During yesterday’s (Tuesday, August 29) SiriusXM Town Hall, DEEP PURPLE’s Ian Gillan (vocals), Ian Paice (drums) and Roger Glover (bass) were asked point blank if they would be open to playing with Blackmore again.
“Me personally, no,” Gillan said. “I mean, I get on great with Ritchie these days, but I don’t think Ritchie’s playing great these days. And for that reason mostly, I don’t think it would work.”
Gillan clarified that he is only in contact with Blackmore “through our offices, through our connections and everything else” and added that “we have invited each other to dinner a couple of times, but we haven’t been able to make it because I’m in London, he’s in Long Island.” He then reiterated: “But, no, I’d be against [a reunion].”
Paice was equally resistant to the idea, explaining: “I enjoy going on stage every night knowing that I’m [there] with my four friends and they’re all gonna play every night. That wasn’t always the case [while Ritchie was in the band], and I wouldn’t want to go back to that again. It’s just the way the man is. He is a man of great emotions. He works it out in black and white; there’s no gray areas to Ritchie: ‘I will or I won’t,’ ‘I like it or I don’t like it.’ Sometimes your bandmembers can’t suffer from that. And I wanna go on stage and have fun. I don’t wanna go on stage and come off feeling so down and miserable. I’m not prepared to go back on that route again, no.”
Glover, for his part, revealed that he hasn’t spoken to Ritchie in “twenty-odd years,” but insisted that he would “be happy to talk to him.” Attributing their lack of personal interaction to the fact that Ritchie has “made himself very private,” Glover added that “I don’t think he approves of me very much, because of the remixes and the remasters that I did of the older albums. That’s what I’ve heard anyway.”