Thoughts about Current Events [ UPDATED 2 ]

A week or so ago when Bill Ward dropped that bombshell online about his contract situation and the Black Sabbath reunion, I was privy to it about 5 minutes before it was put online.  As you probably remember, I handle Bill’s website, and his manager sent me that, asked me to put it on his site.  Obviously, I read it first, and my immediate thought was, “There goes the web server”.  (Which turned out to be true).

Anyway, in the time that’s happened since, there’s been an awful lot of reactions online.  The overwhelming majority of the reaction has been some sort of “Come on guys, get your shit together, get this worked out”.  I’ve seen the gamut of reaction from the positive to the negative – on all sides.  Those calling out the guys for not getting it settled before the 11-11-11 presser, those villifying Sharon Osbourne (which is a sadly too easy shot to take), those ragging on Bill for taking away their reunion, those calling for a 25/25/25/25 split of the pot, etc, etc, etc..

I’m not surprised at that, because for a lot of people, this will be their only chance to see Mk I Black Sabbath.  Of course, they played together a ton of times from 1999 through 2005, so it’s not like it hasn’t happened, but still.   I’ve noticed when you mix metalheads, emotion, money, and high expectations, there’s going to be a ton of how shall we say, “emotional responses”… and there’s been a lot of them online the last few days.

In the last 48 hours or so, I’ve seen a few stories in particular that make me scratch my head at the Internet in general, and it’s ability to fact check itself.  The first is that Sharon Osbourne “fired” Bill Ward, and another that the other three have replaced Bill Ward with Tommy Clufetos (from Ozzy’s solo band), or Bill Ward quit, and is refusing to come on board, etc…   Let’s look at some FACTS:

  1. Bill Ward issued a statement saying that he won’t sign the contract offered to him, and isn’t with the guys as they work on the new album.
  2. The next day, the other three guys issued a statement saying basically “We’re sorry Bill feels that way, but we’re gonna keep working, the door is open”.  (I’m paraphrasing).
  3. Bill issued a thank you statement for the support he’s gotten from the fans.

That’s about it, folks.  Those are the only FACTS as we know them that have been released by the band.  Unless the band announces it, it’s all rumour.  I’m sorry, but I don’t deal in rumors for the most part.

Obviously, given none of us as fans are privy to the contracts involved, it’s impossible to know for sure what’s really going on.  I’ve known Bill since about 1997 when I started doing his site, and if there’s one thing he never struck me as is a liar.  Those accusations I’ve seen are fairly annoying.   I know they’ve annoyed his family, one of Bill’s sons ranted last night online about the inaccuracies of what’s been said about his dad.

My point in posting here is that we all need to take a deep breath, calm down, and for God’s sake, deal in facts, not rumor and speculation.  There’s enough crap in the world, without inventing it.  Obviously, there’s an unpleasant situation going on.  If Black Sabbath actually ANNOUNCES that they’ve replaced Bill with Tommy Clufetos, or Vinny Appice, or Lee Kerslake (har har har), then we can react.  But honestly, reacting to a news rumor story is a bit over the top, and it doesn’t help anything.

Now obviously, if Tony, Geezer, Oz (& Adam Wakeman from what I believe) are continuing to work on the new album, then someone probably has to physically sit there on drums (unless they ignore that and do a drum machine in the interim), but that’s all practical matters and facts that I suspect we’ll never hear about.   But again…. Speculation.  Not fact.

What do I think personally?   I am a bit puzzled as to why it wasn’t worked out before 11-11-11, but this really feels like 2004 again.  The same thing happened then.  It got worked out then.  I suspect it will get worked out again, but I have ZERO facts behind that.  Yes, I occasionally know things before they’re announced, but not this time.  I have no inside information on this situation, I’m just going on personal speculation here.   But I present it as such.  I do not present this as fact, it’s my own speculation and thoughts on the matter.

I want Bill back there as a fan of the band as much as anyone else.  But genuine rage and being REALLY pissed off is counterproductive.  As much as we all want this to happen, it’s ultimately just about music.  There’s more important things in life to get seriously worked up about.

