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Ozzy Osbourne

Though many bands have succeeded in earning the hatred of parents and media worldwide throughout the past few decades, arguably only such acts as Alice Cooper, Judas Priest, and Marilyn Manson have tied the controversial record of Ozzy Osbourne. The former Black Sabbath frontman has been highly criticized over his career, mostly due to rumors denouncing him as a psychopath and Satanist. Despite his reputation, no one could deny that Osbourne has had an immeasurable effect on heavy metal. While he doesn't possess a great voice, he makes up for it with his good ear and dramatic flair. As a showman, his instincts are nearly as impeccable; his live shows have been overwrought spectacles of gore and glitz that have endeared him to adolescents around the world. Indeed, Osbourne has managed to establish himself as an international superstar, capable of selling millions of records with each album and packing arenas across the globe, capturing new fans with each record.

John Michael Osbourne began his professional career in the late '60s, when he teamed up with guitarist Tony Iommi, bassist Geezer Butler, and drummer Bill Ward to form Black Sabbath. The band, made unique by their slow, gloomy melodies and themes, released their self-titled album in 1970 and went on to release classic platinum records such as Paranoid and Master of Reality throughout the rest of the decade. After the 1978 album Never Say Die, Osbourne was fired from Black Sabbath, which led him to form his own solo project. With his new manager and wife, Sharon, Osbourne formed his own band, the Blizzard of Ozz, with guitarist Randy Rhoads, bassist Bob Daisley, and drummer Lee Kerslake. The group's self-titled first album was released in September 1980 in the U.K. and early 1981 in the U.S. Blizzard of Ozz had some of the same ingredients of Black Sabbath: the lyrics focused on the occult and the guitars were loud and heavy, yet the band was more technically proficient and capable of pulling off variations on standard metal formulas. Featuring the hit singles "Crazy Train" and "Mr. Crowley," Blizzard of Ozz reached number seven on the U.K. charts; it peaked at number 21 in the U.S., continuing to sell for over two years and becoming a huge success. Kerslake and Daisley were replaced with Tommy Aldridge and Rudy Sarzo shortly before the subsequent November release of Diary of a Madman. This album, which included the drug ode "Flying High Again," charted at number 16 in the U.S. and became another huge seller. As the Diary tour went underway, sales for the album continued to improve as those of Black Sabbath waned.

Osbourne had no trouble in attaining mass audiences, and his career seemed to have peaked. However, controversy soon erupted when he was accused of animal cruelty: during one performance, a bat was thrown on-stage by a fan and Osbourne bit its head off while supposedly thinking that it was fake. The show was canceled when he had to be rushed to the hospital for a rabies vaccination. Not long afterward, Rhoads was killed in a bizarre plane accident, bringing the band's success to a screeching halt. Osbourne fell into a massive depression shortly after losing his best friend, and plans for his upcoming live album were soon changed. Instead of material recorded with Rhoads, 1982's Speak of the Devil featured live recordings of classic Black Sabbath material and was recorded with guitarist Brad Gillis. Osbourne was freed from his contract with Jet Records and showed up drunk at an Epic Records meeting with two doves, one of which he freed and the other of which he killed in the same manner as the bat; Osbourne was signed to the label. Jake E. Lee became Osbourne's new guitarist for the 1984 studio effort Bark at the Moon. While it didn't match the consistency of Blizzard of Ozz or Diary of a Madman, the record was equally successful, pushing the singer to embark on a tour with glam metal stalwarts Mötley Crüe. Although Bark at the Moon opened up to rave reviews, 1986's Ultimate Sin received rather harsh criticism. The album, although containing the hit single "Shot in the Dark," was regarded as Osbourne's worst studio effort by numerous critics, who claimed it was redundant and uninteresting; nonetheless, the album was another smash hit.

