For many of today’s parents, Deep Purple was one of their favorite rock bands. Sure, not many had the stomach for their heavy metal sound, but along with Led Zeppelin or Blue Cheer, Deep Purple popularized this particular rock sound. This Monday, Deep Purple Jon Lord died of cancer at 71 years.
When people think about Deep Purple, they think “Smoke on the Water” and “Highway Star”. They think rock classics, Ian Paice, “Child in Time” and “Woman from Tokyo”. For the most part keyboardist Jon Lord was the man behind many of the band’s hits and was often seen as the driving force in Deep Purple. Unfortunately for the music world, Jon Lord passed away this Monday of cancer.
“It is with deep sadness we announce the passing of Jon Lord, who suffered a fatal pulmonary embolism today, Monday 16 July” reads a statement on the British musician’s official website. The 71-year-old keyboardist died at the London Clinic “after a long battle with pancreatic cancer”.
“Jon was surrounded by his loving family” adds the statement announcing “Jon passed from Darkness to Light”. The 71-year-old keyboard player was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer last year. Since August 2011, Jon Lord has been getting treatment.
Soon after the news about Jon Lord passing away, Twitter was assaulted by celebrities such as Tom Morello of Rage Against the Machine or Steve Lukather of Toto. Morello wrote on Twitter: “RIP the great Jon Lord, Deep Purple’s cornerstone/keyboardist. So many great great songs and that incredible SOUND of his! Thank you”.
Rick Wakeman, former Yes keyboardist, confessed he was “a great fan” of Jon Lord. “We were going to write and record an album before he become ill. His contribution to music and to classic rock was immeasurable and I will miss him terribly”.
Stereophonics’ Richard Jones tweeted: “Deep Purple in Rock was the first album I bought. RIP Jon Lord. Legend! RJ x”.
Slash, former guitarist for the Guns N’ Roses, said Jon Lord’s keyboard playing and song writing developed “one of the biggest, baddest, heaviest sounds in heavy metal”. His passing away marks a “sad day in rock&roll” added Slash.