Vocalists that were auditioned for Bruce Dickinson's replacement in 1993


Out of the Silent Planet
Probably this has been discussed here before, but it is interesting to list some of the candidates.
'Till now, I didn't even know about the other vocalists (I only know about Kiske - well, at least from '93 'till now :D)

As far as I'm convinced, the final 3 singers were:
1. Blaze Bayley
2. Andre Matos (Angra)
3. James LaBrie (Dream Theater)

This can be just an assumption (at the moment I can't remember where I read about that ranking)

From what I have read the other vocalists were:
- Doogie White (Rainbow)
- Steve Grimmett (Grim Reaper)

And what about Michael Kiske (Helloween) - that is somehow like a legend isn't it ? Is he really was meant to be the replacement for Bruce ?

Guys, if you know other vocalists that were auditioned - go and list them !
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Night Prowler

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Blaze couldn't hit the high notes, Matos' voice was too soft and girly and he wasn't British, LaBrie's voice was too soft and he wasn't British.

Don't think Kiske ever auditioned, but also would've been a bad fit, due to his voice being soft, not being British, the accent and the fact that he was a dick back then :p

I wasn't too familiar with Doogie White so after checking this out, I think he would've been better than the above 3. Still far from perfect though.

I also wasn't familiar with Grimmett, also would've been an OK choice based on this.

IMO Ray Gillen would've been an excellent choice. Too bad he was dead and not British :p

*I read an interview once in which Steve Harris said he wouldn't have hired someone who wasn't British, so...


Out of the Silent Planet
*I read an interview once in which Steve Harris said he wouldn't have hired someone who wasn't British, so...

^ I know about this for ages, haha ! Kiske is German so.... maybe Steve Harris had him in mind as a potential replacement.

But neither Andre Matos nor James LaBrie are British, so that is strange.


Eddie dressed as a hill.
JLB did all of TNOTB live with Dream Theater if you want to check that out to see how he would have managed.
The two bands have been linked, such as Bruce saying the Images and Words demos spurred them on during the FOTD writing sessions and then Bruce singing with them a few times before rejoining Maiden, including attempting a few Maiden numbers in 1998...


General of the Dark Army
Staff member
Doogie White for the win, although I think his style was too Bruce-ish for what Steve wanted at that time. I heard him with Michael Schenker a couple of years ago and he was belting it out, so his voice has maybe fared better than Blaze's in the long term. Hallowed isn't ideal for his voice, although tbh I don't think it's terribly easy for Bruce these days either. Bruce's most recent live performances of Hallowed sound very similar to this. As discussed on various other threads, he was also either the wrong height (!) for Steve's liking, or too Scottish. :rolleyes:


Ancient Mariner
Marco Hietala (Tarot, Nightwish...) did send an audition tape; he confirmed this in his his book. Obviously, he wasn't really considered since he wasn't British and all, but I suppose he was one of the strong ones anyway. If I recall correctly, Steve said somewhere that one of those who auditioned was from Scandinavia (strictly speaking, Finland isn't a part of Scandinavia though) and sounded a bit like a mix between Bruce and Dio. It could have been Marco, but of course this cannot be confirmed.


Winner of the 2020 Dumbest Comment Ever Award
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BTW I've never heard that JLB was even considered, let alone a finalist.

And yea I doubt he auditioned. MP would've lost his shit.


Ancient Mariner
That’s 2002 JLB though during one of the low points of his career. In 1994 he would have fit the bill much better.

I listened to some of DT's Maiden covers a while ago and JLB butchered Children of the Damned bad in 2002. I left these videos with the feeling that it must've been a very off time for him. Early 90s LaBrie was definitely something else.