Archive for June, 2020

Well I just blogged about this album and period of Black Sabbath (see last post) earlier today, and here we have the Babymetalized cover by artist Shawn Fulford (aka ”futon”). A wonderful tribute to a wonderful cover (it kind of grows on you, might take a couple of decades though!). Ian Gillan has stated that he was so upset when he saw the ”Born Again” cover (with the satanic looking baby) that he smashed his albums that the record company had sent over. He was also unhappy about the mix on the album. The 2011 CD (the ”Deluxe” version) has a better mix, so he was right all along. Live, the band was awesome though. Even with Bev Bevan on drums. Who knows how Sabbath would have progressed with Gillan had the Deep Purple reunion not happened when it did? Imagine another two or three albums with these guys… Here is what Shawn has to say about the Babymetalized cover.

Black Sabbath – ”Born Again” Babymetalized

””Born Again” is an album that is highly underrated. My best friend and I got that album back when it was released, we thought ”Zero The Hero” was amazingly heavy (I still think that). The video for the song is weird too. The album art wasn’t well liked, but I thought it was satanic looking and I loved the colours and how they contrasted. It’s worth your time to Google the story of how that album cover came about, it’s pretty funny! I had that cover in mind for a long time to use for BABYMETAL, but never found a photo that worked for me. During the last BABYMETAL tour I saw the picture of Su and it was perfect, except I mirrored it to match the face looking to the left on the Sabbath cover. I couldn’t find the font from the actual cover, which was odd as it looked too be a common medieval font, so got it as close as I could. It’s a simple cover but I love how it looks”. Shawn Fulford (aka ”futon”)

(Classic Rock Calendar: September 1983)


If you blinked, you missed it. Black Sabbath with Ian Gillan on vocals lasted about a year and they released only one studio album in “Born Again”. I saw them live in Stockholm (second gig on the world tour, the album was not even out yet) and the raw power was just great. I loved it and I was glad that Black Sabbath had survived the Dio-split. Of course the reunion of Deep Purple was in the cards and Gillan eventually left Sabbath to get back with the old band again in 1984, but then he had only signed up for a year in Sabbath (just in case). For Sabbath, it was the end of an era. It would take a couple of years for Tony Iommi to get back again, and then it was with the 1986 album “Seventh Star” (that featured another ex-Purple man in Glenn Hughes). Great album, highly underrated (as is “Born Again”). It was good to see an episode from the Deep Purple Podcast that covered the Deep Purple/Black Sabbath connections this week. Very interesting topic. I interviewed Sabbath a few times back then, you can find it on this blog.

(My shot of classic OKEJ article from the Stockholm gig, and the excellent 2011 “Born Again – Deluxe Edition” that also features the Reading 1983 festival)

Last week I showcased a book about this title and a couple of covers, and here is another brilliant example of how Bild Journalen (this is issue 3 1962) used both the front and the back in this way. Wisely, you have Audrey Hepburn on the front and George Peppard on the back (got to think about sales). No credit for this cover image but it might have been a promotional shot for “Breakfast At Tiffany´s.

(My shot of said cover)

Classics Illustrated

Posted: June 30, 2020 in Books, Comics, Cool stuff, Hobby

I grew up with the Swedish edition of Classics Illustrated (soon to be showcased here) but the original was obviously American. I was very happy when this book came out, fleshing out the history of this title in great detail. “Classics Illustrated – A Cultural History, with Illustrations” (McFarland & Company, 2002) by William B. Jones Jr., is the real deal. 272 pages.

(My shot of said book)

I have a real soft spot for Tex Willer. The Swedish comic book appeared over here in 1971 and I just loved it. This particular title, Kansas serien, ended in 1976, but Tex Willer continued to be published well into the 1980s. Then it was suddenly gone but not from Norway and Finland. These days I buy Tex Willer on import from Norway. Tex Willer is huge over there. In recent months, Tex has reappeared over here, but not in a sensible way (I think super expensive books is a mistake, why not learn from our neighbors?). Seen here is Kansas serien 2 and 3 1975. Classic Tex.

(My shot of said comic books)

Old School Comics

Posted: June 29, 2020 in Comics, Cool stuff

Got this in the mail today. Humorkavalkad (4 2020) continues the legacy of what once was in Sweden. Most of these comics had their own comic books back in the day, now most of them are gone except for 91:an. Blondie has also found a final home here. You also get some crosswords etc, so it is always nice to see this pop up. 100% nostalgia. Cover art by Anders Persson.

(My shot of said title)

Now we are really going back in time, and you may recognise Errol Flynn/Olivia de Havilland and Robert Taylor/Elizabeth Taylor on these covers? Swedish magazines, Film Journalen (issue 38 1938) and Vecko Revyn (40 1952). No photo credits. I rate both “The Adventures of Robin Hood” and “Ivanhoe” highly. Robin Hood comes to the rescue in “Ivanhoe” as well, but not portrayed by Flynn.

