|08-30-2005, 01:56 PM||#1|
Join Date: Nov 2002
Iron Maiden VS Ozzfest
Highly entertaining and interesting reading to say the least....
OZZFEST, Hang Your Head In Shame: The Backstage Perspective - Aug. 22, 2005 - from www.blabbermouth.net
The manager of a well-known heavy metal band (*NOT* IRON MAIDEN) who attended this past weekend's Ozzfest show at the Hyundai Pavillion in Devore, California has submitted the following first-hand account of the evening that will surely go down as one of the most shameful moments in recent rock history (NOTE: at his request, the author's identity is being protected by BLABBERMOUTH.NET):
"Saturday night's Ozzfest at the Hyundai Pavillion near Los Angeles was a debacle on so many levels, I am still in shock as I write this. As a fan of many of the bands [Saturday] night, one can only hope this was an isolated incident, but sadly, it most likely wasn't. As many of you have heard already, co-headliners and metal legends IRON MAIDEN were pelted with eggs, bottle caps, beer cups, spit on, had people from the Ozzfest camp talking over the PA during their set, had 'Eddie' delayed from his onstage entrance, had members of the [BLACK LABEL SOCIETY] entourage rush the stage with American flags, and had the PA intentionally turned off over six times, all by the OSBOURNE CAMP.
"While it's still unclear as to the exact reasons why the terrorizing started (rumors abounded as to why, with everything from Bruce calling out Ozzy in the U.K. rock magazine Kerrang! on the widely known fact that Ozzy uses a teleprompter, to various vague references said on stage about a 'reality show' at an Ozzfest stop in Detroit), one thing was very clear: The whole thing stunk, and left me, and nearly all of the 40,000+ heavy metal fans in attendance angered and disappointed. Not that behind the scenes bickering or magazine trash-talking is anything new to rock fans, but the shocking lack of professionalism at one of the largest stops in North America in front of 40,000+ spectators, at the hand of the Osbournes was nothing short of disgusting.
"It all began early in the afternoon, when many side stage bands were openly approached in clear view of everyone backstage by Sharon and Kelly Osbourne to 'join them in throwing eggs at IRON MAIDEN this evening.' All the bands were encouraged to rally the other side-stage bands to do so. Members and/or friends of the hardcore band BURY YOUR DEAD were seen actively trying to encourage other side-stage bands to 'join in the fun.' Thankfully, many side stage bands angrily declined.
"Later that evening, as IRON MAIDEN came on stage, their intro was interrupted by [BLACK LABEL SOCIETY] hanger-on and biker wannabe Big Dave, who was at the soundboard loudly chanting 'Ozzy, Ozzy' over the PA. MAIDEN opened their set and the entire band was pelted from the front row with eggs, beer, beer cups, spit, and various other objects by an Ozzfest-credentialed, bandana-wearing, Osbourne entourage. IRON MAIDEN, ever the professionals, continued through their set, and by the time they launched into their second song, 'The Trooper', Bruce changed into a civil war-era, red coat and began waving a Union Jack — British flag. Then, someone in, or associated with, BLACK LABEL SOCIETY tried to rush the stage waving and American Flag with the words 'Don't **** with Ozzy' scrawled across his bare chest. He was tackled and beaten by MAIDEN crew and promptly thrown off stage.
"As 'The Trooper' ended, frontman Bruce Dickinson, with characteristic spunk, launched into a scathing attack on the people terrorizing his band, calling them 'a sorry excuse for an Ozzy Osbourne fan,' and wondering aloud how, 'three dozen eggs could get snuck into the front row of Ozzfest by people with Ozzfest laminates?' Though he never named names, all in attendance could understand who he was referring to. Nicko McBrain ran up to the front asking Bruce to hold on while he cleaned egg off his drums. He then stated the the next song wouldn't be heard on 'Your local co******ing corporate radio station, wouldn't be seen on MTV anymore, and sure as hell wouldn't be played on a ****ing reality TV show,' met by a huge roar from the crowd.
"During the song 'Hallowed Be Thy Name', Bruce, after only the first two lines, stopped singing and ran to the front row, firing back at his terrorizers, saying 'That asswipe right there, with the curly hair, the ****ing glasses, and Ozzfest laminate throw his ****ing ass out of here right now. It's gonna take more than eggs to stop IRON MAIDEN, and if it wasn't for a lawsuit, I'd rip your ****ing head off right now, you piece of ****!!!!' He had the various attackers ejected and continued with a blistering version of the song until right before the big sing long at the end, the PA was INTENTIONALLY cut off. When it came back, Bruce launched into another scathing attack saying that they were supposed to play a shorter set than normal today, and only play 55 minutes, but IRON MAIDEN can't drive 55, or play 55, and were going to play our whole ****ing set tonight.
