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Fireball

by

Deep Purple



Songfacts®:  You can leave comments about the song at the bottom of the page.

A young assistant Mike Thorne was helping engineer Martin Birch on this track. One of the group turned to Martin and suggested the sound of a machine starting up would be a great way to get the song going (and the album, because "Fireball" is the opening track). Martin could not think of anything suitable off the top of his head. However Mike Thorne suggested the sound of an air conditioning unit turned on could do the trick. He duly recorded it and the band told people who asked what the sound was that it was made by a "special" synthesizer.
At right about this point in Deep Purple's career, Ritchie Blackmore was hospitalized with a case of mononucleosis. Their agent, sweating bullets at the million dollar tour he had booked for them, called another client of his in a panic. That client was Al Kooper (The Blues Project, Blood Sweat & Tears), himself just recovering from hospitalization with food poisoning. The agent dispatched Kooper to fill in for Blackmore. Kooper, more of a keyboardist than a guitarist, was dumbfounded that anyone would ask this of him, but gamely complied on the condition that it was just to humor the Deep Purple members until a better replacement was found. According to Kooper's book Backstage Passes and Backstabbing Bastards, Kooper actually showed up to audition with Deep Purple who seemed more than happy to work around his deficiencies in a pinch, but in the end Kooper backed out and recommended guitarist Randy California (of Spirit) to fill in. Randy California agreed to the gig, but eventually on the first tour stop in Hawaii barricaded himself in his hotel room and refused to play, and alas, the tour was canceled.
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Comments (5):

When recording this track Ian Paice decided to use a double bass drum set-up. Having only one bass drum he went in to the studio next door and borrowed the bass drum from the band who had set up their equipment in there. Turns out it was Keith Moon's bass drum as The Who were using the studio next door recording Who's Next!
- Ricky, Killie, United Kingdom
Ian Paice owns.
- Mike, San Ramon, CA
Ian Paice is the best frikin drummer EVER!
- Mark, Londonderry, NH
The first song where Ian Paice employs two bass drums.
- Scott, London, ON
LOVE this song. their second best one! YOU'RE RACING LIKE A FIREBALLLL!!!! DANCING LIKE A GHOST!!!
- Joe, Bellingham, WA
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