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"Space Truckin'"
Song by Deep Purple

from the album Machine Head

Released March 1972
Recorded December 6 - 21, 1971
Montreux, Switzerland
Genre Hard rock, heavy metal
Length 4:34
Label EMI (UK)
Warner Bros. (US)
Writer Ritchie Blackmore
Ian Gillan
Roger Glover
Jon Lord
Ian Paice
Producer Deep Purple
Machine Head track listing
"Lazy"
(6)
"Space Truckin'"
(7)
"When a Blind Man Cries"
(8)

"Space Truckin'" is a song by British hard rock band Deep Purple. It is the seventh track on the Machine Head album. Its lyrics talk of space travel and it showcases the vocal abilities of singer Ian Gillan and powerful drumming of Ian Paice. According to Ritchie Blackmore, the main riff is based on the Batman Theme.

Live performances

When it was first performed live, the band appended an instrumental that was originally part of the song "Mandrake Root" on their first album but gradually evolved into a showcase for Jon Lord's Hammond organ and Ritchie Blackmore's guitar solos. This usually took the length of the overall song to over twenty minutes, and was always performed as the last number of the main set. A good example of this arrangement can be found on the Made in Japan album, wherein Blackmore also quotes "Fools" of Fireball "cello" solo.

Jon Lord played his solo through a ring modulator or played some of it on an ARP synthesizer. Meanwhile, Ritchie Blackmore usually split the guitar solo into two halves, a quiet section with just drums, then a loud section with the full band. The second half was often when Ritchie would smash his guitar, play it with his feet or throw it into the air. One of the most infamous incidents where this happened was at the California Jam festival in 1974, where he dropped one guitar over the edge of the stage, smashed a second against a TV camera, then set his amplifier on fire which subsequently exploded.

When Deep Purple reformed in 1984, this extended arrangement was reworked, and later included snippets of other songs.

During the Rapture of the Deep Tour, the final part of the song, which originally featured much high pitched screaming by Gillan (now 63) - featured high pitched guitar in the same key as his original vocals.

The intro was featured on the TV show WKRP in Cincinnati on the episode "The Airplane Show" (later issues of the episode replaced this track with generic music).

The song is featured as a downloadable track for the Rock Band series of music video games as of December 30, 2008.

It was also featured in the movie Lords of Dogtown when the main characters are sneaking into pools to skate.

On the remastered version of their 1982 album Live in London album, there is a 31 minute long live version of the song. It consists a lot of improvising from the band members and in one part of the song they play the main riff from Child in Time.

Cover versions

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