Iron Maiden’s Bruce Dickinson Pilots Inaugural “Ed Force One” Jumbo Jet
After taking off from Cardiff, Wales, “Ed Force One,” Iron Maiden‘s Boeing 747 piloted by singer Bruce Dickinson, arrived in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida last Friday.
Check out the landing, and the takeoff in Cardiff, here.
It was Dickinson’s first time piloting a 747 jumbo jet after receiving a considerable amount of flight training. Dickinson said, “It was excellent. Nine hours across the pond and my first landing in a 747. So, hey, what’s not to love?”
When told that the experts called it a “flawless” landing, Dickinson quipped, “I just had my eyes shut, you know? The airplane does it on its own.”
From 2008-11, Dickinson had flown a 757 for Iron Maiden’s jet, but he said that the production they’re taking with them on The Book of Souls world tour requires the larger 747. “The  is just not big enough for what we’ve got in mind in terms of a show,” he said. “So what we’ve got on board at the moment is the stage show […] In fact, we’ll be spending tomorrow, basically, putting all the gear together and making sure it fits. Everything we need will be on the airplane, and all the technicians and baggage and everything else. We’re going all around the world.”
Dickinson’s full press conference held at the Miami airport, is here.
Ritchie Blackmore Claims He’s Barred From Deep Purple’s Rock Hall Induction
According to a recent post published on his Facebook page, Ritchie Blackmore is being barred from attending Deep Purple’s Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony by his former bandmates — or at least their manager, Bruce Payne.
Blackmore and Payne share a long history that stretches back to Payne’s days managing Rainbow, but their relationship has been colored by animosity since Blackmore’s (presumably final) departure from the lineup in 1993. He’s since sued Payne for access to financial records and claimed he was being deprived of royalty income, leading the band at one point to blur out his face on official merchandise.
Joe Lynn Turner Slams Ritchie Blackmore’s Return With Rainbow “Cover Band”
Former Rainbow and Deep Purple vocalist Joe Lynn Turner recently spoke about guitarist Ritchie Blackmore’s return to rock with what Turner has dubbed “a cover band.”
Turner: “I was shocked, only because for over a year… See, the truth is I wanted an authentic lineup for Rainbow. I think the way that it should have gone down is an authentic lineup. I was talking to Bob Daisley, Bobby Rondinelli, Roger Glover, Don Airey… there’s a whole bunch of guys out there that were really willing to sort of get involved with this, open up their schedules and get involved. And, apparently, Ritchie didn’t wanna do that. So I spent a good year of my time working that out with Carole Stevens, his manager. And I was shocked, because I’ll tell you why. She was putting my name out there — and I have all the e-mails to prove this, by the way — she was putting my name out there, and it was… even in German, with a big agency out there in Germany, saying, ‘Joe Lynn Turner and Ritchie Blackmore this June, 2016, together again. The perfect pair. Blah blah blah.’ And she was getting feedback from it.”
Blackmore has confirmed two shows in Germany, at the Monsters Of Rock Festival 2016 on June 18 and Loreley, Freilichtbühneon on June 17. A UK date has also been confirmed for Saturday, June 25 in Birmingham.
Blackmore’s band line-up for those shows will include singer Ronnie Romero, keyboardist Jens Johansson (Stratovarius), drummer David Keith (Blackmore’s Night) and bassist Bob Nouveau.
Lita Ford Launches New Book, Album and Tour
2016 is shaping up to be a banner one for Ford featuring the release of her book, “Living Like A Runaway: A Memoir”, a new album Time Capsule, and extensive touring plans including headline dates and shows with Halestorm and Dorothy.
Time Capsule (set to be released April 15) is a “throwback” record that boasts well known players like Billy Sheehan (bass), Rodger Carter (drums), Dave Navarro (mandolin), Jeff Scott Soto (vocals), Rick Nielsen and Robin Zander (backing vocals) and Gene Simmons (bass).
