‘Glenn Hughes The Autobiography: From Deep Purple to Black Country Communion’ by Glenn Hughes & Joel McIver – Book Review

I was down in St. Augustine, Florida in early August and went by a second-hand book store where this book was waiting for me it to rescue it. A couple weeks later on a flight to New York, I opened it up and started reading. On the flights there and back, I got through 2/3’s of the book as I couldn’t put it down. I finished it up in another sitting or two and really enjoyed it. I knew some stories on Mr. Hughes, but I didn’t know this story. The book, ‘Glenn Hughes The Autobiography: From Deep Purple to Black Country Communion’ was written by Glenn and Joel McIver. It actually starts off earlier than Deep Purple as it cover some of his childhood and does go to Black Country Communion which means it goes from 1951 to 2010.

The forward is by Metallica’s own Lars Ulrich. He discusses the first time he saw Glenn Hughes play and what a big fan he is. I have to admit, it was a little light as forewards go as I expected a little more insight in to what he knew about Glenn, but wasn’t much meat to it. Sorry Lars. But that was the only thing I didn’t like about this book. One of the really cool features in the book is the fact they have interviewed a ton of people close to Glenn through the years, parents, girlfriends/wives and bandmates. Snippets of those interviews are sprinkled throughout each chapter adding color commentary and texture to what Glenn is talking about. It also lets you despite all the drugs, people tended to agree with what he talks about with some minor different interpretations at times.

I know Glenn was an avid drug user, but I guess I didn’t realize to the extreme it became. Imagine my surprise when he is talking about his massive drug use in the mid-to late 80’s he was living in Atlanta. In fact, he ended up buying a house not terribly far from where I grew up and was living at the time. Who knows I could’ve passed Glenn back in the day and never knew it. Doubtful, as he was help up in house a lot doing drugs.

I really loved learning about Trapeze, his band before Deep Purple. I need to explore them more. For me, the activities surrounding his joining Deep Purple were pretty cool and to learn that he David Coverdale were actually friends and got a long really well despite them competing a little for lead vocals. Glenn’s drug problem didn’t really start until around the third album with Purple, ‘Come Taste the Band’ when Tommy Bolin joined. Glenn and Tommy became drug buddies. Glenn’s tenure ended withe Purple without him really knowing it as that is how bad it was getting.

The 80’s were a drug filled mess. His projects with Gary Moore and Pat Thrall all suffered greatly as well as relationships with his many lady friends and his wife. His times with Tony Iommi and Black Sabbath was brief and interesting as well. He was not pleasant person to be around when he was drugged out…which was often. He is lucky to have made it out alive. The drugs were so bad, he only wanted to be around those people that were heavy in to drugs. This lasted until the 90’s when he started to get cleaned up. He revitalized his solo career and eventually gets clean and gets back to his singing as the focus as he is the Voice of Rock. I’m not going in to detail as that is what the book is for so get it.

The book ends with his joining Joe Bonamassa, Jason Bonham and Derek Sherinian as they form Black Country Communion. Glenn really loves this band and believes it might be one of the best things he’s done. They’ve since done four albums total and they are pretty amazing. Too bad the book ends back in 2010 as we know Glenn is still going strong as he now fronts The Dead Daisies and his voice is still amazing!

The Glenn Hughes autobiography is one of the most enjoyable ones I have read in a long time. Glenn is so likable in the book despite some of the crappy things he does. It is amazing he can remember what he does, but he is open and honest about how bad the drugs were and takes full responsibility. He is lucky to be around and we are lucky to have all this great music and have that Voice in our lives. My Overall Score is a 5.0 out of 5.0 Stars as I truly couldn’t put this down and don’t think I’ve read a book that fast in a very long time.

August 2022 Purchases – Vinyl, CDs and Books

August is over and so is Summer. School is back in session and it was a very busy month. Between vacation, getting one of my daughters off to college and traveling for work, I didn’t have much record store time. As a result, my selection is rather small compared to some of my months. But doesn’t mean there isn’t enough to show off so lets get in to it.

We will start off with my record shopping while on vacation as I did pick up a few things. First up was a Joe Satriani for the album, ‘Not of this Earth’, which I already have. But I didn’t have this cover. I had never seen this before, so my rule…if you haven’t seen it before, you buy it. And I did…

And that holds true for one my next finds at the same record store. I picked up Kiss’ ‘Psycho Circus’ on CD as it was at the lowest price I’d seen in awhile. Then I saw a maxi-single for “I Was Made For Loving You (Live)” for the Alive III album. I had never seen this before, so I bought it…

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July 2022 Purchases – Vinyl, CD’s and 8-Tracks!!

