2004 fue un año de ilusiones y espejismos, se anunciaba la llegada de una de las bandas más grandes del metal, URIAH HEEP ni mas ni menos. Existía bastante expectativa y CUARTA CRUZADA le realizo una entrevista especial a MIK BOX el legendario guitarrista de la banda, que además oficiaba como manager de la banda entonces.

CC. The tour 2004 that is published in the web page of the group only includes two countries of Latinoamérica. Why it will only visit Brazil and Bolivia?

MIK : We were asked by the promoters Showmaster to headline the Masters Open Air Festival in Sao Paulo and then we decided to put a few more shows in. There was interest in Bolivia and we have not been there before so we jumped at the chance of playing our music there.

CC. What does the Latin audience mean for a band born inside the essence of the English rock with a great projection in Europe?

MIK: In the little time we have spent in Latin America playing our music it has
been very enthusiastically received and I think there is a deep
understanding of our music so it will be a pleasure to be playing there

CC. Do you know something about the audience that it waits for you in Bolivia

MIK: We have no idea and no expectations but we are very excited about doing a
show there. We hope that it will be successful so that we can play there
again. I hope we do not run out of oxygen:-)

CC. Your band is an icon of the rock of the seventies. What do you think about the artistic career of the band in retrospective, considering you have been pioneer in the experimentation of new sounds?.

MIK: I think the artistic career of the band has been fantastic. We found very early on in 1970 that we wanted to be a melodic rock band that incorporated Hammond Organ, my Wah Wah Les Paul driven Guitar and 5 Vocalists that produce very dynamic harmonies. There have been music fads that have come
and gone but we were always comfortable with the music we had created and therefore did not feel the need to follow the music fashion of the times.
I am a believer that a good song stands the test of time and we have been lucky enough to have had quite a few over the years.

CC. The change of members has been a constant in so long journey. Actually the band keeps just one of the original members. How does it affect in Uriah Heep’s essence?

MIK: Anybody that joins Uriah Heep knows how we stand musically and it is very
easy to fit in. I suppose I have the spirit that lives within and I hope
that I am infectious and enthusiastic enough that they feel from me the way
it should be.

CC. One of the band characteristics in the 70’s was the missing David Byron voices and the now independent Ken Hesley keyboards unquestionably. How did these absences affect to the band?

MIK: The changes had to be made so we just got on with it. It was hard replacing David as the lead singer of course but there was no other choice at the time. These things are always difficult but you have to rise to the occasion and get on with life.

CC. One of the most representative band songs is July morning. And the characteristic that stand out is the duration of the topic, of more than 10 minutes. Is this possible to experience in a new particularities record world now?

MIK: Yes I think there are no limits to the length of a song as long as it is
saying something musically and lyrically.

CC. What kind of influences does Uriah Heep have in the current musical vanguard?

MIK: I think our influences are all the same from the early days.

CC. What do you think of your audience to so many years of the phsycodelic and progressive rock times?

MIK: I never cease to be amazed. Many people have said to me that they have used our music as a landscape to their lives. I guess the reason being that it is powerful music and lyrically it is always positive in most cases.

CC. How is Uriah Heep’s proposal projected in this XXI century with the experience and the legend alternating with the web pages, the links and the digital era?

MIK: As far as the digital era is concerned a good example is now as we are doing an interview by e-mail which is fantastic. The other day I was in a restaurant with my family and I sent Rodrigo Werneck our Brazilian Webmaster an e-mail from my handheld Blackberry Amazing. As far as music goes I believe in using analogue wherever possible as it has warmth of sound that
digital does not. As for the website it is fantastic We have a direct link to the fans and it is a very exciting medium.

CC. If you had the opportunity to form a band with the top 70´s musicians of That time without Heep’s members, who would be?

MIK: Keyboards-John Lord, Bass-Glenn Hughes, Drums-John Bonham, Vocals- Paul Rodgers

CC. Ukiah Heap has been a very influential to many new bands in the last 30 years, actually one of the most important bands of all time, what is your opinion about Uriah Heep within the musical context in the world and what do You expect from the band in the years to come?

MIK: Within the musical context of the world is a very difficult one as things and music are forever changing. However we have found our niche so to speak and play in over 48 countries so we can only hope that, that will expand within those regions and we have the chance to break down some more barriers along the way. It has been a delight to part of a band that can only be described as Rock Pioneers as we have been the first band in many countries to play concerts and I guess Russia would be the most publicised.

CC. Through out Heep’s career, which concert was personally, the most Important to you?

MIK: The Albert Hall London England. My Mother was in the audience and she was so very proud of me. It was the pinnacle of success as far as she was concerned because the venue was so prestigious.

CC. Uriah Heep, has been one of the pioneering bands of the New Wave of British Heavy Metal, when John Lawton was in the band, what is your opinion about of today’s Heavy Metal bands and can you make a difference between past and present?

MIK: I guess the problem I have with it is that it can all sound a bit samey.
In the 70’s all guitarist had their own style and that goes for bass Players, Drummers and Keyboard players. For instance I did not play like Ritchie Blackmore, Ritchie did not play like Tony Iommi and Tony did not play like Jimmy Page. We were all individual and that goes for all musicians of that era. If we are talking Guitar players they all seem to go to the
same school to learn and come back accomplished but with no identity.

CC. If you had the opportunity to go back in time, what age would you like to be in on Heep’s career?

MIK: It would be nice playing 20,000 seaters again 365 days a year, have a Lear jet and bodyguards again etc but hey I am one lucky guy that has been blessed beyond all belief and I am still doing a job that I love and seeing the world. It cannot get any better than that. I have had all that and I am
just enjoying what life has to give me in so many aspects.

CC. What kind of information do you have about Bolivia and what do you expect from the show in La Paz?

MIK: I have no information except for the altitude. I like it that way because then everything is a new experience.

CC. Uriah Heep has a huge list of songs that every fan of the band would like to listen to at a concert,do you play a defined set of songs or do you accept some request from the audience?
For instance, I don’t remember if Uriah Heep ever played live the song «Return to Fantasy» ,which is one of most representative Heep’s songs here in Bolivia?

MIK: We did RTF for quite a long time and we have not played this for a long while. However who knows if we get time at a sound check we may be able to re visit it.

CC. Could you make a difference between the 3 different ages of Uriah Heep?

MIK: Sure there are major differences dud to the different people involved but hopefully the spirit remains the same.

CC. What do you feel in these 34 years when the band is still in the spotlight strong than ever and with a great legacy in modern music of the last 40 years?


CC. If you had to buy discs, what would you prefer to buy, LP’s or CD’s?

MIK: I love the romantics of Vinyl and CD’s are easier to carry around for your hotel room. My wife recently bought me an Ipod which I can put over 10,000 songs on. So right now I carry almost my entire collection around on that.

CC. As a human being, do you miss your youth, would you like to go back in time?

MIK: Life is for living and experiencing. Then taking those experiences good or bad and learning from them. I would rather not look back but move forward

CC. What is your opinion about the pioneers that are still on the road alive and kicking more than ever like Uriah Heep and today’s music in general?

MIK: I think it is great because it keeps so much good music alive for all

CC. For many, many fans it was really a nice surprise, that Tull’s Ian Anderson joined Uriah Heep to play some songs with you. How was the feeling or the chemistry in all of you, since it was the first time that you have played together with Ian?

MIK: Ian was a joy to work with. A complete professional. We had a great time.

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