“There was a shitload of these old 24-track analog tapes in the closet in my house [in the islands],” Ford recalls. “This is some of the best work I’ve ever done and it was sitting there. I grabbed two suitcases and took them back to the United States.”
Imagine Ford dragging a pair of suitcases full of analog tapes through the Caribbean heat back to Los Angeles. She recalls, “we could bake these f**kers,” due to their age. “If you just put them on the reel, they would flake. I was chewing my fingernails, thinking, ‘Please work!’ And they did!”
Hear Ford’s new song from Time Capsule, “Rotten To The Core” featuring Gene Simmons, here.
Slash “In Studio” Recording For Guns N’ Roses
Slash has reportedly been working on Guns N’ Roses material in the studio, according to LA publicist Arlett Vereecke.
The former GNR publicist told ClassicRock.com that recording is “definitely” taking place – although frontman Axl Rose hasn’t been involved.
“I know they’re doing some recording. They’re definitely doing something there in the studio. Axl hasn’t been there, but Slash is definitely in there and it’s not for anyone else.”
Ex-Guns N’ Roses manager Alan Niven also suggests that Duff McKagan and Izzy Stradlin have been working together.
He says: “Duff and Izzy were in the studio before Christmas doing stuff. At a casual glance I think they’ve got at least a couple of tracks down.”
Def Leppard Reschedule Postponed Tour Dates
Def Leppard started a January/February 2016 tour, but had to pull the plug after doctors told vocalist Joe Elliott he had to rest his voice. All the band’s scheduled concerts from February 2-17 were postponed.
The good news is that the band has rescheduled some postponed dates for May. See the schedule below. Tickets purchased for the original shows will be honored at the rescheduled concerts. Ticket and VIP package info are here.
Def Leppard Rescheduled 2016 Tour Dates
5/4 – Lafayette, La. – Cajundome
5/5 – Corpus Christi, Texas – American Bank Center
5/7 – Hidalgo, Texas – State Farm Arena
5/10 – Bossier City, La. – CenturyLink Center
5/11 – North Little Rock, Ark. – Verizon Arena
5/13 – Greensboro, N.C. – Greensboro Coliseum
5/15 – Uncasville, Ct. – Mohegan Sun Arena
5/17 – Allentown, Pa. – PPL Center
5/20 – Orlando, Fla. – Amway Center
Metallica Named 2016 Record Store Day Ambassadors
Metallica played a key role in the inaugural Record Store Day back in April of 2008 when they performed a special in-store appearance at Rasputin Music in Mountain View, Calif. Eight years later, the band has been named the 2016 Record Store Day Ambassadors and will be using their status once again to help promote Record Store Day 2016, which includes over 1,400 participating stores in the U.S. alone.
This year’s Record Store Day will lend support to those in France who suffered tragic losses last fall during the terrorist attack at Le Bataclan. The band has decided to share their own performance from Le Bataclan back in 2003 for a special Record Store Day release. This comes in coordination with the reissues of Kill ‘Em All and Ride the Lightning, which will also be available.
Black Sabbath’s Geezer Butler Urges New York State Legislature To Ban Declawing Of Cats
Geezer Butler, co-founder and bassist of Black Sabbath, has voiced his support for a New York state bill that would outlaw declawing cats.
Removing a cat’s claws has been banned in Israel, Brazil and much of Europe but is legal in the United States, where nearly one out of four cat owners declaw their pets, usually to protect furniture from scratches.
Said Butler, “Many know me as one of the founding members of Black Sabbath, but fewer likely know that I am what you might call a ‘crazy cat person.’ My wife and I have many rescued cats and we have never dreamed of putting them through an elective, convenience surgery such as declawing. Can you imagine having your fingers chopped off at the last bone? That is what the equivalent is for cats who are declawed. It is dreadfully inhumane!
“A surge of veterinarians throughout New York support legislation to put declawing in the trash bin of history. I urge lawmakers to remain steadfast in those characteristics I admire most about New Yorkers and support the bill to ban the declawing of cats.”
