The Wizard

Album: Demons And Wizards (1972)
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Songfacts®:

  • This song was written by Ken Hensley and Mark Clarke, who was Uriah Heep's bassist for a short period, during a 1971 tour and the early stages of the recording of Demons & Wizards. This song was Clarke's only writing contribution, as he got tired of touring and left the band as soon as they had found a replacement, Gary Thain. Clarke would later play with bands like Rainbow, Mountain and Billy Squier.
  • In a Songfacts interview, Ken Hensley addressed the identity of the wizard in the song. "Actually, this song came from a dream that I had persistently over a week and, when I decided to write it, I just followed what I had seen in the dream, along with a little amateur philosophy!" Hensley said.

    "The dream came to life in the song and, although I always dream a lot, I never had that particular dream again."
  • Mark Clarke got to sing a couple of lines in the middle part of the song, as the melody was deemed too high for Heep's main lead vocalist David Byron. It has also been disputed whether Clarke or his replacement Gary Thain is playing bass on the song, but it is indeed Clarke playing.
  • The song was released as the first single from Demons & Wizards, but it did not reach the same level of success as the second single "Easy Livin'," which became a smash hit in many areas. However, "The Wizard" still lives on as one of Heep's most loved classics.
  • German power metal-band Blind Guardian did a cover of the song, which was first released as a B-side on their single "A Past and Future Secret" in 1995. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Jon - Sweden

Comments: 8

  • John from RenfrewSome good comments. and Mariana, I have lamented forever that the Heep is the most underrated band in history. Fans take issue with that saying they aren't underrated, by looking at their album sales, and people like us who post on these things. But the mainstream (not that anybody cares about them) never liked them, and I don't think they will ever get to the rock and roll hall of fame. this is one of their many beautiful melodies, their lyrics are great also (with some Christian/scriptural overtones), and yes, this is never more appropriate than for today's troubled times. PS - can we start our own Hall of fame? Hensley not being it, in particular is wrong wrong wrong.
  • Frosty from Marietta GaSadly, lyrics of the Wizard never more appropriate than today’s troubled times. Thank you Mark Clarke and Ken Hensley. Makes you think there’s hope against impossible odds of the human soul.
  • Jefff from MarylandThe secular world would think it's about whatever this is very biblical and Uriah heap is biblical and the songs like Stealing and this song cloak of gold and eyes of fire is from revelations.
  • Lenny from Edison, NjOne of their finest songs, perhaps the best. An absolute gem. Only wish it was a few minutes longer!
  • Margret Hamilton from St. Paul, MnThis song is an underrated giant of beauty! I really do not care if the rest of the rock world agrees or cares. What a beautiful melody!

    Uriah Heep are the masters of medieval rock with wizards and renaissance imagery. Their harmonies are exquisite!

    Question: How has the epic monster Salisbury been totally ignored by critics and afficiandos of the great underground rock bands of the late sixties and seventies? If you got high and listened to greats like Uriah Heep, Deep Purple, the Doors, Moody Blues, Jethro Tull, Blue Oyster Cult, Alice Cooper, and others of course ---- if you heard this 16 minute classic on head phones and did not "connect" ---- then I cannot make an honest analysis of you.
  • Doug from Kansas City, Moan outstanding song! Takes me way back to those mystical days of my youth, when I thought i had nothing. In fact....I had EVERYTHING
  • Mariana from Timisoara, RomaniaWhat a great song. I cannot believe that there are almost no comments.
  • Rick from Salisbury, NcA hard rocking song for sure!
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