BLACK SABBATH will bring its storied career to a close in the band's native England, with seven shows booked there in January and February. The last two, on February 2 and February 4, will take place in SABBATH's hometown of Birmingham and will likely be their final shows.
"[Guitarist] Tony Iommi wants to do 80 shows [as part of 'The End' tour]," SABBATH singer Ozzy Osbourne told Billboard.com. "We're doing 80 shows. It's good enough. I wouldn't mind extending the tour for another few gigs. There's a lot of people who won't get to see us, but I don't think it's going to happen."
Osbourne also made it clear that it wasn't his call to stop touring with SABBATH. "It's not me that wants to retire; it's BLACK SABBATH," he said. "I'll be continuing my own musical thing. My wife [and manager Sharon Osbourne] is good at telling me partial information, y'know, but I know I'm not hanging 'em up for awhile.
"Being Ozzy Osbourne solo again is not a job. It's a passion. It's a love. It's the biggest, greatest love affair of my life."
The original lineup of SABBATH came together in 1969 with Osbourne on vocals, Iommi on guitar, Geezer Butler on bass and Bill Ward on drums. That lineup recorded and toured through 1978, and periodically reformed through the '90s and 2000s for live work.
They regrouped again in late 2011 for a new album and tour, although Ward dropped out after just a few months. The remaining trio issued the "13" album in 2013 and backed it with a successful world tour — despite Iommi being treated for lymphoma since 2012.