Photo credit: Ross Halfin

Geezer Butler shares that “Ozzy desperately wants to do a final concert”

Author Benedetta Baldin - 17.6.2024

Geezer Butler, the bassist for Black Sabbath, recently spoke with Jonathan Clarke, host of “Out Of The Box” on Q104.3, New York’s classic rock station, on the band’s “The End” final tour, which came to an end in February 2017 in Birmingham, England—Black Sabbath‘s birthplace.

It was great. I mean, we knew that physically it was becoming hard, especially [since] Tony [Iommi] had cancer at the time and he just said, ‘I think I’ve got one more tour left in me and that’s it. That’s all I can do.’ And so we put that two together as the final thing. We all would have loved to have Bill [Ward] with us, but Bill’s a proud guy. He’s had heart problems and everything. And we said, ‘Well, just come out and do, like, three songs or something,’ and he said, ‘No. I either do the whole thing or I’m not doing any of it.’ And so, fair enough. And so we just carried on to the end, and that was it.

When asked about Ozzy Osbourne, the singer of Sabbath, saying recently that he would want to see the original band, including Ward, reunite for one last show, Butler responded as follows:

Yeah. Ozzy desperately wants to do, ’cause of his health conditions, he desperately wants to do a final Ozzy Osbourne [solo] concert. And he said to me, ‘I’d love Sabbath to do a couple of songs, two or three songs, as the final show ever’ — Ozzy’s final show and Sabbath’s final show. And I said, ‘Yeah, I’m up for it, definitely.’ But I’m not sure what the others are up to. Me and Ozzy, we’re up for it. But whether Tony and Bill would do it, I don’t know.

At the beginning of June, he was asked if Ward would be physically ready to do a show.

I don’t think so. Maybe, I don’t know. I mean, the way technical things happen these days, maybe a couple of songs, but who knows? There wouldn’t be any traveling involved. We wouldn’t be actually all in the studio at the same time together. So it could be done that way — maybe.

Given that Geezer claimed in his autobiography “Into The Void: From Birth To Black Sabbath – And Beyond” that he hadn’t spoken to Ozzy in a long time, he instead revealed:

I have been in touch with Osbourne every day practically. There was a lot of miscommunication [before]. He didn’t think I was asking about his health ’cause I know he’s been going through a lot of health problems, and I was sending all these messages to him and they weren’t being passed on to him. So he thought I was just ignoring him. And then the weird way I had to go through Sabbath’s accountant to tell Ozzy I’d sent him all these things. ‘Cause he did this thing in Rolling Stone saying that I hadn’t been in touch with him about his health. So I went through the accountant, and he got in touch with Ozzy and said, ‘He’s just been sending you stuff. He wants to talk to you.’ And we’ve been fine since that.

It’s different to contact Bill Ward, though.

He’s not on e-mail and I hate the phone. So, I send e-mails to his wife, who passes it on to Bill.

Nevertheless, he misses playing.

With [the Sabbath guys], yeah. I still practice my playing regularly. It’s like part of me daily exercise. I don’t get down to the gym. I just go up to my studio.