Oh no, that’s very sad. I was a big fan of Purple when I was a teenager and saw them live a couple of times. Every great rock Hammond player has a unique sound (Keith Emerson, Rick Wakeman, Tony Banks and Tony Kaye also spring to mind—all with their own unique sounds) and Jon Lord was certainly no exception, but what I think singles him out was his incredible “feel”—much more bluesy and jazzy than his peers. I have to go and listen to “Lazy” right now!
Yeah, even though I’m a major prog fan, Lord probably had more influence on my personal playing style than any other Hammond player. Lazy is a good choice. Give a close listen to Hush, from their first album; you can tell that Lord overdubbed two Hammond parts for the solo. And Highway Star has one of the best Hammond solos I’ve ever heard. I was impressed with Don Airey’s comment on learning the song when he took over after Lord’s retirement; he’s a very talented musician himself, and had a hard time learning Lord’s solo from HS. It took me several days, listening to it slowed down in my computer, to learn it, so hearing that someone who’s really good didn’t find it easy made me feel like I really accomplished something.
I doubt that I’ll every accomplish anything like Lord did during his life, though. He was one of a kind.