Iron Maiden’s Bruce Dickinson talks touring and terrorism: ‘don’t back down from living your life’

Dickinson spoke to a Sarajevo radio station about visiting the city during war, and his attitude to risky touring

Iron Maiden frontman Bruce Dickinson has spoken in depth to a Sarajevo radio station about how he deals with touring and the risk of terrorism.

Dickinson spoke to Radio Sarajevo, in part because he famously traveled into the besieged city in the midst of conflict in 1994, playing a show for the trapped city. The events are shortly to be documented in a movie called ‘Scream For Me Sarajevo’.

Dickinson’s interview about the film and life in ‘Maiden goes into his approach to touring in dangerous environments, including a discussion of his risk/ reward approach to endangering himself and potentially endangering the audience in some locations.

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Dickinson said: “You can’t take the responsibility for what might be some lunacy, massacring people, just because you wanna be kind of ‘macho man’ and stand up and say, ‘Ah, yeah, yeah, yeah, we did this and people threatened us, but we were like macho men.'”

“And that’s great until one day it turns out that somebody does go and do [something] and then you have lots and lots of dead women and children, and you go, ‘Maybe we shouldn’t have done the show, because there was a credible threat.’ So, unfortunately, you’ve gotta be grown up about it. But, at the same time, you still need to be able to offer people that hope and send that message out there. They can’t stop… Real life just carries on.”

Listen to the interview in full, half-hour form below:

Dickinson also talks specifically about the Sarajevo experience, saying:

“It was my choice. Actually our choice, collectively, ’cause we all, collectively, said, ‘Yeah, we’re all crazy enough to try and do this thing and drive into Sarajevo in the middle of a war and see if we can go and do a gig. And we’re not quite sure when we’re gonna come back.'”

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“But those poor people that went for that concert at the Bataclan had no choice; they were completely, completely innocent in every possible way. And, of course, nobody knew that the place was gonna get targeted. So, unfortunately, there’s a judgment call that people have gotta make, and you have to make it on the best information available”

Iron Maiden are currently on their Book of Souls world tour, with Dickinson back behind the sticks of the plane dubbed Ed Force One after an incident in Chile badly damaged the band’s wings. They headline Download Festival later this year.
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