Black Sabbath insist there’s two sides to Bill Ward story
Black Sabbath say they won’t comment in detail on Bill Ward’s confirmation that he’s not part of the band’s reunion – but they warn there’s two sides to the story.
On Tuesday the drummer revealed he wouldn’t appear at the iconic metal outfit’s three concerts, at Birmingham and Donington in the UK, and Lollapalooza in the US.
He said bandmates Ozzy Osbourne, Tony Iommi and Geezer Butler had “forgotten where they came from” and added they’d asked him to play the Birmingham show for free, and told him he’d only perform three songs at the Download festival.
Now, in a brief update, Sabbath confirm another drummer will play the shows, but say they won’t discuss the matter, and they’re concentrating on getting ready to gig while guitarist Iommi continues to recover from cancer.
The band say: “We have decided not to make any detailed comment on Bill’s latest statement. There are two sides to every story. We have been working hard at rehearsals making excellent progress after Tony’s treatments and we have engaged a substitute drummer for the forthcoming shows. See you at Download.”
The message appears to bring to an end five months of wrangling after Ward said in January that he hadn’t been offered a contract he regarded as “singable” to take part in what was billed as the original lineup’s reunion.
Sabbath have not named his replacement, but it’s widely believed to be Osbourne’s solo band drummer Tommy Clufetos. They continue work on their first album with the singer since 1979, and release a new best-of compilation, Iron Man, on June 4. Their world tour was cancelled after Iommi announced he was fighting lymphoma, and has been replaced by an “Ozzy and Friends” tour.