Sir Christopher Lee, who has starred in almost 300 movies, including "The Lord Of The Rings", "Star Wars", "The Man With The Golden Gun", "Dracula", "The Wicker Man" and most recently "The Hobbit: The Battle Of The Five Armies", has died at the age of 93. He passed away in a London hospital on Sunday after being treated for respiratory problems.
Sir Christopher Lee last December released released his latest heavy metal single titled "Darkest Carols, Faithful Sing".
The single was a playful take on the Christmas classic "Hark! The Herald Angels Sing" and included three different mixes of the song.
"It's light-hearted, joyful and fun. It's a band singing on how metal should be played, the effect it has on the band and its listeners," Sir Christopher explained.
Lee joined forces once again with guitar prodigy Hedras Ramos, who had previously worked with Christopher on the album "Charlemagne: The Omens Of Death" (2013),replacing Richie Faulkner (JUDAS PRIEST) and "A Heavy Metal Christmas" (2012),which was Sir Christopher's first venture into "Christmas metal."
Christopher Lee became the oldest heavy metal artist at the age of 91. At Christmas 2013, the song "Jingle Hell" reached No. 18 on Billboard, making him the oldest performer in history to have charted. The record was previously held by Tony Bennett.
"At my age, the most important thing for me is to keep active by doing things that I truly enjoy. I do not know how long I am going to be around, so every day is a celebration and I want to share it with my fans," Lee, who turned 93 in May, said.
The singer-actor's first creation, 2010's "Charlemagne: By The Sword And The Cross", which won critical acclaim, was more symphonic than 2013's "Charlemagne: The Omens Of Death".
He told BBC Radio 5 "Up All Night"'s Jamie Stangroom how he got involved in the genre.
"I was first introduced to metal when I sang with a [band] called RHAPSODY," he said. "But what I sang was not heavy metal; I sang with a tenor. Then I worked with MANOWAR as a narrator, I think it was in Germany, and again, that was not me singing metal. I became rather fascinated by this, 'cause in terms of history of music, it's fairly recent, really. And if it's properly done and you can understand the story and you can understand what the people are singing and you have the right bands and the right singers, I think it's rather exciting."
He continued: "When I was approached to do the first 'Charlemagne' album, 'By The Sword And The Cross', it is heavy metal, of course, but what I sang was more symphonic. Now on the second one, 'The Omens Of Death', it is 100 percent heavy metal. I've done my bits and pieces, and they are heavy metal. I'm not screaming or anything like that, but it is definitely 100 percent heavy metal."
Lee also spoke about being presented with the "Spirit Of Hammer" prize by BLACK SABBATH guitarist Tony Iommi at Metal Hammer magazine's Golden Gods awards in London in June 2010, Lee said, "It was a most amazing occasion for me — very exciting — and something I'd never had happen to me my whole career, my whole life, in terms of awards," he said. "I have received quite a few. But I was interviewed, actually in this room, by Tony Iommi, who founded BLACK SABBATH. And I hadn't heard them, but I made it a point [to do so]. [And] I thought it was extraordinary. And then I went to O2 [in London] in front of a fairly large crowd, I would say, all, of course, very young. And I got a greeting, which was really quite amazing. The decibel level was very high. Very high, very high."