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Sunday, 21 March 2010





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Into the roots of heavy metal:

When music isn’t just for the ears but for your life and soul...

Black Sabbath

Formed in Birmingham, England in 1968, Black Sabbath is considered as the father of pure heavy metal, the original lineup of the band being Tony Iommi (guitar), Ozzy Osbourne (vocals), Terry “Geezer” Butler (bass) and Bill Ward (drums). After forming as a heavy blues band calling themselves the “Polka Tulk Blues Band”, in 1969 the band standing against the norms and the popular music at the time, started creating a sound unique only to them with a heavy, dark flavour for the first time around that era changing the band name into “Black Sabbath”.

Starting with their self titled album “Black Sabbath” in 1970, the band has released 18 studio albums so far selling millions and millions of copies around the world.

Along with the album successes with many multi platinum records, Sabbath has also done tours and concerts around the world. This band has been placed second in the list “100 Greatest Artists of Hard Rock” of VH1 and has been ranked as the “Greatest Metal Band” of all time by the MTV.

Along with that, Black Sabbath has also been named as “the heavy-metal kings of the 70s” by the Rolling Stone magazine. Thus the first root of heavy metal sunk slowly into the hearts and minds of millions of people whose remedy for the soul was music.

Led Zeppelin

In 1968, four guys namely Jimmy Page (guitar), Robert Plant (vocals), John Paul Jones (bass), and John Bonham (drums) joined together in order to form a band in a room below a record store in London, England calling themselves “The Yardbirds”. They came out as the new lineup of the band of that name which Page was involved in before, marking the beginning of the future formation of “Led Zeppelin”.

Later on as the band realized that they did not want to play under the name of “The Yardbirds”, they changed it into “Led Zeppelin”. The first studio track where all four members of Zeppelin were featured was “Jim’s Blues” under the name of “The Yardbirds”. Their debut album named “Led Zeppelin” was then released during their first US tour in 1969. This was the beginning of the second root along with Black Sabbath, further defining the genre which came to be known as “heavy metal”.

After many tours, concerts and albums, in 1980 with a US tour coming ahead after three years, the drummer John Bonham passed away which led to the disbanding of Zeppelin. Being described as “the biggest band of the 70s” and “the heaviest band of all time” by the Rolling Stone magazine and listed 1st in the VH1’s “100 Greatest Artists of Hard Rock” placing black Sabbath 2nd in the list, during the years of Zeppelin, they had performed for crowds which included over 100,000 people and had released 9 studio albums which have sold over 200 million copies around the world.

Deep Purple

In 1967, as an idea of Chris Curtis-the former drummer of the “Searchers”- the search for members for a band which was going to be named the “Roundabout” began. Soon Jon Lord and Ritchie Blackmore became a part of the project.

Though Chris Curtis left after that, the other two were eager to carry on. As a result, soon a complete lineup was formed which included Ritchie Blackmore (guitar), Jon Lord (keyboards), Nick Simper (bass), Ian Paice (drums) and Rod Evans (vocals) and in 1968, as suggested by Ritchie Blackmore the band name was changed into “Deep Purple”.

Three albums were released with the same lineup before Nick Simper and Rod Evans were replaced by Roger Glover and Ian Gillan. This line up is considered as the classic Deep Purple. Albums such as “In Rock”, “Fireball” and “Machine Head” were recorded with this lineup. Altogether Deep Purple has had eight different lineup changes over the years.

Hailing from Hertford, England, Deep Purple has done 25 world tours through the years excluding the upcoming 2010 tour and has released 18 studio albums and 34 live albums selling over 100 million copies around the globe. Deep Purple has also been listed as the “World’s loudest band” in the Guinness Book of World Records.

Judas Priest

The founding members of the band being K. K. Downing and Ian Hill who had known each other from childhood days, they had initially been playing as a power trio with the drummer John Ellis when Al Atkins, the lead vocalist of an ensemble named “Judas Priest”, approached them after the splitting up of the ensemble to be the vocalist of the band. As K. K. Downing was a fan of the original band, the band name was changed in to “Judas Priest” shortly after the Atkins involvement.

Thus in 1969, in Birmingham, England Judas Priest was formed. Since then the band has been involved with several drummers till the year 1989 where Scott Travis joined Priest. In 1973, after Atkins and the drummer involved at the time had left, Bob Halford who later became widely known as Rob Halford and the drummer John Hinch joined the band. With a few other lineup changes over the years, Judas Priest has made a revolution in the history of metal. Having sold over 35 million albums worldwide, they have earned the name “metal Gods” in the metal industry. They have also been named as the second most important band in heavy metal by, the first being Black Sabbath.

Apart from this, the band also deserves credit for the revolutionizing of the heavy metal fashion. Priest has released 16 studio albums and 5 live albums through the years and has been on over 25 tours.

If you are someone who admires and craves the depth and the beauty of the music of the people, then these bands should be on the top of your “must listen” list. May this be a spark to light the fire in your soul to go forth and fathom the beauty of this music.


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