Beginning in the industrial neighborhood of Birmingham, England, in 1968, John “Ozzy” Osbourne posted an ad about needing a band to sing for. Friends Bill Ward and Tony Iommi, who had already been playing together, decided to give a go with the singer who Iommi used to pick on when they were school boys. With the addition of Osbourne’ s friend bassist Geezer Butler, the band Earth was formed.
After getting some gigs, mainly playing blues covers, Butler, the band’s main lyricist, took inspiration from a Boris Karloff movie, and the fascination of people willingness to be scared, the band changed their name and Black Sabbath was born. The original line up played for a decade together until Osbourne was abruptly fired, and the line-up changed several times over the next 35 years, with Iommi being the only constant throughout.
Dubbed the Godfathers of Heavy Metal, Black Sabbath has been cited as pioneering the modern metal sound and have influenced thousands of bands since its inception. Although Black Sabbath did reunite for a reunion tour with Osbourne in 1997, and did subsequent Ozzfests, it wasn’t until 35 years after Osbourne was fired that the original line-up sans Bill Ward recorded the album 13, and supported it with a year and a half long world tour.
With the rumor that the band’s show on July 4 at Hyde Park could very well be their last, we look at the first eight albums with Ozzy Osbourne for our Top 10 Black Sabbath songs of that era.