Ed Force One
It seems to be only a matter of time before the legendary B-747 disappears from the skies. There will be many more stories left to tell about this iconic aircraft as the legend grows.
One such story is when Bruce Dickinson, lead singer of the band ‘Iron Maiden’ took controls of a B-747, leased for a world tour in 2016, and redefined the term ‘Front Man’.
The band had dubbed its leased touring aircraft ‘Ed Force One’ (for the band’s mascot, Eddie) for several tours and Dickinson, an accomplished pilot, first took controls of a B757-200 for their ‘Back in Time’ tour in 2008.
By 2016, for the ‘Book of Souls’ tour, the band needed a larger aircraft with more range to accommodate the amount of equipment that had to be moved. This may have been very economical compared to leasing one aircraft for the band and crew and another one for the equipment, besides, they already had their own pilot.
The leased B747-400 was originally delivered to Air France (as F-GITH) in 2003 and was removed from service in October 2015. It was acquired by Air Atlantic Icelandic (as TF-AAK) in November 2015 and leased to Iron Maiden from February to June 2016.
It has been leased to Saudi Arabian Airlines since August 2016 where it is still used for passenger service.
'Ed Force One' at Wikipedia
TF-AAK at Planespotters.net
What happened to the Iron Maiden B-747 at Simple Flying
Aircraft tour video posted on the Iron Maiden YouTube channel
'Ed Force One' on approach at YYZ - Pearson International