Now..  Come on guys.  Get it worked out.  We want a true Mk I Reunion!  :)

UPDATE: I meant to say this when I wrote the article earlier, but I was in a hurry, and forgot.

There’s also the issue of Iommi’s cancer – it’s a huge, and massive unknown variable. If you’ve ever dealt with cancer before, you know how unpredictable it can be. Even if they resolve it with Bill, who knows what kind of condition Tony might be in. We may NOT get a full tour because of Tony’s health, too – we may yet get the tour.  It’s all up in the air at the moment.   I wonder if this has anything to do with the removal of the tour date page from the Official Black Sabbath website.

Anyway, just take it easy and ride it out.  Don’t panic.  :)

UPDATE 2: Later this afternoon, Sharon Osbourne took to Twitter to post the following text:

 I am not in any position to hire or fire anyone in Black Sabbath. I don’t manage the band, I manage my husband.

I’ve been trying to tell people that for awhile now, but so many people seem hell bent on just vilifying her first, they can’t see the reality.  Black Sabbath is not managed by one single person, and when it’s not managed by one single person, there is no arbitrary “firing” capability like that.   Sharon’s done a lot of things over the years, but I tend to buy this one.

Comments

  1. Gustavo Brauner says:

    Very good post, man! Thank you. I hope the old troupe can get over any problems and move — giving us an awesome-only-Sabbath-can-make-it-heavy-metal-album

  2. Joe,

    Well said! I was freaking out as well.

  3. kevin from the emerald isle says:

    good read joe, i hope it will be MK1 and I think it will be but if not if sabbath do an album and a tour I will be there regardless.

    slainte
    kev

  4. Great post, Joe, it was time to calm down people.

  5. I just read the article about Sharon supposedly fired Bill and replaced him with Ozzy’s drummer. This brings up a question. Since when is Sharon Osbourne Black Sabbath’s manager? I understand the stuff with her in the past (2004) because she is Ozzy’s manager and ran Ozzfest where Sabbath was playing. Am I missing something on this? I’m sure all 4 members have their own separate management, but why when they come together as Black Sabbath is it assumed that Sharon Osbourne is running things? Any clarity to this question would be greatly appreciated. Finally, nice post Joe on talking some of us off the ledge and like every other fan, please just get this worked out and bring back Bill Ward!

  6. curt black says:

    hi there
    thanx for your time, for your well done job making this fair web page,
    in my opinion we have to wait until the facts are real.
    and yes, i wish bill ward inside this great comeback.
    best wishes
    curt

  7. status quo says:

    cheers joe,you nailed it with them points
    i just hope it can all be sorted out
    i would hope it can move forward with bill
    if not get vinny in,who i think is a classic drummer,loved him with h/h
    id hate nothing to come out of this,do the album and tour,thats what the fans want
    as a lot of us said,how the fuck important issues,werent sorted b4 11.11.11 has me in rage!!!

    BLACK SABBATH…WE SOLD OUR SOUL FOF ROCK N ROLL…GO FOR IT!!!

    • Look, nobody wants to see a 3/4 Sabbath reunionLook, nobody wants to see a 3/4 Sabbath reunion. All this passion and anger (especially over the last week) was the result of the fact that this is supposed to be a BLACK SABBATH reunion. And THAT is Tony, Ozzy, Geezer and Bill- no one else. As for these continual suggestions of vinnie as a replacement, I will repeat, for the fourth time, VINNIE SUCKS! Anything he has ever done with Sabbath/ HH would have been done 10 times better by Bill. If Dio didn’t find him to replace Bill in 1980, nobody, to this day, would have ever heard of him.Witness the fact that nobody hears of him between Sab gigs. Anybody hear of him between ”Dehumanizer” and ”The Devil YouKnow”? Or before 1980? Or between ”Mob Rules” and ”Dehumanizer”? I rest my case. C’mon boys, get your act together or find new management.

      • status quo says:

        you havent a clue about drummers,so if bill is dumped is that it for this reunion
        i know bill is part of the original crew,i would of thought u would get the next best in line
        after all he has played on a few sabbath albums,and has played with,tony,and gezzer,with h/h,and the the very fine album,tdyk…have u any ideas ,considering your rubbish views on vinney!!!!!

