The earliest promotional videos for Ritchie Blackmore’s Rainbow feature the ‘Long Live Rock ‘n’ Roll’ era line-up featuring Bob Daisley and David Stone, along with Blackmore, Dio and Powell of course. There appears to be 3 videos in existence, all shot in the same faux-live stage set-up style and feature different lead vocal versions than appeared on the final album. It sounds like Dio recorded a new vocal over the existing backing track, possibly to comply with some Musician’s Union requirement perhaps (a similar thing used to happen on the BBC’s ‘Top Of The Pops’ show whenever bands appeared ‘live’ on the show). The specifics of where or when they were actually filmed is not yet known, but here are the videos for you to enjoy (forgive the quality!):
The next videos to be produced were in 1979, to coincide with the release of ‘Since You Been Gone’ and the follow up, ‘All Night Long’ both from the album ‘Down To Earth’. Both followed the tried and tested ‘band mimes to backing track pretending to be playing live’ scenario, but at least ‘Since You Been Gone’ had a slight narrative quality to it with Bonnet acting out some of the lines of the song. ‘All Night Long’ utilised the services of a dancing girl, supposedly at the side of the stage whilst the band is playing…
And then it was time for another line-up change! Again! In came new singer and drummer…
‘Can’t Happen Here’ is the first video to incorporate a bigger idea into the video than just the band miming to the track, mainly due to the lyrical content which is a damning environment of the state of the environment, the global economy, exploitation of limited resources…sound familiar?! And this was 1981. Haven’t learned much in 30 years have we?
And another line-up change, this time Don Airey has been replaced by new keyboard player David Rosenthal…
The most ‘creative’ use of video to promote the song so far from Rainbow…and it wasn’t even released as the single! ‘Death Alley Driver’ was the B-side of ‘Power’ from the ‘Straight Between The Eyes’ album.
Once again, another change of personnel. This time Rondinelli makes way for Chuck Bürgi on the drums. Two videos from the album; ‘Street Of Dreams’ (which was banned by MTV due to its use of a hypnosis sequence at the start of the video…MTV believed it would actually hypnotise viewers. Really. It’s true. I’m not making this up. They really were THAT paranoid about being sued for hypnotising viewers.)
The other video (‘Can’t Let You Go’) features Mr Blackmore carrying off a sultry maiden in the middle of the night…and a very odd-looking Joe Lynn Turner locked in a cupboard…weird!
The final offering from the final Rainbow album, ‘Ariel’, with Mr Blackmore standing in a field playing his guitar. Ok, whatever!