Assemblyperson Linda Rosenthal of District 67 reintroduced the bill in January to outlaw the practice, similar to the ban that is already in place in other major cities like San Francisco and Los Angeles.
Dan Rather Goes For A Cruise In Sammy Hagar’s $1.3 Million LaFerrari Car
Legendary newsman Dan Rather sat down with Sammy Hagar, during a super-sized 90-minute episode of “The Big Interview” on AXS TV this week. During the interview, the pair cruised around in Sammy’s $1.3 million LaFerrari —the fastest street-legal car in the world — delving into Sammy’s personal life, his business endeavors, and continued success as one of rock’s most enduring figures.
Check out the video of Rather with Sammy – not driving 55 – here.
AC/DC Singer BRIAN JOHNSON Adds Jaguar F-Type Project 7 To Car Collection
Meanwhile, AC/DC singer Brian Johnson has added a new Jaguar F-Type Project 7 — Jaguar’s fastest and most powerful production model to date — to his car collection. He said: “I love it. It’s a proper supercar, and boy, oh boy, does it have some grunt to it. While it’s blisteringly fast, I feel so safe in it. I love the steering, the handling, and those carbon ceramic brakes are amazing. The discs are as big as the wheels on my racing Mini. Just listen to that noise from the exhaust. Who needs a stereo when you have a soundtrack like this?”
MetalHeads Say The Damnedest Things
“Probably in 1983, while we were on tour with him [Motörhead frontman Lemmy Kilmister], he invited me up to his hotel room, and he says, ‘Come up and have a couple of drinks.’ So I said, ‘Sure, man. F**king great!’ So we sat down and he pulled out a forty-ounce bottle of vodka and a couple of crates of orange juice and these big tall glasses that probably hold twenty ounces of fluid. So he fills it up with about ten ounces of vodka and then tops it off with orange juice, and then we start drinking. Of course, I get about three or four shots in, and I’m f***ing wasted because I’m not a drinker. So he goes, ‘You’re starting to look a little buzzed there, Lips.’ So he pulls out a little leather pouch and a pocket knife and dips his pocket knife into this white powder, and it’s f**king amphetamines; it’s f**king speed. And he sticks it right under my nose and he goes, ‘F**king sniff, right!’ And it’s like [I consumed] no alcohol. I’m straight as a f**king judge! ‘Wow! Okay, this is cool!’ We keep going and keep going, and the next thing I know, there’s a knock on the f**king door and it’s the tour manager. And he goes, ‘Time to go to the gig, guys.’ And it was supposed to be our day off. And I’m, like, ‘We’re on our day off. What do you mean go to the gig?’ And he goes, ‘Guys, you’ve been sitting in here for 24 f**king hours. Get your shit together and let’s go!’ ‘What happened?’ [Laughs] So I get to the gig and I can barely f**king walk, I’m so f**ked up. And Lemmy walks in and takes a look at me and goes, ‘You’re looking f**king knackered, mate. Maybe you oughta try one of these.’ He pulls out a little plastic bag and it’s filled with little black capsules, and he says, ‘These are called black bombers. Take two.’ And I go, ‘You know what, Lemmy? After last night, I’m only taking one!’ Well I ate the pill, and f**k, I did the gig! I could have done five! [Laughs] All my hair stood on end. And I go, ‘Holy f**k!’”
“Hey, when in Rome, you do as the Romans. When touring with Motörhead, you do as Motörhead. That’s what happened. Now I know what ‘No Sleep ‘Til Hammersmith’ meant. [Laughs]”
~ Guitarist/vocalist Steve “Lips” Kudlow of legendary Canadian metallers Anvil interviewed by The Rockpit.
Metal Videos O’ The Week
Iron Maiden’s Ed Force One Inaugural Flight Take Off and Landing
Sammy Hagar’s Rock & Roll Road Trip With REO Speedwagon’s Kevin Cronin At The Grammy Museum
Black Sabbath’s Tony Iommi Celebrates 68th Birthday Onstage In Michigan