ZP Theart

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ZP Theart
ZP Theart.jpg
ZP live at Ozzfest 2006
Background information
Also known as Naoki
Born (1975-05-27) 27 May 1975 (age 41)
Origin Clanwilliam, South Africa
Genres Power metal, heavy metal, speed metal, hard rock
Occupation(s) Singer, songwriter
Instruments Vocals, guitar, bass
Years active 1999-present
Labels Sanctuary, Noise, Roadrunner
Associated acts Skid Row, I Am I, DragonForce, Tank Shadow Warriors, Pentakill
Website iamiofficial.com

ZP Theart (born 27 May 1975) is a South African singer, songwriter, and the lead vocalist for Skid Row. Theart first achieved attention as the original singer of British power metal band DragonForce. His name "ZP", is not an abbreviation, but those letters are his grandfather's initials (whose name was Zachery Paul).[1][2]

After leaving DragonForce, ZP founded his own band, I Am I, in which he sings lead vocals. The band has so far released one studio album, Event Horizon, which has been released on a USB format and CD.[1][3]

Theart also sang in Shadow Warriors, a side project by his then DragonForce bandmate Sam Totman during the late 90s. Before Dragonforce Theart was also briefly involved with hard rock band Easy Voodoo, and recorded the vocals for the two track Power Quest demo album.

Theart has been doing work with metal band Tank since 2013, and in 2015, he became an official member. His first album with the band "Valley Of Tears", was originally set to be released on 9 June 2015, but it was later set back to 25, September 2015, so that they could give the album better production and give extra thought on the mixing.

Theart was also hired by Riot Games for the voice of Karthus in the songs "Deathfire Grasp" and "Last Whisper" by the metal band Pentakill.[4]

Early Life and First Bands[edit]

ZP Theart was born on May 27, 1975 in ClanWilliam, Western Cape Province, South Africa in Hazyview in the Eastern Transvaal, on a banana and litchi farm, and was raised there by his mother. His older brother lived with him as well. He has stated that according to his mother, at the age of three years, he began to hold a tablespoon up to his mouth, pretending that it was a microphone, and singing to whatever was on the radio. He has stated that in his early childhood, he listened to artists such as Gé Korsten, Carika Keuzenkamp and Rina Hugo, but his older brother began to introduce him to other music cassette tapes that he had gotten from high school, some of them being A-ha, Alphaville, Depeche Mode and then one day, Bon Jovi‘s Slippery When Wet, which is a favorite of Theart's.[5] “I loved the way he pronounced the words and the way he wrote", he said in an interview.[6] He then began to discover, and favorite bands such as Motley Crue, Def Leppard, Iron Maiden, Metallica, and Skid Row. He stated that his two favorites were Bon Jovi and Skid Row. During his teen years, Theart fronted and played in many bands. Not all of them are known, but one was a Pretoria-based band called "Santaria", which was active during the late eighties and early nineties. It is unknown if they are findable online, or at all. Some of the members were "the now drummer of Cold Hand Chemistry, Robert Fick and ex-Strider guitarist Pierre Goosen and Stefan Steyn". After Theart graduated high school, he moved away to London, England, seeking global popularity, rather than local. In the late 1990s, Theart fronted a garage/hard rock band called "Easy Voodoo". They released a demo in 1999, but shortly after its release, Theart left the band.


In late 1999, Theart began to put out advertisements in a studio called "Thin Ice Studios", and his ad was discovered by former Demoniac guitarists Herman Li and Sam Totman. Together, they formed a band called "DragonHeart", but the name was later changed to "DragonForce". They recorded a demo in 2000, and an album called Valley Of The Damned, released in 2003 on Noise Records. A year later, his next album with the band Sonic Firestorm was released on the same label, and a world tour followed. In 2005, they signed to Roadrunner Records, and Inhuman Rampage was released in 2006, eventually going gold. In 2008, Theart's fourth and final album with the band Ultra Beatdown was released, and in 2009, another world tour followed. In 2010, Valley Of The Damned and Sonic Firestorm were re-released with bonus DVDs, featuring live footage, interviews, and other things. Later that year, Theart left the band due to "insurmountable differences of musical opinion".[7] He has since stated that he does not regret his decision to leave.[1][8]

Skid Row[edit]

On February 13, 2016, Theart premiered as the touring vocalist for Skid Row.[9] The band continued to tour throughout 2016 with Theart as their front man. Following a year of touring, on January 15, 2017, he was declared their official lead vocalist. [10]


  1. ^ a b c Childers, Chad (26 May 2012). "Former DragonForce Singer ZP Theart Does Not Regret Leaving Band". Loudwire. Retrieved 12 November 2012. 
  2. ^ Seymour, Jon (3 August 2012). "I AM I's ZP Theart: Exclusive Pre-Bloodstock Interview". Pure Rawk. Retrieved 12 November 2012. 
  3. ^ Ouellette, Mary (22 April 2012). "Ex-Dragonforce Singer ZP Theart Returns With New Band I Am I". Loudwire. Retrieved 12 November 2012. 
  4. ^ "Pentakill Music". Retrieved 3 June 2014. 
  5. ^ BrutalViking (June 18, 2012). "From Farm to 'Force and Beyond – An Interview With ZP Theart". Retrieved December 19, 2015. 
  6. ^ Georgia Straight; lucas aykroyd (September 7, 2006). "REPORT: OLD-SCHOOL DRAGONFORCE A UNITED NATIONS OF METAL". www.straight.com. 
  7. ^ "Dragonforce part ways with ZP Theart". Kerrang!. 9 March 2010. Archived from the original on 6 July 2012. Retrieved 12 November 2012.  |first1= missing |last1= in Authors list (help)
  8. ^ Seymour, Jon (3 August 2012). "I AM I's ZP Theart: Exclusive Pre-Bloodstock Interview". Pure Rawk. Retrieved 12 November 2012. 
  9. ^ http://www.blabbermouth.net/news/video-skid-row-plays-first-show-with-ex-dragonforce-singer-zp-theart/
  10. ^ http://www.blabbermouth.net/news/skid-row-officially-recruits-ex-dragonforce-singer-zp-theart-prepares-to-make-new-record/