Tony Iommi on Chances of Black Sabbath Playing Again: ‘It’s Highly Unlikely, But We May’
Black Sabbath's touring career supposedly came to an end on Feb. 4, 2017 with the last date of "The End" tour in their native Birmingham, U.K. And while the tour had been billed as "The End," the door had been left open for possible one-offs.
During a charity fundraiser at the Opus Restaurant in Birmingham, guitarist Tony Iommi fielded questions while also speaking with host Gary Newborn. When Newborn asked if Black Sabbath would ever perform together again, Iommi offered, "It's highly unlikely, but we may. You can never say never, because we've done it [before] ... So many times, you say, 'Oh, that's it now,' with different singers and this and that, and all of a sudden we're playing together again. I would hope we could do some one-offs, but we'll never tour the world again as we did, because it is really exhausting."
The guitarist then elaborated, "People think, 'What a great life,' and it is a great life, but it has its toll on your body. All the traveling at different hours of the day and night. You finish a show at 11 o'clock. What we'd normally do is we'd base ourselves in one place, like New York or wherever we were, and then we'd stay in New York for 10 days, fly out and do a show and fly back in the night. So by the time you get to the hotel, it's four o'clock or five o'clock [in the morning]. And you don't pass the time, you can't sleep. And that's the difficult part. Even though you travel the best way you can. You could never fault the service. We had a great plane, we had great hotels — everything was marvelous — but it's still tiring."
Eliciting a chuckle from the crowd, Iommi dryly added, "I think when you get to our age, it changes from when we're 20. We could stay up all night, but now I'm 30 and it's a different thing."
With Black Sabbath retired from touring, Ozzy Osbourne recently announced the "No More Tours 2" trek, which is also meant as a farewell of sorts to the lengthy major touring. Osbourne has stated that this is not so much a retirement and people should expect to see him beyond the run, just not doing the massive tours.
Iommi added in his speech, "Ozzy's going on, which is great. And one day we may [reunite onstage]. It'd be nice to do a few one-offs, but not another two years." See the chat in the video player above.
Iommi held the special charity lunch / Q&A as a fundraiser at the Opus Restaurant in Birmingham with the goal of raising money for the Charity for Heartlands Ward 19 and the Solihull Cancer Centre, where the band's late keyboardist Geoff Nicholls had been treated. Iommi himself is a patron of the Ward and is supporting the charity campaign to raise £150,000 for an extension of cancer services at Solihull Hospital.
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