Saturday, November 25, 2006

Missed Concert? No More! (or Roy Z.)

Back in '03 sometime, I was all set to go see Rob Halford and band in San Francisco touring behind the Crucible album. I ended up getting a pretty bad case of the flu and ended up not going. I had seen Halford open for Iron Maiden at the Shoreline Amphitheater back in 2000, and what a show! The icing on the cake for the '03 Halford show was that producer Roy Z. was part of the touring band! I actually had seen Roy back in '97 over at Slim's in San Francisco when the Tribe Of Gypsies (three fifths of it anyway) was the backing band for Bruce Dickinson when he toured behind the excellent Accident Of Birth album. For that particular concert, I had no idea who Roy Z. was and my only concern really was to see Adrian Smith, so I did not pay attention to Roy and the rest of the band. I ended up getting a recording of the show, so I don't feel like I missed out that badly since I can at least hear Roy's playing too. TANGENT AHEAD!! The ticket listed "Geezer" as the opening act. I did not think much of it and assumed it was just some inconsequential band. You can imagine my surprise when THE Geezer walks onstage! I told the girl I went with "HEY! THAT'S GEEZER!!!" She just looked at me like saying "duh! that's what it says on the ticket!"

Anyway, I became a Roy Z. fan and sought out all of the Tribe Of Gypsies albums - no easy task since they are all out-of-print Japan-only releases. I got them and not only did the band become one of my favorites, Roy became one of my favorite guitar players too. As it turns out, he has also produced some of my favorite albums by Halford and Dickinson, as well as Judas Priest! (Angel Of Retribution). I was pretty bummed out when I couldn't go to the show. The Tribe played a show in southern California back in July, but unfortunately I was on a family vacation, and just now while checking for links for this post, I found out the Tribe played another show last Saturday! Why heck!? I could have gone to THAT! So much for being on the Tribe's mailing list.

Now, here's another tangent. Currently, Iron Maiden have settled on AOR producer Kevin Shirley. I sense that they very badly want to have a relationship with a producer like they did with Martin Birch, but at the same time they still hope at this stage to perhaps get radio airplay. Kevin Shirley is a fine producer and has made really good albums with Maiden. As good as they are though, I wouldn't go as far as calling them classics (maybe A Matter Of Life And Death will get there). Martin Birch produced their classic albums, but Martin Birch was not an AOR producer! He was a Metal producer (Deep Purple, Rainbow, Sabbath for example), so what Maiden need, in my opinion is another Metal producer, who like Martin, has a track record of producing classic Metal albums (Chemical Wedding and Resurrection anyone?). The answer is Roy Z.! If it is indeed true that their next studio album will be their last, let Roy Z. produce it and have them go out with a bang! It will probably never happen though for some silly Steve Harris reason like he's not British, he's not old enough, or because he produced Bruce Dickinson's albums. A pity, really. Come on Steve and Rod. You're not bankrolling The Sanctuary Group anymore (here too). Priest got Roy, how about you guys?

Anyway, I just got a hold of a video of a Halford show from 2003 in Japan. The video is really good for the most part, and the audio is even better! Now I can watch a Halford show with Roy in it. He's featured quite a lot, so that's cool. Now I can't feel like I missed out that badly!

Oh, and the Tribe Of Gypsies need a guy like me as their singer. Big original Santana band fan, native Spanish speaker (fluent AND correct grammar user!), great voice (yeah!), and quite handsome! :) Oh boy... here are a couple of screen shots from the Halford Japan 2003 DVD I got:

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