Bands customizing big transport jets for tours is nothing new. For instance, Alice Cooper, the Allman Brothers Band, Deep Purple, Elton John, Olivia Newton-John, and Peter Frampton all made use ofÂ The Starship (a Boeing 720) back in the 1970s. Â Legendary metal band Iron Maiden has turned the volume up to 11 with their custom-liveried “Ed Force One” — named after their evil mascot, Eddie.
What makes Iron Maiden’s tour planes even more unusual is that they’ve been piloted by lead singer Bruce Dickinson, who holds a transport pilot license.Â Iron Maiden’s last tour made use of a customized 757-200.
After the band’s April 11 show in Tacoma, WA, they made the short hop up to Paine Field in Everett, WA on April 12 for a VIP tour of their bird’s birthplace, the Boeing assembly plant, before leaving the same day for their next tour stop in Denver (Editor’s note: I got to see the beautiful #EdForceOne fly over my Denver office on departure!).Â Before they left Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, I was able to be there, on the ground, and get some up-close photos of the plane.
Interestingly,Â Iron Maiden’s 747-400 (TF-AAK) does not have a VIP interior; it’s filled with a standard three-class seating arrangement, as it’s being wet-leased from Iceland’s Air Atlanta Icelandic. The customized livery and some minor interior modificationsÂ were handledÂ by Volga-Dnepr Gulf.
Here are some additional photos: