24 March 2011, 13:59

Medvedev's Deep Purple encounter

Medvedev's Deep Purple encounter
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On Wednesday Dmitry Medvedev received rock legends Deep Purple in his country residence near Moscow. The president is a great fan of the British group and it seems that his 15-year-old son Ilia has inherited his musical preferences. The teenager even played the guitar with the musicians during the meeting.

On Wednesday Dmitry Medvedev received rock legends Deep Purple in his country residence near Moscow. The president is a great fan of the British group and it seems that his 15-year-old son Ilia has inherited his musical preferences. The teenager even played the guitar with the musicians during the meeting.

The musicians went to see Dmitry Medvedev before their concert in Moscow. No dress code was observed: jeans, t-shirts and sweatshirts. Only frontman Ian Gillan wore a jacket.  The president welcomed the musical group by blasting a fragment of one of their songs at full volume, and admitted  that he has been listening to Deep Purple for over 30 years.

“When I began to listen to Deep Purple I could never imagine that one day I would sit at the same table with them. You know that we had a very restrictive political system then and, as a D-jay at school, I had to get the school Young Communist League committee’s approval for disco music playlists.”

It can be said that Deep Purple broke through the Iron Curtain already in the 1970s. They had more fans in the world and new Russia than they did at home, says music critic Ilia Miller.

“Deep Purple is one of the forerunners of hard rock. It was established in the late 1960s and changed its lineup a fair few times. It is rather popular in the world but not in the UK, where people view it a little condescendingly. But in high echelons they are liked not only here but in other countries too. Recently, when a German government minister was resigning, his farewell song was Deep Purple hit Smoke on the Water.”

Deep Purple has been to Russia more than once. President Medvedev has been at the band’s concerts here four times. He remembers each concert very well and shared his impressions with the rockers. Regrettably, this time he was not able to attend the band’s show, so he invited his musical idols to visit him. Deep Purple appreciated their high-ranking fan’s sincerity and hospitality. They gave him a set of drumsticks as a keepsake and got a kick out of playing one of their compositions together with Medvedev’s son.

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