According to The Press Association, IRON MAIDEN frontman Bruce Dickinson will fly around 200 passengers from Newark, New Jersey to Reykjavik for budget airline Iceland Expressin what will mark one of the first flights out of New York following Hurricane Irene.
The singer is a qualified pilot and recently-appointed marketing director with aircraft leasing firm Astraeus Airlines.
Dickinson flew IRON MAIDEN, its 60-member crew and 12 tons of equipment around the world on the band’s own customized Boeing 757, Ed Force One.
Ed Force One is named after MAIDEN‘s infamous mummy mascot “Eddie.”
Dickinson told CNN.com in a 2007 interview, “Aviation’s been kicking around my family for as long as I can remember; my uncle was in the RAF. But I always thought I was too stupid. I was useless at maths and majored in history at university, so I thought history majors don’t become pilots, let alone rock stars. And then our drummer learned to fly so I said if a drummer can learn to fly then anyone can.”
He added, “I never dreamed I would end up flying an airliner. I ended up flying IRON MAIDEN around on tour in a little eight-seat, pressurized, twin-engine plane. Basically we were flying round all the world’s major airports, flew across the Atlantic and back, which was quite an adventure. At the end I thought I really want to fly something bigger, but I can’t afford it — I can’t buy my own 707. If I’m going to do that I have to get a job.”
On how the thrill of piloting a 757 compares to taking to the stage with MAIDEN:
“It’s a different kind of buzz. Obviously you aren’t leaping around the flight deck yelling and screaming, but you have to manage situations… Flying at 35,000 feet is an internal thing, really. Whereas 35,000 people, that’s just showing off.”
On whether he will be hanging up his leopard-skin spandex forever:
“I could never contemplate giving up music. I have to say I’ve always been interested in planes, the only difference is I started to fly the darn things 15 years ago. I don’t see why I should give up either of them. People say ‘Why do you need a second job?’ I say ‘Why do you need to breathe?'”