"The band endured six more 'PA cuts,' including having the power to their amps turned off at one point. When the PA would come back on, they would simply launch into the next IRON MAIDEN classic, never missing a beat. Frankly, with every PA cut, the band just got meaner and meaner, playing each new song with an anger and a fire that was at times, simply astonishing to watch. Bruce began the introduction to IRON MAIDEN with a speech about 'Your constitution has something about 'We The People.' Well let me tell you, the only reason we are up here tolerating this bull****, is because of you people. You have been amazing Glen Helen, and there are A LOT of IRON MAIDEN fans here tonight,' eliciting a huge roar from the crowd. He continued, 'It's gonna take more than eggs to stop IRON MAIDEN, NOTHING is going to come between us and our fans, and it will be death before dishonor, this is 'Iron ****ing Maiden',' which was greeted by a thunderous applause. During 'Iron Maiden', longtime MAIDEN mascot Eddie was purposely delayed from making his entrance, making a brief appearance at the end, and one could only wonder as to how. As the band closed there set with a furious version of 'Sanctuary', the PA was again cut only to have Big Dave repeatedly chant 'Ozzy' over the PA, while the band tried to say goodbye to their fans. The now-furious crowd angrily drowned him out with chants of 'MAIDEN, MAIDEN.'
"Then, not 10 seconds after MAIDEN left the stage, Sharon Osbourne walked on stage and predictably, tried to give MAIDEN some fake, half-hearted praise about how they'd like to 'thank IRON MAIDEN,' and what a wonderful band IRON MAIDEN are, and how their crew were 'fantastic,' then sneering, 'But Bruce Dickinson is a prick.' The entire crowd, now fed up with the entire affair, began loudly booing her, pelting her with beer cups, and yelling 'b****.' She tried to carry on, adding that 'Bruce had disrespected Ozzfest,' only to be drowned out by an ocean of boos, and soaked with beer. She slammed the microphone down and stormed off stage. Many in the crowd, fed up with what they had just witnessed, especially considering that many had come solely for MAIDEN, and paid upwards of $150 to do so, left in droves. SABBATH played to maybe half the audience that was there prior, and seemed stagnate compared to the band preceding them. As a huge fan of SABBATH, I honestly couldn't stand to watch them.
"I've seen IRON MAIDEN probably 10 times in my life, and frankly this was the very best IRON MAIDEN show I've had the pleasure of witnessing. You DON'T want to **** with IRON MAIDEN. The more the Osbournes tried to **** with them, the better they got! IRON MAIDEN was on ****ing overdrive! Considering the amount of terrorizing and intimidation that IRON MAIDEN had to deal with at the hands of the Osbournes and the other side stage and main stage bands participating, they were the consummate professionals. They had the crowd in the palms of their hands, and IRON MAIDEN and Bruce Dickinson proved beyond a shadow of a doubt why they are the greatest metal band on earth right now, and quite possibly, the classiest, too.
"The Osbournes are drunk with power. Shame on them, and shame on ANY of the bands that participated in the terrorizing and intimidation. It was disgusting display, that NO BAND should have had to endure, but especially a legend like IRON MAIDEN. That fact that it happened in front of 40,000+ people, at a Clear Channel-sponsored event, while Hyundai Pavilion Security turned a blind eye and let the Osbourne camp pelt one of the main headlining bands with eggs, beer, and spit, was simply inexcusable.
"I will proudly be attending next year's MAIDEN fest, and as much as I hate to say it, I can't bring myself to spend another dime on the Osbournes.
"Ozzfest, hang your head in shame."
|08-30-2005, 01:58 PM||#2|
Join Date: Nov 2002
More on this metal soap opera.....
The following letter was posted over on Blabbermouth.net, and is supposedly Sharon's rebutle to Iron Maiden manager Rod Smallwood. It sounds legit, however, I am unable to confirm the source from where it originated:
I found your statement to be completely void of the facts that led up to Saturday's show. Your press release was written like an old-time '80s manager, trying to use every opportunity to try and sell the record and the upcoming shows instead of just dealing with the truth.
These are the facts:
You claim to have been in the business for 30 years and have been to hundreds of gigs, but can you tell me how many times you have heard of an opening band talking sh*t about the headliner during their set and getting away with it? Not only is Ozzy the headliner, but he is also the man who is paying your band $185,000 a night. We gave IRON MAIDEN a chance to play to the biggest audiences they have ever played to in the U.S.A. We accommodated them with their stage set and at the band's request we even scoured the audience for people wearing IRON MAIDEN t-shirts and brought them down front during their set to make them feel more comfortable. Tell me, what other headliner would do that? Unfortunately those gestures were completely lost on Bruce Dickinson who for over 20 shows continually berated Ozzy and Ozzfest during his set.
