‘Bad Enough That I Left,’ Tony Carey On Ritchie Blackmore Abusing Rainbow Members

In a recent interview with Classic Album Review, keyboardist Tony Carey discussed if Ritchie Blackmore mistreated Rainbow bandmates.

When asked about the intensity of his experience in Rainbow, the musician opened up about his time with the band, saying:

“Bad enough that I left. I mean, he [Ritchie Blackmore] fired me twice and then couldn’t get a replacement, so he had to hire me back, and I was 21. I was oblivious to a lot of stuff.”

Recalling the day he quit the act, Carey continued:

“It got bad enough that I finally said I’ve had it and actually left The Château outside of Paris where we were doing ‘Long Live Rock ‘n’ Roll,’ at like four in the morning with a taxi and went right to the airport and see you later. I haven’t seen him since this in 1977.”

The host further asked about his decision to rejoin Rainbow for ‘Long Live Rock ‘n’ Roll’ and whether it was difficult for him. The keyboardist replied:

“I didn’t rejoin as far as I know. Maybe somebody knows a different version of the story, but they just said we’re doing an album, and I showed up. I was shocked to show up and find that Jimmy Bain was gone because that’s the best rock and roll bass player I ever worked with and a really great guy.”

Tony also reflected on the band’s dynamics and how Blackmore took on the financial responsibility, explaining:

“Like I said, Ritchie paid for all of that. It was his risk. And he didn’t take a lot of money from Polydor. In fact, they made their own label distributed by Polydor. Ritchie was paying that whole thing for that ridiculous 3000 light bulb state-of-the-art light show and everybody’s salaries, traveling, and studio costs.

He was like picking up the tab, so that’s all his business. We were in a band. I wasn’t aware that if I’d been fired prior to ‘Long Live Rock ‘n’ Roll,’ then I’ll have to edit my story. I was fired three times, but I left once.”

When asked about a possible collaboration with Ritchie in a 2018 chat with Good Times Rock, the keyboardist said it was very unlikely due to his strained relationship with the guitarist.

You can watch the full interview below.