We are moving through the year quite fast I believe as it is already the end of July. And it was a hot one, both temperature and purchases. Now, I do have a handful of vinyl, but as prices skyrocket, I am focusing on the albums that mean something to me or from bands that mean something to me so the purchases have slowed. CDs are cheaper and a lot easier to obtain so I seem to be buying way more of those these days. With minor exceptions, I have been laser focused on what I’m buying. Let’s go through the vinyl first. First up is the new album from Shinedown called ‘Planet Zero’. I have all their albums on vinyl as I am a big fan so why not get the new one…

Then it I picked up a couple holy grail type albums. First was one from Kiss that had only been issued for their very limited exclusive Kissteria box set. I didn’t think I’d every own one. Thanksfully, they re-issued it on vinyl and I snagged a copy. Not their best compilation, but one that was lacking in my vinyl collection so couldn’t be happier…My list of missing vinyl is now smaller.

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Deep Purple – ‘Live in London’ – Album Review (The David Coverdale Series)

In 1982, Deep Purple didn’t exist, no new music was coming for a few more years, but the world needed a brand new Live album by the band.  Or at least that is what the record company thought.  This live album was really not new, it was only newly released. It was recorded back in 1974 with the Mark III line-up of the following:

  • Richie Blackmore – guitar
  • David Coverdale – lead vocals
  • Glenn Hughes – Bass and vocals
  • Jon Lord – keyboards
  • Ian Paice – drums

The album was recorded on May 22, 1974 at the Gaumont State Theatre in London, England and was used a BBC Radio Broadcast but never actually saw the light of day on a physical release until 8 years later. The tour was for the album “Burn” which is where a majority of the songs will come from.

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Like with most Deep Purple Live albums, there are only a handful of songs as some of the songs last an eternity.  You get 6 whole songs on the original release and when they do the re-issues years later you are blessed with getting a whole other song that adds over 30 minutes to the time…yep…one song at 30 minutes.  Wow!!

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Soren Andersen – ‘Guilty Pleasures’ – Album Review

This one completely caught me off guard.  Soren Andersen, famous for being the guitarist for the great Glenn Hughes as well as Electric Guitars and Mike Tramp, released a new solo album without me even knowing.  How does that happen.  It doesn’t matter as I found it and I am a better person for it.  After the brilliance of his 2011 release ‘Constant Replay’, this time around he goes full on instrumental.

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From the opening track, “City of Angels”, you know you are in for something special.  At times there is a whole Satriani vibe to the songs because they are songs.  They are full of melodies and typical song structure you can almost sing along with the guitars which is what I want in an instrumental. There is no showboating for the sake of showboating.  He isn’t going, “hey, look what I can do!!”.  He is giving you his heart and emotions in his songs.

At times he goes all metal with songs such as “The Kid” that come at you like a fist to the face.  He is a rocker at heart with songs like “Agent Wells” that even throw in some funky bass lines.  There are even a couple songs I would consider ballads with the song “Satori” and “Bird Feeder” which are both a little reminiscent of Satriani from his early 90’s work.  “Skybar” opens with a little electronica elements and some wicked ass bass guitar.  The album is full of interesting elements and Soren isn’t a one-trick pony.  He gives you a little of everything.  The album ends with one of the most interesting tracks, “Bipolar”, which gives you two elements of his style and sound and blends them together.

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Deep Purple – ‘Last Concert in Japan’ – Album Review (The David Coverdale Series)

‘Last Concert in Japan’ only saw a release due to the death of guitarist Tommy Bolin who died in December of 1976.  The album was released shortly after in March of 1977 in Japan.  The record company was in a rush to capitalize on his death is all I can think why this was released. The band was done, all parties had moved on and the record company thought it would be an easy cash grab.  Now I have no proof, this is pure speculation but it is what record companies do.

This album captures the Mark IV line-ups last show in Japan as the title says at the Budokan Hall which I believe they set a record for attendance at that time.  The release is not a full show and it was streamlined down to fit on only one LP.

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There are a lot of problems with this album.  First off, the mix. It is pretty crappy as the release was done in such a hurry that the master tracking really suffered and let me tell you it shows.  And if that wasn’t enough, let me just say the guitar playing is less then stellar and I believe Jon Lord was used a lot more in places that there should have been more guitar.  The reason being is Tommy Bolin had been doing drugs quite heavily the night before and according to Glenn Hughes, he feel asleep on his arm for 8 hours and couldn’t play.  And based on what I hear, I believe he might be telling the truth.

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Deep Purple – ‘Made in Europe’ – Album Review (The David Coverdale Series)

Now that Deep Purple was defunct, the record company needed to release something I am sure so why not a live album.  In October 1975, ‘Made in Europe’ was released.  The recording from April 3rd – April 7th on some of the final dates that Ritchie Blackmore would play as he left the band shortly after.  So, with that being said, the line is the Mark III lineup of the band consisting of Ritchie, David Coverdale, Glenn Hughes, Jon Lord and Ian Paice.