Over the last 10 years of Ozzfest, we have worked with over 200 bands. None of them were ever disrespectful to Ozzy or any of the other bands on the tour. But for 20 shows we were forced to hear Dickinson's nightly outbursts from the stage: 'When we come back to America, we'll be back with a proper sound system,' or "We won't be playing the same old songs every night (like SABBATH),' 'We don't need a teleprompter (like Ozzy)' and 'We don't need a reality show to be legit (again, like Ozzy).' Night after night we heard his complaints from the stage about how 'corporate' the venues were and how 'outrageous' the ticket prices were. Strangely enough, if you want to get a general admission ticket to stand in a field to see IRON MAIDEN at Reading this weekend it's going to cost you over $120. I would say that's very pricey, wouldn't you?
When an artist comes on stage and says he's not playing the 55 minutes that he was allotted and that he is going to play for as long as he wants (cutting into SABBATH's set), I'm not going to let that happen. Dickinson was under the delusion that the 46,000 people in San Bernardino had come only to see IRON MAIDEN. He even proclaimed 'This is not the Ozzfest, This is Maidenfest.' I guess no one told him that we have an audience of 45,000 to 53,000 people every year in San Bernardino.
Here's another fact for you. Bruce Dickinson's own band was embarrassed by him. IRON MAIDEN leader, Steve Harris, even came to Ozzy's dressing room to apologize to Ozzy for Bruce's behavior before MAIDEN took the stage in San Bernardino.
It's shameful that Dickinson felt he had the right to air his issues publicly onstage every night as a way to boost his own ego. Dickinson never once came up to Ozzy and me to voice any concerns. He certainly had the opportunity to do so every night. If he wasn't able to show us that courtesy then why should I give him the respect to air my grievances with him in private? Ozzy's only interaction with Dickinson was on the first night of the tour. Ozzy, being the true gentleman that he is, passed Bruce in the hall and said 'Good luck and have a great show.' Unfortunately Dickinson felt the need to turn his back to Ozzy and walked away. Frankly, Dickinson got what he deserved. We had to listen to his bullsh*t for five straight weeks. He only had to suffer a couple of eggs on the head.
On closing, yes, I did cut IRON MAIDEN's sound. This is the way I look at it: Ozzfest is our tour. We built it into something that's lasted 10 years now. We've been responsible for breaking many new bands and resurrecting the careers of former superstars. Part of our success stems from the fact that when a band is on Ozzfest we treat them with nothing but kindness and respect just as if we had invited them into our home. You can ask all of the bands who have been on the tour. They all describe it as the 'ultimate summer camp.' It's like one big family. Unfortunately Dickinson doesn't have the manners to realize that when you are invited into someone's home, are seated at their dinner table, are eating their food and drinking their wine, you shouldn't talk disrespectfully about them (Ozzy, BLACK SABBATH and Ozzfest), otherwise you just might get your ass handed to you. Every action has a reaction. Was Dickinson so naïve to think that I was going to let him get away with talking sh*t about my family night after night? I don't think he realizes who he's dealing with. I will not endure behavior like this from anyone.
I know you would love to keep talking about this because this is the most press that IRON MAIDEN has had in the U.S. in twenty years, but let's move on, shall we?
The 'Real' Iron Maiden
...additionally, RockConfidential.com recently asked Zakk Wylde what his views were on the whole incident. He had the following to say:
This is fact and this is reality. It's not the guys in MAIDEN and their crew. They're a beautiful bunch of guys. Bruce Dickinson every night would be saying 'Ozzy sucks,' 'Ozzfest blows,' 'Corporate America sucks,' 'America sucks,' and all this other crap. He was bagging on America and bagging on Ozz. Ozzy's the godfather of my son. It wasn't like Bruce said those things one night. This happened every night on the 'fest. If you got signed by George Steinbrenner to play for the Yankees and every day you say, 'Steinbrenner sucks,' 'Yankee Stadium blows,' 'I can't stand playing for this team — it sucks ass,' then why are you playing for the Yankees? Shut your ****in' pie hole. All he had to do was go up there, play for an hour, whoop some ass and go home. The only thing Ozzy's ever done was given MAIDEN a stage to come over and play to the biggest audience in the summer. Ozzy would give you the shirt off his back. He'd never do a bad thing to anybody. Sharon didn't like him talking about her husband like that and talking about Ozzfest like that. It's just not kosher. The bottom line is Bruce was being a wad! You act like a ****, you get treated like a ****! That's what happened. He's definitely not one of the guys. Everybody in their band and crew are cool. I love MAIDEN but he's talking about the godfather of my son, he's bagging America and all the troops are fighting overseas defending our way of life and freedom and fighting terrorism. This dillwad's taking American money and then he's gonna go home. At the same time he thinks he can badmouth America. It's not cool. He got pelted with a batch of eggs and they turned the power off on him! Go home!
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