Former DEEP PURPLE guitarist Steve Morse spoke to the Beaver County Times about his decision to reform his STEVE MORSE BAND for a series of live appearances in April and May.
"I quit PURPLE because the tours were too long and we had a health emergency in my family with my wife having Stage 4 cancer," Morse said. "I told those guys 'I can't do this' and they were upset for like three to four seconds and then moved on. That's life, I and I wish them well and they're doing great."
Referencing STEVE MORSE BAND, he said: "I had always been told that we couldn't do weekends only. That it just wouldn't be possible to pay everybody and not be paying out of pocket to play. However, when we did the math with three people, it was possible in many cases to make it work. And the reason for the short length is so I can be home 90 percent of the time and possibly drag my wife with me, and line up all the medical appointments and everything. The idea was to make it possible so I could play some shows and not feel like I'm shortchanging what I could really help with by being home. It has made a huge difference in being a medical advocate through all the crazy stuff that's happened, and the surgeries and complications. There's so much to do with that."
Joining Morse in the STEVE MORSE BAND are Dave LaRue, also of FLYING COLORS and THE DIXIE DREGS, as well as Van Romaine, one of the most in-demand percussionists throughout his extensive career playing live and recording with legendary names like BLOOD, SWEAT & TEARS, Billy Joel, NAUGHTY BY NATURE and many more.
Last July, Morse officially left PURPLE to care for his wife, Janine, who was battling cancer. He was replaced by Simon McBride.
Morse's announcement came four months after the guitarist said that he would be taking a hiatus from the band, in the hope of rejoining his bandmates once his wife's health improved.
Morse effectively took over Ritchie Blackmore's DEEP PURPLE slot in 1994 and had been in the group longer than Ritchie.
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