      • you havent a clue about good drummers,i think vinny is a class drummer,so if bill cant do this album/tour thing ,for his aparent reasons,which i fully respect,do u think the other 3,wont move foward
        without him,dont think so,i would prefare if it was bill
        so i think they would get the next best in line,which i think is vinny, he has played on a few great sabbath albums/tours,mob rules/live evil/dehumanizer/and the great the devil you know,with heaven and hell
        he also has the classic holy diver album and a few dio albums under his belt,
        and he played with,tony and geezer,i would think he would be the obvious choice,in my view!!!

      • status quo says:

        vinny rules

  8. Eric Chiasson says:

    I personally am sick & tired of all those cheap shots to Sharon. I’m hoping for a MK1 reunion as much as any Black Sabbath fans but blaming & calling her all sorts of names (some people out there are just plain nasty) isn’t solving anything.

  9. status quo says:

    hope every thing can be sorted out,you nailed it with all them points
    hope all parties can move forward with bill on the drum stool
    if not get vinny in ,do the album /tour,thats what the fans want
    id hate if nothing developes,from this
    as a lot of us said,how inportant issues ,werent sorted out b4 11.11.11,has me rattled!!!

    BLACK SABBATH…WE SOLD OUR SOUL FOR ROCK N ROLL!!!!

  10. As usual, well said Joe. I agree a thousand percent and have been saying the whole time, we don’t have any idea what is actually going on. The website that posted the Tommy Clufetos story is not what I call reliable. Until I hear confirmation from someone in the camp I sit back and still get very excited about the possibilities of a new Sabbath album.

    As much as I love Bill, I find it so hypocritical of some o the fans demanding not to call this Black Sabbath. Was it not Black Sabbath when Vinnie Appice, Bev Bevan, Bobby Rondinelli and Cozy Powell played with the band. It is like we are in a weird vortex and even the die hard “all era’s are Sabbath” are demanding it not to be called Sabbath. If it has Iommi, Osbourne and Butler it will be called sabbath.

  11. Please, no Clufetos (not a bad drummer, but not a Sabbath one) like STATU QUO said, if Bill don’t do the thing the band should have a classic Hard/Heavy drummer stile, we can discuss names (I already gave my opinion) but Bill is the man.

    • Hello,

      Obviously, Bill Ward should be with Black Sabbath. But, sadly and unfortunately if this situation with Bill does not get properly resolved, they, Black Sabbath will obviously have to look for another drummer if they plan on continuing. If so, drummers such as Carmine Appice would seem to be a very nice fit and addition to Black Sabbath. Carmine plays more in the style of Bill Ward, percussionist/drummer, powerful, jazzy, bluesy, rock, big band swing, etc,etc than even Carmine’s Brother Vinnie Appice as well as comparing Carmine to many other drummers.

      I do not know that much about Tommy Clufetos, but he seems to be at the very least a very good drummer, and seems to be in excellent shape. But with that being said, if he did not change part of his approach and or style, I would also say No Clufetos for Black Sabbath.

      Even if Clufetos did change part of his style and or approach on drumming Black Sabbath songs, I still would rather somebody else like the above given example Carmine Appice.

      What do you think?

      Joe,

      Bye.

  12. Its just so,pathetic and sad; that these people can’t come together and give Bill a fair contract. They will all make a ton of money. More then they could ever need. OZZY, GEEZER, BILL AND TONY solve the problem and make it a true reunion!

  13. Jonas Olsson says:

    Love from Sweden, Joe!!

  14. Well said. It’s hard not to speculate but you’re bang on that until we hear otherwise nothing is official. I really hope that things can be worked out with Bill. It’s sad that this has turned into a public spat but fingers crossed contractual matters can be sorted before the album/tour progress. If there is really and definitively no way to make Bill happy and get him involved again then surely Vinny Appice is the next best option and only logical replacement… no disrespect to the likes of Bevan, Powell, Singer and Rondinelli but aside from Bill, Vinny has played on the most well-know/liked Sabbath albums and knows how to nail all the classics live. He’s a beast behind the kit on stage… always has been and always will be hopefully. At least he has some real Sabbath history on his CV so it’d be better than just bringing in some bloke Ozzy has used/is using. Anyway, I’m doing exactly what Joe was talking about: speculating! Ha! I better shut up. Hopefully Tony, Geezer and Ozzy can get Bill back in the band and make peace… life’s too short. Also, because of this Bill media-blow-up everyone seems to have forgotten about sending positive vibes to help Tony kick cancer’s ass! Get well soon Tony.

