Last November, the news hit that the original line-up of Black Sabbath would be reuniting to record another album – their first of all new material with the OG four since 1978’s Never Say Die.
Of course, the band was also slated to hit the road for a big worldwide tour. Unfortunately, soon after the news hit that guitarist Tony Iommi was battling lymphoma, but everyone is still carrying on with the writing and recording of the new album with producer Rick Rubin at the helm.
Now the reunion has hit another snag, with original Sabbath drummer Bill Ward refusing to sign his contract to be a part of the reunion unless he gets a more favorable deal. According to reports on Blabbermouth, Ward has called his current offer “unsignable” and he will sit out the album and tour unless he’s given a “signable contract…a contract that reflects some dignity and respect toward me as an original member of the band.”
Then rumors hit the ‘Net that Ward had effectively been fired from the band, and outraged fans pointed to the heavy hand of Sharon Osbourne, whose thuggery has alienated many of Ozzy’s fans, earning her the nickname Sauron Osbourne. One of the more notorious examples of her childish behavior was when she repeatedly cut off the sound on Iron Maiden, and having people hurl eggs at them while they were opening for Sabbath when Sharon ran afoul of Maiden singer Bruce Dickinson.
Once word got out that Ward would be replaced by Ozzy’s drummer Tommy Clufetos, a Facebook page was launched called 1,000,000 Black Sabbath Fans Say Yes to Bill Ward. Sharon then tweeted in response, “I am not in any position to hire or fire anyone in Black Sabbath. I don’t manage the band, I manage my husband.”
Ward has been forced to sit out playing with Sabbath before due to health issues, where he was replaced by Vinny Appice, who first replaced Bill on the Heaven and Hell tour, and on some of the later reunion jaunts. Appice told Loudwire if he got the offer to come back, it would be tough to turn it down. “It’s not just the opportunity,” he said. “I love Tony and Geezer. They’re like family in a way. It would be a hard thing to say ‘no’ to.”
However things land, the fans obviously will want a complete runion with the original four. With more important matters, Ozzy recently said on SiriusXM Radio that Iommi’s “gonna beat” his cancer.
“He’s got so much support, not only from each one of us in the band, but the fan base; it’s unbelievable. He ain’t gonna die, I’m telling you. I told him if he dies, I’m gonna kill him.”