Brazil's Wikimetal podcast recently conducted an interview with legendary drummer Vinny Appice (DIO, BLACK SABBATH, HEAVEN & HELL). You can now listen to the chat using the audio player below. A couple of excerpts follow (transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET).
On whether he still has contact with any of the BLACK SABBATH members:
"Yeah, once in a while, I get e-mails back and forth with Tony [Iommi, guitar] and Geezer [Butler, bass]. And Bill [Ward, drums], not so much. But I recently saw Bill at a Rock [And Roll] Fantasy Camp. We do these Rock Fantasy Camps in Las Vegas, and we do them in Los Angeles, and Bill was one of the guests. So he was there, and we got to hang out a little bit and talk. Bill's a lovely guy, and he played such great stuff on all the early albums and everything he's done. So I'm not really in touch with him more than when I see him around town, but Tony and Geezer, every once in a while, we keep in contact via e-mail and stuff, which is nice."
On the contractual dispute between Bill Ward and the other members of the original lineup of BLACK SABBATH:
"Now everything is more of a business. Bill played some very interesting parts to those songs of the old, Ozzy-era stuff, and they became part of those songs. Bill played great stuff that became licks in the song, and it was a style they played together with. So it was unfortunate they didn't use Bill [on the '13' album and the subsequent tour]. And then the next in line, everybody said, would have been me, 'cause we played together so many times and we're like family. But sometimes there's so many other things involved, business-wise and [by] business people that surround the band, and that decisions are made on business decisions more than musical decisions, and that happens a lot. So, you know, that's the way it is. And if they do one last gig, I don't know what's gonna happen, who they're [going to have playing drums]. Rumor has it they asked Bill, and that would be the way to go out. So we'll see what happens."
On HEAVEN & HELL's 2009 album "The Devil You Know":
"We put together that album… It was done differently [from the SABBATH albums featuring the same lineup], because previous albums we did, we went into a rehearsal place and we would rehearse all the time, live, and wrote songs together, and Ronnie [James Dio] sang. 'The Devil You Know' was done down in Ronnie's studio at his house, and Tony would come over, 'cause we all lived here… He would fly over from England. And what they did was they put the riffs down with a drum machine, and we were in Ronnie's studio with a drum machine, and there was an engineer working the drum machine, and I would just be there and make a suggestion here and there. But it was done very differently. So I didn't really play the drums until all the songs were written; they were developed that way. And then we went over to Wales, where we recorded before, Rockfield Studios, and we recorded everything there. And Ronnie did the vocals. As usual, we laid down the drum tracks and then the bass and the guitar, and then Ronnie went in and did all the vocals. [He was] just amazing. He was so professional. It was amazing watching him do the vocals. He just lays it down, and then goes, 'Okay, I wanna double it. I wanna put a harmony here.' He knows exactly what he wants to hear. So he was one of the most professional artists I've ever seen."
On playing with former PANTERA bassist Rex Brown in KILL DEVIL HILL and his decision to leave the band:
"It was a great band. It was fun to play with Rex. Rex played loud. [Laughs] He's one of the loudest bass players — louder than Geezer. It was great playing with him. It was just hard breaking the band. Unless there's four name guys in a band, it's hard to get tours, it's hard to get people to come down to see you, and it's hard to make money to let it sustain. So we weren't really pulling in enough money and interest to keep it on the road a lot. And I had a lot of other things going on that I couldn't stop, so it was just too many things at one time, and it was a lot of work, and we couldn't… We thought it would be on a better level at the point where I left. So it wasn't working out. I had other things that I had on my plate, so we decided that it would be better if I left the band and they get somebody else. But it was a great band, and it was fun playing with Rex. And, unfortunately, you know… I don't know… It doesn't seem like they're doing very much at this point. So I don't know what's going on with that."