Sharon Osbourne calls Bruce Dickinson a "f**king a**hole", says he is "so jealous" of Ozzy

Sharon Osbourne and Bruce Dickinson
(Image credit: Steven Ferdman/Getty Images, TORBEN CHRISTENSEN/Ritzau Scanpix/AFP via Getty Images)

Sharon Osbourne has called Iron Maiden frontman Bruce Dickinson a "faceless singer", and a "fucking asshole", and claimed that Maiden's vocalist is "just so jealous" of her husband Ozzy's success.

For those wondering why Mrs O has launched this verbal attack, we'll point you in the direction of Ozzfest 2005, where Ozzy Osbourne and Iron Maiden topped the bill... and, following some snarky press comments from Dickinson about the merits of the two acts, the tour climaxed with one of the most memorable spats in metal history.

When Steve Harris' band took to the stage at Devore, California's Hyundai Pavilion of Glen Helen on August 20, 2005, Maiden were pelted with eggs, ice cubes and bottle caps. Then, during three of Maiden's biggest songs - Run to the Hills, Hallowed Be Thy Name" and Number of the Beast - the festival PA was cut off, which led Bruce Dickinson to call out the organisers, ie, the Osbourne camp, for trying to sabotage the show. At another point, a man appeared on stage waving an American flag bearing the words, 'Don't fuck with Ozzy.'

Afterwards, Sharon Osbourne openly admitted that she was behind the stunts.

Her official statement read: “From day one, Bruce Dickinson started berating Ozzy and belittling the Ozzfest audience. He stated he ‘didn’t need a reality show to give him credibility;’ ‘We’re not just some f—ing reunion band;’ and continuously complained about the sound system, saying that when he comes back to America, he’ll have a better one.

“Might I say, the rest of the band are gentlemen and have a great professional attitude. The crew [is] absolutely great. But how sad it was, after 10 years [of Ozzfest], that this little man tried to ruin it for everyone.”

In a new interview with Consequence, Ozzy's wife and manager was asked for her memories of the argument. 

She didn't hold back.

"Bruce Dickinson is a fucking prick," she says. "Well, no, he’s not a prick because a prick’s nice. He’s a fucking asshole. Because the situation is he was on a tour called Ozzfest. And Ozzy Osbourne was paying him every night to perform. He accepted the gig. He knew what he was doing. He accepted the gig. And every night he would go onstage and say bad things about Ozzy. And the crew and everybody in all the other bands would be like, ‘Are you letting him get away with it?’ And I’m like, ‘I sure am.’ But the last gig was [just outside of] L.A. And I thought, ‘You motherfucker, now you’re gonna get it.’

"And so I had about 20 people in the audience and a lot of them were nurses from Cedars Sinai, because I had cancer at that time. And they were all my chemo nurses. And they all came down, and they fucking pelted the shit out of him. And my thing is, you play, you pay!

"And the thing is, if you’re being paid to do a gig, but you don’t like the person, then fuck off. But don’t stay, take the money, take all the good that’s coming to your band through being on a festival, doing 24 shows and still slagging the person that’s paying you. It’s like, ‘No, that makes you a fucking asshole.’ And he is. And he’s never apologized, he never even went up and said hello to Ozzy. The thing about him is that he is just so jealous. And always has been of Ozzy. And that’s his problem.

"Because the thing is about Bruce Dickinson, he’s hugely successful," Sharon continues. "He’s got a great fan base, a great fan base that have been loyal. The band are great guys. All the band are great. And they do great. You know, they’re a great band, you can’t take it away, and neither would I take that away from them. But the thing about Bruce is, he is unknown to the public. Bruce Dickinson could walk into anywhere and nobody would know who the fuck he is. Do you know what I’m saying?

"He’s a faceless singer to the general public. People aren’t scrambling to get him for an interview. And the thing is, he’s not interesting. But the thing is, Ozzy is original and Bruce isn’t and that’s what eats Bruce away."

So, er, no love lost then?

The Iron Maiden camp has yet to respond to Osbourne's comments.

Read Consequence's cover story with Ozzy Osbourne here.

Paul Brannigan
Contributing Editor, Louder

A music writer since 1993, formerly Editor of Kerrang! and Planet Rock magazine (RIP), Paul Brannigan is a Contributing Editor to Louder. Having previously written books on Lemmy, Dave Grohl (the Sunday Times best-seller This Is A Call) and Metallica (Birth School Metallica Death, co-authored with Ian Winwood), his Eddie Van Halen biography (Eruption in the UK, Unchained in the US) emerged in 2021. He has written for Rolling Stone, Mojo and Q, hung out with Fugazi at Dischord House, flown on Ozzy Osbourne's private jet, played Angus Young's Gibson SG, and interviewed everyone from Aerosmith and Beastie Boys to Young Gods and ZZ Top. Brannigan lives in North London and supports The Arsenal.