Also in 1986, Osbourne was accused of encouraging suicide among listeners via use of subliminal messages in his Blizzard of Ozz song "Suicide Solution," a song that he claimed was written in relation to the effects of alcohol abuse. Although the case was eventually dismissed, Osbourne once again earned a feared reputation. He pulled up his profile in 1987 with Tribute, a live album recorded in 1981 that was dedicated to the memory of Randy Rhoads. Lee soon left the band and was replaced with Zakk Wylde for No Rest for the Wicked, which would be released in 1988. The record proved to be one of his strongest yet, highlighted by "Miracle Man," in which Osbourne ridiculed evangelist (and longtime foe) Jimmy Swaggart. Just Say Ozzy, a live EP taken from the subsequent tour, was released in 1990. After recording a new studio album in 1991, Osbourne found himself without the usual enthusiasm to perform, due to his increasing age and his desire to spend more time with his family. When No More Tears was released in the fall, it was confirmed that the following tour would be Osbourne's last before retirement. Following the tour, a live double album, Live & Loud, was released in 1993 to commemorate Osbourne's career, and it was now assumed that the singer's glory days were over.

However, the retirement was not to be -- Osbourne resurfaced in 1995 with Ozzmosis, which, despite mixed reviews, sold three million copies within a year after its release. After the subsequent tour proved one of the best-selling of the summer, Osbourne created Ozzfest, a tour package that featured himself along with many other metal bands. While there were only two performances in 1996, a live album was nonetheless released, simply titled The Ozzfest. 1997's tour package included such metal acts as Pantera, Marilyn Manson, and a Black Sabbath reunion from which only Bill Ward was absent. With the exception of Sarah McLachlan's Lilith Fair, Ozzfest 1997 was the most successful tour of the year, and Osbourne released a compilation album, The Ozzman Cometh, in November. Shortly afterward, Osbourne united the entire original lineup of Black Sabbath to record the live album Reunion, which was released in 1998. He also found time to duet alongside rapper Busta Rhymes for a remake of the Sabbath classic "Iron Man," retitled "This Means War," which was included on Rhymes' 1998 release Extinction Level Event (The Final World Front).

Sabbath continued to tour well into 1999, as they again headlined the year's Ozzfest, which was billed as their supposed final tour. The same year, a grisly Ozzy action figure was shipped out to toy stores -- complete with tiny decapitated bats. Osbourne also finally began work on the follow-up to his lackluster 1995 solo release Ozzmosis, which saw him joined by returning guitarist Wylde, plus former Faith No More drummer Mike Bordin and former Suicidal Tendencies/Infectious Grooves bassist Robert Trujillo. 2001 was greeted with the news that not only was Black Sabbath reuniting once again for the summer's edition of Ozzfest, but that the quartet was going to enter the recording studio in the fall with producer Rick Rubin to work on the original lineup's first all-new album since 1978's Never Say Die. Unfortunately, Epic Records caught word of Osbourne's plans and stopped both a post-Ozzfest tour with Disturbed and the album itself until he finished his solo record. Ozzy fans were given the double-disc Ozzfest: Second Stage Live to tide them over in the meantime -- the collection included tracks from most of the bands that participated in the 2000 festival, as well as tracks from Ozzfest's inaugural 1996 lineup.

Finally, the new solo album Down to Earth appeared in the fall of 2001, followed by a few successful rock radio singles and a huge Christmas tour with co-headliner Rob Zombie. Meanwhile, inspired by an episode of MTV's Cribs starring his family, Osbourne and the network's producers took a chance on creating a reality show based around the infamous singer. Following his family around the house for several months at the end of 2001, the end result was The Osbournes, one of the most successful shows in the history of the network. The show, which was equal parts documentary and sitcom, reinvented Osbourne as a befuddled father with a razor-sharp wit and a loving family. It also proved to also be a critical success, and Osbourne found himself invited to a White House dinner to promote his animal protection activism, something that only came to light after an episode of the show dedicated to the family's numerous pets. A string of compilations followed Down to Earth, including 2005's Under Cover, a collection of cover songs. Ozzy returned to the studio the following year to begin work on a new studio album. The resulting Black Rain arrived in May 2007, followed by his tenth studio album, Scream, in 2010. In 2012, Ozzy reunited with most of the original Black Sabbath lineup to record an album of all-new material that harkened back to the heaviness of their earliest days. The album 13 was released in 2013 and Ozzy toured with Sabbath for much of the year in support of it. The next year focus returned to his solo work with the release of Memoirs of a Madman, a greatest-hits-style collection that offered standout tracks from almost every album in his body of solo work. ~ Barry Weber & Greg Prato
full bio

