To celebrate the fact that 2014 marks the 30th anniversary of Blaze Bayley being a singer, he will be releasing a best-of album in November of this year and then will be touring in the new year. I caught up with him for a quick interview.
Thanks for agreeing to do the interview! Could you tell the readers of Soundscape a little bit about yourself?
I am Blaze Bayley, heavy metal singer. I started with Wolfsbane in 1984. I was chosen as the new Iron Maiden singer when Bruce Dickinson left. When Bruce returned, I continued performing with my own band. Now I am still performing as a heavy metal solo artist.
When did you first realise you had a talent for singing?
I had gone to a Ronnie James Dio concert and decided there that I wanted to be a heavy metal singer. I was told many times that I had a good voice but when I joined Wolfsbane I realised how good it was.
I really admire the sound and tone of your voice. Is there anything you do to keep it in shape or do you just go out and sing?
I make sure I drink enough water before a show. No alcohol before the show or smoking. Rest is also very important for my voice. Other than that nothing special.
What inspired you to do your acoustic shows and record your acoustic EP? I really loved Russian Holiday and thought it was a great idea!
I worked together with Thomas Zwijsen on my King of Metal album. Whilst going on tour with this album, we talked about the idea of an acoustic album. I have always wanted to do an acoustic album but hadn’t met the right guitarist. When I saw that Thomas played a classical acoustic guitar, I knew we could make something special. We decided on an EP and it worked out really well.
It’s incredible to think you’ve been singing for 30 years. Is your best-of album something you’d been planning for a while, or did you decide to make it to commemorate your impressive career?
I didn’t realise it was 30 years until I had to do another interview. It goes so fast! Me and my manager thought it was a good idea to celebrate it with an album and a tour. I have a lot of new fans that didn’t get the chance to buy the old albums so they’ll have a chance to listen to these songs. I also worked with Rick Plester on 2 new songs this month. They will be on the best off album too.
What would you say your favourite thing about being on the road is?
Performing. I like meeting people from different countries too but the reality is that we don’t see much culture of each country. We spend most of the time in the car driving. But performing makes it all worth while.
What’s your favourite thing about being a musician?
Being creative, working with different people and seeing their inspirations.
Do you have any interesting or funny tour stories to share?
There are many things that happen on tour that are funny when they are in context. It’s difficult to remember these.
Which release of yours are you most proud of?
I am very proud of the 2 Iron Maiden albums I did and the EP too.
What has been the highlight of your career?
There isn’t a specific point. Just the fact that I was able to have the top position in my profession: be the singer of the biggest heavy metal band in the world. That was an experience I will never forget!
And finally what are your hopes for the future?
That I will be able to keep doing what I am doing now! I would like to thank all my fans for their support over the years and hopefully they will keep following me in the future!
Blaze Bayley’s Best-Of album will be released in November. His current live dates can be found here.