Greg Prato of Songfacts has chatted with another ex-Iron Maiden singer. Paul Di’Anno spills the beans on writing Maiden classics and what he’s up to these days.
The original Maiden vocalist talks about his new band Architects of Chaoz and his new live DVD The Beast Arises. Inevitably there’s also lots of talk about his days as Maiden frontman in the early 1980s.
Di’Anno is still proud of his Maiden days and also claims to have written at least one classic tune pretty much on his own. “Running Free is basically my song. I asked Steve to play this certain bass line, he did, and I actually ended up getting a songwriting credit – I thought, ‘Oh… great!’ […] I had the idea for it all. I stole the idea off of Gary Glitter, with a drumbeat and stuff like that.”
CLICK HERE for the full interview!
Thanks to Greg Prato!
13 thoughts on “Paul Di’Anno Interview”
Christer — what the flyin’ happened to this guy?! I saw a clip of his “Beast” DVD, posted by one of his personal friends on Facebook, and it was beyond horrendous. He looked confused, he forgot the words, he was out of key, and sweating like a baptist preacher. He’s falling apart, losing his mind and his body. It was the most awkward few minutes I can remember and it’s shocking that he would even sell this to the public. Good Goddess, he needs some serious help because if he thinks he’s fighting his demons, he’s right; they’re winning.
I wonder what Paul DiAnno, the artist would sound like if he stopped being Paul DiAnno, the former Maiden guy…? So sad. So, so sad…
I haven’t seen or heard anything he’s done in the past ten years, to be honest. I don’t know, Paul has never taken care of himself, has he? Like Harris said about his Maiden exit: “Paul was totally fucked up.” It seems to me that he’s revelled in that role most his life, being the fucked up rocker. Which is no way to get to the top of the world. Especially not if your actual talent is very limited, which history suggests is the case with Di’Anno.
Harry also said, “He was perfect for those two albums.” No one can disagree with that, I don’t think. Even Bruce sounds a little awkward when he sings the earlier material. But, I have heard his work from the ’90’s and recently and yes, “reveling in that role” is exactly what he’s done. Not only does he seem to be o a path of self-destruction physically, he’s full of crap. He talks about doing his own thing, but he has made absolutely no attempt to find his own self or make his own way. Still uses the font, still records and performs the same 10 songs, and makes the same allusions to Maiden in everything he does. He’s stuck — a train wreck without a track. It’s painful to see.
And I’m noticing Blaze is following suit, which makes me wonder, “What on earth does this band do to their former members?” The only one that seems to have it together is Dennis, who seems to have found a sense of peace with it all. But, even he is still marketing “Prowler” after all these years.
I always like to give people the benefit of the doubt and I so want to like Paul and be a fan of his music. But most of the videos I’ve seen of him seem to feature him ‘singing’ out of tune and threatening to beat the ‘you know what’ out of someone in the audience. Including, in one clip, a female audience member! Like Ms Ray said, so sad. Let’s face it, his departure from Maiden COULD have been a huge chance to get himself sorted and become a well respected singer and a high profile vocalist, it’s such a shame he never took that road.
Yeah, it seems he just wasn’t interested in sorting himself out. And it’s way too late now. No disrespect to Paul, but I have no reason to believe that he had anything more in him than what he did in Maiden.
“Iron Maiden” and “Killers” are two of the best Maiden albums of all times, much thanks to Paul’s energy and charisma. It does not matter what he’s up to these days – those two albums are here to stay. I really enjoy watching old Maiden clips, Paul’s always rock solid. Bruce’s stage performance was not always tip top in the early days (he’s much better live now I think), but you could always count on Paul. Just my opinion.
Well, Paul never had to sing Hallowed Be Thy Name or The Trooper or Rime Of The Ancient Mariner every night, did he? 😉
@Ms. Ray: When it comes to former members living off the Maiden legacy, in most cases I guess it’s inevitable because it’s the most dependable work and income they can get. But in the case of Blaze I find it a little sad, because apart from Bruce he’s had the best run of any ex-Maidens on his own hasn’t he?
Then again, there’s perspective here: Even Bruce, when doing great records like Accident Of Birth and The Chemical Wedding, got the biggest roar from the audience when he played Flight Of Icarus or Powerslave.
Maiden is both a blessing and a curse, I suppose.
Yes, I suppose hitting any pinnacle would be a cursed blessing, as the only direction to go after that is down. However, I don’t believe that life has to stop. There are still many, many sides of the mountain to climb if you choose to explore — Ronnie James Dio (RIP) is a phenomenal example of this. So many would believe Rainbow would have been the end all, but then he was adopted by Sabbath. Instead of trying to fill in old shoes, he made his place and essentially re-created the brand. So, when he leaves the godfathers of Metal, surely that could have been that, but no…he found his own brand and the rest truly is history.
Bruce, in his own way, has created a safety net by not putting all his artistic and creative eggs in one basket.
My point is, there’s always choice. Though, being removed from what could have been the best thing that could’ve happened to you is undoubtedly painful, it is up to you to choose whether it is an ending or a beginning. And I believe this is a lesson that can be learned by any mortal being in any circumstance.
Absolutely, life doesn’t have to stop! But I’m not sure it’s entirely fair to cite Dio and Dickinson. I mean, Ozzy and Alice Cooper could also be mentioned here, but clearly Paul Di’Anno has nowhere near the talent of these utterly exceptional guys. 🙂
Maybe he should have done something completely different with his life when he left Maiden, and not continued singing and playing at all? Like you said at the start of the thread, Paul’s case is embarrassing. He’s more like Peter Criss, really…
LOL! Point made! 😀 (Poor Paul…)
Di’ Anno was not Maiden’s first vocalist…
No, he wasn’t. But calling him the “original” Maiden vocalist can’t really be faulted, unless you’re extremely fond of picking the nit.