Lita Ford has recalled how the biggest hit of her career, the Ozzy Osbourne duet Close My Eyes Forever, came about by accident during a night of drinking, getting stoned and driving under the influence.
The 1988 hit from her album Lita crowned an era during which she was named best female vocalist in rock, while Ozzy was named best male vocalist. She was managed by his wife Sharon at the time.
The former Runaways guitarist tells Metal Underground: “Close My Eyes Forever was a mistake.
“It was just me and Ozzy and Sharon hanging about in the recording studio. They showed up one day and had a housewarming present for me: a life-size duplicate of Koko the gorilla from the San Diego Zoo. It was freaking huge – I had to strap it in the front seat of my jeep to get it home.
“Ozzy stayed, Sharon got bored and left, and me and Ozzy had a couple of drinks and we were jamming. We started singing, messing about and we wrote Close My Eyes Forever.
“Next thing I knew the sun was coming up. I looked at him and went, ‘Uh-oh, we’re in trouble.’ Sharon had been waiting all night.
“We were a long way from where Ozzy had to go. He said, ‘Can you drive me home?’ I said, ‘No, I can’t.’ We were stoned out of our minds.
“He got into a cab and I strapped Koko into my jeep and drove home – just barely made it.
“And then we had this hit song.”
It’s not the only time in Ford’s career a track has come out of the blue; the title song from new album Living Like a Runaway has a similar history.
She explains: “I presented two album titles: Branded and Living Like a Runaway. Everybody went: ‘Living Like a Runaway.’ The problem was I hadn’t written the song yet.
“I thought, ‘It’s such a great title’ and if I don’t write a song, someone else was going to. So I had to hurry up. We started with nothing but the title, and in three days we had a finished song.”
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