ZAKK WYLDE: How Could I Not Be Eternally Grateful To OZZY And SHARON OSBOURNE?

Gene Triplett of recently conducted an interview with Zakk Wylde (BLACK LABEL SOCIETY, OZZY OSBOURNE). A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.

On BLACK LABEL SOCIETY‘s latest release, “The Song Remains Not the Same”, featuring acoustic versions of songs from the band’s previous album:

Zakk: “I love the heavy stuff, listenin’ to SABBATH and ZEP, or when I’m liftin’ weights listenin’ to the Dimebag or MESSHUGGAH or MINISTRY or whatever. But it’s just like we’d be sittin’ on the bus and we got an 18-hour drive. I mean, the last thing I feel like listenin’ to is heavy music. I mean, I’ll listen to THE EAGLES, I’ll listen to NEIL YOUNG, ELTON JOHN. You know, just all the good mellow stuff; BAD COMPANY or whatever. I’ll make a compilation just of awesome, ass-kickin’ mellow (stuff). CROWDED HOUSE, you know, just all the good mellow stuff.

“I listen to everything. Even classical. I’ve been playin’ tons of classical guitar.”

On his current relationship with Ozzy Osbourne, who replaced Zakk in 2009 with Greek axeman Gus G. (FIREWIND):

Zakk: “I still talk to Oz. No, no fallin’ out or nothin’. No, we never got in any arguments ever. I mean, we were too busy dyin’ of laughter. It was just like with Oz, ‘Zakk, I don’t wanna be the lead singer in BLACK LABEL,’ you know what I mean? I mean, if Randy Rhoads, if Saint Rhoads was still around, and if Randy was leavin’ Oz goin’ to QUIET RIOT and comin’ back to Oz, QUIET RIOT, Ozzy, QUIET RIOT, after a while you go, ‘Uh, Randy, it’s startin’ to sound like QUIET RIOT. I don’t wanna be in QUIET RIOT … I wanna have my own thing.’ And you know, you can’t blame Ozzy for that at all.

“He knows I’m at his disposal whenever he needs me. It’s like, ‘Oh, you want me to come over and clean the dog run before you have company over? No problem.’ And Gus G., aside from being a killer guitar player, he’s a super-cool dude … Mom and the Boss (Sharon and Ozzy Osbourne), I mean, what more could Ozzy do for me? He introduced me to the world and then on top of it, Mom and the Boss always had me opening up on the Ozzfest and helping me all the time, so I mean, how could I not be eternally grateful to them?”

On adjusting to a life of sobriety, on orders from his doctor:

Zakk: “Over two years now. No, it’s no big deal. It’s just like, I don’t go to AA meetings. I got a million things goin’ on in my day, the BLACK LABEL to-do list. Before my feet hit the floor, I’ve got stuff that I gotta do. Goin’ to an AA meeting? I’ll go to the gym. That’s my therapy. I know Ozzy was havin’ AA meetings. I went to one of ’em. I said, ‘Oz, nothin’ for nothin’. Like, I gotta go clean the dog run, I got things I gotta do around the house, I could be practicing right now, I could do other things.”

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