  15. KazolOrajia says:

    I agree 100% with everything you said, Joe. You’re a great example when it comes to these things.

  16. Granted, Joe, only a couple of official statements to go on, but a lot of people have spent a lot of money on tickets and travel, on the basis that the reunion and album was actually going to happen!

    “It’s got to be now or never” kind of statements, and the (pre- Bill) update that the FOUR guys were in the UK actually working on the album? The announced tour dates being taken OFF the official Black Sabbath, when most have been sold?!!! Come on, no wonder almost everyone is p*****!!!!

    Whatever the reasons, it all leaves a nasty taste, and a sad end to the greatest rock band!
    It should of all been sorted and signed, a four way share, before ANY announcement was made on 11-11-11.
    Looking back on that date, the lads didn’t look too excited at the announcement! Probably see why now!!!
    Bitter? Just sorry to see an awful end to it all! What a bloody mess!

  17. I think the fellas need to take one step at a time which is tony health first,resolve any problems,then make the album,then if everything is going well then do your tour,I would much rather see a new studio album than a tour

  18. Doug Nicko says:

    Well said SJT new studio album is most important WITH BILL”Tony’s health is also I just know when Bill is back in all forms Tony will feal better too.

  19. All true. But I’m still very sad to think that they may not work this out. And I really hope its not a money grab by one party or another. As a lifelong Sabbath fan, I love that Tony kept the faith all these years and my heart goes out to him as he struggles with this ugly disease. But as far as the reunion goes, I don’t care about Tony’s singular tenure with the band; I don’t care about Ozzy’s name recognition; I don’t care about anything but hearing new music from the 4 guys who changed rock and roll. Anything less would be another missed opportunity – and just plain sad. If you really want a new Sabbath record, then work it out guys. Time is not on your side.

  20. if its money ive never understood why these bands dont split it evenly……..same thing with van halen….i guess they thought m anthony wasnt worth even pay also……

  21. Monte Self says:

    Right On Joe !, thanks for that post I’m sure it helps, also thanks for the contest prize, I’m really jazzed about seeing it tonight ! (God Bless Ozzy Osbourne) !.

  22. I am sick to bloody death of Bill pulling out after already committing, this goes way back to (at least) the Born Again tour. ‘Your comments give me even more strength’….bullshit. I love Sabbath but for god’s sake Bill stop being such a pussy.

    • I just want this thing to end and the band back together, I was so looking forward to hearing their new album! Bill deserves to have a fair contract, I just hope that the management comes back with a new contract asap. I want the 4 original, nothing more, nothing less.

    • Bill was not being a pussy back in 1983 ,as he was a recovering addict and felt going on the road would kill him. I’m not an addict, but HAD a brother who was an addict and my wife was an addict. You put addicts in surroundings that threaten their sobriety (numerous strange hotels, bars, concerts, groupies) and they will probably cave. That doesn’t make you a pussy, it makes you a person who values their life. As for now, Bill should be paid 25 percent of what they will make. He shouldn’t be treated like a hired hand. Like Henry Rollins and many others have said, “Black Sabbath is Bill, Tony, Geezer and Ozzy”. He was there from the beginning, he got Ozzy into the band, he had to fire Ozzy and I read he financially carried Sabbath when they were recording Heaven and Hell here in Miami in 1980 when the band was considered dead after firing Ozzy. On top of that, he was dealing with his addictions and the loss of both his parents within months while on tour. He couldn’t take it anymore and quit, leaving Sabbath in a jam, but if he didn’t, he would be dead and we wouldn’t be having this conversation about Bill holding out.

  23. muchas gracias, saludos desde Colombia.

    lo mas sensato que se encuentra.

