Happy Birthday Adrian Smith! (Feb 27, 1957)

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(Title image by DALL-E 3)

Hi WA Friends!

Here's another post that has nothing to do with your success in online marketing, but it fits with my guitar niche, and there are many musicians and music aficionados at WA who I think will enjoy it.

If that's you, it's "fun time!" ๐Ÿ˜Ž

I'm publishing this one day early because tomorrow will be a little crazy for me, and I might not be online except for cellular. I'll be at some musical marketing festivities along with my friends from the local Guitar Center.

Please help me celebrate the birthday of one of the great Metal players, Adrian Smith, whose name has become synonymous with the band Iron Maiden!

I was living in Italy when I heard Iron Maiden's first album, which was released in 1980, and I couldn't believe how good it was!

Adrian Smith

Some Interesting History

Born on February 27, 1957, in Hackney, London, Adrian's interest in music was sparked by his early exposure to rock bands, which ultimately led to his passion for the guitar. His formative years were spent honing his skills and playing in various bands, most notably Urchin, which he joined in his teens and where he began to develop his signature style.

The pivotal moment in Adrian's career came in 1980 when he was invited to join Iron Maiden, replacing guitarist Dennis Stratton. This transition marked the beginning of an era that would see him contributing to some of the band's most iconic albums, such as "The Number of the Beast," "Piece of Mind," and "Powerslave." His ability to weave melodic phrases with aggressive riffs became a hallmark of Maiden's sound, particularly in his collaborations with fellow guitarist Dave Murray.

Unfortunately, Adrian's time with Iron Maiden was not without its hiatuses. In 1990, he left the band to pursue other musical ventures, including his solo project, ASAP (Adrian Smith and Project), and later, the band Psycho Motel. These endeavors showcased a broader range of his musical talents and interests, from the more melodic rock sound of ASAP to the darker tones of Psycho Motel.

In a twist that delighted fans worldwide, Adrian returned to Iron Maiden in 1999, rejoining at the same time as vocalist Bruce Dickinson. This reunion sparked a new creative period for the band, with Smith's songwriting and guitar work featuring prominently on subsequent albums. His contributions to the band's later works, including "Brave New World" and "The Book of Souls," have solidified his position as a key architect of Iron Maiden's enduring legacy.

Beyond Iron Maiden, Adrian has continued to explore other musical avenues, including collaborations with various artists and his more recent venture, Smith/Kotzen, with Richie Kotzen. This project, in particular, has allowed Adrian to delve into a blend of blues, rock, and soul, further showcasing his versatility as a guitarist and songwriter.

The Artwork and Album Covers!

Any Iron Maiden fan knows that the band has some of the best commercial artwork, many images of which were used to create their album covers.

Here's a collage that demonstrates a sample of some of the artwork.

Now, check out a close-up of just a few of the Iron Maiden album covers (not in recorded order)! The creature featured on these album covers is affectionately called "Ed the Head" by the band members. Lol

Here is their "Piece of Mind" album, which was autographed by the band and given to me as a gift from a friend. It is hanging on the wall in my music studio. Sorry for the reflections.

I did meet the band members many years ago and still have the backstage pass somewhere in a box of memorabilia.

Equipment Used (for all our WA Gearheads Lol)

(compliments of me and ChatGPT)


  • Fender Stratocaster: Smith's primary choice, known for its versatility and distinctive tone. He has used several models over the years, including a custom-built Strat with a Floyd Rose tremolo system.
  • Jackson Guitars: In the mid-80s, Smith was often seen with a Jackson Soloist, which became one of his iconic instruments during this period.
  • Gibson Les Paul: Used occasionally for specific songs that require the rich, warm tones characteristic of Les Paul guitars.


  • Marshall Amplifiers: Smith has predominantly used Marshall amps throughout his career, favoring the JCM800 models for their raw power and classic rock tone.
  • Mesa Boogie: For certain studio recordings and live settings, Smith has also incorporated Mesa Boogie amps to achieve a more diverse sound palette.