The show was recorded from 3 different shows that took place on April 3rd, 1975 in Graz, Austria, April 5th in  Saarbrücken, Germany and finally on April 7th at the Palais des Sports in Paris, France.  According to the album jacket, the album was recorded using the “Rolling Stones” mobile truck.  And it has also been discussed that there were some heavy overdubbing and cleaning up of the set including the audience with the crowd noise and applause…but this is the 70’s what live album wasn’t retouched (ahem…Kiss).

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The album is only a single LP and only includes 5 songs with a total run time of 45:47 which means the average song length over 9 minutes so the band plays the heck out of these songs which is really what a Deep Purple live album is all about.  The band had huge success with the prior live album ‘Made in Japan’ and although this is a good release, it isn’t as good as the Japan release.

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Deep Purple – ‘Come Taste the Band’ – Album Review (The David Coverdale Series)

Ritchie Blackmore left the band after the last album, ‘Stormbringer’, due to creative differences with David Coverdale and Glenn Hughes.  I find this funny considering Ritchie brought them in to help take the band in a new direction and Ritchie ended up not liking that direction.  So Deep Purple was done…or were they?

David talked Jon Lord and Ian Paice to continue and they did.  Now before they could continue, they needed a new guitar player and in comes Tommy Bolin, a bloody American.  This upset quite a few diehard UK Purple fans.  And probably part of the reason the album didn’t do that well.

David had heard Tommy’s playing on Jazz fusion drummer Billy Cobham’s solo album called ‘Spectrum’ and thought he would be perfect.  And we all know now that David has an ear for great guitarists (can you say John Sykes and Steve Vai to name a couple). Tommy was a great guitar player and it is too bad his heroin addiction would take a life way too soon a little over a year after the album’s release.

Deep Purple would continue and this would end up being the first Deep Purple album to not feature either Ritchie Blackmore or even Ian Gillan.  As a result, a lot of people don’t really consider this a Deep Purple album.  Now that is crazy because if they consider ‘Burn’ to be a Deep Purple album, then this one is as well as the sound and feel is so similar to that album and quite possibly could be better.  I know I might be in the minority, but I really like this album.

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Deep Purple – ‘Stormbringer’ – Album Review (The David Coverdale Series)

After ‘Burn’, Deep Purple went right back in the studio and recorded their second album together with the Mark III line-up.  The album was released in November 1974 just nine months after ‘Burn’.  ‘Stormbringer’ is the bands 9th album and actually ended marking the end of an era for the band which will discuss shortly.

The album cover is a great picture of a tornado with a pegasus riding in with the storm.  The cover is based on a photo by Lucille Handberg which was taken back on July 8th of the year 1927 in the town of Jasper, Minnesota.  The picture stretches out to the back cover to show the immense size of the storm.  The intenseness of the album cover; doesn’t necessarily translate to the music.

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The sound of the album is a continuation of ‘Burn’, but not near the intensity. There seem to push the Blues and Funk and lot more on this one much to the dismay of its leader Ritchie Blackmore.  Ritchie was so displeased with the direction of the band that after this album, Ritchie left ending the era of the Mark III phase of Coverdale, Hughes, Lord, Paice and Blackmore.  I find this funny considering David Coverdale and Glenn Hughes were both brought in by Ritchie to explore a new sound and direction for the band.  I guess sometimes be careful what you wish for.

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Deep Purple – ‘Burn’ – Album Review (The David Coverdale Series)

Welcome to the new series covering the career of the great David Coverdale.  We will start off with Deep Purple and then cover his solo work, his work with Jimmy Page and of course, Whitesnake.  We have a long journey ahead as we have around 33 albums that we will cover.  Sit back and I hope you enjoy the ride…Let’s get started!

Deep Purple – ‘Burn’ (1974):

In 1973, Deep Purple went through yet another line-up change.  This one saw the band lose the lead singer, Ian Gillan, and bass player, Roger Glover.  And for this time around, Ritchie Blackmore wanted to take the band in a new direction and it was the start of Mark III.

First up he brought in bass player Glenn Hughes and damn the man can sing as well so not a bad pick. Glenn had come from the band Trapeze where he had made a name for himself.  But Ritchie wasn’t done.

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Ritchie found a pretty unknown singer whose voice he really loved as it had a blues tone to it that spoke to him.  That gentleman was none other than David Coverdale.  We would all grow to love him from Whitesnake, but every story has a beginning and this is his.  With the powerful vocals of Hughes and Coverdale, Deep Purple were set up to do great things.  Not only those two great singers, Ritchie still had the amazing Jon Lord on keyboards and Ian Paice on Drums.  It is a pretty impressive line-up!

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