A quick word with: Ozzy Osbourne

By Scott Kara

Ozzy Osbourne, the master of metal, Prince of Darkness and reluctant reality TV star, headlines the Rock2Wgtn Festival during Easter

Ozzy. How are you?
I'm alright. Bit tired, I just got back from England.

That's right, you hosted the Brit' Awards.
It was good, but I mean I'm not really into this TV stuff like my wife and my daughter but Paul McCartney was there and I'm a really big fan of the Beatles and him doing his own thing. He's a really, really nice guy, and I've met him a few times, but I'd heard all these rumours about him and you kinda tend to buy into them. But, you know, he's going through this really rough patch right now. But he kind of reinforces the fact that when all is said and done, no matter what the world is throwing at you, when you've got your music you've got everything.

You were saying you're not as into the TV side of your life as Sharon is. Do you have any regrets about letting the TV cameras into your home?
We had no idea what it was going to turn into. But my first love is rock'n'roll you know. Television is ... well, I'm somewhat camera-shy believe it or not.

So after the show got big how did you see your public image change?
After doing Ozzfest, being wanted by the police, and doing some crazy, crazy shit in my career, there is one incident that will forever stay in my mind. Just as [The Osbournes] was getting really big, and I don't know what TV ratings mean, 10.7 is a f****** earthquake reading to me, you know, but I was in Boston, coming out of the hotel and this very conservative middle aged woman, very attractive, stops me and goes, "You're Ozzy Osbourne.

What are you doing in Boston?" I said I was doing a show. She said, "What kind of a show?" I'm thinking this woman has left her brain in the f****** car. "A rock'n'roll show," I say. And she says, "You do that too?". I'm thinking, "Where the f*** have you been?"

You're on your way to New Zealand so what do you think of the Rock2Wgtn line up?
Alice Cooper and myself, and who else is there?

KISS are playing.
Who?

KISS.
What? I can't ...

KISS. You know, Gene Simmons.
Oh, KISS. Are they going to be there? I guess they'll be headlining one of the days.

And what songs do you play as part of your sets nowadays? I know you always play Paranoid [by Black Sabbath].
You'll have to wait and see because if I tell ya and we don't play it you'll be pissed off. I always do Paranoid, but I'm not going to tell you any more.

Why is Paranoid always a constant in your set?
It's a fun song, everyone knows Paranoid, it's good to play live on stage and the crowd love it. It's just one of them songs and when I first departed from Sabbath I said, "That's it I'm not doing any Black Sabbath." But then you go round these concerts and things and people go, "What about Paranoid? What about War Pigs?" So it got to the point where I thought, "They played them and I sang them so why not?"

What influence do you think the classic Sabbath albums and Ozzy albums like Diary Of A Madman have had on today's music?
You know, we had success from the word go. We never had to wait. You know, we formed in '68, then had a bit of a booze up touring thing in '69, recorded the first Sabbath album in 1970 in 12 hours or something and it just took off and it's never stopped for me. So when you're immersed in something it's hard to say. Plus, I hate that f****** phrase heavy metal. It's got no musical connotation what so ever.

How do you want to be remembered?
That I've made people have fun in their lives.

Ozzy Osbourne headlines the two day Rock2Wgtn concert on March 22 and 23. KISS, Alice Cooper and Lordi play day one and Ozzy plays last on day two with support from Poison and Whitesnake.

- NZ Herald

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