The Deep Purple Principles David Coverdale Used To Form Whitesnake


Before forming his band Whitesnake, David Coverdale was the lead singer of Deep Purple between 1973 and 1976. Coverdale achieved great success with the band and performed to hundreds of fans on stage.

However, Ritchie Blackmore’s departure in June 1975 and the disappointing release of ‘Come Taste The Band’ encouraged Coverdale to leave the band and pursue a solo career. The musician formed Whitesnake in 1978, and he has continued his music career with the band ever since.

As he was a member of a band like Deep Purple, considered among the pioneers of heavy metal and modern hard rock, it’s not a surprise that David Coverdale borrowed some elements from the band’s approach to music for his band Whitesnake. Let’s see these principles Coverdale applied in his band.

What Were The Elements David Coverdale Brought From Deep Purple To Whitesnake?


In a 2011 interview with Ultimate Classic Guitar, David Coverdale stated that he formed Whitesnake after experiencing writing and making music to suit Deep Purple. He then said he learned every good and bad aspect of making music with Deep Purple during his three years in the band.

After the interviewer asked him what the elements he applied to Whitesnake were, Coverdale said he sat down and decided to incorporate the elements of hard rock, rhythm and blues, soul music, and Motown’s influences into the band. The musician then noted that Motown had influenced every Whitesnake album so far.

Moreover, Coverdale mentioned another element he considered crucial; the sense of humor in the lyrics. According to the musician, Whitesnake’s foundation has been the same from the beginning, and the only thing they changed was their clothes and hairstyles.

In the interview with Ultimate Classic Guitar, David Coverdale said the following:

“For me, it was taking the elements after the experience of writing or tailoring music to suit an identity such as Deep Purple. For me underneath this creative umbrella, I wanted to learn from every aspect, good and bad, that I’d had with this extraordinary high-octave experience of three years with Deep Purple, one of the biggest bands in history.”

The interviewer then asked:

“What were those elements you wanted to bring to Whitesnake?”

Coverdale responded:

“What are the elements? I sat down absolutely clearly and thought, I want to include hard rock, rhythm and blues, soul music, and Motown. Believe me; there are Motown inflections on every f*cking Whitesnake album out there, including the new one.

And humor, baby. ‘I’ve got a white snake, mama / You wanna shake it, mama?’ It’s all f*ckin’ tongue in cheek and a bit of this and a bit of that. The bedrock and foundation of Whitesnake have always been the same; just the clothes have changed. And certainly some of the f*ckin’ hairstyles.”

According to what Coverdale stated, it seems he brought the elements of hard rock, rhythm and blues, soul music, and Motown influences to Whitesnake. Besides, it looks like the musician also thinks he just changed the stage apparel of his band, but the sound and lyrics have remained on the same level since day one.