Archive for Bruce Dickinson

Book Review: Bruce Dickinson An Autobiography

Posted in 1980s, Concerts, Heavy Metal, Heavy Metal and the 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 12, 2018 by 80smetalman

Welcome to my second ever book review. The first one was three years ago so I figured it was time I do another. Okay, it’s because I write more than I read but this particular book definitely needs a comment or three on. My total reaction to “Bruce Dickinson, An Autobiography” was, “I wish I could write like that.” Bruce has a distinct writing style that definitely entertains as well as it informs. When recounting his life, he doesn’t do the normal David Copperfield crap with dates and list of his life’s events. Instead he gives those accounts through his own eyes in a very amusing way which at times while reading it made me wonder if I should pack up writing.

Iron Maiden

Naturally, I read the book to hear about his life with the great Iron Maiden and yes, there are some wild accounts there. However, his life before and outside of Maiden was just as intense. Reading about his childhood, his father was a bit of a Delboy Trotter, (a character from the famous British sit-com “Only Fools and Horses), in the sense that he was always acquiring and running different businesses, often at the same time. At one point, he owned a hotel but sold used cars from the front of it. I point this out because I think Bruce’s childhood experiences contributed to his eccentricity.

Bruce Dickinson

How he became a pilot was also a very good and interesting read. He started on a twin engine plane and by the end, he was piloting huge passenger jets. Then there is how he started his brand of beer, “The Trooper.” However, the part that I found most interesting was during his solo career. His account of his concert in war torn Sarajevo and all what he and his band had to go through, the check points, the fear of getting fired on, to be able to perform was absolutely mind blowing. Talk about guts but then it was those guts that helped him beat cancer very recently. How he describes what he went through while battling this disease is harrowing and it’s only right that he gets full marks for overcoming it.

Bruce Dickinson’s autobiography is a cracking read from start to finish. He keeps the reader entertained while at the same time giving them insight into his wild and wonderful life. Plus there are a few surprises along the way as long as events that I didn’t know about but not surprised about. I bow to the superior writer here.

Reading the autobiography has further convinced me that Bruce Dickinson deserves a knighthood. Therefore, I call on all British readers to clink the link and sign the petition.

https://www.change.org/p/special-honours-committees-for-knighthoods-a-knighthood-for-bruce-dickinson

On a different note, though I have retired from festivals, I will still go for single days. This year, it looks as if I must go to Bloodstock on the Sunday because Queensryche are headlining and Twisted Sister’s Dee Snider is also on the bill for that day.

Next post: Starship- Knee Deep in the Hoopla

I don’t feel worth to post a link to Rock and Roll Children for this post.

Advertisements

A Knighthood For Bruce Dickinson

Posted in Heavy Metal, Heavy Metal and the 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , on November 1, 2017 by 80smetalman

Bruce Dickinson

After all his accomplishments in music, aviation and business, it is time that Bruce Dickinson is formally recognized for all of his achievements and be granted a knighthood by the United Kingdom. Therefore, I have started a petition which you can sign so this can happen. It’s a travesty that he hasn’t been recognized sooner. I know that if he were a trendy pop singer, he would have gotten a knighthood for doing less. So click the link below and let’s get Bruce what he so richly deserves.

https://www.change.org/p/special-honours-committees-for-knighthoods-a-knighthood-for-bruce-dickinson?recruiter=69219669&utm_source=share_petition&utm_medium=twitter&utm_campaign=share_twitter_responsive&sharerUserId=69219669&utm_content=nafta_twitter_shortlink%3Areal_control

Iron Maiden

 

 

 

 

 

 

Great Metal Albums of 1982: Iron Maiden- The Number of the Beast

Posted in 1980s, Heavy Metal, Heavy Metal and the 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , on September 6, 2015 by 80smetalman

220px-Iron_Maiden_-_The_Number_Of_The_Beast

Honestly, I didn’t intend to make the post of Iron Maiden’s killer 1982 album “The Number of the Beast” coincide with the release of their latest album “Book of Souls.” I was just simply going down my list of albums for 1982 and it was next. However, the gods of rock operate in mysterious ways and so it must have been their will that the post would be made in light of the new album. Especially since “The Number of the Beast” was the first album to feature Bruce Dickinson as lead singer. It has already been established that the new album is a personal triumph for Bruce after his battle with cancer so maybe it’s fitting that appropriate tribute is paid to his first album with Iron Maiden.

