Bonnet: Blackmore rock return could be practical joke

Former Rainbow frontman Graham Bonnet suspects Ritchie Blackmore’s promise of a return to rock could be a practical joke.

Blackmore last month announced he’d temporarily set aside his folk music career for a short run of rock shows in 2016. The singer, who appeared on Rainbow’s 1979 album Down To Earth, would love to reunite with the guitarist – but admits it’s unlikely.

Bonnet tells Metal Mythos: “I don’t know if it’s fact or fiction because I know what Ritchie’s like. He’s a great practical joker. It wouldn’t surprise me if he just said this on a whim.

“But I think if he was going to get a band back together, I think he would put the original Deep Purple lineup together. That’s what I would imagine rather than Rainbow. But I don’t know because sometimes he’s hard to read.”

He explains: “The reformation of Rainbow would be a little harder than putting together the old Deep Purple because the original Rainbow guy is not with us – it should be Ronnie James Dio singing.”

Bonnet adds: “If Ritchie called me up I would certainly do a show or two with those guys again. It was one of the best times of my life. He gave me a new career.”

The singer made his Escape From Alcatrazz: Alive In Japan EP free to download earlier this year and revealed that he hoped to release a follow-up to his 1999 solo album The Day I Went Mad at some point in the future.

Scott Munro
Louder e-commerce editor

Scott has spent more than 30 years in newspapers and magazines as an editor, production editor, sub-editor, designer, writer and reviewer. After initially joining our news desk in the summer of 2014, he moved to the e-commerce team full-time in 2020. He maintains Louder’s buyer’s guides, scouts out the best deals for music fans and reviews headphones, speakers, books and more. He's written more than 11,000 articles across Louder, Classic Rock, Metal Hammer and Prog and has previous written for publications including IGN, the Sunday Mirror, Daily Record and The Herald covering everything from daily news and weekly features, to video games, travel and whisky. Scott grew up listening to rock and prog, cutting his teeth on bands such as Marillion and Magnum before his focus shifted to alternative and post-punk in the late 80s. His favourite bands are Fields Of The Nephilim, The Cure, New Model Army, All About Eve, The Mission, Ned's Atomic Dustbin and Drab Majesty, but he also still has a deep love of Rush.