Ozzy Osbourne explains why he "didn't feel important" in Black Sabbath

Black Sabbath in 2011
(Image credit: Getty)

Ozzy Osbourne has opened up on his awkward relationship with Black Sabbath in the 80s in a new interview, even going so far as to admit that he "didn't feel that important in the band" by the time he famously was let go in 1979.

Speaking to Stereogum, the Prince Of Darkness responded to a question surrounding his reunion with Tony Iommi and the rest of Black Sabbath at Live Aid in 1985 - the first time he'd played with the band since his acrimonious departure. 

"Well, they were managed by my father-in-law [Don Arden], and my father-in-law and my wife [Sharon] and I were in a fucking war. I was fucking served [a lawsuit] at Live Aid by my father-in-law, for interference or some bullshit, and nothing ever materialised from it. And I was drinking lots of fucking booze in them days, and I was bloated. It wasn’t a great experience. It was more like, 'I’ll have my revenge on them,' kind of thing. Or no, it wasn’t revenge. It was just the first time I’d seen them all since the breakup."

"It wasn’t a life-shattering experience where I went, 'Fuck, why did I go and get fired,' and all this shit," he says of the Live Aid performance itself. "It was just Sabbath. By that time, I’d felt freedom as well, whereas with Sabbath, I didn’t feel that important in the band. I used to feel I was just a sideman for their show. I’d come up with my own melodies and that, but I didn’t feel on an equal part with them, because I couldn’t play an instrument. But that was a long time ago, and when you start thinking about this shit now, it doesn’t seem necessary anymore, does it?"

Ozzy recently reunited with Tony Iommi once again for new album Patient Number 9, which features a raft of A-list special guests. 

Merlin Alderslade
Executive Editor, Louder

Merlin moved into his role as Executive Editor of Louder in early 2022, following over ten years working at Metal Hammer. While there, he served as Online Editor and Deputy Editor, before being promoted to Editor in 2016. Before joining Metal Hammer, Merlin worked as Associate Editor at Terrorizer Magazine and has previously written for the likes of Classic Rock, Rock Sound, eFestivals and others. Across his career he has interviewed legends including Ozzy Osbourne, Lemmy, Metallica, Iron Maiden (including getting a trip on Ed Force One courtesy of Bruce Dickinson), Guns N' Roses, KISS, Slipknot, System Of A Down and Meat Loaf. He has also presented and produced the Metal Hammer Podcast, presented the Metal Hammer Radio Show and is probably responsible for 90% of all nu metal-related content making it onto the site.