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Bass players frequently asked questions

Signed photographs

I can’t supply signed photographs of the band or myself. Maybe other artists are better at this (having offices and secretaries and assistants and office boys, etc) but I’m not like that, unfortunately. There are some who think that we in the band all live together in the same country, in the same house even, and walk around looking like a group photograph. I have met more than one person who looks surprised when they see me for the first time because I’m not flanked by the rest of the band. “Where are the rest of them?” they cry in alarm. The fact is that when we are not touring, we live in different far-flung parts of the earth and the simple request for a signed photograph would involve an inordinately complicated amount of effort.

“What about stockpiling a batch of photographs when you are together?” you might ask. Well, we do spend a lot of time in the dressing room signing loads of stuff – it is one of the rituals of doing a gig these days. Here’s how it usually goes; you walk in the dressing room, stake a claim to a part of the room where you can put your bag without it getting wet, greet the crew, grab a bite to eat (because you haven’t had time for a meal since yesterday), complain that there is no tonic water or that the meat doesn’t fit the bread, discuss what changes there may be to the set list (wouldn’t you like a be a fly on the wall?), check out the stage and whatever band is currently rattling the walls, and then settle down to sign the batch of album and CD covers, posters, drum sticks and photographs that is lying there in wait. Even if we were as organized as to do some extras each night, which we’re not, it would still require more time than I have. So, apologies to those for whom this is important.

Butterfly Ball

Anyone can perform The Butterfly Ball (or any other music, come to that), you don’t need my, or anyone else’s, permission. I am constantly surprised and pleased by the amount of people who find pleasure in this project and desire to put it on a stage somewhere.

There are no written scores, orchestral or otherwise, and to supply them would therefore be impossible. Over the years the idea of reviving the concert has occurred, both to myself and to others, and one day I hope that this can happen. Unfortunately, I have no control of the music at the moment – that is still mired in past business and until things change I can do nothing. Time will tell.

Whilst on the subject of The Butterfly Ball, I get many enquiries about the animated film of Love Is All. I did not know this before but there is a DVD available of a compilation of the work of Halas and Batchelor, the animators, that includes The Butterfly Ball. I don’t even have a copy myself so I will attempt to get one from them.
It could also be found on the “Enhanced Multimedia Track” of the UK 1999 Connoisseur Release of “Butterfly Ball”. It’s Quicktime and decent quality. Last but not least there is another DVD release called “Hardin & York – Wind in the Willows, the Concert”. It features “Love is all” as bonus track with the audio recorded live at the concert and the animation as video part.


I am not producing any music other than things in which I am involved. Actually, most of the production work for which I am known happened in the 70s, when I was a producer full time. There are so many bands out there (wherever that is…) looking for help, deals, recording contracts, a lucky break, a helping hand, constructive criticism, or think that I have an interest in producing new bands or advice to offer. The fact is, being in Deep Purple takes most of my time. To produce a band would require setting aside at least two months and that would be impossible. Even if I had the time, any band would have to have all the basic requirements; a good manager; a recording contract; and be professional. I am given a lot of tapes and CDs as I tour around, and I do usually listen to them, but I don’t want them sent to me, sorry.

Backstage guest list

I cannot put anyone on the backstage guest list or make arrangements to meet anyone, no matter how much they flatter me.

Paintings and Photographs

At the moment my paintings or photographs are not for sale. However, I am working on ways to change this.

There may be additions to this FAQ in the future.