Dear Friends

DF 2 - Santiago (April 97)

Dear Friends,

Just returned from South America and I'm having a month at home before shipping off to Orlando, wherein commenceth Deep Purple's magnum opus (well, I'd like to think positively). It was great to meet old friends and new in Chile, Argentina, Brazil, Peru and Bolivia.

The tour started with a near disaster in Santiago when a load of fans swarmed the lighting tower at the centre of the stadium. It collapsed in groaning agony between Fireball and Ted.

I thought 'people must be dying' as the tangle of metal and screams was strobed by the lacerated 'electrics'. I still have vivid dreams about the scene; frozen in black and white and colour.

The information came through slowly and steadily as we sat in our dressing room with heads bowed and fingers crossed. The singular expression backstage was a silence as loud as the ambulance sirens. Our technicians appeared, from out front. They were battered and bloodied, but otherwise unhurt.

An hour and a half later the Santa Laura Stadium was still packed; even more so as additional thousands came in when the gates were opened for the emergency services. Then the word came through ....... no fatalities.

At that time we decided to carry on with the show, but it was only the brilliance of our crew that made it possible. They jury-rigged some sound and some lights ... and the remainder of the night was surreal. We had to leave the next day and I have not yet communicated with any of the injured. I'm waiting for more information as I write and I hope to have more in the next letter.

However, I must say that the whole tour was a trip and we're all looking forward to returning next year.

I've had a few people trying to get hold of Javelins' stuff (another in the pipeline by the way), also Toolbox and Naked Thunder (interesting compilation containing half of each, called 'Gillan, the very best of'...?). These records areon the RPM label (at and the site has the catalogue listed and explained, plus news, titles etc. together with details of a recommended mail-order supplier who can accept credit card payments world wide, and a downloadable order form too. Please be accurate as you key in the address because there's a record store in America called RPM records and apparently they've been getting some misdirected mail.

For those still wishing to communicate in the conventional way, my office has moved and my new address is:

c/o Lois James
1 Water Lane
Camden Town
London, NW1 8NZ

Thanks for the e-mail. I do read it, honest! I have several logistical problems with replying to e-mail sent to Steve and the first step to resolving them will be to do a general reply; with answers to all the questions over a short period. I'll establish this as soon as Steve can set it up, and until I can sort out the other problems.

Dreamcatcher has made a recovery after a good session with Steve Morris last week in Liverpool. This week I'm shooting a video for Gunga Din with the help of some university students from Plymouth and Exeter. A full report in the next letter with (hopefully) the detailed plans for the release of the album.

I hope the letters arrived safely and thanks to all of you for all your support.

Peace & love,
Ian Gillan
Copyright © Ian Gillan 1997

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