David Coverdale Says Ritchie Blackmore Inspired Whitesnake’s ‘Still Of The Night’

Musicians often inspire one another, and in David Coverdale‘s case, Ritchie Blackmore‘s works guided the new musical direction Whitesnake was taking. During a recent chat with Classic Rock magazine, Coverdale admitted that his former bandmate influenced ‘Still Of The Night.’

David only had the chance to work with Blackmore for a short period since the guitarist departed from Deep Purple in 1975. Even though the pair produced successful projects together, Coverdale later admitted that they didn’t like each other as bandmates. The pair, however, has made up, and the singer recently revealed that Blackmore influenced his hit song.

Coverdale disclosed that he was going through some stuff at his house when he came across some demos. One of them was a song Ritchie and him had been working on, which would be the basic premise of ‘Still Of The Night.’ The musician joked that the demo and the song had no similarities, so neither Ritchie nor he had anything to worry about, copyright-wise.

The singer discussed that he improved the song as much as he could. Then, he gave it to John Sykes for him to record the guitar solos when they were in southern France. John, however, didn’t like the blues. So, Coverdale had to manipulate it into an electric blues song, and Sykes’s performance was remarkable for his time.

The musician also remarked that the guitar solo was unique because of the song’s quality. There were lots of musicians who were trying to perform that ‘widdly stuff’ with their guitar but their songs didn’t have the quality ‘Still Of The Night’ had. Coverdale, in that regard, was proud of his work.

Coverdale discussed Blackmore’s influence and the creative process of ‘Still Of The Night’:

“I was going through stuff and found some early demo cassettes. One of them was a song that Ritchie Blackmore and I had been working on, which was the basic premise of what would become ‘Still Of The Night.’ It was totally unrecognizable, so Ritchie doesn’t have anything to worry about… Neither do I!

I took it as far as I could, then gave it to Sykesy when we were in the south of France, and he put the big guitar hero stuff on there. John hated the blues, so I had to work within those parameters. I manipulated it to be electric blues, but how he performed was fabulous for his time and relatively unique because of the songs. There were a lot of people doing that widdly stuff, but they didn’t have the quality of those songs.”

Even if Blackmore and Coverdale didn’t particularly like one another back in the day, their musical genius helped them record a demo that would form the basis of ‘Still Of The Night.’ David, however, managed the improve the song and adapted it to the band’s style. With these innovations, the song became an acclaimed hit.