Tony Iommi Insists BLACK SABBATH's Dispute with Bill Ward Was "Over Nothing," Cites Ward's Health
Black Sabbath have completed their final tour, and they were never able to get Bill Ward up on stage to do at least a song with them. There were some rumblings it would happen at the final show, but they were just unsubstantiated rumors.
Still, in a new interview, guitarist Tony Iommi expresses disappointment that things couldn't have worked out. At a Q&A session at London, England's Regent Sounds, a record shop that used to be a studio where Sabbath recorded their first two albums, Iommi said:
"It would have been nice to do these last shows with Bill, but it just didn't happen," Iommi said. "And it's silly, really, because it was over nothing. Even if he'd have played a couple of shows, it would've been great."
"I don't think he quite realizes how hard it would have been on him. So we wanted to bring another drummer just in case Bill" — who has reportedly had two heart attacks in the past two decades — "ended up saying 'I can't do it' for a couple of days or whatever. It's too risky to go out and then have Bill say 'I can't do it,' and you have to cancel [a show] on seventy thousand people, or whatever it might be. It's very hard, and it's not fair on the fans and it's not fair on him."
Iommi and bassist Geezer Butler seemed to remain on good terms with Ward, as the trio accepted a Lifetime Achievement Award together a few years back.
Elsewhere in the interview, Iommi said he's busy mixing the forthcoming Sabbath DVD showcasing their final show. Watch the interview below: