Bill Ward Won’t Reunite With Black Sabbath Until Dispute With Ozzy Osbourne Is Resolved
Black Sabbath won an award yesterday for songwriting, and three-fourths of the original lineup was there to collect it. Among those on hand in London to accept the Ivor Novello Award was estranged drummer Bill Ward, the first time he's appeared in public with his former bandmates since 2011.
But that may be the last time you'll see him with Sabbath for awhile. Ward told NME during the event that he won't take part in any Black Sabbath reunion until a disagreement is resolved with singer Ozzy Osbourne, who was not at yesterday's event.
"I'm in a huge dispute with Ozzy, so that doesn't really help, and as far as I'm concerned, until that dispute is finished then I'm not gonna participate," he said. "They've already made an album without me [2013's 13], so I'm sure they'd go on without me playing, and that's okay with me – I still love them just the same. I'd love to think I could [rejoin the band], but the things I'm asking for may be out of reach."
Ward and Osbourne traded some words online earlier this year regarding the drummer's omission from the band's 2013 comeback album and tour. Ward pretty much said he'd return if Osbourne apologized for earlier remarks he made saying that the drummer wasn't fit to play in the band. Ward issued a set of demands to Osbourne, who responded by telling his former bandmate to "stop playing the victim."
So far, Black Sabbath haven't started working on a new album, even though Osbourne said one is coming next year, along with one final tour. But both guitarist Tony Iommi and bassist Geezer Butler said they have no idea what they'll do ... if they'll do anything at all. "I'd love to keep going," Butler told NME. "I'd desperately want to keep going before I kick the bucket." Iommi echoed his sentiments: "It'd be lovely to do a last tour, it'd be really nice to do that."
Even though Ward claims he won't be part of whatever Black Sabbath do unless Osbourne takes a step toward resolving their fight, he remains friends with his other two former bandmates. "It feels really nice to be with these two," he said. Iommi said he thinks the same. "That'll never go," he agreed. "We've been friends for a long time, you can't just lop someone off like that. We stay in touch with each other. We're always thinking of each other."
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