Brought His Spoken
Word Tour To
February 12, 2022
Bruce Dickinson, the lead singer of Iron Maiden, brought his "Evening With" spoken word tour to MGM's Center Stage on Thursday.
Based off his New York Times Bestselling book, What Does This Button Do?, Dickinson told stories about growing up in England, getting kicked out of school, joining a band in high school and ultimately joining Iron Maiden.
Dickinson, dressed in black pants, black t-shirt, black zip-up hoodie and red sneakers, bounded to the front of the stage and said, "Hello Cleveland! I've been waiting a long time to properly say that."
Indeed it has been a long time since Bruce has set foot in Northeastern Ohio. Iron Maiden's last show in the area was at Blossom in 2010. Iron Maiden will be playing in Columbus in October on their Legacy of the Beast Tour.
Bruce is a very good story teller, and his British accent added a bit to his charm and wit.
Stories of being told not to join the school choir by his friend because you "sing God's greatest hits and you dress like a girl and the choir director likes boys who dress like girls." That led him not to try very hard at his audition which eventually earned him a certificate that read: "Dickinson- non singer."
He noted that he got expelled from school for "pissing in the head masters soup." He did end up going to college and earning a degree in Modern History.
While in college, he ended up joining his first professional band called Samson and he told exploits of going on tour around the UK and Europe with the band.
Throughout the show he would show pictures on the screen behind him to help accentuate his stories.
He also told anecdotes of how he joined Iron Maiden, playing in front of one of the largest crowds ever at Rock In Rio, and the poor fashion choices he has made throughout his career. He did mention that the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame has his jacket from the Somewhere In Time Tour and he said, "And quite frankly, I want it back!" Taking a jab at the institution that has yet to induct his legendary band.
Closing out the first part of his story telling set included bits on becoming a pilot, some of his travels and how he survived cancer.
After a twenty-five minute intermission, Bruce returned to answer questions from the audience. Before the show, ushers were walking around with cards where you could write down a question and if selected, he would answer it during the second part of the show.
My question, which was "Do you still fence to stay in shape?" was answered by Dickinson. He said that he is still in fencing groups in the UK but they are separated into different age categories.
Several other questions were answered such as: he still enjoys flying, he would buy a Spitfire plane if he could afford it, his favorite motorcycle is a Triumph, he does plan on making another solo album, he would consider going on a solo tour and he plans to keep on singing as long as people want to hear him.
It was a rare opportunity to see and hear stories from such an iconic front man in an intimate setting.
Now let's hope that Bruce and the boys play in Cleveland soon and the Rock Hall finally inducts them so they can have a permanent home on the shores of Lake Erie.
Review and photos by Greg Drugan