Ritchie Blackmore On Leaving Deep Purple: ‘Rock Became Boring and Stressful’

Ritchie Blackmore moved away from Deep Purple’s sound and formed Blackmore’s Night in the late 1990s. He recently shared with Guitar World that his neo-medieval folk-rock band was an escape from his previous work’s stress:

“The stress was from the traveling to do with rock and roll, the continual trying to come up with different augmentations of heavy riffs, which can be boring. I was getting stale playing the same type of music: heavy rock for the sake of playing heavy rock.”

His words went on:

“I have always been interested in melodic rock—melodies in general. Toward the end of Purple, it was just being loud for the sake of being loud, so when I heard renaissance music—there were so many incredible melodies that struck a chord with me. That was such a relief in many ways, so I jumped off the monster train just to play some melodies more organically.”

He Didn’t Want To Make Mainstream Music

Blackmore and his wife/bandmate, Candice Night, explored Renaissance-inspired music in Blackmore’s Night records. The guitarist commented on the band’s sound in a Forbes chat a couple of years ago:

“When we put the concept of Blackmore’s Night together, we knew that it would probably never get played on the radio. But we didn’t care because we just wanted to play our kind of music. We didn’t care about playing to thousands of people—but we wanted to play to a hundred. It was so refreshing—a breath of fresh air compared to what I was used to before.”

The duo released their latest album, ‘Nature’s Light,’ in March 2021. Blackmore said of it:

“This music is still challenging: to be playing arrangements where we have me playing mandolas, nyckelharpas, and hurdy gurdys, and Candice playing shawms. In the old days, it was easy with guitar, bass, drums, keyboards, and everyone did their part. It is tricky to know when to play a rauschpfeife and a guitar and sometimes a synthesizer, and how it balances out.”

Blackmore’s Night is set to start a US tour this summer. Their first stop is The Sherman Theater in Stroudsburg, PA, on June 22.