According to a 1996 Kerrang-article the sign below can be found at the front door of
"It is forbidden for vagrants, beggars, itinerant musicians and
females of doubtful reputation to enter these premises.
-May 1901 -By Order"
When Bruce was in Samson the band made a never released
song/improvisation called "The Biggest lay In Town" about one of their groupies.
Bruce later used the lyrics for Iron Maiden's "Nodding Donkey Blues"
that was on the flip of the "Be quick or be dead"-single in 1992.
In the horror B-movie "Incubus" Bruce's first real band,
Samson, appears with a clip of the song "Vice versa" taken from their
film "Biceps of steel"
Below are some screenshots from the movie.
If you spot a Skunkworks CD with the cat# sircd062 you have
stumbled upon a very rare misspress which, when played, will
present you with six songs of Turklish folk music! The packaging
is exactly as the proper CD with face print on the disc.
Talking of movies, in "A nightmare on Elm street 5" Bruce
contributed to the soundtrack with the song "Bring your daughter to
the slaughter". It won a Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Original Song.
This did, however, not stop Iron Maiden from recording it for their
"No prayer for the dying" album the following year.
The low voices in the beginning of "Machine Men" on The chemical
Wedding is Bruce reading extracts from the yellow pages!!!
Skunkworks bassist Chris Dale was sometimes seen
with a leek sticking out of his trouser pockets. This was just because
he's a Walesman and the leek accompanied with a dafodil is in the
Wales national emblem. "It's a comfort to have leek in the pocket
in cases of homesickness", Chris explains.
In the All the young dudes video, when Bruce jumps up from the table in the café,
he actually spilled a whole cup of tea on bassist Andy Carr. Andy was not so amused.
Bruce getting up from the table. Andy sitting on the far right.
The turned over cup above Janick's elbow
Early 1996 there was a word out that Bruce had started this
airline-buisness, "Mile high airlines" where amourous couples
could pay money for the opportunity to have a shag at high altitude.
In various newpapers around Europe there were articles with pictures
of Bruce in a cockpit and him giving an insight in the story. On MTV
they even had a phone number that could be dialled to book a
highflying shag with Bruce's company.
What they didn't know was that it was all intended as a
joke on April Fools Day. Bruce even decided that he shouldn't do the
joke but some people obviously got hold of it and the word was out.
I wonder where that phone number that MTV presented led...
The number was 0181 995 5124
Around 1992, Bruce bought a dalek from an advert in Loot, a free ads paper.
The daleks are the arch enemies of The Doctor in British TV-series "Dr Who".
Bruce allegedly paid a four figure amount for it.
"By the pricking of my thumbs /
Something wicked this way comes" from
the second chorus of Book of Thel is actually a quote
from William Shakespeare's Macbeth.
On the B-side to the "All the young dudes" single there is an
acoustic track called "Darkness be my friend". Now, that's
all common knowledge, but what many people don't know is that the
flutelike sound in the "solo" is played by none other than Don
Airey on keyboards, former member of Rainbow and other classic
The film "The planet of the apes" (The original 1968 version,
not Tim Burton's) inspired Bruce and director
Howard Greenhalgh to find a special place to shoot the video for
"Tears of the dragon" in. Bruce wanted the same feel as in
"Planet of the apes" where, in the very last shot, you see half the
Statue of Liberty sticking out of the ground, and they ended up at
shooting the video at the "Durdle door" in Dorset, England.
Last scene in "The Planet of the Apes" (1968)
Durdle Door in Dorset, England
The song "Solar Confinement" on the Skunkworks album was originally
called "Astral parlour confinement" and "Headswitch" off the same
album had the working title "Fastgarden", since it was a fast song
in the Soundgarden vein.
There actually was a "Slowgarden" as well but this song was never
finished and since the Skunkworks has split-up it isn't very likely
to believe that the song ever will be finished.
In an episode of the long running british soap opera "Coronation Street"
first broadcast on January 4 2016 on ITV
a copy of "Balls to Picasso" can be seen on a shelf in the newsagents The Kabin.
One of The Bruce Dickinson Wellbeing Network's most precious
pieces of trivia is that when Bruce and the lads were rehearsing
for the "Airraid over Europe 2002"-tour Bruce had to re-learn the
lyrics for "Broken", "Silver wings" and "Inner space" and Chris
(Dale, bassist) printed the lyrics from THIS WEBSITE for Bruce use
The track "Armchair Hero" (Back from the edge CD-single) was
originally called "Share it or lose it" and was played on the 1995
part of the Balls to Picasso tour.
Bruce's all time hero Arthur Brown is reading pieces of poetry
in between some songs on "The chemical wedding"-album.
These are in fact excerpts from the poem "The Book Of Thel"
by 18th century poet William Blake.
The intro and outro tapes that was used on the Skunkworks-tour
was lifted from the obscure "Captain Lockheed and the
Starfighters" album by Robert Calvert. The intro was the track
"Catch a falling starfighter" and the outro was
"The Gremlin II", which, by the way, has Arthur Brown on guest
Balls to Picasso underwent a couple of title changes before it
was released. At one point it was going to be called "Laughing in the
hiding bush" after the track on the album and there even was a short
lived idea that the album was going to be called "A thousand points
of light" but Bruce thought it sounded too pretentious.
Dickinson's ensemble of guitarist Alex Dickson, bassplayer Chris Dale,
and drummer Alessandro Elena made history as the first band to play a
live rock show in Sarajevo since civil war erupted at the end of 1991.
The band was invited to Bosnia by the British UN Forces.
During their stay in Sarajevo they became a much closer unit as a
band and the whole thing inspired Bruce to write the song
"Inertia". He had seen this image (up left), on a placard for
Radio ZID, which saw woman trying to push a wall with her head. Bruce
got the idea for the song because he felt that the picture showed what
really was inertia.
Bruce was inspired to write the song "Dive dive dive" based on
characters from the BBC series "Captain Pugwash".
Bruce planned to use some samples from it as an intro to the song
but didn't get the permission so he had to do the talking himself.
"Seaman Staines" mentioned in the lyrics allude to the series.
The occurance of a "Seaman Staines" in the show is an urban myth, though.
Seaman Staines is also mentioned in the Iron Maiden track "Run silent, run deep",
off the "No prayer for the dying" album. This song, though
released half a year later, was the first of the two.
In 1992 Bruce was involved in writing a movie script on occultist Aleister Crowley.
"Man of sorrows" from the "Accident of birth" album
was written during that period and intended for the soundtrack of the movie,
hence the Crowley references in the lyrics. The movie was shelved
but the script was later reworked and used for the "Chemical Wedding"-movie
which premiered in 2008.