The Then And Now Of Black Sabbath
And the battle that has waged on in the background for the past months has finally come to its embittered conclusion. The results? Disappointing. It seems as though the highly anticipated reunion has been euthanized in one clear as day letter delivered by the drummer Bill Ward.
Since the original announcement several months ago wrenches into gears have sprouted like Iommi’s cancer diagnosis and the first wave of contract disagreements, but since then this has been pretty much in the background of public attention so to bring you up to speed, should you be behind, allow me to direct your attention to the previous summary of the events. Take a look here.
Bill Ward’s Letter
In Bill’s letter he had confirmed that after all this time the contract negotiations have waged onward and yet no solid consensus had been built. No agreeable one anyway. Ward apologized repeatedly and earnestly, though he still hasn’t divulged too many specifics about just what was expected of him short of repeating that the terms were just not fulfilling.
Though ambiguity didn’t reign supreme entirely.
It was mentioned that there were discussions for him to partake in a Download Festival performance in April, but for only three songs while a second drummer would take over for the rest. He declined. Then later in the month he had learned about a Birmingham performance. One that was intended to be a reunion performance, though he was evidently out of the loop on that.
Long story short, lawyers did their “blah blah blah” thing while Ward made his preparations for travel. And then the offer came. “Come to the UK, play for free, and see how the first show goes.” Temptation aside, the ambiguity and scrutiny turned him off and he declined.
Though as disappointing as this plot twist is, all hope still isn’t lost. He expressed that not only is he still open to a reunion, but so is the rest of the group. The only hiccup is that neither side is willing to make a compromise on paperwork.
The Real Losers
What ultimately makes this a classic case of Murphy’s law is the fact that the fans lose out so much. Prior to contracts having even been read it was announced as blatantly as possible that a reunion with all original members would happen. Then the contracts come out, then the disagreements, and now it’s all been for nothing and the fans have all been let down. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. Make sure you sign the contracts before you go and make your announcements. Otherwise anything can happen, like contract disagreements, and it can, oh say, be canceled before the idea leaves the bedroom. Hell. I’d suggest at least waiting until after the contracts have been signed before selling tickets.
A Moment of Opinion
Normally I prefer to wave opinion for news updates, but I’ve chosen to make an exception this one time. I say stop being douches and just play. There was a time when Black Sabbath performed contract free. When just being able to play in a club seemed like a success on its own. I’m not so naive that I don’t see why contracts are necessary, but come on. People have wanted this for how long now? I’m curious what is so important that a group of people with such a stature can’t possibly come to a compromise on.
If you want to read the full statement you can do so here. Go nuts.