  24. Agree with Craig. Bill is always pulling out of Black Sabbath for whatever reason.

    It seems odd to post on facebook the way he did. Maybe the guys aren’t getting along in the studio. Lots of bands say that when they get back together, the old problems that caused them to break up in the first place start to crop up again. and they always did pick on Bill.

    I am a fan of all four, and I’ll enjoy whatever album comes out of this regardless. More music from Ozzy, Iommi, Butler (and hopefully Ward) is always a good thing!

    Regardless of Toni’s health, the clock is ticking on all of them anyways! So hopefully they all get their shit together and give us a great Sabbath album before it’s too late. It doesn’t have to sound like, or live up to previous material. Just let it be what it is, and let us enjoy it.

    • I agree as well. I was glad to hear about the re-re-union and am very interested to hear whatever they come up with.
      Bill really had no business airing the dirty laundry in public, what did he expect, that when the other guys see how many fans support him the money will get better? He’s been out of the band far longer than he’s been in it and the name went to Tony quite some time ago.
      Back when they were all friends and making records and nobody ‘owned’ the trademark, he was an equal member. Now he’s basically getting hired on as a member (like Ace Frehley and Peter Criss had to do). He’s certainly going to get less than Ozzy, I’m betting Ozzy’s getting ‘hired on’ too. Tony probably has to pay all three of the others out of whatever the band clears on tickets, concessions, flat per-gig fees, t-shirts, albums, odds & ends (less tax, travel, accomodations, food etc.).
      I’d love to hear a new album but it’s kind of getting ruined already.

  25. I hope tall of his gets resolved very soon. Also good vibes to Tony Iommi.

    I really really hope Bill Ward comes back on board. Then maybe they would let him sing ‘It’s Alright’ again. :)

  26. I hope all of this gets resolved very soon. Also good vibes to Tony Iommi.

    I really really hope Bill Ward comes back on board. Then maybe they would let him sing ‘It’s Alright’ again. :)

  27. No Geoff Nicholls NO SABBATH!

    Seriously, who has he pissed off? I am sure he would like to be back for this possible last hurrah!

  28. Fabio Guadagnuolo says:

    Yours is a good summary, I agree with you on all points. Just as a remark, what really worries me is Tony’s health condition, that is much more important than all the rest. I really hope he recovers, music is just secondary compared to this.

    • I am with you all the way on this one. Health should always come first I lost a friend of mine to cancer the end of last year and she didn’t know she had the big c until three weeks before she died and i also came close to loosing the singer from my band for what should have been a rutine operation, so do take care of your health, you can’t replace a life.

  29. so, who does manage sabbath? who writes out contracts and does stuff like that?

  30. Black Mike says:

    This is the post from Aron Ward (Bill’s son) on facebook:

    “The press is spinning this sh*tstorm to read as if my dad has quit. This is not true. The guys know that. That’s why they said the door is ALWAYS open.

    “My dad hasn’t ‘declined’ playing with Black Sabbath or ‘threatened’ to pull out of this reunion. As he stated, his bags are packed and he’s ready to go. He says it loud and clear, he definitely wants to play on the album and he definitely wants to tour.

    “Up ’till about three weeks ago, he was working extremely hard and close with the other three on this album/reunion tour. He was in very good spirits and sounded excited to be writing with Tony, Geezer and Ozzy again.

    “‘Don’t be so greedy': he is by no means greedy, man. If he was, he would have settled with whatever contract given him. It’s kind of obvious someone else is greedy. Wake up. He lives in a modest home in Southern California. Pays rent like the rest of us. In case you’re still blind, look at it this way — sadly, the current ‘Sabbath’ statement reads as if someone would rather see the remaining members play in front of thousands of disappointed, confused and resentful fans then give my dad a dignified agreement. Additionally, the record sales will be severely affected because it isn’t the promised original lineup. All this because of someone’s inability to respect him as the committed founding member he is. This has derailed the fans’ hopes of seeing the original lineup and strongly divided the fans. What a way to f**k up such a powerful, influential and inspirational legacy for the rest of time.

    “To Terry ([a.k.a. Geezer] my godfather), Ozzy (my friend when I was little) and Tony (towering hero), I hope that you will listen to your fans. They want all of you together. As YOU are Black Sabbath, so is my Dad. I hope you guys can work it out.”

