Jon Lord, the keyboardist of the pioneering British hard-rock band Deep Purple, died on Monday in London. He was 71.
The cause was a pulmonary embolism, said his manager, Bruce Payne. Mr. Lord announced last year that he had cancer.
In songs from the late 1960s and early ’70s like “Smoke on the Water,” “Hush” and the epic “Child in Time,” Deep Purple laid much of the groundwork for heavy metal, drawing a blunter and fiercer sound out of the blues-based riffs common in the British invasion’s first wave.
Mr. Lord’s Hammond B-3 organ — with its signal routed through a Marshall amplifier to give it a distorted tang — was key to Deep Purple’s style. It locked into formation with Ritchie Blackmore’s guitar, Roger Glover’s bass and Ian Paice’s drums, forging catchy lines like the four-note motif of “Smoke on the Water” that helped the band sell tens of millions of albums around the world.
source: NY Times