Band’s break up all the time, single members leave band’s all the time, and you can say that when a new member enters a band a lot of the time you can consider a band to be completely new. Singers are often the members that influence this the most because vocals are the things most music listeners focus on. There are lots of famous bands that have singers that didn’t last or they are just overshadowed by another singer. Here are some of the singers for big rock band’s that you’ve forgotten about. With each choice I’ll have a video with a highlight of each singer’s time with the band.
Gary Cherone (Van Halen)
After Sammy Hagar’s time with the band came to an end and an attempt to reunite with original singer David Lee Roth failed to get off the ground Van Halen decided to take a whole new direction with former Extreme singer Gary Cherone. Cherone recorded just one album with the band and completed one tour, and Van Halen III wasn’t received particularly well and I think there was a long period where the album went out of print, which would be rare for an album for a big band like Van Halen. I do occasionally like listening to some footage of Van Halen playing with Cherone, because I thought he was pretty good performing with them, but none of the new material they did together ever did anything for me.
Dave Evans (AC/DC)
Dave Evans was the first singer for AC/DC, only appearing on one of the band’s singles, Can I Sit Next to You Girl. The song was then rerecorded with Bon Scott, but a promotional video of the Evans version can still be easily found. Angus and Malcolm Young fired Evans because they felt his style didn’t suit the band as he was going for a more glam rock style that didn’t really suit the music they played. Evans never found success on his own, but continued to pursue a music career after he was fired. AC/DC found success with Bon Scott and later Brian Johnson. Axl Rose also filled in for them on a recent tour.
Blaze Bayley (Iron Maiden)
Bruce Dickinson left Iron Maiden in 1993. He was replaced by Blaze Bayley for two albums (The X Factor and Virtual XI) and both were commercial flops. Bayley was criticized because his voice never resembled Dickinson’s at all and he struggled to sing Iron Maiden’s back catalogue. In 1999 he was asked to leave and Dickinson came back for good shortly after.
Tim “Ripper” Owens (Judas Priest)
Rob Halford left Judas Priest after the tour for their 1990 album Painkiller. Since Halford’s voice defined the band and he was a tough singer to replace the remaining members decided to go with a singer for a Judas Priest tribute band. The Ripper (who took his nickname from a Judas Priest song) sang on two Judas Priest albums in 1997 and 2001. Both weren’t particularly well received from fans. I personally enjoy watch The Ripper perform Rob Halford’s classics, but the band’s songwriting suffered without Halford. Halford eventually came back and stayed for good. The Ripper has been involved in many projects since then and has vowed to re-record his albums with Judas Priest because he’s accused them of disregarding their work together after Halford returned.
Tony Martin (Black Sabbath)
Black Sabbath went through quite a few line-up changes at the point Tony Martin joined the band. The band had already been through several singers, the most notable being icons Ozzy Osbourne and Ronnie James Dio. Martin came in to replace Ray Gillen, who didn’t even last long enough to record an album with Sabbath. Martin recorded 5 albums with Sabbath over two stints in the band. There are a handful of solid Martin era songs, but Ozzy Osbourne and the rest of the original Sabbath lineup reunited in the late 1990s.
Joe Lynn Turner (Deep Purple)
Joe Lynn Turner was the replacement singer in a couple of Richie Blackmore’s bands. The first was Rainbow, replacing Graham Bonnet, but after Blackmore dissolved Rainbow to reunite Deep Purple for a reunion of the classic lineup Turner was brought in for one album after Ian Gillen left. The “Mark V” version of the band only lasted for one album and Gillen came back once again for the band’s 25th anniversary.
So who’s the replacement singer that you’ve forgotten about?