IRON MAIDEN – “Cross Eyed Mary” 1983 cover song is a rare Metal Music treasure

Iron Maiden "The Trooper"  EP album artworkIron Maiden released their fourth studio album, “Piece Of Mind” in 1983. An amazing Heavy Metal album it was and forever will be. I bought that album back in ’83… stared at the front cover for hours, which in fact, probably equals out to actual days. I have always been mesmerized by artist Derek Riggs artwork of mascot Eddie. This album does not contain the cover song of “Cross Eyed Mary”, instead, it was released as a “b” side to the single “The Trooper”, taken from the “Piece Of Mind” album. To the best of my Metal research, “The Trooper” single was released on June 20, 1983. I frequented a small and independent record store on an almost daily basis back in the ’80’s, (I won’t divulge the name of this store for personal reasons), upon a daily stop there… there it was… Iron Maiden “The Trooper” Maxi Single on vinyl no less!! My Metal memory is very vivid about this moment… I stared this beautiful Iron Maiden rarity down, bought it and have kept it pristine ever since. Plus, this was the only copy this store had, I never saw this Iron Maiden single on vinyl again. (Certainly, there has to be more out there in collections or online today, I just never happened to come across one in person). This Iron Maiden Maxi Single as it is called, again, is on vinyl that is the actual size of an album -(an EP if you will), it plays at 45 rpm.

As for “The Trooper” it is and always will be an amazing work of Metal Music, this song no Metalhead could ever possibly tire from. An unreal great Metal song is “The Trooper”. Now, for the Metal juicy part of this important single… “Cross Eyed Mary”. I always have and will continue to give Jethro Tull a listen now and again… they are cool by me, despite what Metallica may think of them. The original Jethro Tull version of “Cross Eyed Mary” does not even come remotely close, to the prolific Metal power of Iron Maiden’s cover version though. I am talking extremely Metal prolific, when I mention this Iron Maiden cover of “Cross Eyed Mary”. Whoa, man, this Iron Maiden cover sends Metal chills up and down my spine. I am not sugar coating a thing… this Iron Maiden cover is the real thing, hands down it is my most favorite and cherished Metal cover song that has ever been recorded. Not to sound cheesy or lame here, the opening guitar leads sends me into Metal orbit… really. Bruce Dickinson is outstanding on vocals with this song, Iron Maiden took hold of “Cross Eyed Mary” and turned it into a Metal masterpiece. NO flutes or piano are on this Iron Maiden cover version of “Cross Eyed Mary”, no sir.

My copy of “The Trooper” vinyl single looks just like the above image, with the exception that my copy has “Maxi Single – super sound version” printed on the front cover, inside a red outlined circle. The bottom image shows what the Japanese import version of “The Trooper” looks like on CD, however, “Cross Eyed Mary” is NOT on this CD single!? The two songs on this Japanese import are: “The Trooper Live (2003)” and “The Trooper” (album version). Go figure that out, the same artwork, it is “The Trooper” single, yet “Cross Eyed Mary” is not included anymore. It would have been Metal genius, if Iron Maiden included “Cross Eyed Mary” on their “Somewhere Back In Time: The Best Of 1980-1989″ album, that would have been a perfect song to add into the historical Metal mix. I am just psyched that I still have this vinyl single of Iron Maiden, this is one Metal treasure I just will not part with – no way.

Some Metal extra notes about this Iron Maiden single, to benefit, guide and nourish your Metal mind: 

Iron Maiden, as they appeared on “The Trooper” and “Cross Eyed Mary”: Bruce Dickinson on lead vocals, Dave Murray on guitar, Adrian Smith on guitar, Steve Harris on bass guitar and Nicko McBrain on drums. * This 1983 “The Trooper” single was originally released on EMI records.


12 Responses to “IRON MAIDEN – “Cross Eyed Mary” 1983 cover song is a rare Metal Music treasure”

  1. When I was still a Maiden collector, I had at least 7 or 8 different versions of this single. Wish I would have kept all that. I had well over 100 pieces of Maiden vinyl, probably closer to 200.

  2. metalodyssey Says:

    I understand about wishing you kept “all that”… that is why when I stumble on a cool vinyl Metal find at the thrift stores I get psyched out. I still have “The Trooper” picture disc too, “Cross Eyed Mary” is not on it however. I did sell stuff on ebay years ago that I wish I never sold… sometimes rebuilding a collection can be more “fun” the second time around – that is how I have been feeling about my Metal hobby lately.

    In Metal – Stone

  3. unfortunately rebuilding my maiden collection would run me a small fortune.

  4. metalodyssey Says:

    Check out any or all of the “thrift” stores around you… I am getting ahold of some unreal vinyl, that is near mint and in some cases… still sealed! At 50 cents a pop, man, I am rebuilding at a price I never, ever, dreamed of. I am amazed, at what some people actually “donate” to these thrift stores. I find real cool and at times, out of print Metal CD’s from a buck to 3 bucks at these stores and flea markets too. I actually feel foolish sometimes, when I stand there debating about snagging a vintage Metal album for 50 cents. However, to rebuild a collection on CD or to replace the ultra rare stuff, I can whole heartedly agree with you.

    In Metal – Stone

  5. Around here metal stuff doesn’t sell cheap as there are plenty of people “in the know”. I’ve got it all on CD now anyway, so it’s no big deal.

  6. metalodyssey Says:

    Yeah, it’s the picture discs that get you… I gave up a bunch of them years ago, they never sounded that “crisp” when I played them on the turntable anyways. Plus, like anything else, you save this stuff, like picture discs and they take up space. The memorabilia is cool to look at, yet “space” always becomes an issue. I see the “people in the know” all the time in the thrift stores, they pretty much can tell I am schooled at the music too… stare downs and elbowing does occur, it can get quite daring at times when I am out Metal treasure hunting. Civility no longer exists out there in the marketplace… it is like Ted Nugent once wrote… “Dog Eat Dog”.

    In Metal – Stone

  7. If I’m not mistaken, ‘Cross Eyed Mary’ is on the bonus disc of the 1995 Castle reissue of Piece of Mind.

    Heavy Metal Addiction

  8. metalodyssey Says:

    That is noteworthy Metal info… I never picked up that actual reissue, I never knew it existed. Funny thing is, I bought “Piece Of Mind” on CD a couple of years ago, brand new at Best Buy, there are no bonus tracks on it. (I kept listening to the vinyl all of these years, finally I upgraded to CD). That is why this is essential info to get out… that “Cross Eyed Mary” can be found on this 1995 Castle reissue “version” of “Piece Of Mind”. Thanks for this Metal heads up.

    In Metal – Stone

  9. The reissue series was a good one back in ’95, I remember the local Circuit City had them for $9.99 when they all came out at the same time as Best Of The Beast.

    If you go to Wikipedia and go to the Iron Maiden discography, they list all the bonuses for the ’95 reissues on each album’s page. You can get these versions on Ebay pretty easily.

    Heavy Metal Addiction

    • metalodyssey Says:

      Thanks again… the reissues will get me every time. Just look at all the Motley Crue & Twisted Sister reissues lately, the bonus tracks are at times worth the re-purchase, other times their not. W.A.S.P. reissues are definitely worth the re-purchase for the bonus track content that Blackie Lawless added. This ’95 reissue of “Piece Of Mind” is worth the purchase for “Cross Eyed Mary” alone, to have it on CD.

      In Metal – Stone

  10. Very nice! I think I have this on a Rare Maiden release (something like stuff they never released or something and it has a bunch of studio “bloopers” and what not.

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