Selected Discography


Track List: Scream

1. Let It Die

3. Soul Sucker

4. Life Won't Wait

5. Diggin' Me Down

6. Crucify

7. Fearless

8. Time

9. I Want It More

10. Latimer's Mercy

11. I Love You All


Track List: Black Rain

1. Not Going Away

2. I Don't Wanna Stop

3. Black Rain

4. Lay Your World On Me

5. The Almighty Dollar

6. 11 Silver

7. Civilize The Universe

8. Here For You

9. Countdown's Begun

10. Trap Door


Track List: Under Cover

1. Rocky Mountain Way

2. In My Life

3. Mississippi Queen

4. Go Now

5. Woman

6. 21st Century Schizoid Man

7. All The Young Dudes

8. For What It's Worth

9. Good Times

10. Sunshine Of Your Love

11. Fire

12. Working Class Hero

13. Sympathy For The Devil


Track List: Prince Of Darkness

Disc 1

1. I Don't Know (Live)

2. Mr. Crowley

3. Crazy Train

4. Goodbye To Romance (Live)

5. Suicide Solution (Live)

6. Over The Mountain

7. Flying High Again (Live)

8. You Can't Kill Rock And Roll

9. Diary Of A Madman

10. Bark At The Moon (Live)

11. Spiders

12. Rock 'N' Roll Rebel

13. You're No Different

Disc 2

1. Ultimate Sin (Live)

2. Never Know Why (Live)

3. Thank God For The Bomb (Live)

4. Crazy Babies

5. Breakin' All The Rules

6. I Don't Want To Change The World (Demo)

7. Mama, I'm Coming Home (Demo)

8. Desire (Demo)

9. No More Tears

10. Won't Be Coming Home (S.I.N.) (Demo)

11. Perry Mason (Live)

12. See You On The Other Side (Demo)

13. Walk On Water (Demo)

14. Gets Me Through (Live)

15. Bang Bang (You're Dead)

16. Dreamer

Disc 3

13. Dog The Bounty Hunter

Disc 4

1. 21st Century Schizoid Man

2. Mississippi Queen

3. All The Young Dudes

4. In My Life

5. Fire

6. For What It's Worth

7. Sympathy For The Devil

8. Working Class Hero

9. Good Times


Track List: Down To Earth

1. Gets Me Through

2. Facing Hell

3. Dreamer

4. No Easy Way Out

5. That I Never Had

7. Junkie

8. Running Out Of Time

9. Black Illusion

10. Alive

11. Can You Hear Them


Track List: Ozzmosis

1. Perry Mason

2. I Just Want You

3. Ghost Behind My Eyes

4. Thunder Underground

5. See You On The Other Side

6. Tomorrow

7. Denial

8. My Little Man

9. My Jekyll Doesn't Hide

10. Old L.A. Tonight


Track List: No More Tears

1. Mr. Tinkertrain

2. I Don't Want To Change The World

3. Mama, I'm Coming Home

4. Desire

5. No More Tears

7. Hellraiser

8. Time After Time

9. Zombie Stomp

10. A.V.H.

11. Road To Nowhere


Track List: No Rest For The Wicked

1. Miracle Man

3. Crazy Babies

5. Bloodbath In Paradise

6. Fire In The Sky

7. Tattooed Dancer

8. Demon Alcohol

9. Hero


Track List: Tribute

1. I Don't Know (Live)

2. Crazy Train (Live)

3. Believer

4. Mr. Crowley

5. Flying High Again

6. Revelation (Mother Earth)

7. Steal Away (The Night) (With Drum Solo)

9. Iron Man (Live)

10. Children Of The Grave

11. Paranoid (Live)

12. Goodbye To Romance

13. No Bone Movies

14. Dee (Randy Rhoads Studio Out-Takes)


Track List: The Ultimate Sin

1. The Ultimate Sin

2. Secret Loser

3. Never Know Why

4. Thank God For The Bomb

5. Never

6. Lightning Strikes

7. Killer Of Giants

8. Fool Like You

9. Shot In The Dark


Track List: Bark At The Moon

1. Bark At The Moon

2. You're No Different

4. Rock 'N' Roll Rebel

6. So Tired

7. Slow Down

8. Waiting For Darkness


Track List: Diary Of A Madman

1. Over The Mountain

2. Flying High Again

3. You Can't Kill Rock And Roll

4. Believer

5. Little Dolls

6. Tonight

7. S.A.T.O

8. Diary Of A Madman


Track List: Blizzard Of Ozz

1. I Don't Know

2. Crazy Train

3. Goodbye To Romance

4. Dee

5. Suicide Solution

6. Mr. Crowley

7. No Bone Movies

9. Steal Away (The Night)


Track List: I Don't Wanna Stop (Radio Single)

1. I Don't Wanna Stop


Track List: Let Me Hear You Scream (Radio Single)

1. Let Me Hear You Scream


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ill be deadpool shell be domino
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my mom and i are watching deadpool
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white power
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That group kickass!
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I love you so much for music
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alejandra guzman is the baddest chic in mexico
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over the mountain
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jem the movie
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Llllllllllll l l l l l o o o o o o o o o o o o o v v v v v v v v v v v v v v e e e e e e e e e e e e e e e e e e yyyyyyyyyyyo o o o o o o o o o o o u u u u u u u u u u u u u u u u u u u u u u u u u ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! !
