Full Metal Jackie of Loudwire spoke with the Prince of Darkness, Ozzy Osbourne, about his Memoirs of a Madman CD and DVD compilation Black Sabbath and Randy Rhoads. Excerpts from the interview appear below.
Loudwire: Ozzy, there’s a lot of really cool stuff on the Memoirs of a Madman DVD that fans will love. What emotions does all that footage bring up?
Ozzy: Well to be perfectly truthful, the video I am not as big on watching myself be interviewed. It’s something I’ve always felt. To the music side, it was a chore in itself because I’ve got so much stuff to choose from throughout the range of my career. I know people are like, “Why didn’t you do this one? Why didn’t you do that one?” I can’t please everyone. I did the best I could, but it’s not a bad package. And the reason why I did it. Since I have been doing the Black Sabbath thing, fans have been going, “Oh is it the end of the Ozzy thing?” It is like, “No.” It is to let people know that I am still actively doing a solo career. With the Black Sabbath tour and another Black Sabbath album, but that’s the last thing I’m going to do with Black Sabbath and then I am going to go back to being solo again.
Loudwire: A singer is only as good as the musicians around him. You’ve always surrounded yourself with the best. Over the years, how have the players in your band pushed you to be the best singer you can be?
Ozzy: Well it just seems to happen. Zakk [Wylde] was with me longer than anybody. He was the longest player with me, ever. But as I am getting older time goes by so quickly. Sharon and I went to dinner with Zakk and his wife, it’s like family. Randy Rhoads was something special. He was a special guy. Just sad he’s no longer with us. Jake E. Lee was great.
Loudwire: You recently revealed that Sabbath would release one more album and do another tour. Have you already started writing?
Ozzy: No, we are going to start in the New Year. I can’t really give you [an answer] because I haven’t spoken to them yet. Rather, I have texted Tony he is getting new riffs. I am not worried because Tony Iommi is the best guy in the world for coming up with heavy metal riffs.
Loudwire: Is there a timeline for the record or the tour?
Ozzy: I haven’t discussed it with anyone yet. I left him alone for a while because the last thing we did, the tour he was diagnosed with lymphoma. So, I didn’t want to worry him. I didn’t want to put pressure on him.
Loudwire [On the Memoirs of a Madman] there’s a concert in there from Rochester with Randy Rhoads on guitar that was filmed back in 1981. What kind of emotions did seeing Randy stir up?
Ozzy: You know I’ve seen that piece from Rochester so many times, I get sad. He was a great guy. He was a great player. It seemed like he’d be with me forever and he was only with me for a couple of years. Sharon and I still go see his mom from time to time. She is old now, she is in her 90s. But it’s the kind of responsibility because I feel somewhat kind of responsible because for the fact that he had not been with me he might still be alive. I know you can’t live like that. But I feel sad. He was a great guy.
Loydwire: Do you remember clearly when you first found him?
Ozzy: Yeah well, not first. When I first found him I was drunk in Los Angeles in a hotel room. And this guy said I got this fantastic guitar player you won’t believe it. This little guy came into my room, 11 o’clock at night. I saw him, at first I thought is that he was a girl. He was so little then. I heard him play and I was like wow! I couldn’t believe how amazing he was.
Read more at Loudwire.
In related news, Osbourne recently told Esquire,”If this is Black Sabbath’s last hurrah, then we’ll have ended it on an up note rather than when I left in 1979 and everybody was fucked up on one thing or another and I was marked out as being the worst. The only thing sad about it is I hope Bill Ward can get his stuff together to do this because one of the biggest things I’m proud of in my life was that Black Sabbath wasn’t a band that was created by some business mogul in London or New York. That we were four guys who had a great idea and it worked from record one.”
The singer adds that once Sabbath call it quits, he will go right back to his solo career because he can’t juggle the two projects at one time.
He says: “I’m not one of these guys to do my solo stuff one night and Black Sabbath the next. I can’t do that. It’s too much to handle. So with the Sabbath thing, the record company wants us to do one more record, and we’ve decided to do one more tour, and at the end of the tour we just disband and I go back to doing my solo stuff. And that’s why I released Memoirs Of A Madman, to let people out there know I’m still functioning as a solo artist.”
sources: loudwire.com and esquire.com