Well lets see here. No reunion. Yes reunion. Maybe reunion. If this doesn’t sound like every single band whose fans would kill for a reunion featuring the original lineup, I don’t know what does.
And as far as classic rock and roll bands go – Sabbath has one thing going for them that a lot of legendary bands don’t – all the original members are still alive and kicking as of right now.
The Beatles can’t do it. Zeppelin can’t do it.
There has been a good bit of speculation and even conflicting information from the members of the band.
Geezer Butler said hells no – there would be no new album and no reunion tour for Black Sabbath.
On the flipside – in August, Tony Iommi all but promised that the reunion was a done deal.
Now we’ve got a press conference featuring all original members of Sabbath slated for the easiest date to remember in the foreseeable future 11-11-11 – just a few days from now.
Ok, so you’ve got to ask the question – why ELSE would they schedule a press conference at the Whiskey A Go-Go in LA – the venue where a very young Sabbath played their first gig in LA on the same date in 1970 – November 11.
How many other reasons could there be?
We’ll have to wait and see.
November also almost marked the demise of the original lineup of the band. In 1977 – 9 years after they first took the stage as Black Sabbath, Ozzy suddenly quit the band, only to return in January of 1978.
In 1979, Tony Iommi decided to fire Ozzy with the entire band in a drug haze and accomplishing nothing – especially Ozzy, who was having a hard time coming up with new material.
After that, Sabbath endured a dizzying array of lineup changes (26 members in total), member hiatuses, lack of direction, and an unmistakable contrast to Ozzy’s hugely successful solo career.
I just summed up 30+ years in that last sentence so don’t judge – but the point is, nothing really BIG happened in this time period for Sabbath.
The original members kept busy however.
Ozzy Osbourne released 11 solo albums. He starred in his own reality t.v. show, and published an autobiography. He “discovered” and rocked with Randy Rhoads, enjoyed a short stint with Steve Vai, a few amazing albums and tours with Zakk Wylde and now – Gus G.
Tony Iommi spent a good bit of this time working on a significant chunk of the Sabbath albums after Ozzy left, as well as solo projects (2000, 2004 and 2005), working with “Heaven and Hell” (2007,2009, 2010), and various other appearances – two of which were with Ozzy (1993 and 1997).
Geezer Butler also enjoyed a solo career (1995, 1997, 2005), as well as pretty much being the resident bassist for Sabbath, playing on a total of 24 albums between 1970 and 2007, the biggest gap being nine years, between 1983 and 1992. He also played on two Ozzy albums, “Just Say Ozzy” and “Ozzmosis”, and three Heaven and Hell albums with Tony Iommi.
Bill Ward played on nine Sabbath albums prior to Ozzy’s departure, and nine more after, a Dio album, a handful of solo projects, and two albums with Ozzy, “The Ozzman Cometh”, and “Live and Loud.
Considering how much all of these guys have worked together since the “breakup” of the original lineup, we can assume that they’re not exactly opposed to working together.
An original reunion would certainly be satisfying for all of the Sabbath fans, with ages ranging from folks in their 20’s all the way up to people 70+ years of age.
So what does Sabbath have up their sleeve?