Richard Hugh "Ritchie" Blackmore (born 14 April 1945) is a British guitarist and songwriter, who began his professional career as a session musician as a member of the instrumental band The Outlaws and as a backing musician of pop singers Glenda Collins, Heinz, Screaming Lord Sutch, Neil Christian, etc.. Blackmore was also an original member of Deep Purple, playing jam-style rock music which mixed simple guitar riffs and organ sounds. During his solo career, he established neo-classical metal in his own band Rainbow which fused intricate baroque music elements with blues rock. However, Rainbow gradually progressed to catchy pop style hard rock. Later in life, he formed the traditional folk rock project Blackmore's Night transitioning to vocalist-centered sounds. Their latest album, Dancer & the Moon, is set to be released June 11, 2013.
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