    (Sourced from planetrock.com)

  31. I Agree, to much rumours.

  32. Wait a minute. Sharon is being disingenuous. She’s not Black Sabbath’s manager. She’s Ozzy’s manager. Fine. But if, as Ozzy’s manager, she insists on a 50% cut for her client (Ozzy), that in effect leaves only 50% to split amongst the remaining 3 members of Black Sabbath, obviously. In other words, her insistence on her’s clients percentage sticks the rest of them with lower percentages and (in Ward’s opinion) an unsignable deal. She didn’t have to be Black Sabbath’s manager to kill the whole thing. She just had to be Ozzy’s manager to kill it. Of course she didn’t hire or fire anyone. She didn’t have to. Her position enabled her to get around it and get it done otherwise.

  33. Mark Halligan says:

    Fair enough post Joe with common sense – especially since we have no official announcement from Sabbath. However, in any event it still stands: NO BILL DUE TO A CONTRACT DISPUTE = NO SABBATH.
    I am 45 years of age and have Sabbath running through my veins – always have, and, with such a special institution as Black Sabbath, one thing you do not do is make a mockery of it !! – Especially not through shallow political reasons !! We all know how Bill plays Sabbath – he doesn’t play along with the song – but THROUGH the song in his beautiful thrashing offbeat style !! There is only one drummer for the original Sabbath and in that respect there are no more important band members – only 4 very valuable equals. Lets hope any contractual dispute is resolved because if not, the mighty Sabbath institution will have made an embarrassing fool of itself whilst greatly disrespecting its followers, for all the world to see. Like others, if this situation does exist and concludes negatively, I will also boycott the album and tour, simply because I will have lost any motivation to continue my interest in the project. What a massive shame and missed opportunity that would be………….
    Hail The Mighty Sabbath !!

  34. “We sold are soul for rock n roll” as the title goes ; now the “Metal Gods” are doing some soul seaching???

  35. IronManE5150 says:

    If it’s anyone’s fault other than Bill’s, it’s Tony’s. Who “owns” the band? Who fired everybody else? Therefore, who’s decision would it be to move on without Bill if he’s lagging?

    I know that’s not what you want to see, because, like Dio, you all think Tony Iommi is God and can do no wrong, but he can – “Seventh Star” through “TYR”, “Cross Purposes” and “Forbidden” are prime examples. And since when did any of you believe Ozzy had any weight over Tony? I thought he was just a tool, like Geezer and Bill, and Black Sabbath was Tony’s band.

    I have officially lost faith in the power of metal.

  36. sabbathite says:

    The thing is, that even if this is worked out, it won’t be forgotten, and I think it leaves behind a rather unpleasant, if you will, atmosphere over the whole thing. It would seem to me that it has strained friendships between Bill and the other three. MAYBE. on the one hand, Tony, Geezer, Ozzy are quite upset that Bill went public like he did with the whole thing, while Bill MIGHT be rather saddened that they did not more actively, if at all, support him and his position to get a “fair” deal…..though I understand none of us no the real details.
    Though when one considers the bad and AT TIMES unfriendly back and forth that went on between Tony (and maybe to a lesser extent Geezer) and Ozzy in the 1980s and 1990s (some of it real, lots of it exaggerated by the press), I suppose it all can be made right again….and LET’S HOPE SO!!!

  37. I think Bozo the clown would be an appropriate coice for the drumsticks. I am not buying this anymore. Go home.

  38. I am shattered and spreadiing the link to where we vote one million say yes to Bill Ward.. They are my fave band that I have never seen as was too young before. I am 48 now and we need to stick to this one voting place to have something to show for.. to me it was not just about the music.. I would want Bill with one arm over anyone anyone else.

  39. Mike Nobles says:

    Hi Joe: Here are a few more facts you left out. Black Sabbath’s Facebook page has un-liked Bill Ward’s Facebook page. Black Sabbath’s Facebook page has taken down the ability for fans to post. Black Sabbath’s Facebook page deleted thousands of posts supporting Bill Ward. Tommy Clufetos Ozzy’s Drummer posted on his page dates he would be playing with Black Sabbth. He has since removed them but that alone does not look good. So we will wait and see what happens.

