OZZY OSBOURNE PROMISES ‘A LOT OF (EXPLETIVE) TRICKS AND TREATS’:
October 27, 2007
The Prince of @#*%! Darkness talks about life after MTV, sobriety (for real!) and how he hopes to put a bite into Halloween in Minneapolis.
You’ll have to forgive the [brackets] that appear in this article.
Ozzy Osbourne was funny, enthusiastic and even uncannily polite talking by phone two weeks ago from Seattle, where his first arena tour in six years kicked off. But even now that he’s purportedly stone-cold sober for the first time in his career, metal’s most legendary singer still wasn’t completely coherent or clean of profanity. Hence, the brackets.
One thing that was easily understood: The Prince of Darkness is as excited as the rest of us about his return to Minneapolis’ Target Center on Halloween night with his horror-filmmaking buddy Rob Zombie for an opener. Is there a better Halloween gig ever?
“There’s going to be a lot of [expletive] tricks and treats,” Osbourne promised.
He launched into a memory of one of his first tastes of the holiday, from when he was still fronting Black Sabbath. You know it was a good one if Ozzy, 59, remembers it.
“I never really was into Halloween as a kid, you know, because in England, it’s just starting to catch on now. But one year [indecipherable words], on tour with Black Sabbath in America, and I think it might have been Denver or wherever, it was a Halloween. And everybody just went [expletive] bananas. All the people were dressed up like witches and goblins or whatever, and I remember somebody [indecipherable] dressed as a dildo. We had such a good [expletive] time that night.”
Osbourne’s tourmate, Zombie, was the director behind the recent remake/update of the horror movie “Halloween,” a surprise hit at the box office when it opened over Labor Day weekend.
“I haven’t seen it yet, but I’m sure it’s [expletive] brilliant,” Ozzy said, raving about the job that Zombie did as a director on his “Dreamer” video. “The guy is very talented, and he’s just really one of the absolute coolest, nicest guys in rock ‘n’ roll.”
Osbourne himself is also enjoying some comeback-level success with “Black Rain,” his first all-new album since 2001. The CD debuted at No. 3 in Billboard and landed him his first radio hit in years, the fittingly titled anthem “I Don’t Wanna Stop.”
Ozzy said the album’s reception is extra sweet since it’s the first he’s made sober. Suffice it to say, the guy known for biting the head off a bat and snorting a line of ants had drug and alcohol problems for decades.
“I didn’t know if I could [expletive] do it,” he said of making the album. “I thought maybe I needed the drugs and alcohol. I’d never made a record any other way.
“I came to an arrangement with myself. I thought, ‘Well, if I can’t do it on my own without any alcohol or drugs, I’ll call it a day and carry on just doing live shows or whatever.’ But then I spoke to a friend of mine who’s been in the recovery program, and he’s got a lot more years in it than I. He said to me, ‘You know, there’s nothing wrong in asking for help.'”
The help came from his band, including longtime guitarist Zakk Wylde, and from producer Kevin Churko, known for working with — of all people — Britney Spears and Celine Dion (presumably, he can deal with difficult personalities). Osbourne also took inspiration from his son, Jack, 21, who successfully completed a rehab program in 2003.
“My son’s got more clean time than I have,” he said with pride.
“I don’t want people to think that I’m anti-drugs, or anti-alcohol. For me, I am [against it]. If you have a good time and you’re not harming anybody, it’s all good. But I just don’t choose to do it right now. It’s just amazing the whole transformation that me and my family have had from the [recovery] program.”
Being an empty-nester
Ah, the family. Ozzy’s kin became nearly as famous as he is during the first-of-its-kind reality TV show, “The Osbournes,” a huge hit for MTV from 2002 to 2005.
Asked whether life has returned to normal for his family since the end of the series, Ozzy said, “That was normal. What you saw was the way we lived. We never had any script or direction.”
Ozzy clearly grew tired of having cameras in his face every day, but he said the show became worth it in his eyes in its last season, when his wife/manager Sharon was diagnosed with colon cancer.
Courtesy of www.startribune.com