In Honour of Jon Lord

Bruce M. Thomson

Gold Member
Steve Morse said:
Jon just died. I'm shocked and don't know what to do, so I'm going to try to tell you a little about Jon.

Jon was the powerhouse keyboard player that brought rock and classical directly together many times. The first was his timeless organ solo on "Highway Star". The next was his "Concerto for Band and Orchestra". I was able to perform with the whole band as it was played at Alb...ert Hall before we toured extensively with it. Just weeks ago, I was able to play on a studio recording of Jon's concerto and share some heartfelt thoughts and words with him.

Jon was the guy that would stop us from giving up on an idea in songwriting because it wasn't immediately obvious. I remember him encouraging me in the studio to keep doing what I was doing as I played around with an idea that I was intrigued with. After writing something as amazing as his concerto, he still had the imagination to hear ideas on top of anything I suggested. He always had a regal, gentlemanly manner. Like any of us, he could get annoyed, but he would only show it with his wry and dry wit.

Mostly, he was upbeat and a pleasure for anybody to be around. His humor was right up my alley, with us exchanging ridiculous thoughts like,"If Brenda Lee married Tommy Lee, her new name would be Brenda Lee......" Or having him finish the tune when an announcement at an airport would start with several musical notes to get your attention. It's hard to give anecdotes that convey an ease that somebody could give you, but he sure had that ability. We all love people that will pay attention to our kids, and years ago he charmed my (then) 5 year old son, Kevin with a Donald Duck imitation even while he was being hurried to get out of the dressing room and go to the green room for after show greetings.

Jon retired from the endless DP tour schedule, but continued to do appearances with original material and performances of his concerto. I knew he missed the band he helped start, but at the same time couldn't stand the relentless travel. From time to time, we would see him on tour, and he would sit in with us. The last time we played, less than a year ago, at the Sunflower Jam at Royal Albert Hall, he had just come offstage from performing with Rick Wakeman. Later I talked with him and his wife about how strange it felt to look around at the keyboards and not see him there at Albert Hall. We promised to do something together. Soon thereafter, we all learned of his battle with Pancreatic cancer. I kept hearing hopeful, positive reports that they might be making progress, but this sudden death caught me totally unaware. I thought we would meet and do a recording project in the future when he recovered from the chemotherapy. Well, we sort of did, but I had to record it and send it to him, as we were in different countries.

If you have friends, family, especially kids, don't ever miss a chance to do or say something special....or simply appreciate the fact that they are there. One day, they won't be.
 

rogue_drummer

Gold Member
I heard of Mr. Lord's passing last night while browsing Facebook. It was a total shock, to say the least. Deep Purple's Machine Head is one of my favorite albums and his work on "Lazy", and "Highway Star" is always to be admired and appreciated.

He will be missed.
 

Anon La Ply

Renegade
Bruce, you were definitely in a good space to be jamming with JL - a genuine rock legend.

I hadn't heard this. Sad. Great player in a great band. No one got the organ growling the way he did when Purple hit the scene. Lazy and Speed King were especially awesome solos.

Still, he made 71, which is a good innings. Most people getting much past that age have to deal with much discomfort so good on him - great musical career, great life, dodged the decrepitude bullet at the end.
 

keep it simple

Platinum Member
Bruce, it's obvious from your eloquent post that Jon was more than just a noted encounter to you. I thank you for providing just a glimpse of the man. Jon was widely known for his expressive musicianship, but perhaps more impressively via your post, also a damn fine person.
 

Bruce M. Thomson

Gold Member
The post is by Steve Morse (See Top Of Page) Sorry if I led you to think that humble me had met him. Steve is the eloquent one. There were many more as well from many of the great keyboard players in England.

Cheers
 

keep it simple

Platinum Member
The post is by Steve Morse (See Top Of Page) Sorry if I led you to think that humble me had met him. Steve is the eloquent one. There were many more as well from many of the great keyboard players in England.

Cheers
Ah, sorry Bruce, my bad. You didn't mislead at all, it was my lack of attention. Aside from that, my feelings about the value of the insight stand.
 

Bruce M. Thomson

Gold Member
Ah, sorry Bruce, my bad. You didn't mislead at all, it was my lack of attention. Aside from that, my feelings about the value of the insight stand.
Cheers.

My dream band would have a Hammond organ. Not many around these days, at my highschool dances (oh so many moons ago) all the bands had one, with a large Leslie going round and round. It was hypnotising. Even now I prefer the organ over the synths.
 

keep it simple

Platinum Member
Cheers.

My dream band would have a Hammond organ. Not many around these days, at my highschool dances (oh so many moons ago) all the bands had one, with a large Leslie going round and round. It was hypnotising. Even now I prefer the organ over the synths.
Oh yes, I couldn't agree more, except for transporting the damn things :( Our keys player gets some nice Hammond sounds from his setup. He has the full tabs & Leslie module thing, but it's still nowhere near as satisfying as the real deal. A bit like Edrums compared to Adrums eh :)
 
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