Connect with us

The drummer that Bruce Dickinson said was “God” to him

Bruce Dickinson


The drummer that Bruce Dickinson said was “God” to him

The singer Bruce Dickinson started his musical career in 1976, first achieving moderate fame a few years later as a member of Samson. But it was after he joined Iron Maiden in 1981 and the band released their acclaimed album “Number of The Beast” in 1982 that he really gave the first steps to become one of the best singers of all time.


Although he is known especially for his powerful voice that helped Iron Maiden to add even more power to the sound, he had other plans when he was young. As the musician revealed in an interview with the Gastão Moreira on the Brazilian MTV show Fúria in 1998 (Transcribed by Rock and Roll Garage), at first he wanted to become a drummer. In that conversation he revealed which was the drummer that was “God” to him in the early days.

The drummer that Bruce Dickinson said was “God” to him

Bruce Dickinson was asked by the interviewer if he knew by the time he was just a Rock and Roll fan at an early age, if he already knew he wanted to become a singer. Curiously, the Iron Maiden vocalist said that at the first he actually wanted to become a drummer.

“I don’t know what I was thinking back then. But I was just really, really, fired up by these bands. When I used to see gigs I used to look on stage and go ‘Oh, I wanted to be up there, you know. I wanted to be up there, doing that’. I wanted to be a drummer. Actually, I wanted to be Ian Paice from Deep Purple. He was like (the) God of drums to me.”

Bruce Dickinson continued:

“I had this idea that I was going to be like Ian Paice but the personality of Keith Moon. So I was like: ‘Yeah, I would be like this big crazy guy behind the drums. But I would be able to play drums really, really good as well’. Then reality came crashing in. I thought ‘I can’t afford a drum kit and I can’t drive a car. So how I’m gonna get my drums around? (I was depressed) and then I found out I could sing. So I thought ‘Wow, that’s the answer’,” Bruce Dickinson said.

By the time Deep Purple released their debut album “Shades of Deep Purple” in 1968, Bruce Dickinson was only 10 years-old. So he had the opportunity to see during his youth, the band’s evolution when the singer Ian Gillan and the bassist Roger Glover joined them.

Over the decades he always showed his love for Deep Purple and were able to perform with Jon Lord, Roger Glover, Ian Gillan and Ian Paice multiple times. Most recently he even toured with an Orchestra playing only Purple tracks.

He said that Ian Paice is one of the “finest” drummers in the world

It’s well known that Deep Purple is probably Bruce Dickinson’s favorite band. He always mentioned the group and the singer Ian Gillan as huge influences. Back in 2020 in an interview with My Planet Rocks (Transcribed by Rock and Roll Garage), he revealed that “Fireball”, from the album of the same name released in 1971, is one of his favorite Purple songs.

“It’s just one of those tracks, that is not played very often. But it’s got some phenomenal bits in it. And of course, it’s also got – I mean, having been a drummer or at least aspired to being a drummer, I have huge respect for drummers. Ian Paice is simply one of the finest drummers in the world, he really is. And I suppose if you’re going to be a drumming nit-noid type guy, it’s his foot. It’s all down to his foot,” Bruce Dickinson said.

One year after “Fireball”, Deep Purple released “Machine Head”, their most acclaimed album. The singer Ian Gillan said many times that he loves “Fireball” because it was the album that gave Deep Purple the elements to make “Machine Head” possible.

How Bruce Dickinson reacted when he first heard Deep Purple

It’s always a very special moment for music fans when they discover a new band. Usually these discoveries happen by accident and it wasn’t different when Bruce Dickinson heard Deep Purple for the first time. As he recalled in interview with Double J back in 2018, the first time he heard the British group was in school.

“I was walking up and down the corridor at boarding school. I heard this racket coming from behind a door. (Then) I thought, ‘Oh my god, what is that?!’ I knocked on the door and this senior boy opened the door. (He) looked at me with a big sneer on his face. I asked, ‘Who was that?’. He went, ‘Oh, it’s Deep Purple if you must know, ‘Speed King’’ and shut the door.”

Bruce Dickinson continued:

“That was that. I was hooked. We used to have little auctions in the boarding house. People would be short of money and wouldn’t have enough money to have enough to pay their bill at the school shop. So they’d auction their stuff off.”

“The second LP that I got was ‘Deep Purple In Rock’. Scratched to bits. So I paid 50 cents Australian for it. I loved it and played it absolutely to death. I think I might have blown up my parents’ stereogram with it,” Bruce Dickinson said.

I'm a Brazilian journalist who always loved Classic Rock and Heavy Metal music. That passion inspired me to create Rock and Roll Garage over 6 years ago. Music has always been a part of my life, helping me through tough times and being a support to celebrate the good ones. When I became a journalist, I knew I wanted to write about my passions. After graduating in journalism from the Pontifical Catholic University of Minas Gerais, I pursued a postgraduate degree in digital communication at the same institution. The studies and experience in the field helped me improve the website and always bring the best of classic rock to the world! MTB: 0021377/MG

To Top