IRON MAIDEN's BRUCE DICKINSON Has 'Given Up' Trying To Define Heavy Metal

November 10, 2017

IRON MAIDEN singer Bruce Dickinson was a guest on the November 11 episode of the long-running PBS chat show "Charlie Rose". A clip from the program can be seen below.

Asked for his definition of heavy metal, Dickinson said: "I haven't got one. I've given up. There's no point in even trying to define it. It's defined more by other people than it's defined by me. 'Cause when I started out listening to music, there was no such thing as heavy metal. It was a term coined by a journalist, actually, and I think it was from a William Burroughs novel — but that's a minor detail.

"Metal came out of something that was called heavy rock," he continued. "Heavy rock was simply an offshoot of blues rock — you know, LED ZEPPELIN and DEEP PURPLE and things like that, and FREE, and all those bands. They weren't heavy metal, but they kind of came into the heavy metal orbit, and then the whole world of music became polarized. It became very niche; everybody was put in their little silos. And that was as much a fact of life because of the media, because the media did that. And then record companies figured out that they could market it and yada yada yada and so on and so forth. But we've managed to survive, and not just survive, but to thrive, in a sense, outside that system. So people call us heavy metal, and we say, yeah, fine, we are."

Regarding how IRON MAIDEN has been able to survive and prevail, Dickinson said: "Well, first of all, we don't ally ourselves to the media; we're not part of the cult of celebrity. Hopefully if we end up having any notoriety, it's because we've actually done something, as opposed to having plastic surgery, or whatever — being famous for being famous; turning up to the opening of an envelope. So we do what we say, [and] we do it with integrity. We do a lot of touring. Okay, we do about three months a year, but we tour fairly intensely, and we, I hope, do really good shows. And we engage as much as possible with our audience, which is increasing. 'Cause years ago, in the '80s, we did one show in the New York area, maybe two. We're now doing four, so we're twice that size. And it's a global band. So our niche has grown. I like to say our fans are like plywood — we grow a new laminate of them every generation, and they all stick to each other."

Dickinson is promoting his autobiography, "What Does This Button Do?", which was released in the U.S. on October 31 via Dey Street Books (formerly It Books),an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers.

Find more on Iron maiden
  • facebook
  • twitter
  • reddit
  • email

Comments Disclaimer And Information

BLABBERMOUTH.NET uses the Facebook Comments plugin to let people comment on content on the site using their Facebook account. The comments reside on Facebook servers and are not stored on BLABBERMOUTH.NET. To comment on a BLABBERMOUTH.NET story or review, you must be logged in to an active personal account on Facebook. Once you're logged in, you will be able to comment. User comments or postings do not reflect the viewpoint of BLABBERMOUTH.NET and BLABBERMOUTH.NET does not endorse, or guarantee the accuracy of, any user comment. To report spam or any abusive, obscene, defamatory, racist, homophobic or threatening comments, or anything that may violate any applicable laws, use the "Report to Facebook" and "Mark as spam" links that appear next to the comments themselves. To do so, click the downward arrow on the top-right corner of the Facebook comment (the arrow is invisible until you roll over it) and select the appropriate action. You can also send an e-mail to blabbermouthinbox(@) with pertinent details. BLABBERMOUTH.NET reserves the right to "hide" comments that may be considered offensive, illegal or inappropriate and to "ban" users that violate the site's Terms Of Service. Hidden comments will still appear to the user and to the user's Facebook friends. If a new comment is published from a "banned" user or contains a blacklisted word, this comment will automatically have limited visibility (the "banned" user's comments will only be visible to the user and the user's Facebook friends).