Derek Scancarelli of Forbes spoke with Iron Maiden’s guitarist Adrian Smith about his reaction when he first found out that his bandmate, singer Bruce Dickinson, had been diagnosed with throat cancer back in late 2014.
The guitarist said:
“Nothing can prepare you for something like that. It was an incredibly dark time. I suppose my immediate thought was that he’d probably beat it because he’s that kind of person. Plus, the first thing we do is find out the facts of his cancer: what stage is it? That’s very important.
”We found out it was treatable and in a relatively early stage. Although I think he’d had it when we were doing the album ‘The Final Frontier’ . I was there when he was doing vocals. I could hear it in his voice sometimes; he didn’t sound quite right. But we found out it was treatable. We tried to give him a bit of support, but really, what can you do? He had to go through it. He did and he beat it. It was quite incredible.
”He’s got such a strength of character. He’s never negative about anything. He’s always a very positive person. ‘If I can put my mind to it, I can do anything,’ sort of person. And he usually does. But we didn’t know about the band. Who knows about these things? But I thought he’d probably recover and thank God he did.”