Unlike several other bands who were around in 1982, Iron Maiden was not one of those who escaped my attention. Quite the opposite, it was this year when I discovered them while on liberty in Toulon, France. Somebody played an Iron Maiden song that was on a juke box in a bar there and the rest was history. I can’t even remember which Maiden song it was, too much alcohol, but I know I liked it. It probably wasn’t even from this album.

What can I say about this album that hasn’t already been said? For me, it has all the wonderful tracks that led me to love Iron Maiden. This album features such classics as “Run to the Hills,” The Number of the Beast,” “22 Acacia Avenue” “Hallowed Be Thy Name” and “The Prisoner.” See, I heard each of these songs other places such as live albums and videos before I ever heard this album and they were stand out songs on those. Hearing all of them together on one album was simply a mega bonus. Even the track least known to me, “Gangland,” is a very cool track that has every bit of the grit that Iron Maiden puts into all of their songs. I have already declared that “The Number of the Beast” is my favourite Iron Maiden studio album.

There are many things that make this album so good. Obviously all of the classic kick ass tracks that are on the album. However, I agree with many thousands and thousands of others who said that the vocals of Dickinson was what took it up to the summit of great albums. His voice is fresh and ferocious, a combination that many singers don’t have together in abundance. Still, I won’t take anything away from the rest of the band. The guitars of Smith and Murray are just superb with the rhythm section of Harris and Burr keeping things all together. With all of these things, it is no wonder the songs are so good.

Track Listing:

  1. Invaders
  2. Children of the Damned
  3. The Prisoner
  4. 22 Acacia Avenue
  5. The Number of the Beast
  6. Run to the Hills
  7. Gangland
  8. Hallowed Be Thy Name
Iron Maiden

                                 Iron Maiden

Along with all the great music associated with “The Number of the Beast” from Iron Maiden, it is also had it’s share of controversy. Without even bothering to listen to the album, the religious right in America branded the band ‘Satan worshipers’ due to the title of the album. This led to record burnings and protests at their concerts and why when I finally got to see them two tours later, they felt the need to tell every audience they played to in America they weren’t Satan worshipers. I highlight this point in “Rock And Roll Children.” One listen to the album will provide plenty of evidence they aren’t. “The Prisoner” was inspired by the popular British television show. “22 Acacia Avenue” is about a house of ill repute, and I am pretty sure it was inspired by the trial of Madam Cyn in London who was acquitted of running a house for prostitution. The more famous “Run to the Hills” is about the plight of the Native Americans. I could go on here but the point is that the songs aren’t Satanic. In fact, the subjects of many of the songs of Iron Maiden is another reason why I like them so much.

Next post: Ted Nugent- Nugent

To buy Rock And Roll Children, go to http://www.strategicpublishinggroup.com/title/RockAndRollChildren.html

Also available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Froogle and on sale at Foyles Book Shop in London

 

 

 

 

Great Rock Albums of 1982: Don Henley- I Can’t Stand Still

Posted in 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 8, 2015 by 80smetalman

Don_Henley_-_I_Can't_Stand_Still

Sometimes I wonder if musicians who are in a band and then put out their own solo albums aren’t faced with an agonizing worry on how their albums are to be received. If the album sound too much like that of their band, they are accused of just putting out the same album with different musicians. On the other hand, if they venture too far from that band’s sound, they are criticized for being too diverse or if the album sounds somewhat commercial, selling out. People of little or no experience of heavy metal have accused both Ozzy and Bruce Dickinson of doing the former in spite of the fact that when you listen to those albums, there are notable differences  in the sound between Ozzy and Black Sabbath as well as Bruce and Iron Maiden. No pleasing some people I suppose. Having heard many a solo album, I think the one album that best successfully strides the line between these two extremes is the solo album by Tyketto’s Danny Vaughn, “Soldiers and Sailors on Riverside.” It is my favourite melodic rock album of the 2000+ era and while there are some moments where you can hear the Tyketto influence, he definitely does his own thing without totally diversing and it sounds very good. Therefore, I wonder if back in 1982, I wonder if Don Henley had such a worry when he released his first solo album following the demise of The Eagles.