  40. Mike Nobles says:

    I think the hold up is Ozzy and Tony do not want to share equally royalties from the new album.

  41. I Love you **BLACK SABBATH** and I`´m waiting yuo HELSINKI 23.5.2012

  42. I DIEING FOR new NEWS

  43. Derek Walther says:

    Joe: glad you are bringing full perspective to this. I always consider your site to be the authority on the Sabs, more so than anything I see on YouTube (where I first heard about Bill’s decline of the contract). I think the guys are in a tough position here, with now two members’ fate uncertain: Bill for contract and Tony for health. I think the focus should be on one thing only: a MK1 Sabbath album with all 4 original members. Tour should be separate. Bill’s health has been in question on tours recently anyway, and like you said about Tony at this point…who knows? I would imagine that with so many years lying between Never Say Die and this album, the band feels the same way as all the fans about the unification of the “original 4.” If they record with any different lineup, they should consider a name change, a la Heaven and Hell. I thought the re-name was a classy (yet unnecessary) move with Dio, and with all the vitriol online about Sharon, Bill, etc., a name change may be the best way forward now, although it would hurt marketing overall (as I’m sure it did with H&H). As long as we’re talking possible replacements for Bill, I’d suggest Mike Bordin or Vinny Appice over Tommy Clufetos, as the former incorporate more of the nuances in Bill’s playing, whereas Tommy is a very precise drummer whose sound is better suited for Ozzy solo than for Sabbath.

  44. Erick Bertin says:

    You know, my one and only reproach for Bill would be “Why did you agree to do the press conference BEFORE signing a fully satisfactory contract?” Anyway, having said that, I feel instinctively inclined to take Bill’s side on this, even though I have no facts whatsoever to back this up, like I said, it’s just a gut feeling. They better work this out fast, ‘cos they’re really running out of time (no spring chickens, these fellas are, as Yoda would say) and obviously, no “original lineup reunion” is possible or even viable without Bill…

  45. Chris Stobart says:

    Bill or no Bill, we’ve got Ozzy out front on a studio album and that’s really something after all these years.

  46. I don’t care what happens. Bill or no, Ozzy or no, I want more Iommi/Butler.

    I’m not certain Bill has that groove anymore.
    I’m not certain Ozzy can sing a note outside of a studio.

    I am certain that Iommi and Butler make magic together, as recently demonstrated on “The Devil You Know”

    Appice is Dio’s guy, I doubt Ozzy will want to work with him.

    Hell, Hire Tommy Lee.

  47. if it is the origianl 4 that have equal onwership/partnership in black sabbath , then how about all parties act as equal and stop the crap and treat bill as such an equal ? doesn’t sound equal to me and doesn’t sound like you all are mates and that all is going well as you all have been saying lately !

  48. i’m as big a sabbath fan as anyone but i dont get all the hype about yet ANOTHER reunion. Hard to imagine seeing these guys perform here in 2012 as being anything close to what is was like seeing Sabbath live in the 70s. No disprespect to the fellas, but guys playing heavy metal in their 60s is a pretty poor subsitute for what was once a great thing. Thats what I took away from the earlier Mark i reunions. The new studio album…well see. I just think the whole thing is a set up for disappointment for the fans. Hope im wrong.

  49. Tony Iommi is the only member who had never left the band. Ozzy, on the other hand, had never been a good musician, neither at Sabbath nor in solo career ( all of his success was based on Bob Daisley and Randy, everybody knows that…. )
    I personally considers Ozzy’ voice disgusting…!!!
    Some songs recorded by him are pretty boring….!!!

    Please!!! Tony, Geezer and Bill ( or Vinny…) get together , calling Geoff of course, and record an album under the name of Sabbath… After all, there’s no need to have Ozzy in the band. Yes, everybody knows that he has no talent, he can’t compose , he can’t sing long gigs, he was only someone created by marketing, by his wife Sharon.
    Mr. Bill Ward , I can’t understand your friendship for someone so despisable as Ozzy and his wife. Sometimes, we have to choose our friends better..!!!!

    Long live for Black Sabbath without Ozzy and mainly Sharon!!!

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