Black Night (5:54)

Cover of Deepest Purple: The Very Best of Deep Purple

From Deepest Purple: The Very Best of Deep Purple and 251 other releases

“Black Night” is a song by British hard rock band Deep Purple, first released as a single in June 1970 and now included on the 25th Year Anniversary version of their 1970 album, Deep Purple In Rock. The song became a smash hit following its release, peaking at #2 on UK charts, and to this day remains Deep Purple’s highest charting UK single.

Writing process and recording

Once Deep Purple in Rock had been completed, EMI asked for a suitable single to be recorded to help promote the album. After spending six hours searching for inspiration, the band went to a nearby pub and got drunk. Ritchie Blackmore started playing a riff that was closely based on the riff to Ricky Nelson’s 1962 rock recording of the old George Gershwin standard “Summertime”. Ian Gillan and Roger Glover came up with the lyrics: “We borrowed the title from the words of an old Arthur Alexander song. We stole the tempo from Canned Heat

Live performances

“Black Night” made its way into the setlist soon after release, generally as the first encore. The song was not played in full after Ian Gillan and Roger Glover left the band in 1973, but snippets were often played by Ritchie Blackmore as part of his improvisations. On the reformation of Deep Purple in 1984 “Black Night” returned as part of the main set list. There are many versions of the song available on Deep Purple live albums.

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