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Blaze Bayley

Interview with Blaze Bayley from Blaze Bayley
by Jean-Francois Poulin at 22 October 2018, 9:07 AM

One has to have the utmost respect for people that are genuinely nice in real life, that don't take anything for granted. All of musicians in Metal are really nice people and I the Metal Community in a sense is one big happy family and most musicians in other genres aren't as nice with their fans. Metal Temple writer Jean-Francois Poulin had the pleasure of meeting Blaze Bayley in 2013 in a small venue in Downtown Montreal, he had accepted an invitation by a small unknown band that were doing a record launch and asked him if he wanted to do an acoustic set and then a covers set and he accepted wholeheartedly. That shows the man he is and he was able to get his ''X-Factor'' CD signed and had a small chat and a picture taken with Blaze and he was the nicest musician he has ever met.

So how has been the overall reaction to the Infinite Entanglement Trilogy?

I think Infinite Entanglement is the biggest achievement of my career.  It was made possible by my fans and the fans have embraced it and given me so much support.
Why did you want it to be a trilogy?

The story is from the book I’m writing and when we realized how many songs we had to tell the story, I said to my manager this needs to be 3 albums.
You change backing bands here and there for your various tours (Norway, Canada, South America to name a few), you seem to gel really well with any backing band, what's your secret?

I now have a solid line-up which is working really well for me. I have the full metal band with musicians from the band Absolva. Chris Appleton, Martin Mcnee and Karl Schramm. For classical acoustic I have Thomas Zwijsen.
Do you have any memories of your multiple shows in Montreal? I remember vividly a rainy and muddy day in an outside show with IRON MAIDEN playing with DIO for the Virtual XI tour!

Wonderful times and great fans.  It was a very special time.
In 2007 you decided to reunite with your old pals from WOLFSBANE, how did that come about? Was there any tension left from when you left in 1994 to join IRON MAIDEN?

Just old friends jamming and having fun and the spark was there. We made 3 records since that first reunion. Check out:

IRON MAIDEN usually play ''Sign of the Cross'', ''Man on the Edge'' and ''The Clansman'' ever after you left, these songs have been staples in their setlists and in the hearts of fans ever since. How do you feel about having your songs being immortalized even after you left the band?

It’s great that the songs continue. Being in Iron Maiden was a wonderful part of my life and I was well treated. I have great memories of touring the world and the fans mostly very generous and welcoming to me. I learned a lot co-writing with Steve Harris.

In 2007 you decided to change the name of the band from BLAZE to the BLAZE BAYLEY BAND, did you want to reach another chapter in your musical career and wanted something different nonetheless?

No one recognized BLAZE as me. People recognized Blaze Bayley. It was also a fresh start.

I have seen you a few times in concert and you seem genuinely touched by the reaction of the crowd and meeting the people before and after the show, humble as I have ever seen a musician be, how important is that connection, that human factor with the fans. You never have strayed from the path and always stayed yourself and a really nice guy throughout your long career.

My fans make it possible for me to live my dream of being a professional heavy metal singer. There is a free meet and greet after every Blaze Bayley headline show so I can thank them all personally. This is incredibly important to me as an independent artist.
The 2011 partnership with Paul DiAnno led to some really interesting European tours, how was your relationship with Paul and how did the partnership come about?

Paul is a wonderful person with a great sense of humour. A promoter in Russia had the idea and it was so popular we were able to keep going for a couple of years. Lots of fun.

Any plans on new tours or even material with the Trinity Project alongside Tim ''Ripper'' Owens and Geoff Tate? It was really short-lived but made a lasting impression.

Trinity was great fun but almost impossible to repeat in view of everyone’s busy schedules. I have a classical acoustic tour in November, then back to full metal in 2019 with Latin America in January, Europe in March, UK in April, North America in April/May, then festivals in the Summer.
Also for the Infinite Entanglement trilogy, I heard about that people were throwing out the idea of making a book about it, any truth to that?

Yes I am writing the book and that was the original basis for the story in the trilogy.
Coming back to the 2013 Piranha bar show with SOME OF THE FEW, you seemed to have the time of your life doing those covers at the end of the show, what does it represent for you doing those covers?

It’s great fun to do sometimes but not a significant part of my touring these days.
Any future plans for another collaboration with Thomas Zwijsen?

Yes there is a new classical acoustic CD called December Wind released in November and a tour also that month.
Throughout your career, you seem to have always kept your voice in tip-top shape and you never seem to go out of breath on a show, even if its 3 hours long and the energy in your voice never seem to fade, what do you attribute this to?

I don’t drink alcohol on tour. My fans inspire me and give me dark energy.
Any funny road stories from your time in WOLFSBANE and IRON MAIDEN?

Eddie fell over onstage in France. At a Wolfsbane gig fans invaded the stage. Almost 100 people were onstage with us at Tamworth Palace.
What can we expect from Blaze Bayley in late 2018 and the beginning of 2019?

I have a classical acoustic tour in November, then back to full metal in 2019 with Latin America in January, Europe in March, UK in April, North America in April/May, then festivals in the Summer.
Thank you so much for the opportunity to interview you for Metal Temple, it was an honour and a privilege Mr. Bayley!


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