(My shot of said covers)

Well the day clearly belonged to Babymetal. About 140,000 people watched the free YouTube feed of the 2017 concert “Legend – S – Baptism XX” (I checked right before it was removed). Not only are they selling merchandise (how about a Babymetal pet-collar designed by Su-metal!), people could also donate during the airing of the show. I could not believe how fast the donations came in. They clearly wrote history today.

Thank you Team Babymetal!

(My shot of post-show still and message at the very end of the feed)

This interview with Deep Purple´s Roger Glover goes back to my DEEP PURPLE FOREVER days. In 1996, Steve Morse was the new guy in Purple and the band set out to promote “Purpendicular” in a big way. They wanted to restore the reputation of Deep Purple and that could only be done by taking it to the people. This meant way more concerts, and outside of the usual cities too. In Sweden that summer, we got 10 gigs. I looked back on this a couple of days ago on this blog (June 25), today I will share the chat that I had with Roger. My friend Staffan Eriksson was with me and a guy from a magazine called Slitz also joined the conversation. This is all of it, as it was. The show in Paris that is mentioned ended up as the “Live At The Olympia” live album (released in 1997). Enjoy.

I want you to know that a lot of people seem to think that the joy is back in your playing, especially if you compare “Purpendicular” with “The Battle Rages On”.

– It is called “having fun” (laughs). (Pointing at the cover of DPF #11) Nice cover.

Thank you, it was taken in 1994 when you were here. Let us begin with this tour. You have just been in Russia for the first time. How was that?

– How did we percieve it?

Yes, you played in Moscow, right?

– Yes, it was a festival called Dynamo. It was us, Status Quo and a few local acts.

How big was the audience?

– Between 35,000-40,000. In fact, it looked like there were as many soldiers present as there were fans. It was incredible, the crew said “You are not going to believe this”. Uniforms of all kinds.

So a bit strange perhaps, but I am sure the people are nice over there.

– Oh yes, it was not that strange. Big festivals usually has an atmosphere of excitement in the air anyway. It means that you are open to take chances, especially if the sound is good. The worst that can happen is that you try too hard. It can have an opposite effect. It can be a bit frustrating if the audience is way in the back. That really is the worst thing that can happen and it was a bit like that in Moscow.

Too many soldiers in the way?

– Well, there were four lines of them.

So the Moscow concert was the most strange one on the tour so far?

– I guess you can say that, but I do not like words like “best”, “worst”, “loudest”, “lowest”…

You are doing a very long tour. Have you decided yet when it is to end?

– Probably 2014…

(Laughs) No, really. But these long tours, looking back at your history, as some people will, there is a worry that the workload can be too much and lead to a repeat of what killed the band before…

– We have no plans to split at this moment.

(Laughs) Thank you very much!

– Not this decade. Not this century even!

Well, that would be something would it not.

– It is not that far off is it?

A couple of albums…

– Yes, a couple of records and a few million concerts!

What about America? Are you planning to ease back into that market again?

– Sooner or later we are going to play there again. No doubt about it. People are discussing it right now.

Are you happy about your American label? Has the album sold anything Stateside?

– No, the album has not sold well at all in America. America is the slumbering market and it is difficult for us to be heard. It has nothing to do with the label, it is the current musical climate and we may not fit in right now. In some sense, we are an underground band again over there.

Depending on your point of wiew, that can be a good thing…

– We do not mind. What we do may not be hip at the moment but that is not our problem. We just do our thing. And the strength of this band is that it is very natural so it is not in our nature to chase what is popular this week. In all honesty, and I have to say this, I am so happy about this new record and how we are right now that I have to think that it will sell some day. It might take a year or two for the word of mouth to do it, but I think it will happen. “In Rock” meant nothing in America, “Fireball” had a better response. We may have to go through the same thing again, it may take a few years for America to discover us again.

But you may have to do 150 concerts in America to make that happen again…

– I have nothing against us doing that.

It would be amazing if you did.

– If everything is right, the timing, the backing, we have nothing against hard work.

Have you decided to record another album next year?

– Yes, but we do not know where or when. The tour might end in March, but that is me guessing. We would like to play in Australia and South America too. But these are just thoughts I have and I would not be surprised if we tour until maybe April next year and then the next album will come up after that.

Was “Purpendicular” a result of you jamming together?

– Was it a jam? Yes, it was well cooked (laughs).