  • Dunlop Cry Baby Wah: A staple in Smith's setup, used to add expression to solos and lead lines.
  • Boss Chorus Ensemble: Utilized for thickening clean tones and adding depth to rhythm parts.
  • Ibanez Tube Screamer: Often used to boost the signal and add a touch of overdrive to solos.

International Travel Arrangements

Adrian and the rest of Iron Maiden take their world tours on the road in their own private jet, "Ed Force One."

"Ed Force One"

The jet carries the band, supporting personnel, and all their stage equipment. It is piloted by none other than Bruce Dickinson, the band's singer, who also has an international commercial pilot license!

Honors and Awards

Adrian Smith, along with Iron Maiden, has received numerous honors and awards throughout his career.

Here's a brief overview of some of Iron Maiden's achievements that Adrian Smith contributed to:

  • Inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (2009)
  • Received the Metal Hammer Golden Gods Award for "Best Live Band" (2016, 2021)
  • Awarded the Kerrang! Award for "Inspiration" (2011)
  • Won the Ivor Novello Award for "Best International Song" for "Fear of the Dark" (1993)
  • Achieved multiple gold and platinum album certifications worldwide
  • Held the Guinness World Record for "Most Consecutive Live Shows in Different Countries" (2003)
  • Featured in Madame Tussauds' Rock Circus wax museum (2011)


Adrian Smith's discography is both vast and influential. If you're only going to listen to one, I recommend "The Number of the Beast" (1982), which sold almost 20 million copies, worldwide!

Despite the album's name, this is not a Satanic band, and I am a Christian man. I enjoy Iron Maiden for the incredible guitar work that goes into the songs they write.
(discography compliments of ChatGPT)

Iron Maiden:

  • Killers (1981)
  • The Number of the Beast (1982)
  • Piece of Mind (1983)
  • Powerslave (1984)
  • Somewhere in Time (1986)
  • Seventh Son of a Seventh Son (1988)
  • Brave New World (2000)
  • Dance of Death (2003)
  • A Matter of Life and Death (2006)
  • The Final Frontier (2010)
  • The Book of Souls (2015)
  • Senjutsu (2021)


  • Rocky Mountain Way (1998) - Single
  • Janie's Got a Gun (2006) - Single


  • She's Got a Devil's Grin (1978) - Single
  • Play It Loud (1979) - Single


  • Best of Smith/Kotzen (1994) - Compilation
  • Smith/Kotzen (1991)
  • Native (1994)
  • Better Days... & Nights (1996)

Psycho Motel:

  • State of Mind (1996)
  • Welcome to the World (1997)


  • Silverflame (1990)
  • BBC Radio 1 Rock On Session 1990 (2015) - Live EP

Guest Appearances:

  • Bruce Dickinson - Accident of Birth (1993)
  • Primal Rock Rebellion - Primal Rock Rebellion (2011)
  • Various artists - The Best of British Steel (2014)


  • Adrian Smith co-wrote the song "Wasted Years" with Iron Maiden's Steve Harris on their 1986 album "Somewhere in Time."

Happy Birthday, Adrian Smith! ๐ŸŽ‚

Let me know which Iron Maiden album is your favorite in the comment section,

AND ...

Keep on Rockin'! ๐Ÿค˜
Frank ๐ŸŽธ

~ 65% Human-written content

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Recent Comments


Thanks for this post Frank. Iron Maiden was definitely one of my early influences, and my favorite album for both the music and the cover is the Killers album, the last album that their first singer, Paul Di'Anno, sang on.

Some very interesting trivia on the band, (and on Adrian) that I didn't know. Thanks again!


Youโ€™re welcome Kevin.

Yeah, Killers is one of my favorite albums, too! There are so many great albums! I think all of them are excellent, each in their own way!

