To remember Jon Lord
DEEP PURPLE, IRON MAIDEN lead singer Bruce Dickinson, Rick Wakeman, Alfie Boe and Joe Brown are among artists lined up for the Celebrating Jon Lord concert at London’s Royal Albert Hall on April 4.
The concert gives fans a chance to relive Jon’s much-acclaimed and extensive musical career, remembering music from Paice Ashton Lord, Deep Purple, his later classical compositions and everything in between. The 83-piece Orion Orchestra, conducted by Paul Mann, will accompany Deep Purple and other artists on the night.
The concert has been organised by the Sunflower Jam charity, founded by Deep Purple drummer Ian Paice’s wife Jacky to support research for and application of holistic and non-toxic treatments for children and young adults suffering from cancer. Jon, who died last year from pancreatic cancer, co-founded Deep Purple in 1968 and co- wrote many of their songs. He studied classical piano from the age of five, and this was a major influence on his work. His particular loves included Bach and Elgar.
An early inspiration from the rock ‘n’ roll scene of his youth was fiery piano man and singer Jerry Lee Lewis. Also influenced by blues and jazz, Jon played his Hammond organ with a rock attitude, helping Deep Purple to become pioneers of progressive and heavy rock.
Deep Purple’s classic line-up was Jon, Ritchie Blackmore, Ian Gillan, Roger Glover (bass) and Ian Paice (drums.) The heavy rock group will always be famed for the number ‘Smoke On The Water’. Jon was responsible for the magnificent organ riff on ‘Child In Time’.
Jon, an ever-present stalwart in the group amid a number of lineup changes until he left in 2002, was hailed for his orchestral work “Concerto For Group And Orchestra”, first performed at London’s Royal Albert Hall with Deep Purple and the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra in 1969.
In 1973, Jon said Deep Purple’s music was “as valid as anything by Beethoven.”