In a new Interview with Washington D.C. radio station WTOP, Iron Maiden drummer Nicko McBrain talked about early days.
“[In] 1979, they did their very first European date in Belgium. I was playing in a band MCKITTY and we were on the same bill with them. I got to see IRON MAIDEN‘s very first European show out of England. That was the night when I really got to know the band. That was the beginning, that day we played the show in Belgium with IRON MAIDEN and NAZARETH were the headline band.
Steve saw I did an impromptu drum solo and a bass solo, because the guitar player’s rig went down. Steve remembered my solo and said it was one of the best solos he’d ever seen, and he’s not a solo guy, as you know.
You’d very rarely hear Steve do a solo and you don’t get a drum solo anymore. But that set me up to be the drummer when Clive started — he wasn’t playing too well, and his heart wasn’t in it anymore. The first drummer that came to mind was me. I was in the right place at the right time.”
He further added:
“The late Clive Burr was a great mate and a fantastic drummer,”
“He just lost the heart for it. I took his drum stool. The funny thing is, I was playing in a band in 1980 for a couple of years, a band called TRUST. When I left TRUST to join MAIDEN, and Clive actually went and did an album with TRUST that next year. We kind of swapped drum stools.
It’s quite a weird story. Not a lot of people know that, and now they do. I went off and I’m the second-longest surviving member of IRON MAIDEN. It’s Steve, Dave, then me. Not Bruce [Dickinson, vocals]. Not Adrian [Smith, guitar]. Because both of them had a hiatus from the band.
It’s been an absolutely incredible, insane wonderful, glorious, biting fingernails, journey. There’s never really been bad times with the guys, except when we lost a couple of engines on a very expensive airplane a few years ago. [Laughs]”