DEEP PURPLE Bassist: 'We're An Album Band And We Always Were An Album Band'

VintageRock.com recently conducted an interview with DEEP PURPLE bassist Roger Glover. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.

VintageRock.com: The big news, of course, is that DEEP PURPLE has a new album out called "Now What?!". This is your 19th studio album and it was recorded in Nashville, Tennessee, and it's been a long time coming since "Rapture Of The Deep" in 2005. Now, Steve Morse [DEEP PURPLE guitarist] told me making a DEEP PURPLE album is like charity because you guys don't really make any money. So what was the motivation for going in and making this record?

Glover: Well, as far as I'm concerned, there were different theories in the band about whether we should do a record again, whether we should do it and release an EP or some singles on the Internet. But the bottom line of thinking is we're an album band and we always were an album band. We were very proud to be an album band back in the day. We kind of railed against doing singles because, really, we're an album band; we're an album band. That's kind of strange vanity. But an album, especially with a band like us that has such a long history, an album is a sort of state of the union address if you like. And it's the state of the band that we're in now. And every album that we make is a kind of a point in time. And I thought we needed to do one. Three years ago, we started thinking seriously, "Well, let's have a writing session." We had no idea where or when we were going to record it, or whatever. But then [producer] Bob Ezrin came to see us in Toronto just over a year ago and was really up for doing the album, and we liked him. It was a match really well made. So that was a great impetus. We had a really great writing session; we wrote most of the songs then. I think when you've got someone like Bob involved you kind of realize that you've got to be good. And maybe because we spent such a long time between albums, we were kind of itching to write … itching to do something that really was different and sounded good.

VintageRock.com: You produced a few DEEP PURPLE albums and gazillions of others. How was it to surrender the chair to someone like Bob Ezrin?

Glover: Actually, very easy. It was nice to be a bass player rather than someone sitting there with the discs trying to make decisions. It's very difficult to produce the band you're in. You know, you need objectivity to do that because whatever you say to the band, you're just one of five opinions. And that's tough to deal with if you're a producer sometimes. So I've always been quite happy to have other producers and Bob Ezrin obviously comes with an amazing track record. He gave me a lot of respect as a fellow producer and deferred to me a lot. We worked together, actually.

VintageRock.com: Looking back at it as a whole, what's your take? How do you see the record fitting in with everything DEEP PURPLE's done?

Glover: The magic period is almost over — the magic period where you finish an album and no one's yet heard it. It's still yours, as it were. And I must say, I've been playing it myself for pleasure because I love the mix. I love what we did. I'm proud of the record. I think it is a good record. It's very difficult to come up with something that's fresh and new, yet still retains the character of who you are and who you have been for the last 40-odd years. I hope we've achieved that. The only feedback we've had actually so far is from journalists. I've done quite a few interviews now and it's been positive throughout. It's been very positive. But yeah, I guess it's a good album. It's hard to judge your own album, you know.

VintageRock.com: Last night they had the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame induction in L.A. where I'm at, and I was very disappointed to see that DEEP PURPLE wasn't included. Ian Gillan, in the same interview I did with him, told me he thinks it's kind of an American thing but he would gladly accept that honor on behalf of the family, friends and everyone that supports the band. What do you think about the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame? Do you care about being inducted?

Glover: I've never thought about it, really. I know a lot of fans have been wanting it for years. When we were nominated, I thought, actually I have mixed feelings. First of all, I thought, it's about bloody time. And second of all I thought, it's actually going to be a pain in the neck because we're on a train now going towards "Now What?!" And we've been on this train a lot longer than I care to think about 20 years ago with Steve. And that's like stepping back into the past. Yes, it would gain attention to the band. Ritchie [Blackmore, former DEEP PURPLE guitarist] should be there. What would that do? It would enliven all the debates, it might be a nightmare. Who knows? He might not show up. You never know with stuff like that. So when we didn't get in, I was actually kind of relieved.

Read the entire interview at VintageRock.com.

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