Joe Lynn Turner apparently wanted to call his album with you “Jam”…

– I do not think I know who Joe Lynn Turner is. But yes, the new album is a result of us jamming together. It felt like 1969 again. It is the first album since those days when we feel like a real band again. The chemistry of a band is so important. We have always been blessed in that, even in difficult situations we have always been able to come up with decent stuff. Even our worst records have some good songs on them. You will always try whatever the situation may be to do your best. Nobody ever walks into a studio with the ambition to make a bad album and you never walk on stage thinking lets do a bad concert. If it happens, it happens. That is life. I am beginning to view Deep Purple as this gigantic soap opera. It goes up and down, but now everything is fine.

Have you recorded any shows yet?

– We recorded Paris, with a horn section!

Horn section?

– Yes, we had a few guys with us and they joined in for a few tracks, like “No One Came”, “Highway Star”, “Purpendicular Waltz” and “Cascades…”.

That is fantastic. I had no idea.

– AHA! (laughs)

Well, I have heard that something might happen in Montreux on this tour?

– Maybe a repeat of what we did in Paris, yes.

Staffan / Do you miss Ritchie?

– I have nothing negative to say about Ritchie. He has been part of my life. But I am happy now, I can say that.

Slitz / I have a question about Joe Satriani. I have heard a bootleg of one of the shows that you did with him and it sounds pretty good. So why did you not ask him to replace Ritchie Blackmore?

– Why did not Joe Satriani get the gig in Deep Purple? He was the guy that stepped in when circumstances dictaded quick solutions. We had a sold out tour in Japan and to go there without Ritchie would have been a risk. So when Ritchie quit we said “Can you please do Japan?” and he said “no”. So I said “Well, you want to leave the band but if we are not going to Japan we may be sued” and he still said “no”. So we were forced into a situation in which we had to try to help safe face for the Japanese promoter. We stood to lose a lot of money if we could not fix the situation and the band could have ended its days with a bunch of lawsuits and nobody wanted that. But the guitarist would have to be somebody with a reputation, for the promoter to be able to say “Ritchie will not play, but…”. And he suggested Joe. And Joe was fantastic, a real professional. I spoke with him on the phone and we sent him some recent live tapes to listen to and then we met in Tokyo and had three days of rehearsals. Not that he really needed it, he would have been OK anyway. He knew what he was doing. And the shows turned out to be great so we said “This is too good, can we do some more?” and he said “OK” and so we booked the summer tour (1994) in Europe.

Did you record any concerts with Joe Satriani?

– No. Ehr, yes, the Japanese shows were recorded. But Joe does not want people to hear it because he does not think he was good enough. You have to respect that. I mean, put yourself in his position. He was not a member of Deep Purple. He was a hired gun. I think we all thought “Is this the guy for us?”. But we never asked him if he wanted to join, maybe so we did not risk to hear him say “No thanks”? And at the end of that tour, when our manager talked to him, it became obvious that he would not join. He said the tour had been the most fun that he had experienced in his life, but that he was tied up for his own thing for at least the next two years. He had records to do. I also think that he looks at himself as being part of a younger generation and maybe he did not want to lose that? He had worked hard to get to where he was. Maybe he thought that he would lose all of that? Steve is not like that. He goes after his instincts and his heart. He is not planning his career, he goes to where he wants to be and that is it.

Do you recall what you played when the band first rehearsed together with Steve?

– Well, that was the concerts that we did in Mexico.

So you never met him before you shared the stage?

– No, it was the same kind of deal as when Joe came in, we sent Steve some tapes and he listened to it. Like with Joe, Steve was just a total professional. It felt like we could just do it. The first thing we worked on later in the studio is a good idea that we still have to complete. Another early idea turned into “Loosen My Strings”.

Staffan / Great bass.

– Thank you. We were just warming up. I just started to play a few things just so that we could get the sound right and Steve joined in. He said “What is that?”, and I said “I am warming up, what are you doing?”. And the band joined in and we had a song.

Do you always record everything that is going on in the studio?

– I am always ready but there is no point in recording every moment. If you did you would never have enough time to check it all out. So I have this DAT player and a microphone in the room and if anything interesting happens I turn it on.

All these tapes from all these recordings… Could you see yourself, someday in the future, sitting down and wading through all this stuff so that the fans could get to hear some of these precious moments?

– I have a 24 track recorder at home and I have a lot of tapes. Sometimes, if I feel a little bit bored, I find myself listening to old tapes of Deep Purple and I have to say that at times I can not help but think about you guys out there (smiles mischievously)…

Slitz / The “In Rock” remaster you released now is pretty interesting.

– Yes, and we are working on “Fireball” right now. Here is a bit of news for you, we did locate a forgotten track, made in 1971. We have still to decide on a title. But it will be on the updated “Fireball”.

