Original Black Sabbath to Reunite Again?
As Ozzy Osbourne has intoned so many times onstage, “Crazy, but that’s how it goes.” There is growing evidence that the original Black Sabbath — Osbourne, guitarist Tony Iommi, bassist Geezer Butler and drummer Bill Ward — are going to reunite for an album and tour. On Aug. 4, during an on-air interview with KNAC.com, Osbourne said, “It’s very, very possible that the original Sabbath are gonna finally do the ultimate Sabbath album. And we’re gonna do a tour, I think.”
Right now, there’s nothing scheduled and nobody has confirmed what seems to be the inevitable. But Ozzy added, “I spoke to Bill Ward yesterday, and we both say we never say ‘never’ anymore.”
During a recent interview with Noisecreep, bassist Geezer Butler had an identical response: “I’m never going to predict the future ever again. So many times I’ve said I’m never going to anything with Ozzy or Ronnie or whoever, and next week you’re doing it. So I’ll never say never ever again. In a way it’s nice to never know what’s going to happen.”
In 2001, the band worked with producer Rick Rubin on new material, but nothing surfaced. Then Ozzy returned to his solo career and worked on the MTV hit reality show ‘The Osbournes.’ The last time Black Sabbath toured together with Ozzy was on 2005’s Ozzfest. The next year, Iommi and Butler got back together with singer Ronnie James Dio (who played on three Black Sabbath studio albums after Ozzy originally left the band) and drummer Vinny Appice, touring as Heaven & Hell. They wrote three songs for a 2007 compilation album, ‘Black Sabbath: The Dio Years,’ and the full 2009 record ‘The Devil You Know.’
In May 2009 Osbourne sued Iommi in New York Federal Court, alleging that the guitarist unlawfully stole the name Black Sabbath. While the case was in dispute, Dio was diagnosed with stomach cancer and died six months later on May 16. On July 20, Osbourne issued a statement that read, “Ozzy Osbourne and Tony Iommi of the legendary heavy metal band Black Sabbath have amicably resolved their problems over the ownership of the Black Sabbath name and court proceedings in New York have been discontinued. Both parties are glad to put this behind them and to cooperate together for the future and would like it to be known that the issue was never personal, it was always business.”