PureVolume recently conducted an interview with legendary BLACK SABBATH bassist Geezer Butler. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.
PureVolume: What makes you happy, personally, on an average non-touring day?
Geezer: I live in Beverly Hills, and I’ve got lots of dogs, so I take them for walks. Or I’ll just sit by the pool, reading. My dogs are all rescue dogs — I’ve got five rescues now, and they’re just like mutts. The closest to a breed is one that’s a Cavalier King Charles spaniel. But all of our dogs had been severely abused, and we rescued them from various places. And I’ve got seven cats, too. And a few scorpions out in the backyard. There are all kinds of things that live out in the hills where I live: scorpions, tarantulas, coyotes, and deer. Lots of deer. It’s great. I mean, it’s their territory, isn’t it? So it’s a we’re-taking-over-their-territory kind of thing. So you just have to find happiness within yourself. So I find happiness in rescuing animals — they’re so loving and appreciative afterwards, when you give them a good home.
PureVolume: You penned the lyrics for “God Is Dead?” And, a la Richard Dawkins and the late Christopher Hitchens, it’s faddishly hip to be an atheist now. But why can’t science and faith peacefully co-exist?
Geezer: Yeah. That’s what that song is about. It’s about the guy that’s sick of hearing that God is dead, so he sets out to prove that he isn’t.
PureVolume: What do you yourself believe?
Geezer: I’m not sure myself. I grew up Catholic, so I’ve always got that ingrained in me. I mean, I don’t go to church or anything like that. And sometimes I think it’s like science fiction, or just a load of fiction, and then other times I’ll go back to praying to Jesus. So I’m not really convinced about anything. But when I’m on a plane? I will always pray!
PureVolume: What do you think comes next, afterlife-wise?
Geezer: What? When I’m in the ground? I think you just die, and that’s it. But then, who knows? I’ve seen a couple of ghosts — I don’t know if that means anything. I saw them when I was a little kid, at home. Me and my sister saw this old woman, coming down the stairs, and it really freaked us out. It was a ghost, just floating down the stairs. And it was a bit of a weird old Victorian house that I grew up in. And one day, I came out of my bedroom, and there was a guy just standing there, looking up the stairs, dressed in 1920s clothes. And then he just disappeared. But that was when I was a kid, around the age of seven or eight, and I never really had any of those experiences after that. But me and my sister saw the first one, so I didn’t imagine it. So I’m not sure if it was a spirit that lives within the walls of a certain place or what. Who knows?
PureVolume: Are you ultimately optimistic about the future?
Geezer: I’ve been one of the luckiest people on Earth with my life, you know? I’ve got everything that I need. I’ve got a great band, great family, great friends around me, so there’s no reason for me to be pessimistic. So it all comes down to other people, I suppose — beware the other people. Religion’s gone nuts now, with Egypt and all that, and Sunnis against Shi’ites, Palestinians against Israel. It’s just endless. And it’s going to kick off in Africa, as well, like Somalia. And they never seem to learn. I mean, why can’t we all just live in peace for once? I’ve managed to do it!
Read the entire interview at PureVolume.