Speaking about how he first joined MANOWAR back in 1980, Eric said: “Joey came to my house and said, ‘I’ve got this guy in New York. He plays guitar. His name is Ross [Friedman]. [He’s] pretty good. We get along great. I met him on tour when I was with BLACK SABBATH [as a pyro tech for the ‘Heaven And Hell’ tour],’ he says, ‘and we used to play in the dressing room, and it sounded pretty damn good. We wanna get a band together.’ And I said, ‘I’ve got the singer.’ He said, ‘No, I’m talking about you.’ And I said, ‘I don’t wanna know nothing about it. That’s not for me.’ He said, ‘What?’ He said, ‘C’mon.’ I said, ‘Joe, it’s not for me. Don’t want it.’ He said, ‘Are you sure?’ I said, ‘I’m so sure. I’m not doing this anymore. I am done with this music business. I’m finished.’ He said, ‘Jesus Christ.’ He said, ‘Think about it.’ I said, ‘I don’t need to think about it. I’m done.’ He said, ‘Will you at least sing on a demo? I’ve got some songs together. Would you at least sing that?’ I said, ‘Well, fine. I’ll sing the demo as a favor to you, ’cause we’ve known each other since we were kids.'”
He continued: “So we rehearsed in some shithole in our hometown, in somebody’s living room. It was the first time I met Ross. We didn’t have a drummer, but we rehearsed and got, like, three or four songs together — some of the songs from ‘Battle Hymns’. So then we went to another city and we recorded these songs. We hired a drummer and recorded the songs. I said, ‘Okay, there you go,’ and I went back home. A week later, there’s knock on my door, and I open it, and it’s Joey standing there. He says, ‘We got a record deal.’ I said, ‘Who?’ He said, ‘We. We got a record deal.’ I said, ‘We don’t even have a band.’ He said, ‘We got a record deal with Capitol Records.’ I said, ‘Bullshit.’ He said, ‘We have a record deal. Do you wanna do it?’ I said, ‘Absolutely not. I don’t wanna do it. Good luck. Have a great time. I’m done.’ He said, ‘Oh, Jesus Christ. This is what you wanna do your whole life. Every musician wants to make a record. The record is the hilt. You wanna make an album. ‘Cmon.’ I said, ‘Not me. I’m done with this business. You understand? I’m done.’ He said, ‘Look, sleep on it. Think about it. I’ll come back tomorrow. Let’s decide tomorrow.’ I said, ‘Okay.’ So that night, my wife and I talked about it, and she said, ‘Well, you’ve certainly got the voice for it.’ And she said, ‘If you don’t do it, you’re gonna be saying to yourself ‘what if’ your whole life. If you do do it and it falls flat, you can say to yourself, well, you gave it a shot.’ I said, ‘Yeah, you’re right.’ So Joey came knocking on my door again, and I said, ‘Let’s get this fucking thing done.’ Then we started rehearsing again — rehearsing, rehearsing. And that’s how MANOWAR started, actually. We went down to Florida, hired another drummer down there to play the drums. And that’s how MANOWAR was born, right there.”
Before MANOWAR, Eric played in bands THE KIDS, LOOKS and HARLEQUIN.
MANOWAR will embark on its 40th-anniversary tour later this year. The trek will kick off in April in Germany and will include shows in The Netherlands for the first time in many years.
MANOWAR released a new EP, “The Final Battle I”, in March 2019. Parts II and III of the trilogy will arrive at a later date, inspired by MANOWAR‘s adventures on the remainder of “The Final Battle”.
In 2019, MANOWAR recruited Anders Johansson as the band’s new drummer.
The Swedish musician made his live debut with MANOWAR in March 2019 in Brno, Czech Republic.
Johansson can be heard on “The Final Battle I”, which was initially made available in an exclusive pre-sale at the merchandise booth of the band’s “The Final Battle” world tour.
Former MANOWAR guitarist Karl Logan was arrested in August 2018 in Charlotte, North Carolina and charged with six counts of third-degree exploitation of a minor. He was jailed after pleading guilty to two child-pornography counts.
A few days after Karl‘s arrest was made public, MANOWAR issued a statement saying that he would no longer perform with the group. He has since been replaced by E.V. Martel, who previously played in a MANOWAR tribute band.