Skip to main content

Sabbath reveal truth of one-day debut album

Black Sabbath’s self-titled debut album was recorded in a single day – but bassist Geezer Butler has revealed the band had been given two days to do the work.

He, Ozzy Osbourne, Tony Iommi and Bill Ward laid down their tracks on February 13, 1970, and didn’t wait around for the mixing because they had another show to play.

Butler tells Guitar World: “We had two days to do it, but we didn’t know any better. We just went in and recorded it like a live gig.”

The bassist – who was last week arrested after a bar brawl in California – has recalled how a violent experience with skinheads inspired his lyrics for classic track Fairies Wear Boots, from second album Paranoid.

“We did this gig in Weston-Super-Mare and we had a fight,” Butler says. “I went outside to the telephone to make a call to our manager, and I got surrounded by all these bloody skinheads, going, ‘Kill him! Kill him!’

“I had to time it right so I could throw the phone at them and leg it back into the gig. I told Tony, and of course he said, ‘Come on, let’s go.’ He grabs a microphone stand and we went out for a battle with them. Fucking nuts.”

Sabbath are expected to record their final album this year and follow it with a farewell tour. They’re the cover stars of the latest edition of Classic Rock Magazine, on sale now.

Martin Kielty

Not only is one-time online news editor Martin an established rock journalist and drummer, but he’s also penned several books on music history, including SAHB Story: The Tale of the Sensational Alex Harvey Band (opens in new tab), a band he once managed, and the best-selling Apollo Memories (opens in new tab) about the history of the legendary and infamous Glasgow Apollo. Martin has written for Classic Rock and Prog and at one time had written more articles for Louder than anyone else (we think he's second now). He’s appeared on TV and when not delving intro all things music, can be found travelling along the UK’s vast canal network.