done to Bob Dylan songs before. Even worse the arrangement is a carbon copy of what Nazareth equally incredulously did to Joni Mitchell’s ‘This Flight Tonight” a while back. Roger Glover produced it. It’s bad enough to make you think: Come back, Deep Purple, if all can never be forgiven, it is most certainly by now forgotten.”

    That was a hilarious slam and it led me straight to listening to ‘Sin After Sin’ at the record department of a retail store and being in bliss after a few seconds into the first track because Priest sounded to me like a nasty version of Purple (who had disbanded just a year before) back then. Which goes to show: As an artist there is no such thing as good or bad press, as long as they spell your name right!

    Also high marks for the Purple management for giving as good as they got. When the NME slammed ‘Burn’ (the album) as pretty much the only UK music paper, the put in a full page advert a week later or so which quoted the rave reviews from Melody Maker, Sounds etc to then deadpan “With friends like these who needs NMEs?!” only to surmise “We do. A little heated controversy never did anyone any harm.” That was classy.

  4. 4
    Gregster says:

    Yes, if the music press was poor back then, the whole industry is much worse now !

    Peace !

  5. 5
    Bubbabot says:

    I LOVE these “introduction” articles about people who went on to become household names.

    I’ve never cared much for Whitesnake, and like just barely half of the DP Mk. 3/4 material. But as a voice Coverdale beats Robert Plant in my opinion, and on his best day was a fair match for Ian Gillan too.

    Funny how the writer didn’t describe his voice though. Maybe at this press event Coverdale didn’t actually sing? I say that because: this is one of the few early Coverdale articles/reviews I’ve read that didn’t say or imply that he was just a Plant clone.

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