Also, the graphics on the album covers are outstanding! Maybe you could develop your own character like Ed, trademark it, and make a series of shirts and hats. Just an idea. Lol

I could have gone into a lot more depth about Iron maiden, but this is obviously not the audience for that.

Read the other comments and youโ€™ll find some additional trivia that might interest you. ๐Ÿ˜Ž

The other artist that had very interesting graphics was Zappa. Google โ€œFrank Zappa album coversโ€ and select the โ€œimagesโ€ filter if you are not familiar with them.

He has over 60 albums, including all the bootlegs and live stuff that came out by the Zappa family trust after his death!

Frankโ€™s music took my guitar playing to another level, back in the โ€˜60s and โ€˜70s, with all the diatonic (mostly Mixolydian) scales he used in Rock, when everyone else was using Pentatonic and Blues scales.m over simple I, IV, V chord progressions.

Frankโ€™s harmonic structure, rhythms, and key modulations were out of this world! Lol

Frank ๐Ÿค˜๐ŸŽธ

Thanks Frank, I'll check those out!


Goodness me Frank. I remember some of those album covers.
A colleague was a big, big Iron Maiden fan. He talked about them constantly.

Driving out to a job, we would have Barbra Streisand on the radio and he would suddenly burst out with a heavy rock song, full volume, out of tune.
So one day we tied him to the miniature railway line in Glossop Park, after a heavy lunchtime session at the local pub. And yes, the miniature steam train was running. Perhaps better for all of us, the train driver saw Mikey tied to the rails, stopped and released him.

Some great memories, thank you Frank.

Haha, You guys are a little crazy, Bux! ๐Ÿ˜ƒ

That's what happens when that Evil Heavy Metal warps your mind! Lol ๐Ÿ˜‚

Rock On! ๐Ÿค˜
Frank ๐ŸŽธ

That was on a quiet day Frank.
Enjoy the week and keep those posts coming.

Haha, I can believe that, Bux! ๐Ÿ˜Ž

Have a great week!
Frank ๐Ÿค˜๐ŸŽธ

Thanks for this post Frank. You know I am a metalhead!
I first heard the Diary of a Madman record by Ozzy on a midnight album hour on the radio. Went to the store and found the first 2 albums w Randy Rhoads. This was my intro into metal.
Funny story, while browsing through albums at the local record store, the crazy artwork of the Maiden records through me off. Thought they were childish and so I never bothered w them. Years later, in HS, my best friend made me watch the Live after Death concert video. Changed my life forever!

You're welcome, Steve. ๐Ÿ˜Ž

Yeah, I bought the first Maiden album ever recorded because of the crazy cover, and I just couldn't believe my ears! Haha

I love everything that Ozzy ever did, especially with Sabbath!

Rock On! ๐Ÿค˜
Frank ๐ŸŽธ

Happy birthday Adrian Smith!

I only got to listen to a few songs from this one album cover called "killers."

Thanks for sharing another delightful post, Frank!

Myra โค๏ธ

Hi Myra

Killers is a great album for those who like Metal!

Rock On! ๐Ÿค˜
Frank ๐ŸŽธ

Agreed! ๐Ÿ’ฏ


I remember the record stores back in the day when they still existed, Frank. I'd spend hours browsing through the album covers, enjoying the amazing artwork on their covers. They almost remind me of some comic book covers, like daredevil or ghost rider!

I'm always adding to my musical knowledge and history with everyone of your music post!

Appreciate the post! ๐ŸŽธ๐Ÿค˜
Isaiah ๐Ÿ™‚

Haha, Thanks, Isaiah! ๐Ÿ™

Yeah, back in the 1960s, I would walk to the local music store and spend an hour looking at all the albums in the record bins before selecting one or two for my collection. My brother and I had over 800 albums by the end of the 1970s!

That music store had a soda fountain bar that made the best drinks for less than 50 cents! Those were the days! (I sound like all the other old people, Lol).

Rock On! ๐Ÿค˜
Frank ๐ŸŽธ

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