The passing of JON LORD: "Jon was a great character; wonderful. I mean… you know, he’s not been in the band for nearly 10 years but we were still in very close contact. And Jon was kind of like… we all looked up to him. He was there when Roger and I joined the band ’69 and he had a lot of… he was a fun guy; very bright, great sense of humour but he had gravitas as well.
When he… when we got the news, we were in Nashville in session there and we kind of expected it but it was still a terrible blow. And so it all went quiet for a while, needless to say, and then we started recalling the good times – as you do. His spirit is very much in the record; in the music. In fact I remember writing a line at the time: “Souls having touched are forever entwined.” And that got into one of the songs and so he’s there in the music.
I don’t think he’ll ever be away from it really, because he created the foundation of Purple. I mean… there was so many influences coming in but his… a bit of rock and roll, soul, blues, folk music and all that sort of thing but his input of orchestral composition and jazz were profound, to say the least."
The new studio album: "It’s being mixed as we speak. We’ve finished recording. It’s a new tone, it’s a new direction, it’s fresh stuff. I think it was all written and recorded in Nashville, and the reason we went there – not to make a country record, but because Bob Ezrin, our producer, lives in Nashville and so it made a lot of sense because he had all the studio facilities and back up and everything else. So it made it really easy.
It was a great environment to record in and yeah, there’s a bit of diversity on the record. There’s some sort of… defining music is just so hard; it’s just really… it’s hard to define. If you think of a solo artist, you normally know them by their name; you don’t normally describe their kind of music, you just say, “It’s so-and-so or it’s so-and-so.” But with bands everyone feels an obligation to categorise then. I think when you’ve been around the block as many years as Purple has and a lot of other bands, you just listen to see what comes out. It’s not the same at all. So it’s kind of hard for me to describe it. I can’t compare it with any other album either, as far as I know. It will obviously find a niche somewhere when it comes out in April, so I’m looking forward to hearing it."
On Tony Iommi's health: "I think he’s going well – touch wood – he’s on the mend or in remission or whatever they say. I heard he’s going back to work again so that’s a wonderful… he’s been through a really rough time. You know, it’s pretty rough, the treatment for these things and so I’m glad to hear he’s on the mend."
Read more at 100% Rock Magazine.