BLACK SABBATH's TONY IOMMI: 'It's Really Great' To Be Able To Perform New Songs Live

August 22, 2013

Corbin Reiff of the Seattle Weekly recently conducted an interview with legendary BLACK SABBATH guitarist Tony Iommi. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.

Seattle Weekly: [BLACK SABBATH singer] Ozzy [Osbourne] has said that a lot of the songs on the ["13"] album were arranged in a manner that would be conducive to playing live. Do you agree with him in that regard?

Iommi: Yes, absolutely. When we spoke with [producer] Rick Rubin, we talked about Ozzy singing more in his range and trying to sing more in a lower register like on the early albums. Like on "Black Sabbath", Ozzy sang more in his range in a lower tone and that's what we wanted to get back to with this album so that we could do them live onstage.

Seattle Weekly: In your opinion, how are the new songs stacking up against some of your older classic material and how does it feel to bring something new into the set?

Iommi: They are fitting in really well with the old material and it is really great to be able to do these songs. We've got a big catalog of the old stuff and we've sort of gotten locked into doing so many of them and certain ones Ozzy couldn't do because they were so high — "Hole in the Sky" and things like that. We're also throwing some older ones in there that we haven't played since 1970, so it's been quite good.

Seattle Weekly: Last year you were diagnosed with lymphoma, which has been successfully treated. How are you holding up health-wise currently and what sorts of accommodations are being made with your health in mind?

Iommi: It's early days, but I'm all right at the moment. Our first couple of shows I got really tired when we were through. Of course, we've also been playing out in the open air, and with the heat, I've been drenched, so it's been a bit of a jump in the deep end for me. But yeah, I'm holding up all right, I hope. We have had to work the tour around my treatments because I can't go out indefinitely now. I have to do two months or seven weeks and then go back to England for treatment. That knocks me about for ten days or so, then I start feeling better, then it's on to the next leg.

Read the entire interview at Seattle Weekly.

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