Ian Gillan had a virus the previous three days to the concert, but to me his voice was in fine form. However, I could tell that the after-effects of the virus and the Portsmouth heat / humidity got to him just a bit. He later mentioned that "Gillan's Inn" is exciting . . . looking for a September release."
Steve Morse was superb as always . . . athere was one RB heckler in the audience who became a Morse fan after witnessing "The Well Dressed Guitar". Steve's stage presence, and his interaction with the audience and the rest of the band was awesome. Backstage, he commented when he saw me with my family, "Now that's the way to bond with a family". He then proceeded to tell us that his son first went to a DP concert when he was six, without earplugs (Hollyn and Colby wore excellent earplugs) and still fell asleep!
Ian Paice was solid on the drums, and a delight as always. Don Airey was superb, a great choice to replace Jon Lord. Afterwards I told him how much I enjoyed his K2 CD (it is excellent). "Perfect Strangers" was the best versionI have ever heard . . . Don seems to be basking in the spotlight which has engulfed him in Deep Purple.
Roger Glover made us feel right at home. Paula was quite humbled that a rock star of his stature would walk back to his dressing room and get us a bottle of water . . . a true gentleman. He said that the band had wanted to play a song from the new album, but did not have a chance to rehearse in Pittsburgh or in Portsmouth . . . so, you DP fans down the line are in for a treat . . . please tell us how it sounds!! He mentioned that the new album is due in October (fingers crossed), and also that he was working on a new solo album (yes!). Oh yeah . . . his playing was superb, he and the band are having such a good time.
DP fans down the road are in for an excellent show . . . expect more songs from "Bananas" (they played mostly old stuff because Portsmouth was having a festival called "Harborfest" so the band anticipated a "holiday" crowd expecting to hear the old stuff) and one or two from the new record. I look forward to your reports!
Mark, Paula, Hollyn, and Colby Bryant