DJ Medvedev recalls rock 'n' roll youth with Deep Purple

23rd March 2011, Comments 0 comments

President Dmitry Medvedev, who has made much of his penchant for rock, has sat down for tea with the British rock band Deep Purple reminiscing of his Soviet-era youth and receiving drum sticks as a gift.

Meeting the legendary band at his Gorky residence outside Moscow Tuesday night, Medvedev, 45, gushed about his love for rock and said he used to spin rock music at school parties where he was a deejay.

"It was an unusual discotheque because hard rock was the main music there," Russian news agencies quoted Medvedev as saying in comments released on Wednesday afternoon.

The president said that before playing rock at his Soviet-era school his playlists had to be approved by the Communist-party youth wing known as Komsomol.

The Kremlin chief met the musicians including the band's lead singer Ian Gillan, showing off an impressive collection of music equipment including a reel-to-reel tape recorder and a vinyl record player as well as the group's top albums, Russian news reports said.

Deep Purple drummer Ian Paice presented the Russian president with a set of drum sticks. The meeting came just after Medvedev had met visiting US Defence Secretary Robert Gates.

The Russian leader, who wore a black suit and a white shirt but no tie, said he had been a Deep Purple fan for the past 33 years.

"When I started listening to Deep Purple, of course I could not imagine that I would be sitting with you at this table just like that," he was quoted as saying.

Medvedev has repeatedly sought to convince Russians of his hip credentials, saying he enjoyed listening to US rock groups favoured by his teenage son and last year he met Bono, the frontman of Irish rock band U2.

Russia is heading for presidential elections in 2012 and both Medvedev and his 58-year-old mentor, Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, said they may run.

© 2011 AFP

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