Former IRON MAIDEN frontman Paul Di’Anno will embark on a tour of Brazil, dubbed “Running Free Again”, in September/October — his first since being jailed in March after he falsely collected U.K. government benefits by claiming he suffered nerve damage to his back that prevented him from working. Backing the singer on all dates will be the Brazilian metal band SCELERATA consisting of Fábio Juan (vocais), Magnus Wichmann (guitar), Renato Osorio (guitar), Gustavo Strapazon (bass) and Francis Cassol (drums). The trek is expected to run between September 15 and October 16 (dates subject to change).
Says Di’Anno: “Back home again, and looking forward to ‘Running Free Again’, and seeing you all in a few weeks. Thanks for all the birthday wishes too. Also, relieved to say, I managed not to drop the soap! :)”
Di’Anno, 52, was sentenced to nine months for swindling £45,000 (approximately $72,000) in benefits. He was told he would serve at least four and a half months of the sentence behind bars before being released on conditional bail.
D’Anno was reportedly busted when investigators at Department Of Work And Pensions (DWP) received an anonymous tip that he was still singing. They then found videos and pictures on YouTube and the rocker’s own web site of Di’Anno “energetically leaping around on stage, singing to fans around the world.”
Di’Anno completed his first North American tour in early 2010, 17 years after he was deported following a prison term for guns and drug offenses.
“In 1991 I did a couple of stints in jail for guns and drugs,” Di’Anno explained in a 2010 interview. “I was stupid. But after I’d done my stretch they still treated me like a criminal. And I was — but I wasn’t that bad. So I didn’t feel good about America. The government, not the people.
“Prison was tough, but I’m tougher. I was nobody’s bitch, put it that way. You’ve got to do it; otherwise people will walk all over you.”