Interview With Blaze Pt. 1
(Bayley, Wilfort)

Keith Wilfort: How did you feel when you finally learned that you'd got the job in Maiden?
Blaze: Relieved... more than anything

Keith Wilfort: Cause there was a bit for awhile where it was, you know...
Blaze: Well I had to audition just the same as everybody else, so I was probably.... I just thought... I didn't think really... I thought I had a chance as much as anybody else cause I'm quite a determined person, but I thought "well I'll never get it", you know, cause it's such a dream job, you know, it's something that you think... So I was just relieved more than anything, all the anxiety and worrying thinking "Will I get it? Won't I get it? .... " you know, so it was like "Are you sure? Are you sure?" you know, just to make sure... "It's me? Yeah, you've phoned the right person? Are you sure?" And I just spent about three days getting completely drunk... and staying drunk. So, it was good. It was a relief more than anything and then after awhile I felt really good about it.

Keith Wilfort: Did you have to sing a lot of songs or was it sort of...?
Blaze: Umm... I think we got to... It didn't seem like a lot, I remember the audition, it didn't seem like a lot of songs, but in fact I think it was about nine different numbers. And it was quite a cross section of Maiden material with stuff like Hallowed and Number Of The Beast and Clairvoyant and Fear Of The Dark... So it was all quite different stuff that both Paul and Bruce had done. And, I just remember being at the audition and thinking "well, even if I don't get it, at least I got the chance to sing with Maiden", and sing, you know... and so I thought "I've got this far, I don't really care now, I'll just go for it and enjoy the fact that I'm actually singing with Iron Maiden." So it was good from that point of view... it was really good, and we got to the end of it and we were all looking at each other going "Isn't there any more? Is that it?" Cause it just seemed to go like that, you know, it seemed to be a real vibe in the room... something was certainly clicking.
Keith Wilfort: So, when it came to actually settling in with the band, did it take a while to adjust to it or was it a case of sort of like "We're in there, this is it!"... the vibes, you know?
Blaze: I think it was... there was a little bit of a limbo period until we actually started working together, because even though I was in the band, we hadn't done anything together, there were no shows planned and the first thing we were gonna do was start writing this record. And I think I was quite nervous at the time. But as soon as I got together with Janick, you know, the ideas... I was thinking, "will this work with Maiden?", you know, and stuff like that... the ideas that I'd got, but it just slotted straight in. And when I started working with Steve it was great as well, cause he started... the way, the style that he writes and the way he constructs his melodies and his songs, he uses a part of my voice that I would never usually use, but it's a part I'm always looking for. So it's quite fulfilling in that respect, because even though I'd spent nine years in Wolfsbane, my previous band, and we'd made five albums, there was certainly something as we'd gone on that I was trying to find more character, and something more individual about my voice that maybe I'd just touched on sometimes. But when we started working together in Maiden, writing the songs and as the arrangements started coming together, it really felt that something was coming out of me, I was pushing myself a lot further, and it was very very satisfying.

Keith Wilfort: Did it take a lot of rehearsing before you actually started recording?
Blaze: Oh, weirdest thing I've ever done, because we'd got the songs together and it seemed like Steve and Janick... and they would go "Yeah, we'll do this... Ok yeah that's ready." I said, "Well we've only recorded it on the dictaphone, aren't we gonna do any demos? "Oh no no, we're not doing any demos, we'll just go in, you know, we'll get everybody else to learn the arrangements and we'll just record it." And so we were in the studio, we'd rehearsed up the the first song, "ok yeah, a bit of drum in there... whatcha think goes there... la-de-da-de-da..." And I don't think we'd even got through it once without messing it up. And they all just said "Ok, shall we go for a take then?" And I said, "Don't you think we should get through to the end without stopping?" You know, "Oh no! Just get the tape rolling!" So we all went off and got the tape, and so like everybody's on edge.... but I don't know, in a way I think when you do do demos, alot of the time you can lose the excitement of the song. And I think because the first time that we'd get it right and it really worked, that was the take that we were gonna use, there was certainly a little bit of electricity there, certainly, so it worked really well. I mean, sometimes we'd get it right and it just wouldn't feel... you would think, "well what's that all about?" It's all played perfectly but just lacks that little bit of energy or certain something. And then other times, yeah, it really clicked. So it was good from that point of view.
« I Live My Way Interview With Blaze Pt. 2 »