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Joe Lynn Turner Says He’s Working on Rainbow Reunion With Ritchie Blackmore

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Former Rainbow vocalist Joe Lynn Turner says he’s hopeful he can coax guitarist Ritchie Blackmore into a reunion this year — even though previous attempts to get the band back together have been unsuccessful.

Turner, who was part of Rainbow’s constantly shifting lineup for a commercially successful trio of albums in the early ’80s before Blackmore dissolved the band to return to Deep Purple with bassist Roger Glover, told Classic Rock Magazine that he’s confident Blackmore wants a reunion, although he isn’t sure what form it’ll eventually take.

“He’s itching to do some rocking, and we’re going to get together in the fall. Ritchie is really, really ready to rock. He still has the chops, too,” insisted Turner. “I’m not sure if it’s going to be a Rainbow reunion, or a bunch of remakes — which I detest, because you can’t improve on perfection. But that’s what’s happening.”

Blackmore was known for his tendency to change his mind abruptly during Rainbow’s time together, which contributed to a number of the band’s many lineup changes, and Turner acknowledged that Blackmore could back out at any time. “It’s Ritchie, man,” he said. Turner also admitted he’s somewhat concerned about what could happen if Blackmore’s “wife or mother-in-law gets in the way,” adding, “She drives me f—ing crazy.”

The biggest obstacle, however, may always be Blackmore’s mercurial nature — and his commitments to his band Blackmore’s Night. According to Turner, the band could have made a bundle of money with an earlier offer for a reunion tour, but it all fell apart because Blackmore wanted to focus on his band. “We had multi-million dollar deals set up with Live Nation,” he recalled. “A 60-day tour to start with, HD 3D movie, everything – and then he had to finish [a Blackmore’s Night] album.”

Still, given any and all difficulties, Turner seems convinced something will happen on the Rainbow front soon. “It could happen,” he concluded. “It’s probable.”

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