Established in 1995
Higher-on-Maiden are the Original and Finest Tribute to Iron
Over the years they have appeared
in over 13 countries, the band members have actually played on
stage with Steve Harris, Adrian Smith, Nicko McBrain, Paul
Dianno & Blaze Bayley, and now in 2009 are still going as strong
This is the bands story so far
(formerly Hi-on Maiden) was born in September 1995, when three
friends, ADRIAN SWIFT,
QUICKO McBRAIN and Mr.
Hayfield, in a band called "Who are the Saints?", started
jamming Iron Maiden songs while in rehearsals. Adrian Swift had
been playing Maiden songs on the guitar since a very early age,
so he knew them like the back of his hand. After several similar
rehearsals, they thought the Maiden songs were sounding pretty
good, and seeing as there wasn't an Iron Maiden tribute band on
the circuit, decided they should focus their attention on this.
Mr. Hayfield wasn't really into
doing the Maiden tribute, so he left. Adrian and Quicko roped in
their mate SIMON BRADLEY,
to play the other guitar part and started advertising for a bass
player. After auditioning a couple of bass players,
SPEED HARRIS joined
the band. The music was now sorted, all they needed was a
singer. The position was filled by
ELIAS ABBOUD, a
student from Lebanon over here studying economics at Birmingham
university. The line up was now complete. They played several
gigs with this line up, until Elias had to return home to
Lebanon early 1996. The band advertised for a new singer, and
after several auditions, PHIL
WOOLHAMS joined the band.
Shortly after Phil's arrival, Simon took a
job Writing for "GUITARIST MAGAZINE" which
meant him moving to Bath. Luckily, DAVE
HURRY (Python), a friend of Mr.Hayfields, was on hand to fill
his shoes.... Phil was only with the band for about 6 months, but during
this time they established their name by playing lots of headline gigs
including an outdoor festival. Building on their growing reputation, the
band booked a headline U.K. tour for the tail end of '96. Phil had
commitments with another band, Wormhole, so once again, they were forced
to look for another singer……..
Adverts were placed in the national music
press and more auditions took place (some of which were humorous to say
the least!!!! One guy pulled his trousers down and run around the studio
screaming 'Running Free' in a high pitched voice…….but that's another
story!). Eventually, they came across
JAMIE GIBSON. He had the right image and a decent voice. The
U.K. tour was a HUGE success, including a gig at The Royal Standard in
PAUL DI ANNO got up on stage to do a few songs with the
This line up remained stable well into
'97 with the band doing loads more gigs around the country. Until the
vocalist (again!), Jamie, decided he was going leave.
Then came a bizarre stroke of good
fortune. BIG DICKINSON, from
Newcastle, had seen the band's poster in Trillians and decided to
contact them on the off chance that the band was looking for a singer or
a drummer!!!!! Perfect timing!!!! He came and auditioned in that same
week. The band were blown away. He was perfect! A fantastic voice, top
bloke and a Maiden fan through and through.
In 1997, the band appeared on Live TV's
show THE SHAM ROCK QUIZ and on
the same day after recording, Speed and Big met
BRUCE DICKINSON and ADRIAN
SMITH for the first time. Bruce and Adrian listened to their
demo tape that had been recorded a few weeks previously and couldn't
believe just how much the band sounded like
IRON MAIDEN. Bruce actually
commented "You sound just like me!!!!" and "I always wondered what I
sang on that bit!!!"
In 1999 the band were asked to go to
London to record the music for an IRON
MAIDEN tribute album.. The album featured famous singers such
as PAUL DI ANNO (Maiden), STEVE OVERLAND (FM), DOOGIE WHITE (Rainbow)
and GARY BARDEN (MSG) along with guitarists such as PAUL QUINN (Saxon).
The album went on to sell over 50,000 copies in America alone and many
more thousands world wide.
By far the bands biggest break came
when they were contacted by IRON MAIDEN,
and asked if they would perform at the official convention in the year
2000. Of course, the band jumped at the chance! It was indeed an honour.
On the 17th of June 2000, the band took the stage at the London Astoria
and wowed over 850 Maiden fans with a superb live show which included
NICKO MCBRAIN guesting on the
drums for GHOST OF THE NAVIGATOR !!!! Straight after the show, The Band
were asked if they would go on tour with the
IRON MAIDEN FAN CLUB in 2001, playing shows all across Europe.
They didn't need to be asked twice.
Since then they have not looked