Leslie Wilson Jr. of GulfNews.com's Tabloid! recently conducted an interview with DEEP PURPLE singer Ian Gillan. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.
GulfNews.com: How do you keep up the enthusiasm and energy over the tours and the years? What's the secret?
Gillan: Well, I don't really know. We never planned this far ahead. Possibly it's the way we set ourselves up in the beginning. We had no ambition, except to make the band as good as possible. Every street where I lived in the south of England had a band, so you try and steal the guitar player or the drummer from the band in the next street, just to improve your own band and all we cared about was just playing music that we loved. We didn't give much thought to image. In fact, we don't have a publicist — never had one — and we never [gave] thought to the normal business things. So there's a basic simplicity to the ethos of the band which has survived and I don't think it's changed in any way. The music's kinda matured with us — it's grown up a little bit, I suppose — but it's still got all the energy and enthusiasm that we had as kids. Apart from that, I couldn't answer your question because I'm too close to it. All I know is that it's full of energy and we still love it.
GulfNews.com: You have been screaming rock music for over 40 years. How do you do it?
Gillan: I think it's quite natural, I do a lot of it, and so I keep myself fairly fit. My mates who were singers they quit to enjoy their success or raise families and they didn't continue. Then they tried to come back years later but it was very difficult because vocal cords, unlike guitar strings, are unforgiving, you can't change them. So I think I've been singing all my life, and therefore I'm pretty match-fit, so to speak. Most things are within my scope, I sing pretty naturally so it's not a strain, never has been.
GulfNews.com: Befitting the success DEEP PURPLE has achieved, the band has been nominated for the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame. How much of an honor is this, or is it?
Gillan: [laughs] Without being asked, I was nominated for an MBE a little while ago and I was a bit fed up with these sorts of things and then I rationalized the situation. When I was a kid, the last thing that I wanted was to be institutionalized and sort of fought against the establishment all my life. However, when I had a chance to think about the nomination, I realized I saw people getting excited about it around me and I realized it's for family and friends and it's not for me alone, it's for the people who have supported us all through these years, particularly through the bad times. So I look at it in a different way now, with a certain amount of humility.
Read the entire interview from GulfNews.com.