Roger David Glover (born 30 November 1945) is a British bassist, songwriter, and record producer. He is best known as the bassist for hard rock bands Deep Purple and Rainbow.[Glover wrote the guitar riff on “Maybe I’m a Leo”
Born near Brecon, Wales, Glover moved with his family to St Helens before settling in the South Kensington area of London, at the age of ten. Around that time his interests started to shift towards rock music, and by the time he was thirteen Glover began playing guitar. He later moved to the North London district of Pinner, and while at Harrow County School for Boys he formed his first band, Madisons, with a group of friends; in time this merged with a rival band to become Episode Six, a band which later featured Glover’s future Deep Purple bandmate, vocalist Ian Gillan. The two left Episode Six in 1969 to join Deep Purple.
Deep Purple and solo
After spending four years with Deep Purple, where the band saw their most successful releases in the albums in Rock and Machine Head, Glover departed, along with Gillan, after Deep Purple’s second tour of Japan in the summer of 1973. Glover said “I wrote the riff to “Maybe I’m a Leo” after hearing John Lennon’s “How Do You Sleep?”
Throughout the 1970s Glover produced albums by such acts as Judas Priest, Nazareth, Elf, Status Quo, the Ian Gillan Band and David Coverdale.
In 1974 Glover released his first solo album, The Butterfly Ball and the Grasshopper’s Feast, and in 1978 his second, Elements.
From 1979 to 1984 he was the bassist, lyricist and producer for Ritchie Blackmore’s solo band, Rainbow, working on four of the group’s studio albums.
In 1983 he recorded his third solo album, Mask, released the next year. When in April 1984 Deep Purple reformed, Glover returned to his old band where he has remained for the last three decades.
In 1988 Glover, along with fellow Deep Purple member Ian Gillan, recorded the side-project album Accidentally on Purpose. Almost two decades later Glover played with Gillan during Gillan’s brief solo tour in 2006.
In 2002 Glover released his fourth solo album, entitled Snapshot, under the name Roger Glover & The Guilty Party. The album featured performances from Randall Bramblett (who shared co-writing credits on several tracks) as well as Glover’s daughter, Gillian.
In 2011 he released his fifth solo album, If Life Was Easy, which featured guest appearances by Nazareth’s Dan McCafferty and Pete Agnew as well as Walther Gallay and Daniel “Sahaj” Ticotin.
Notable collaborations and performances
In 2001 Glover was among a host of bass players who contributed to Gov’t Mule’s double album The Deep End, recorded as a tribute to the late Allen Woody, Mule’s original bassist. Glover played on Deep Purple’s “Maybe I’m a Leo”, which was one of Woody’s favourite songs. On 3 May 2003, in New Orleans, Glover also took part in a special concert performed by Gov’t Mule featuring appearances from all bass players who had contributed to The Deep End album.
On 7 October 2007 Glover joined his former bandmate Jon Lord to perform Concerto for Group and Orchestra at the Royal & Derngate Theatre in Northampton. The concert also featured the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Paul Mann.
In 2008 Glover played bass on a charity single called “Lucy’s Song”, written and produced by David Domminney of Rogue Studios in London and available at iTunes. Income from the sale went to The Linda McCartney Cancer Centre (specifically to promote their Field of Women event which took place at Liverpool Cricket Club on 6 July 2008).
On 21 March 2012 Ian Paice was playing a gig with the Deep Purple tribute band Purpendicular in Pratteln, Switzerland. The band received a surprise reinforcement as Roger Glover “happened to be in the neighbourhood” and joined them on stage.
Glover has been married twice and has three daughters. Musician Gillian Glover (born 1976) is from his first marriage. He currently lives in Switzerland with his partner and their two daughters
In 2004 ITV Wales aired a TV special about Glover, entitled Roger Glover – Made in Wales (produced by Craig Hooper) which featured interviews from fellow musicians Ian Gillan and Ian Paice, as well as Glover’s mother, Brenda, and his then-wife.
Roger Glover uses Vigier Bass Guitars, SWR heads and cabinets, Picato and Ernie Ball strings.
Painting and photography
On 22 October 2010 Roger Glover’s artwork exhibition called Happy Silence opened at the K-8 e.V. Galerie in Cologne. Previously Glover has let many of his pictures be auctioned in other galleries for charitable purposes, but this was the first large-scale presentation of his work.