By EMMA CORNFORD
IT WAS the year 1972 ? Britain took over direct rule of Northern Ireland, 11 Israeli athletes at the Munich Olympic Games were killed by terrorists and the first episode of M*A*S*H screened.
It is a year that Maclean musician Tony Rendell remembers well, because it was also the year that UK band Deep Purple released their album 'Machine Head'.
Tony is such a big fan of Deep Purple that he formed a tribute band, Deeper Purple, and 34 years later he managed to realise one of his lifelong dreams. He met Deep Purple.
"I'd say that without a doubt, it was one of the best experiences of my life. To follow such a legendary band for so many years and then to have the opportunity to meet them ? it was just awesome," he said.
The chance to meet his heroes started when Tony emailed Deep Purple keyboard player Don Airey four months ago.
"I emailed him and told him about the band, because we are the only Deep Purple tribute band in the country at the moment.
"He didn't get back to me straight away, but a couple of months ago he sent me an email through the band's website."
Tony got back to him, so Airey organised backstage after-party passes at the Brisbane show for Tony and his partner.
"When he came down to the party I introduced myself and he said 'oh yeah you're Tony Rendell ? you sent me that email about your band'," Tony said.
"When he left he said to keep in touch and let him know how the band goes, so that was a bit of a thrill.
"The whole thing was pretty amazing. How do you top something like that?".