Chris Slade Shares His Regret About Uriah Heep
In a recent interview with Ultimate Guitar, former AC/DC drummer Chris Slade shared his memories with one of his former bands, Uriah Heep. The musician revealed his regret about the band and stated that his tenure with them could’ve been much longer.
Chris Slade established Manfred Mann’s Earth Band in 1971 and released several studio albums with the band until 1978. Later, he played with notable names like Paul Rodgers, Jimmy Page, and David Gilmour. In 1989, Slade joined AC/DC when asked following Simon Wright’s departure. The drummer became a part of the group’s twelfth studio album ‘The Razors Edge,’ released in 1990. He contributed to the hit songs such as ‘Thunderstruck’ and ‘Are You Ready.’ He also toured with the band and played on the successful song ‘Big Gun.’
Later, the rocker parted ways with the band because they wanted the former drummer Phil Rudd to rejoin it. After a long time, Slade made a reunion with the group in 2015 and played with them on the Rock or Bust tour. However, he left the band for the second time after Phil Rudd rejoined in 2020. Apart from playing with AC/DC and several other impactful names, Slade worked with Uriah Heep in 1980. He was on the drums and percussion in the band’s thirteenth album ‘Conquest,’ which sold well. However, the drummer did not appear with the group again.
When recently asked about his memories with Uriah Heep, Slade opened up about his working experience with the group. He mentioned that John Sloman significantly impacted the ‘Conquest’ album as he wrote many songs on the record. According to Slade, the group belonged to Mick Box, but John Sloman wanted to contribute more at that period, which caused tensions during the album’s creation process. The drummer stated that the group was very talented and thought they harmonized. However, as Slade noted, he regretted that things did not work well.
When asked about his memories with Uriah Heep, Slade explained:
“Oh, a lot happened during the making of that album. I think a great percentage of it was written by Sloman. John was great, you know, he’s a great onstage personality and a wonderful singer. He’s all of that, but he’s an even better writer, and I don’t think that Mick Box wanted that because they already had writers, so bringing John in, as good as he is, caused a lot of tension.
From Mick’s perspective, though, why would they want another writer? When it comes down to it, Heep at that point was Mick’s thing, but John wanted to contribute more, as he’s not the. To this day, he is one of the most undiscovered talents in British music. Pino Paladino, the bass player, would agree with that.
We have often talked about that, that John was the greatest undiscovered talent in Britain and still is, unfortunately. He always seems to be ahead of the curve when it comes to writing. To be honest, that could have been a special group, that version of Uriah Heep. At the time, it seemed like we had all the right pieces, but it wasn’t to be. I do sometimes wish it had worked out, though. That’s how it goes, though; sometimes it’s just not meant to be.”
You can listen to ‘Conquest’ below.