Legendary BLACK SABBATH guitarist Tony Iommi has just released his memoir, “Iron Man: My Journey Through Heaven And Hell With Black Sabbath”, in hardback via Perseus Books/DeCapo Press. The book is filled with funny and fascinating stories from throughout the rocker’s career, but how did he remember all of them? Tony said it was easy.
“Well, I have trouble remembering last month,” Iommi told VH1 Radio Network‘s Dave Basner. “I have trouble remembering last week, but past stuff I can remember. And funny enough, Ozzy [Osbourne, BLACK SABBATH singer] is the same, and we talk about stuff from 30 years ago and we can remember it as clear as a bell but we try to talk about stuff that happened last week — no idea. Even yesterday (laughs).”
When asked about Ozzy‘s statement from a few months ago where the singer revealed that he didn’t think all four original members of BLACK SABBATH could “physically” take part in a reunion, Iommi said, “Who knows? I mean, somebody might keel over. It might be me. But we’ll see. At least we’re talking, everybody.”
If SABBATH were to reunite and work on new music, does Tony have any material ready for a possible studio album? “I’m writing all the time,” he told VH1 Radio Network. “I’ve got a lot of stuff. I’ve got a studio at home. I just go in and play for a bit, put something down. My engineer is good; he’ll program up drums and whatever else. So I’ve got plenty of ideas for whatever thing I want to use them as, but usually I end up writing for that particular thing. I might have an idea for whoever it might be, whatever lineup or whatever I’m going to do, I might start off with that, but that thing might not end up like that. I’ll change the riff as we go along, depending on the vocal.”
Ozzy told Billboard.com last month that a reunion of the original BLACK SABBATH lineup was a “very, very strong possibility.” He added, “It’s in the very early stages, so we haven’t recorded anything yet. If it works out, it’ll work out. If it doesn’t, I’ll keep doing my thing.”
The Birmingham Mail reported in August that the original SABBATH lineup — Ozzy, Iommi, bassist Geezer Butler and drummer Bill Ward — had begun rehearsing and writing music in secret for a new album. The Mail based its story around remarks made by Iommi, who later said the comments were off the record and taken out of context. Iommi‘s manager, however, did not deny that a reunion was underway.
Speculation about a reunion was fueled later that month when Ozzy skipped the Hollywood premiere of the documentary about his life, “God Bless Ozzy Osbourne”. Both his son Jack and daughter Kelly hinted at the time that their dad was “doing something that is very, very exciting.”
SABBATH did try to record a new album 12 years ago, the original lineup’s first since 1978, but abandoned the attempt after just a couple of songs. The original lineup has not toured together since summer 2005 and last appeared together when they were inducted into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame in 2006.
BLACK SABBATH “reunion” promotional photo (1999):
BLACK SABBATH live in 2005: