This page last updated January 24, 2003

January 21st 2003
Sydney Opera House
(spoken word)

Read Tom Bradbury's transcription of the interview and the Q&A session.
Part One - Interview
Part Two - Q&A session

Photo: Drew Thompson

Paul Hogan writes:
Jon was gracious, personable and witty in the Q and A session at the Sydney Opera House last night. Among other things, he said he has been writing prolifically since leaving DP, and is planning on going in the studio in March-April.
He also said he's been very impressed with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra and the band 'george' and their interpretation of his Concerto. He says it's very different to, and 'less pompous' than Deep Purple's version, which brings a whole new perspective to the piece which he really likes. He said george's approach, especially in the first movement, is more complementary to the orchestra; DP's approach is more combative.
But he spoke with great fondness of his time with Purple, saying he thought about leaving for the last 12 years! Just couldn't quite bring himself to do it! Says he's learned a lot about himself in the last few years and now has more of a 'spiritual perspective to life', which he hopes is being reflected in his music.
In terms of the contradictions of being in a loud rock band and writing symphonic music, he said he loves both and quoted Steve Morse: "Aren't people allowed to be good at more than one thing?
I didn't get to ask about the new DP album and whether or not he'd be on it - the time was cut short. However one could speculate that, if he plans to record his own stuff after he leaves Oz, his opportunities to contribute could be pretty limited.
There were about 100 or so people there. It was in the Drama Theatre of the Big White Building with the Sails. Jon was interviewed by some guy on stage, then questions from the audience were invited. Went for about an hour to hour and a half.
I think there were a lot of music students there judging by some of the questions (like "What techniques do you use for notation"?), but also a good group of die-hard DP fans. Afterwards he came out to the foyer, chatted and signed autographs and posed for photos.
There was some guy with a Big Mother of a Video Camera taking footage - apparently a whole lot of stuff is being shot for future DVD release.
Tomorrow night 'The Making of Machine Head' is on TV, then the Concerto (night 2) on Saturday. Bring it on!

Unwritten Law writes:
Last night I watched together with about 50 others as Jon Lord gave a live interview at the Sydney Opera House.
Get this, I was walking to the Opera House and on my way I passed Jon Lord in the street! I had to look twice to make sure but it was the man himself. He was looking very fit and well.
Waiting to go into the auditorium where the event was being held, I looked round to see all sorts of people of all ages waiting to see Jon Lord.
Inside the hall I was at first disappointed not to see a piano onstage (hoping for perhaps a snippet or two of his music), but was curious to see two black chairs on the stage.
On he comes with a radio presenter from Triple J and gives an interview talking about the Concerto, Gemini Suite, Spinal Tap and lots more in a vey relaxed atmosphere. He was cracking some great jokes along the way too.
Then he turned to all the fans watching and answered every question put forward... Shame I couldn't get mine in before the end.
He told of how he had the ideas for his next CD, but hadn't recorded them yet, and how he would be in the studio soon to do so.
He mentioned his upcoming shows in the Opera House performing the Concerto with Australian band George. The first two sold out fast, and by demand a third night went on sale, also to sell out!
All in all a great night, and did I mention it was free?
My question to Jon Lord, had I got it in there, would have been: Do you perform on any tracks on the new Deep Purple CD, and will you be back onstage with Purple again, even as a (hate to say it) guest performer?
Given the chance, what would you have asked?

Drew Thompson writes:
It was a great night and very informative - and recorded too. Just to note, Jon said he had the ideas in place for his next album and was hoping to go into the studio in March/April. It really looks like these shows will be very special, with a few nice surprises along the way.

Michael Keating writes:
It was a shame that Jon Lord only had an hour to speak at the Opera House. I'm sure everyone there would have stayed much longer.
I can't stress enough how engaging, personable and humorous Jon was. It was only a small crowd due to I think the limited advertising given to it, but this lent to a more intimate atmosphere.
I was in the front row and was able to ask the first question of the night - I always wondered whether "In Rock" was released soon after the Concerto to proved to fans that Purple stilled rocked, but Jon said this was not the case and that DP were working on "In Rock" at the same time he was writing the Concerto. He'd work with DP during the day and then come home and work on the Concerto until the small hours.
Jon was gracious enough afterwards to sign autographs and after we were chucked out of the hall he invited everyone into the lobby for more autographs and photos. Very much looking forward to the Concerto and to hearing selections from Pictured Within and Gemini Suite at the Basement in a few weeks.

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