Classics: Rainbow ‘Ritchie Blackmore’s Rainbow’

The latest albums I mentioned in my little ‘Classics’ series addressed power metal and US metal highlights from the mid 80’s and now it’s another time leap we take. The display on our rock’n’roll time machine shows 1975.

1975 is the release year of ‘Ritchie Blackmore’s Rainbow’, an album that paved the way for Rainbow as well as for many bands that followed and referred to the sound of this masterpiece. Ritchie Blackmore’s and Ronnie James Dio’s song ideas with the inclusion of Dio’s band Elf evolved to a magic combination that moved things in the right direction.

Recordings took place between December 1974 and March 1975 with a final release date on August 4th. ‘Ritchie Blackmore’s Rainbow’ includes nine songs, most of them penned by Blackmore and Ronnie James Dio. The two exceptions are the swinging version of ‘Black Sheep of the Family’, originally by Quatermass and The Yardbird cover of ‘Still I’m Sad’, an instrumental that shows why Blackmore is so much respected as guitarist and musician.

Next to these two songs, it’s the opener ‘Man on the Silver Mountain’ that still belongs to the best songs Rainbow ever unveiled. This all-time Rainbow classic is surrounded by excellent tunes like the rhythm-focussed ‘Sixteen Century Greensleeves’ and the heart-bleeding ballad ‘Catch the Rainbow’, a song that gives even tough metalheads some tears in their eyes.

Last but not least it is ‘Ritchie Blackmore’s Rainbow’, which gave Ronnie James Dio the possibility to share his outstanding voice with a wider audience, being a springboard for one of the most impressing careers in rock and metal. Of course, it all started with Elf, but it was ‘Ritchie Blackmore’s Rainbow’ that broke the ice for the legendary singer and frontman. Horns up.



  1. Man on the Silver Mountain
  2. Self Portrait
  3. Black Sheep of the Family
  4. Catch the Rainbow
  5. Snake Charmer
  6. Temple of the King
  7. If You Don’t Like Rock’n’Roll
  8. Sixteen Century Greensleeves
  9. Still I’m Sad


Label: Polydor

Genre: Classic Rock

Release Date: 1975

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