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Tony Iommi on His Autobiography, Embarrassing Moments and Future

Da Capo Press

‘Iron Man: My Journey Through Heaven and Hell With Black Sabbath,’ is the newly released autobiography of Tony Iommi.

The book chronicles the story of both Iommi and Black Sabbath. The guitarist speaks honestly and unflinchingly about his rough-and-tumble childhood, the accident that almost ended his career, his failed marriages, personal tragedies, battles with addiction, band mates, famous friends, newfound daughter, and the ups and downs of his life as an artist.

Arguably the architect of the heavy metal riff, Iommi admitted to Noisecreep that being so candid about his personal life was difficult at first. “There were definitely some things that I didn’t want to talk about, but when you’re working on an autobiography, you have to really say some things that are uncomfortable. This book was very difficult for me because I’ve never really talked about my private life in interviews in the past. I’ve always just kept it about Black Sabbath or whatever musical project I had at the moment. So yes, it was tough for me to be so open about these personal moments in my life, but I’m getting a bit more used to it now that I’m doing all of these interviews about the book,” Iommi says.

“To be honest, I wouldn’t even know who to give it to for feedback [laughs]. The book has only been out for a few days, so I haven’t really heard from anyone that I mentioned in the book yet. It came out in the UK a couple of weeks ago, but by that time I was already here in the States. So we’ll have to see about that.”


Watch ‘Learn About Black Sabbath’ Video

Black Sabbath’s chemical exploits are legendary, so Noisecreep asked Iommi if he had a lot of difficulty remembering a lot of the older anecdotes in the book. “When it comes to my personal life, there are just things that just stick out in my mind. I’m sure there are things that got lost along the way, but the really important things are in my book. The funny thing is I can remember things from 30 years ago, but if you ask me what I did yesterday, I might not know [laughs].

“Another I used to do was write down everything in a journal. I had many of them. But one day I got called into court about a management problem and I said, “Oh, I have everything written down in my journal.” So the next thing I know they pulled all of my journals into court and it was so embarrassing. Everybody had a copy in front of them. There were so many things in there that I didn’t want anyone to know about. You know – things about relationships and other personal matters. So I said, “That’s it… no more journals for me!” I’ve never done it again since then.”

Now that he’s opened up about his personal life in such a public way, Noisecreep asked Iommi if he would ever consider doing a reality show like Ozzy Osbourne did some years back. “Oh no, definitely not. I couldn’t do that kind of thing to be honest. I would feel very uncomfortable having all of these people in my house, following me with a camera. I don’t even think Ozzy was all that happy about it either.”

When the subject of his future plans came up, Iommi didn’t mention Black Sabbath. “I’ve been doing a lot of writing on my own. I’ve done some work with Ian Gillan (Deep Purple) and that was a lot of fun to do. We’re talking about doing a project one of these days – an album or something. But he’s busy with Purple for now so we’ll have to see. But yes, I’d love to work with him again.”

Buy Tony Iommi’s Autobiography

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