The Story Of Ritchie Blackmore's Rainbow
We have waited a long time for someone to deliver a definitive book on
the history of Rainbow, and in many ways this book is exactly what we
have all been waiting for. In other ways however it falls short of its
many line up changes, the anecdotes from the recording sessions and
live concerts, are all here, but what is missing are the in depth reasons
behind the facts.
lack of first hand quotes from the main people involved with the band,
instead using quotes gleaned from old interviews, gives the impression
that the book has been a peace meal construction, rather than a true
study on the reasons behind the band. Was Mr.Blackmore interviewed for
The book reads as if it has been written by two separate authors, the
writing style of the journalist and the fan are at times poles apart.
The journalist employs a style of flamboyance with the language, and
the fan writes from the heart. I know the book is a compilation of two
separate ideas that have been put together. At times the two flow well
together, at other times the joins are very apparent.
facts are presented within the story of the band, in a chronological
manner, and the reader is certainly drawn through the history of the
band in a tourist like manner. At times the book allows itself to view
more important topics, but often just passes by quickly, with a casual
reference to what happened. The earlier albums are looked at in depth,
while the later albums are passed by with only a reference to the key
from the above points, the book is a welcome addition to any real fan
reference library. It clears up many points that have been in question
for many years. An obvious one being whether or not “Temple of the King”
was ever played live before the '95 re-formation. Thankfully we can
now rest easy in our beds over that issue. The book does explore Blackmore’s
reason behind the departure of Dio and the move towards a more commercial
sound, and this is one of the most interesting parts of the story.
Where the book really excels, is in the appendices. The lists of concerts,
records, singles, bootlegs, personnel and equipment are excellently
presented bits of work. Though curiously no mention of the specs for
the Rainbow, and of its later fate when it was discarded.
story is one familiar to most older fans of Mr.Blackmore and his career,
and most of the quotes and stories are also familiar to anyone who followed
the band during its duration. The book has a nice easy reading feels
to it, except the few times I had to reach for the dictionary, notably
when the journalist started using words like “tyro”. It is an enjoyable
read, and for those not familiar with the history of the band, it’s
a fine starting point. For those of us more than familiar, I await a
Blackmore biography, should anyone be brave enough to write one. Bit
like a Rainbow album really, some great material, some highlights, some
filler, and some fade out towards the ends of tracks, but overall an
interesting body of work.
Still no confirmed release date for the revised edition of this
title, which has now been out of print for a couple of years. The
original edition is long since sold out.