Slitz / When you released “Nobody´s Perfect” Ian Gillan called it “an inferior version of “Made In Japan””, so “Come Hell Or High Water”…

(Me) … is a lot better…

– No, it is not. “Made In Japan” was completely honest. “Nobody´s Perfect” was honest in as we told people what we had done on the cover. At the time I thought that if we recorded a lot of shows we would eventually relax and not even think about it. That was an experiment that did not quite work out, nobody cared about the tapes. So when I was tasked to put the live album together I could sense that it was not great. But by then we had spent 100,000 pounds so there was no going back.

But “Come Hell Or High Water” is a good live album surely.

– “Come Hell Or High Water” is, if nothing else, an honest album. But I can for the life of me not understand why they did not put “The Battle Rages On” on it… I do not get that at all.

That was weird.

– It made us very pissed off! But that choice was not ours, we had nothing to do with that album. Nor had Ritchie. It was all the record company. It is terrible when you are criticized and you agree with what is being said. What can I say? We are now trying to make the live set interesting again. For a long time we were stuck with the “Made In Japan” formula, but we are changing that now. We always had a lot of suggestions for songs to play but Ritchie was never interested. You can not force people to do things they are not interested in.

Slitz / Will you record another solo album after “The Mask”?

– Maybe some day. “Accidentally On Purpose” (the Gillan/Glover album) was in a way a follow up and I have a lot of ideas on the shelf. But I have no idea how to package it. I am really not a solo artist. I have never toured as a solo artist. I give everything I have, all my energy to Deep Purple. It is about motivation really. But thanks for asking, I appreciate that.

(End of interview – DEEP PURPLE FOREVER #15 cover shot by Peter Klein, Roger/Steve shot by Staffan Eriksson)

By Michael Eriksson (and Staffan Eriksson & Slitz) 1996 / Trinkelbonker 2020

* * * * *

As of today, you can find the following interviews on this blog. Enjoy!

EUROPE 1986 (June 16 2020), DEEP PURPLE PODCAST 2020 (April 6 2020), KIMBERLY GOSS/SINERGY 2002 (March 31 2020), RAINBOW 1997 (March 9 2020), RAINBOW 1996 (March 6 2020), MICHAEL BRADFORD 2003/MAKING OF DEEP PURPLE´S “BANANAS” (March 2 2020), URIAH HEEP 1988 (February 18 2020), ANNE-LIE RYDÉ 1984 (January 21 2020), CRYSTAL VIPER 2020 (January 16 2020), JOHN NORUM 1988 (January 12 2020), ARTOMUS FRIENDSHIP 2019 (November 10 2019), NAZARETH 1989 (August 26 2019), VELVET INSANE 2018 (September 11 2018), JON LORD 1981 (December 15 2015), DAVID COVERDALE 1981 (November 13 2015), GLENN HUGHES 1996 (May 12 2015), TOTO 1988 (March 31 2015), YNGWIE MALMSTEEN 1990 (March 1 2015), MARTINA EDOFF 2009 (December 4 2014), MICHAEL MOJO NILSSON 2014 (January 21 2014), THE HUGHES TURNER PROJECT 2001 (December 29 2013), JOE LYNN TURNER 1996-1998 (October 9 2013), GLENN HUGHES & JOHN NORUM 1988 (September 21 2013), JOE LYNN TURNER 1994-1995 (September 9 2013), JOE LYNN TURNER 1993 (September 7 2013), STEVE LUKATHER 1989 (September 4 2013), BLACK SABBATH 1983 (August 22 2013), RAINBOW 1995 (July 19 2013), MICK UNDERWOOD/GILLAN 1982 (June 11 2013), DEEP PURPLE 2002 (May 2 2013), DEEP PURPLE 1998 ( February 25 2013), BLACK SABBATH 1986 (February 12 2013), BLACK SABBATH 1987-1989 (December 31 2012), JOHNNIE BOLIN 2012 (December 24 2012), MARTIN POPOFF & RICH GALBRAITH 2009 (November 12 2012), DAVID COVERDALE 2000 (October 14 2012), JON LORD 1984 (September 7 2012), JOE LYNN TURNER 1992 (August 31 2012), JUDAS PRIEST 1986 (August 22 2012), RONNIE JAMES DIO 2001 (August 20 2012), NIGHTWISH 2002 (August 14 2012).

If you go back to the 1970s there was only two or three photographers in rock that really stood out. One of these was German photographer Didi Zill. He used to work with Deep Purple and in 2013 the first edition of his big “Deep Purple” book (436 pages) from publishers Schwarzkopf & Schwarzkopf saw release. It includes pictures from 1970 to 1990 (and includes solo projects), and there are a second updated version that takes it into the 2000s. This is the original. Classic stuff.

(My shot of said book)