Pride of Lions Jim and Tobey
Photo: Kristie Mayfair

Jim Peterik is a legend in the world of Rock music. In 1964 Peterik formed the band Ides of March. In 1970 the group released their hit single “Vehicle.” Even if the band name or song title doesn’t ring a bell, as soon as the opening brass fanfare hits your ears, you will no doubt recognize it. From 1978-1988 Jim was a member of Survivor and co-wrote some of the band’s most recognizable songs including “I Can’t Hold Back,” “The Search is Over,” “Burning Heart,” and of course “Eye of the Tiger.”

In addition to contributing to Survivor, Peterik co-wrote songs for other artists including 38 Special, Sammy Hagar, Lynyrd Skynyd, The Doobie Brothers, Jimi Jamison, and so many more. After Survivor disbanded Jim Peterik continued songwriting and put together a few personal projects. World Stage is a collection of collaborations between Peterik and many prominent vocalists. He has released two albums under that moniker since 2000. His most recent in 2019.

In 2003 Jim Peterik was introduced to vocalist Toby Hitchcock. Together they formed the Melodic Rock project Pride of Lions. It can be said that Pride of Lions is a continuation of what Peterik started in the ’80s. The songs are loaded with big choruses and lots of emotion (and keyboards). Pride of Lions has released 5 studio albums and 1 live album. On October 9, 2020 they released their 6th studio album Lion Heart [review].

Growing up in the ’80s, Survivor was one of my favorite bands. Mainly due to their musical soundtrack contributions to Rocky III and Rocky IV. From those two songs I discovered so many more great songs that never reached the same notoriety. When I began my own e-zine back in the day, Frontiers Music was just starting out as well. One of the first albums they sent me was the self-titled Pride of Lions debut and I was hooked. It was an honor and privilege to interview Jim Peterik for Metal Express Radio.

Highlights include:

  • Discussion of Pride of Lions’ new album Lion Heart
  • How “Eye of the Tiger” made it into Rocky III
  • How his song contributions to other bands caused friction
  • Memories of recording Suvivor’s Vital Signs
  • The formation of Pride of Lions
  • Jimmy’s huge guitar collection
  • Working with Dennis DeYoung (Ex-Styx)… and much, much more!

** Interviewer’s note: At about the 10 minute mark Jim refers to Pride of Lions, but he meant Frontiers asked him for another World Stage album next year.

Pride of Lions is:

Toby Hitchcock – Lead vocals
Jim Peterik – Lead vocals, background vocals, keyboards, guitars, percussion
Ed Breckenfeld – Drums and percussion
Klem Hayes – Bass
Mike Aquino – Lead and rhythm guitar
Colin Peterik – Drums on “Lion Heart”
Kevin Campbell – Bass on “Lion Heart”
Christian Mathew Cullen – Synths & Programming

Band Links:

Jim Peterik Official Website


  • George Dionne

    George was a contributor here at Metal Express Radio, reviewing albums and conducting interviews, out of Massachusetts, USA. George has contributed to numerous music related websites and blogs, and even managed his own from 2004-2009. George's first assignment was covering a live show by the mighty GWAR. By contrast his later assignments featured Judas Priest, Van Halen, and Bon Jovi. George was also the front man for the South Eastern Massachusetts cover band Sound Tower from 2009-2015.  Sound Tower played 300+ shows across MA and had two original songs on the Cape Cod radio station PIXY 103. George enjoys a good whiskey, scotch, and/or bourbon and fights crime in his spare time.

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