Ritchie Blackmore helped form Deep Purple in 1968 and it's his thunder-headed guitar work that graces their finest moments -- from "Hush" to "Smoke On The Water." For this alone, Blackmore is vital to the hessian canon, but it does not stop there. Blackmore jumped ship on Deep Purple in the mid-1970s to work with Ronnie James Dio (who was then singing for Elf). Together they created Rainbow, who churned out some fine heavy, shrieking crotch rock, such as "Long Live Rock N' Roll." Blackmore kept Rainbow going until the mid-1980s and then disbanded the group. During the '90s, Blackmore reappeared under the auspices of Blackmore's Night, a medieval Renaissance folk group that included his fiancee Candice Night. Songs about minstrels and gypsies and titles such as "Fayre Thee Well" ensued, and Blackmore would often be photographed with a hawk on his arm. Needless to say, Blackmore's dedication to Heavy Metal and its accompanying folklore puts everyone else to shame.