The News Tribune recently conducted an interview with Ozzy Osbourne. A few excerpts follow:
The News Tribune: The first [Ozzfest 2007] gig is at the White River Amphitheatre. And a couple of years ago you had a rough gig there. (Ozzy stormed offstage in 2005 after his voice went out.)
Ozzy: I get a lot of voice problems.
? You have to do a lot of shouting, you know. That's why I think we're booked on the early part of this tour.
? I've just done the biggest European tour I've ever done. And I had a little bit of voice trouble. But it seems to be getting better now, you know.
The News Tribune: Given that in recent years you've had vocal problems, and the first two songs on the new album are called "Not Going Away" and "I Don't Wanna Stop", have you considered retirement?
Ozzy: Every year I do.
? I was listening to the demo tapes of "No More Tears" today, which was recorded, like, 15 years ago. And I would go, "@#$%@% hell." My voice has a lot higher range, you know. And I was talking to Bob Seger a couple of years ago when I was out with him, and I asked him, "Can you still get up there? Like when you sing ('Old Time Rock & Roll'.)" He said, "I have problems." We all have problems. When it's going great, I love it. When it's going bad, I hate it.
? There's a lot of people doing a lot of trickery, with @#%@%@ machines and everything. Like a friend of mine went to see MADONNA, and apparently she does the whole @#$@%@ thing lip-sync.
The News Tribune: When will you know that it's time to pass the torch?
Ozzy: If I go from playing @#%@%@ big shows to playing clubs
?? I ain't gonna be doing that.
? If the audience dwindles, and I don't enjoy it any more, I'll quit, you know. I don't want to play to an empty room or an empty theater or an empty amphitheater. I mean, they've been asking the STONES for the last @#%@%@ 20 years,
? and they're still going.
The News Tribune: I read this is the first album you've done completely sober.
Ozzy: Yeah, yeah. I've recorded albums sober before. But I haven't co-written albums or written anything sober before. And why I did it like that was I found a friend of mine. He's got a lot more years time than I have. I says to him, "The alcohol and the drugs fuel my creativity." He says, "That's what your addiction tells you. But what you've gotta do is don't be afraid to ask for help."
When I'm doing an album, I'm usually like some deranged @#%@%@ pregnant man. I didn't get myself too involved. When I have a vision in my head
?? I don't play music. I can't read music. I can't hardly read English considering I'm so dyslexic. I had to detach myself from it, you know. And the success of the TV show was (considers) it just put me on this ride, you know.
The News Tribune: Were you apprehensive about how people would receive your album after the show?
Ozzy: Well, no. Luckily for me, I've done other projects of covers and things that have been great sellers for me. But that was just to let (fans) know that I'm still around, you know. But my own albums, they've always been successful, you know. So for whatever reason this album, "Black Rain", didn't do as well as (expected). I can't really complain because I've had such a great
?? next year it'll be 40 years I've been doing what I've been doing.