Listen to Bruce Dickinson’s 1981 demo tape for Iron Maiden

All Iron Maiden fans know that Bruce Dickinson wasn’t the band’s first vocalist.

The group began with a dude named Paul Day out front, who lasted for a short period in 1975-76. He was replaced by Dennis Wilcock, who eventually got fed up with everyone else in the group and bolted in 1978. (He wasn’t missed, apparently.)

The modern Maiden era begins with singer Paul Di’Anno. This is who we hear on the first two studio albums, but by 1981, his alcohol and drug intake made him unreliable. He was shown the door.

This is when we finally get to Bruce Dickinson. While singing for another group called Samson, he became a Maiden fan from afar. By the time Di’Anno was fired, the rest of Maiden knew of Bruce and asked him to submit an audition tape. He won the job, of course, but its instructive to hear the tape that sealed the deal.

More at Metal Injection.

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 30+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

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