Black Sabbath Reunion? Drummer Bill Ward Holding Out For One
The split between Black Sabbath and longtime drummer Bill Ward over a contract dispute has been well documented, but the musician still has positive feelings toward the group and says in a new interview that he's hoping that there will eventually be a return to the band.
Ward, speaking with Eagles of Death Metal's Jesse Hughes for a Vice video short on his Black Sabbath history, explained, “If there’s some longevity with Black Sabbath, then I’d like to be a part of it. [...] I love playing with Terry [Geezer Butler], I love playing with Ozz, and I love playing with Tony. When Tony opens up with huge chords, I still get the same shiver up my back that I got when we were 18-year-old kids.”
The piece itself is more based around how Black Sabbath came to pioneer the genre we now know as heavy metal, and Ward recalls that their music was an instantaneous hit. The drummer says, "We knew it was different, cause at the time most people didn't like the music. Most people were scared by it. When we played Black Sabbath, man, every bit of anger came out of us. There was no mercy for my drum kits, no mercy! I would just stand on those cymbals, man."
While the term heavy metal would later be bestowed upon them by the press, Ward says he felt that they may actually have been at the forefront of another genre as well. He explained, "I always honor our music by calling it working class music. I always considered Black Sabbath as the first punk band. They were thoughtful lyrics, but at the same time they were different and they were topical, and I think people had a tough time mixing it. I think they just didn't like the subject matter and that's where some of the things from other realms, the devil music or whatever, that's where that started to show."
The Ward-Black Sabbath contract issues seems to be at an impasse, with the drummer holding strong while the group utilizes Osbourne's drummer Tommy Cluefetos to play live shows. They've also been working on a new album, their first in years.