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Man On The Silver Mountain by Rainbow
Album: Ritchie Blackmore's RainbowReleased: 1975
In a 1975 radio interview with Ritchie Blackmore and Ronnie James Dio, the vocalist said he would allow Ritchie to explain this song, "but you'd get completely lost in his explanation, so I'll do it for you."
It is, he said, a semi-religious song, the man on the silver mountain is a kind of God figure everyone is crying out to. "Man On The Silver Mountain" runs to 4 minutes 42 seconds, and was co-written by Dio and Blackmore. Like the rest of this Polydor label album it was recorded at Musicland Studios, Munich in early 1975.
Here's Blackmore's take on the song (as told to Jon Tiven
), which is indeed confusing: "It's supposedly about some guy on top of a mountain who's like a Jesus Christ, it's kinda religious in a way. My interpretation is that some guy goes on top of a silver mountain, finds the silver, and realizes that he can't get down again. It's vaguely a classical progression with about 25 chords in it, but you don't realize it because they're all relative, and it resolves after about 30 bars. It's one of my favorite numbers, very much like a Purple thing: what we call the 'Bagshot Bullet' guitar playing, Bagshot being where I come from. We recorded the album in a hotel, and it was really loud... I had one of the speakers down in a cellar to get echo on one side, and this was reverberating throughout the whole hotel so everybody was complaining."