I was born in Matamata, New Zealand – Lawrence Paterson, but now everyone calls me Larry – drumming by the age of 15 influenced by the sounds of classic hard rock and heavy metal made by bands such as Motörhead, Iron Maiden, Judas Priest, Black Sabbath and AC/DC. Several bands in New Zealand followed until by 1988 I relocated to the United Kingdom.
Once there I again spent years in several bands of different calibre and levels of achievement, drumming for the likes of thrashers Arbitrater in 1992 when they released the ‘Darkened Reality’ album. For a period of time I was ‘official helper and gear carrier’ for Cozy Powell and his drum tech Eddie Naughton during the writing and recording of the Black Sabbath ‘Forbidden’ album; working for a while as ‘backline security’ for Sabbath.
Getting to know one of my all time drum heroes left an indelible impression on me and a profound influence of my playing style and attitude to both music in general and metal in particular. Cozy was a good guy as was Eddie, without whom I wouldn’t have got involved with Sabbath and known Cozy. Cozy put me up for an audition with Peter Green as temporary replacement for when he was away with Brian May; an audition that I spectacularly failed because I hadn’t worked on my shuffle, just stuck to the blues of Rattlesnake Shake and that kind of thing. It was a good lesson and despite being upset at letting Cozy down, he could not have been nicer about it. I learned a lot from that and Cozy’s words of wisdom, chief of which was ‘sometimes your face just doesn’t fit a band – but you gotta give it a go’.
Sadly both Cozy and Eddie are no longer with us and I still miss them both.
Over the years since my arrival in the UK, I have played in several notable bands, including Chokehold (who released three albums, appeared on Channel 4 television and toured with Saxon who were uber cool to us) and Blaze Bayley with who I did two studio albums, a live double album and DVD following tours throughout England, Wales, Scotland, Northern Ireland, Eire, Russia, Slovenia, Spain, Croatia, Germany, The Netherlands, Denmark, Norway, Brazil, Poland, Czech Republic, Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, Finland, Sweden, Belgium, France, Switzerland, Italy and Greece between 2007 and 2010. It was a great time while it lasted 🙂
A string of bands followed, some of which were definitely better than others (!), the last UK band was part of was I.C.O.N, after temporarily filling in at times when they were between drummers. We released ‘The Blacklist’ and toured with Operation Mindcrime, Anvil and Udo Dirkschneider and had a blast (apart from the Udo tour giving me pneumonia as we weren’t allowed dressing rooms at most dates). Since then I’ve moved to Italy in 2017. Music took a back seat for a while, with a few gigs here and there, mainly with my covers band ‘Thunderhead’.
The pandemic threw the world for a loop, but now in the second half of 2021 I am gearing up once again to hit the road as a new member of the band Alcatrazz.
Alcatrazz started life in 1983 formed by Jimmy Waldo, Gary Shea and Graham Bonnet and at that time featuring Yngwie Malmsteen and Jan Uvena. Malmsteen was replaced by Steve Vai before the band went into hiatus.
I’ll be playing alongside original band members Jimmy Waldo (keyboards), Gary Shea (bass) with Joe Stump (guitar) and Doogie White (vocals) and am looking forward to making albums and touring with these heavy hitting musicians.
Away from music, I authored a book on the Blaze Bayley band’s history entitled ‘At The End Of The Day’, which was published originally in 2009. As of 2021 I’ve written 21 books, all but the aforementioned, about a totally different subject: since 2000 I’ve written non-fiction histories of the Second World War – predominantly related to the Wehrmacht – inspired largely by a lifelong interest in the Second World War and working as a Scuba instructor, which included a couple of years diving the wartime wrecks off France. I taught diving in the UK, Grenada, Cyprus, Malta, France and Italy.
I VERY proudly endorse the following equipment and organisations:
Mapex drums and hardware; Wincent Drumsticks; Paiste cymbals; Aquarian Drumheads; The Music Shipping Company (Kidderminster); Duallist Pedals; Hardcase cases; Best Tronics Cables; Dreadmeister custom drum and bike parts.
Go here for a reasonably accurate list of bands I’ve been part of.