Ian Gillan on Deep Purple Member Rock Hall of Fame Exclusions: ‘This Is Very Silly’
Before the 2016 inductees for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame were announced last week, members of Deep Purple had expressed their discontent at not being inducted despite being one of the biggest forces in rock history. Frontman Ian Gillan had some venomous words for the Rock Hall's committee earlier this year and still holds some resentment after the British act finally received the nod.
The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame has elected to induct past and present members Ritchie Blackmore, David Coverdale, Rod Evans, Ian Gillan, Roger Glover, Glenn Hughes, Jon Lord and Ian Paice, key members of the band's classic Mark I, Mark II and Mark II lineups. However, a number of other members are being excluded from the induction.
Miffed by the exclusions of current members Steve Morse (guitar) and Don Airey (keyboardist) in particular, Ian Gillan offered up a blog post suggesting he may not attend the event:
Dear Friends, Families and Fans,
Putting the past shenanigans to one side, the induction is not - in clear fact - for Deep Purple.
It is an arbitrary selection of past members, which excludes Steve Morse and Don Airey; both of whom have been with the living breathing DP for a very long time.
Obviously this is very silly, and so my response is quite simple: 'Thank you very much'.
And….what a coincidence…This morning I got an invitation to a wedding from some dear old friends. Unfortunately my family was not invited and they said that I would be required to sit next to my ex (we divorced decades ago) at the wedding feast.
They were shocked when I called to thank them and decline the invitation.
Morse is Deep Purple's longest tenured guitar player and appears on their last five albums, starting with Purpendicular in 1996. Of the five albums, the only one to breach the Top 25 on the Billboard 200 was 2013's Now What?!, which reached No. 19 on the chart. Blackmore had quit the band in 1993 and tapped guitar virtuoso Joe Satriani as his replacement. Unable to make time for the band, Satriani declined a permanent slot and Morse was selected.
Jon Lord retired from the band in 2002 and was replaced by legendary keyboardist Don Airey. Lord passed away in 2012 after battling pancreatic cancer.
Now that the band has been inducted after criminally being kept out for decades, the big question revolves around which members will actually make an appearance at the ceremony at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y., on April 8. Paice had already predicted a "punch-up" would ensue depending on who shows up. Tensions run deep between some of the current and former members of the band, which eludes to more questions concerning a performance from the band at the ceremony.
Deep Purple are finally in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, but the controversy still rages among one of rock's most elite.
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