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The first ever single, a 45 RPM piece of vinyl, I bought was "Since You Been Gone" by (Richie Blackmore's) Rainbow. I became an instant fan of Blackmore's guitar playing. I wanted to know more about what he'd done so researched his career. I discovered he was previously in Deep Purple. So I bought their albums too. I was never lucky enough to see Rainbow perform live but I did see Deep Purple twice. Once in 1985 at the one off revival of Knebworth Faire, and once in Birmingham.

Blackmore's relationship with fellow Purple Ian Gillan was tumultuous to say the least and he left Deep Purple for good in 1993. He reformed Rainbow for one last album before quitting that too. He wanted a change in direction and to play smaller venues. He also had an interest in music from the middle ages, folk and classical music. This interest he shares with his, now, wife Candice Night. Together they formed Blackmore's Night.

I also have an interest in classical music, traditional folk, and more recently the German folk which tends to be referred to as mittelalter which literally means middle ages. Modern gothic bands from Europe often have Mittelalter influences. Some rock bands do too. Nightwish's Islander has more than a bit of a folk influence in it. Blackmore's Night rings all the bells for me and occasionally they cover on of the old Rainbow or Deep Purple classics. But the song I can't stop playing right now is "Locked Within A Crystal Ball". It is catchy, a tad gothicy, has mittelalter influences and Richie's classic guitar playing.

Originally published at Spice World!.
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August 2010

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