Rainbow were a hard rock and heavy metal band formed by former Deep Purple guitarist Ritchie Blackmore in 1975. In addition to Blackmore, the band originally consisted of former Elf members lead singer Ronnie James Dio, keyboardist Mickey Lee Soule, bassist Craig Gruber, and drummer Gary Driscoll. Over the years Rainbow went through many lineup changes.
In 1974 Blackmore became infuriated at the funk/soul elements being introduced to Deep Purple by David Coverdale and Glenn Hughes as well as with the rejection from his bandmates of his suggestion to record a cover for inclusion in Stormbringer, and originally intended to record "Black Sheep of the Family", a song written and recorded by the band Quatermass, as a solo single to express that his ideas were being suppressed in Deep Purple. During recent US tours Deep Purple's support band had been Elf, and Ritchie had been impressed by Elf's singer, Ronnie James Dio. Blackmore and Dio found they had such a creative rapport that a full album's worth of music was soon composed and they recorded it with Elf as a session band. Emboldened by the experience, Blackmore decided to leave Deep Purple and form his own band around Elf, effectively taking it over minus their guitarist and renaming it Rainbow. The name of the band was inspired by the Rainbow Bar and Grill in Hollywood that catered to rock stars, groupies and rock enthusiasts.
Rainbow's debut album, Ritchie Blackmore's Rainbow, was released in 1975 and featured the minor hit "Man on the Silver Mountain".
Man On The Silver Mountain (Live)
Hall Of The Mountain King (Live)
Blues & Beethoven (Live)