dv-ssor

It took me a couple of listens to “I Can’t Stand Still” before I finally remembered how good it is. Fortunately,  I am more musically open minded than I was in 1982 and that helped me appreciate it even more. While the influence of Henley’s days with The Eagles is definitely there, he puts his own spin on things. It’s not “Hotel California” but it was wrong of me to expect it to be. The closest songs that come to that on “I Can’t Stand Still” are the tracks “You Better Hang Up,” “Nobody’s Business” and “Them and Us.” As far as The Eagles go, I have always believed that Henley’s voice was best suited for their ballads and this is certainly proven with the two ballads on this album, “Long Way Home” and “Talking To The Moon.” Ironically, it is the single from the album where Don puts his best personal stamp. “Dirty Laundry” may sound like new wave synth pop to the untrained ear but it is definitely his song and the guitar solos are the best on the album. The following track and probably my favourite, “Johnny Can’t Read,” gets the same sort of work from Don. What amazes me the most about “I Can’t Stand Still” is the sheer number of musicians Henley gets to play on the album with him. I mean, he practically used all of Toto at some point on the album.

Track Listing:

1. I Can’t Stand Still

2. You Better Hang Up

3. Long Way From Home

4. Nobody’s Home

5. Talking to the Moon

6. Dirty Laundry

7. Johnny Can’t Read

8. Them and Us

9. La Eile

10. Lilah

11. The Unclouded Day

Don Henley

Don Henley

Don Henley- drums, lead vocals, keyboards

Ras Baboo- percussion, timbales

Derek Bell- harp

Kenny Edwards- bass, guitar

Steve Foreman- percussion

Bob Glaub- bass

Louise Goffin- vocals, gut string guitar

Andrew Gold- keyboards

Max Gronenthal- vocals, gut string guitar

George Gruel- vocals

Garth Hudson- synthesizer

Maren Jensen- vocals, gut string guitar

Danny Kooch Korchmar- bass, guitars, synthesizers, backing vocals

Ross Kunkel- drums

Steve Lukather- guitar

Paddy Maloney- whistle, ulliean pipes

Jeff Porcaro- drums, moracas

Steve Porcaro- keyboards

Timothy B Schmidt- bass, guitar, vocals

Leland Sklar- bass

JD Souther- acoustic guitar, gut string guitar

Benmont Trench- keyboards

Waddy Watchel- electric guitar

Ian Wallace- drums

Joe Walsh- lead guitar

Max Williams- drums

Bill Withers- vocals, gut string guitar

Warren Zevon- vocals, gut string guitar

Don Henley made an impressive start out of the blocks in his solo career with “I Can’t Stand Still.” While he doesn’t completely abandon his past, he isn’t afraid to be his own person with the album and once that conclusion is arrived at, it makes the album that much more enjoyable.

Next post; Glen Frey- No Fun Aloud

To buy Rock And Roll Children, go to http://www.strategicpublishinggroup.com/title/RockAndRollChildren.html

Also available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Froogle and on sale at Foyles Book Shop in London

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bruce Dickinson Diagnosed With Cancer

Posted in Heavy Metal, Illness, Music, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , on February 20, 2015 by 80smetalman

Bruce Dickinson, vocalist from Iron Maiden, has been diagnosed with cancer.

While having a routine checkup in December, the heavy metal frontman, 56, learned that he had developed cancerous tumors on the back of his tongue, according to a statement on the Iron Maiden fan page.

Bruce Dickinson of the legendary heavy metal band Iron Maiden performs on stage in 1983.PETER STILL/REDFERNSBruce Dickinson of the legendary heavy metal band Iron Maiden performs on stage in 1983.

The performer finished seven weeks of chemotherapy and radiology treatment Wednesday.

The announcement says that doctors expect the artist to make a complete recovery, although it will take several months for Dickinson to get back on his feet.

“Bruce is doing very well considering the circumstances and the whole team is very positive,” thereleased statement explains.

Iron Maiden completed their most recent tour in the UK in July 2014

Let us all wish Bruce a full and speedy recovery.