GUS G. On Playing With OZZY: ‘I’m Really Loving All The Changes That Have Happened To Me’

Geeks Of Doom recently conducted an interview with FIREWIND/OZZY OSBOURNE axeman Gus G. (real name: Kostas Karamitroudis). A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.

Geeks of Doom: Now that the dust has settled roughly two years after you joined Ozzy‘s band, what has life been like for you?

Gus G.: It’s still amazing, man. It’s not something you really get used to, you know what I mean? [laughs] I mean that in a great way. I’m really loving all the changes that have happened to me and stuff, and that I’m having the chance to do this at such a level. It’s a blessing and few people in the world have the chance that I got so I’m very grateful and I’m really enjoying it.

Geeks of Doom: Good. How did you come to join Ozzy?

Gus G.: The management emailed me. Someone from his management sent me an email and they asked me if I wanted to go down and audition. You know somehow I had gotten on their radar, I don’t know how…so that’s how it happened.

Geeks of Doom: I read that when you were with ARCH ENEMY that you gave them [Ozzy‘s people] a FIREWIND CD?

Gus G.: You know, I did back in 2005 at the Ozzfest, because they put out an ad on Blabbermouth that they were looking for a guitar player. So I just went in and gave them one of my CDs. But I don’t think that really had anything to do with it because that was like four years before they actually contacted me so I doubt they realized, “Oh, remember that guy from four years ago?” I think it was just, I don’t know, I think it was Blasko, the bass player. He knew about me, he had seen me around in magazines and the Internet and all that stuff so… when they asked him about who he would suggest he came up with my name and then they checked me out and they liked what I did.

Geeks of Doom: What was the first rehearsal like?

Gus G.: It was great! You know, this band had chemistry right from the start. So as soon as we started playing the first song, it felt really great. It felt like a great band from the start and the fact that everybody is really good people, it really makes things even better, and we really get along.

Geeks of Doom: Cool. When the “Scream” world tour finally ends, do you have plans to get back in the studio with Ozzy?

Gus G.: There’s plans for that, but I don’t know anything about the time frames, to be honest with you. Because when the “Scream” tour ends in August, I go out with FIREWIND, we’re doing a European tour and an American tour so I don’t think we’re going to be going back to the studio in 2011. So it might be sometime in 2012, but who knows? I don’t really know what Ozzy has in mind.

Geeks of Doom: Have you noticed a different reaction at your FIREWIND shows and a different reaction to the albums since you joined Ozzy?

Gus G.: Well, the album [“Days Of Defiance”] got great reviews worldwide. At the live shows I think some of Ozzy‘s fans have been showing up and…they’ve started getting more aware, [we are] getting more fans in. So yeah you could say that things have gotten better for the band. I think we’ll mostly find that out when we go out on tour again in September because this is obviously a very good thing for the band, you know?

Geeks of Doom: Your first FIREWIND album was in 2002. Since then you’ve been through quite a few lineup changes. Are you happy now with the guys you’ve got in place?

Gus G.: Yeah, yeah, it’s really good. Like I said, it took me a few years to find the right guys for the band because it was more like a studio band. So I didn’t really know the guys that were playing in the band when we were doing the first couple of albums. But by the fourth album, that’s when we got a stable lineup. That was with the album “Allegiance” in 2006. The only lineup change we had since then was the drummer, but the rest of us, we’ve been the same. We’ve had the same singer, Apollo [Papathanasio], and that’s kind of like the main core of the band; me, Apollo and Bob [Katsionis]. So, yeah, we’ve had a pretty good lineup and we’ve been twice around the world with those guys and we’ve played over 250 gigs. So it’s been good.

Read the entire interview from Geeks Of Doom.