Iron Maiden guitarist Adrian Smith recalled in an interview with Eddie Trunk why he is the singer on the band’s track “Reach Out”, that was released as the B-side of “Waster Years” back in 1986.
“I think it was just before we did [1986’s] ‘Somewhere in Time.’ We had shock news, Maiden took six months off. This was in the mid-’80s, it was a big deal at the time because we never took any time off.”
“[Manager] Rod Smallwood said, ‘Yeah, go and have six months off, it’s great.’ and then Nicko [McBrain, drums] and I ended up in the studio together – because we were always jamming and messing around at soundchecks. So we got a band together what ended up being called The Entire Population of Hackney, and I drafted a couple of my old mates in.”
“A guy called Andy Barnett, the guitarist who played with FM, Dave “Bucket” Corwell, who played with Bad Company and Paul Rodgers, Nicko played drums. We just used to go to a studio and play every day.”
“We did a gig at the Marquee club, we did a couple of clubs. I was singing lead vocals at the time. And from that, when we went to do ‘Somewhere in Time,’ we had to do some B-sides, so [Iron Maiden bassist and bandleader] Steve Harris suggested, ‘Won’t you do some of the stuff you did with the Hackneys?'”
“So we did ‘Reach Out,’ which was written by Dave Colwell, the guitarist, a good friend of mine, great songwriter. So we did that as a B-side. It wasn’t really a surprise. Steve’s idea was as about as far away from Maiden as you can get. But you know, I sort of said, ‘Alright, let’s do it.'”
“And Bruce sang backups as well, so we sang together. It was great, and Martin Birch produced it, so I was behind the glass with Martin Birch producing me, the guy who did [Ian] Gillan and Ronnie Dio.”
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