Yngwie Malmsteen Discloses The Reason For Not Wanting To Work With Ex-Iron Maiden Drummer

During a conversation with Darren Paltrowitz, one of the greatest electric guitar players of all time Yngwie Malmsteen looked back on the time when he released the debut studio album with the band, ‘Alcatrazz.’ Apparently, the band considered working with multiple drummers including former Iron Maiden drummer Clive Burr but Malmsteen didn’t find him suitable for Alcatrazz.

As you might know, Yngwie Malmsteen recorded with heavy metal band Alcatrazz its debut studio album, ‘No Parole from Rock ‘n’ Roll’ which was released on 15 October 1983. The record was a success as it spent seven weeks on the Billboard 200 albums chart with singles such as ‘Island in the Sun’ and ‘Jet to Jet.’

The album holds a special place in the guitarist’s career as it’s often considered by fans as the best Alcatrazz release and is credited for launching Yngwie Malmsteen’s great solo career. Furthermore, Malmsteen continued performing ‘General Hospital’ and ‘Incubus’ throughout his career as a solo musician as well.

During a recent interview, Yngwie Malmsteen opened up about the time when he first agreed on working with Alcatrazz as well as recording ‘No Parole from Rock ‘n’ Roll.’ Apparently, the guitarist had two conditions before agreeing to join the band; first, being the songwriter for the record, and second, getting a new drummer for the band.

While looking for a new drummer for Alcatrazz, the band auditioned thousands of drummers according to Malmsteen’s statement. Although the rest of the band was into working with late Iron Maiden drummer Clive Burr who jammed with the band from 1979 to 1982, Yngwie Malmsteen actually didn’t agree with his bandmates and said he wasn’t the right drummer for them.

Yngwie Malmsteen confessed his thoughts on Burr:

“So I went to Phil’s house, and he was in love, he was a sweetheart, but he was a little bit lost at the time. And so I called Alcatrazz from Phil’s house, and I basically said, ‘Alright, I joined your thing. But, I write the songs – No. 1. No. 2, we get a new drummer.’

So we auditioned a thousand drummers, something I was happy about. They wanted Clive Burr from Iron Maiden, he was a great, great guy but he wasn’t the right drummer.”

After refusing to work with Clive Burr, Yngwie Malmsteen managed to convince his bandmates to work with Jan Uvena from Alice Cooper’s band. Eventually, the guitarist got what he wanted and Uvena joined Alcatrazz and stayed with the band until its disbandment in 1987.