Keyboardist and organist Jon Lord, best known for being an original member of Deep Purple, passed away yesterday of a pulmonary embolism brought about by pancreatic cancer. He was 71.
Lord was deeply influenced by classical music and it shows in Deep Purple’s early material such as “Hallelujah” and “April”. In the early 70s, Deep Purple embraced a hard rock sound as exemplified by “Smoke on the Water” which Lord co-wrote.
After Deep Purple disbanded in 1976, Lord would collaborate with fellow Deep Purple alum Ian Paice and Tony Ashton in the shortlived Paice, Ashton & Lord. In 1978, Lord joined Whitesnake along with David Coverdale, another ex-Deep Purple member. Lord would remain with Whitesnake until 1984 when Deep Purple reformed with the album Perfect Strangers featuring their comeback single “Knocking at Your Back Door”. In 2002, Lord left Deep Purple and spent the final decade of his life performing and recording his own music including a solo album in 2010. Here is Lord performing “Child in Time” in concert that same year.