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got it back
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my mom took my jessica jones comic to church
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I can play like randy rhoads. I know the nut trick.
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I agree with you Perry - The writer gives a bland overview. I'm not a fan of Ozzy's craziness or drug use.....he's quite the puzzle. Ozzy, like any other act, has had some flops. But his legacy and tenure in the business, to me, are remarkable. His voice, is my wine. The lyrics, I don't care where they came from, have inspired me, saved my life in some ways and comforted me. You notice he mostly sings to inspire or endure...wor k s for me. His book, 5 stars. GREAT GUITARS too.
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haohmaru of the wind on youtube
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@jimbomuncy5 Truth
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Boy whomever wrote the article on Ozzy must not be much of a fan. ...doesn't possess the greatest voice... and credits him with endearment to all adolescents. Two overwhelming understateme n t s , I'd say. People recognize his voice that don't even know who he is and when I went to the last Black Sabbath concert in Houston, the demographics of his audience were unlimited
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Wolfgang Mozart is cuter than ozzy.
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OZZY!!!!!!!! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! !
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crazy babies
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breaking all the rules
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arrival by marty friedman now on pandora
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jp > ozzy
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gooooo oooozzzzyyyy y y never stop rock in
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Oh hell ya Ozzie baby!! woooo yaaaa man.
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Brazil love Judas Priest
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Very cool
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Las vegas live was live
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watched Randy scream Ozzy with his guitar
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jimmy bain is dead
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is there anybody out there?
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now i have none
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2 cds of jake the snake
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I still have the 2 of jake the snake on my spotify, non of randy rhoads
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He has always been awesome
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I enjoy all of his music, but him and Zakk Wylde is awesome.
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live after death now on pandora
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When young, Oz was a very handsome man. The booze, drugs, and rock-star lifestyle changed all that. He was just a party animal, a kid having a wild and crazy time doing whatever he wanted. His mind and body paid a high price, but we got some great rock songs as a result. Guess there's no such thing as a free lunch.
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I sing like Dave and Maynard.
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I'm more like jeff young and dave mustaine
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Jake E Lee is fantastic but their are many like him.... but Rhodes...Com o n Man
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shot in the dark
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i prefer jake e lee
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Agreed in my opionion Randy's the best there has ever been!!!! Fav of all time Priceless!!!
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I'd like to cover shot in the dark with my band
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I have a randy rhoads guitar
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jake e lee
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I might go to guitar college
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the ultimate sin
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I hate the rolling stones also. I like Vanessa Carlton's version of paint it black.
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I agree with ya dBrock! Randy probably my favorite guitarist of all time.
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