Though they oft outsold (and outplayed) Led Zeppelin and Black Sabbath in their respective heyday, Deep Purple seems to evade the hosannas it so richly deserves as a band which played a major role in bringing metal to the masses. When bassist Roger David Glover and vocalist Ian Gillan first joined forces with Ritchie Blackmore, Jon Lord, and Ian Paice in 1970– they transformed the Purps from psychedelic prog-rockers to album chart-topping heavy metal masters of the almighty riff.
Glover is one of heavy metal’s rare finesse players. Case in point: whereas most metal bassists would have duplicated Blackmore on “Smoke on the Water,” Glover chugs on the harmonic root which affords the track its signature character. Over the years, Glover’s role as a writer, producer, and bass player cannot be understated – especially since the band’s rejuvenation with guitarist Steve Morse.
Glover’s work outside the band is equally extraordinary as a solo artist (Butterfly Ball, Mask), a guest artist (Govt. Mule) and as a producer with Nazareth, Status Quo, Ian Gillan Band, Judas Priest, Rainbow, and Rory Gallagher, among many others.