Iron Maiden’s Steve Harris Says Pay-To-Play Is ‘Just Wrong’
When a band is trying to build an audience, going on tour with higher profile artists is a great way to get exposure to a larger audience. Sometimes bands have to pay for that privilege, hence the term "pay to play." That's a practice that Iron Maiden bassist Steve Harris is strongly against.
In an interview with Spain's Metal Journal (via Blabbermouth), Harris says, "The thing that annoys me is that I hate it when people charge bands to play with them. I hate that. I've never done that, ever done that with Maiden, and I never will do it, with Maiden or [my other band] British Lion, because, to me, it's just wrong. A band should get at least some expenses [covered] to play a gig, and they shouldn't have to pay anybody to play, and I've always been really against that. And I've always really just tried to help people out. I think it's really good."
Harris also said, "I feel like I've had a fantastic life and career with music, and I've worked very hard, but maybe I've had a bit of luck along the way. I don't know, but the at the end of the day, it's nice to give something back. And I kind of feel like that with British Lion as well, because even the guys in the band, in British Lion, they're all talented guys, they really deserve some sort of recognition, and up 'till now they really haven't had that. And they're getting a little bit of recognition now, and it's quite rightly so. And I love that."
Harris was asked why he is such a strong supporter of new talent, and he replied, "Well, because we can. I mean, we have an opportunity… Anybody who's in a position Maiden is, or whatever, or any band that can potentially take another band on tour, I think you can help other people, and it doesn't take much effort to do that."
British Lion will be touring in Europe in November and December. To see all their concert dates, go here. The band, whose lineup also includes vocalist Richard Taylor, guitarists Graham Leslie and David Hawkins and drummer Simon Dawson, released their self-titled debut album in 2012.
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