Original Whitesnake bass guitarist Neil Murray spoke in a recent interview with Rolling Stone magazine and talked about how David Coverdale has changed over time.
Neil was one of the first members of Whitesnake, and he left the band in 1982 to join Gary Moore. Before leaving Whitesnake, he recorded ‘Snakebite’ and ‘Saints & Sinners.’ After about a year, he rejoined Whitesnake.
During this period, Neil recorded the US reissue of ‘Slide It In’ and one of the most successful albums of the band’s self-titled record, ‘Whitesnake.’ In 1987, he was no longer a member of Whitesnake after Coverdale created a new lineup.
In the conversation, Neil pointed out that there are considerable differences in terms of how Coverdale’s lifestyle changed after he became rich. He said that this made him uncomfortable to reach and talk with him. As Neil said, it is hard to be on the same page with Coverdale right now.
Later on, Neil touched upon the fact that Whitesnake doesn’t really play the rock sounds right now and claimed that Coverdale doesn’t even want to play the rock sound they had back in the days.
Furthermore, Neil mentioned that Coverdale doesn’t speak from his heart in the interviews and stated that Coverdale doesn’t reveal the whole story besides telling the same stories he has told over the years.
Neil Murray talked about David Coverdale in the conversation:
“Probably a few months ago. I didn’t speak to him for many, many years. I went to see Whitesnake a few times when I wasn’t in the band. And he’d even say onstage, ‘Oh, I hear Neil Murray is in the audience. I hope he’s going to come backstage afterwards.’
And I wouldn’t do that simply because there would be such a difference between their level of success and what I was doing at the time, which would be virtually nothing or something very obscure. I’d just be very uncomfortable.
But we’ve had a few conversations. We aren’t really on the same wavelength anymore, I’d say. He’s lived in America since 1985. He’s been married to two different American women.
The whole success in terms of the post-1987–and-onwards career has been so focused on that style of music. Even though he has great affection and nostalgia for the earlier albums, he doesn’t ever try to play that style of rock anymore.“
“I don’t know. If someone is a multi-millionaire, and I’m the opposite, no matter who they are, whether you know them or worked with them or whatever, there’s such a huge gulf between your lifestyles that it’s kind of hard to get on the same page.
I get on fine with him, but it’s very much on his terms. If you read interviews with him, you don’t really get to the heart of David. It’s very much, ‘Here’s the same quotes and stories I’ve told everybody else.’ I don’t know him well enough now to get beyond that.”
Later in the conversation, Neil mentioned that bass sound was very front in the early albums of Whitesnake and touched upon the fact that he was in the background after the 1987 records.