Now this is interesting. Classic Rock magazine recently interviewed Ozzy Osbourne and Ozzy had a few things to say about Zakk Wylde:
Well, I’m getting a new guitar player as we speak,” said Ozzy, “and everyone has been saying to me for a long time, ‘Get Johnny 5!’ And I tried him at one time and I didn’t really give him a chance. We’ll see, I don’t know. I haven’t fallen out with Zakk, but Zakk’s got his own band, and I felt like my stuff was beginning to sound like Black Label Society. I just felt like I wanted a change, y’know?
“I’ve got a guy from Greece coming in – not the musical, the country of Greece – but I’m not going to say too much about it, cos I don’t know myself at this point. I’ve got a new album, I’m working on it as we speak. I’ve got a studio at my house and I’ve got a guy called Kevin Churko, the guy that did the last album [Churko also worked on Ozzy’s Under Cover album, produced Cheap Trick’s highly rated 2006 album Rockford, and has credits on releases by Britney Spears, Celine Dion and Shania Twain] – he’s great to work with.
So you’re taking it easy recording this album?
“Oh yeah. Zakk came down and did a bunch of stuff and I don’t know if I want to use it but I’ve got it there if I do. And this Kevin Churko is a bit of an all-rounder so I’m getting back to basics in some respects. One thing about a guy who can’t do all the finger-tapping stuff is that he plays better on the riffs cos it’s not all [hums riff for Iron Man followed by over-the-top widdling].”
Alerted to the article on Twitter, Zakk said:
ZakkWyldeBLS I haven’t heard anything about this. Until I talk to the Boss I don’t know. I love Ozzy.
ZakkWyldeBLS I’m doing Blizzcon with him in August and supposed to finish up the cd in September….this is news to me
Now, this wouldn’t be the first time Zakk’s own music has forced him to leave Osbourne employ: back in the mid 90s when Zakk was briefly working with Guns ‘N’ Roses while also pursuing his own band, Pride & Glory. Back then Ozzy said Zakk couldn’t make up his mind what he wanted to do, so Ozzy made up his mind for him. But man, Zakk’s a pretty big part of the Osbourne legacy and to be perfectly honest with ya I’m not sure I would have gone to Ozzy’s most recent Melbourne gig if Zakk wasn’t in the band.