Classic Rock News

Friday April 17



Ozzy Fires Back At Original Black Sabbath Drummer

(hennemusic) Ozzy Osbourne has issued a response to a request by original Black Sabbath drummer Bill Ward for an apology over remarks about him not being physically fit enough to participate in the band's 2013 album "13" and its accompanying world tour. On Wednesday, Ward released a public statement outlining his personal need for Osbourne to amend and retract comments before he would consider any meetings about rejoining the group for their final album and tour. "I never wanted to discuss this in a public forum but Bill's statements left me no option to but to respond honestly," begins Osbourne's response. "Wow Bill, What the **** are you on about? I cannot apologize for comments or opinions I may have made about you in the press during Sabbath's '13' album and tour -- physically, you knew you were ******. Tony, Geezer and myself didn't think you could have done a two hour set with a drum solo every night, so we made the decision to move on. With Tony's condition we felt that time was not on our side." The singer then challenged Ward over his ongoing remarks about a contractual disagreement the drummer says left him unwilling to participate in any reunion. "Bill, stop this smokescreen about an 'unsignable contract' and let's be honest," adds Osbourne. "Deep down inside you knew you weren't capable of doing the album and a 16 month tour. Unfortunately for you, our instincts were correct as you were in hospital several times during 2013. "Your last hospitalization was for a shoulder surgery that you now say you've only just recovered from. This would have meant that our world tour would have been canceled. "So how is all of this my fault? Stop playing the victim and be honest with yourself and our fans. Bill, we go back a long way, let's stop this now before it gets out of hand. God bless you. Love. Ozzy."

Read more: Friday April 17

Thursday April 16



Bill Ward Demands Ozzy Apologize Before Black Sabbath Reunion

(hennemusic) Original Black Sabbath drummer Bill Ward says he needs an apology from Ozzy Osbourne over remarks in recent years before he considers any conversations that might lead to a reunion of the groundbreaking UK metal band. Ward declined to participate in the group's 2013 album, "13", and tour over a contractual dispute. Last fall, Ozzy said he hoped Ward would return to the lineup as the band began planning their final album and world tour. Now, in an extended official statement, Ward says Osbourne must amend and apologize comments he made during the "13" process that suggested the drummer wasn't capable of performing at the level needed for a Black Sabbath reunion. "I have neither severed nor discontinued my relationship with Black Sabbath," explains Ward, "however, since 2012, the often inaccurate statements about me as a person and as a musician have caused me to be guarded and be especially detached emotionally and spiritually from Ozzy. His rhetoric above all has brought me the most discord. The continuing misguided information about me has established a necessity on my part to confront these issues." "There is always speculation about a true, original Sabbath lineup for the next tour or record," continues the drummer. "With a sad heart, I have to say I will not participate in any musical undertakings until a righting of the wrongs spoken against me has been achieved. I must admit, I have little to no expectations of this happening, but in the order of first things first, I'm looking for an honest accountability of all of Ozzy's statements that I felt were untrue. "I would want Ozzy to amend his opinions and exaggerations. I would want him to be forthcoming about his unrealistic viewpoints. And because I was chastised publicly, I would want him to amend publicly in his words, and not through an Ozzy representative, the nature of the wrongs. I would not want to continue on with him without this seemingly impassible dilemma being addressed." Ward feels a healing with Osbourne must take place before he can even begin to address his concerns over contractual issues he said were unworkable as presented for the "13" album and tour.

Read more: Thursday April 16

Wednesday April 15



Foreigner Announce Tour Dates With Def Leppard

(hennemusic) Foreigner will be staying on the road following their summer tour with Kid Rock. They have announced that they will be joining the last leg of Def Leppard's 2015 US tour this fall. The pair have added 7 October shows to the run which will also include Tesla and Night Ranger. Pre-sales begin on April 15 with general public tickets on sale on April 18 (except as noted below). Def Leppard will launch an extensive North American tour with Styx and Tesla on June 23 in Tampa, FL. Foreigner team up with Kid Rock for US dates starting June 24 in Hartford, CT, with shows running into early September. See the tour dates here.

Read more: Wednesday April 15

Tuesday April 14



AC/DC Fan Killed After Coachella Concert

(hennemusic) An AC/DC fan who attended the legendary band's debut performance at Coachella on Friday night was struck and killed by a train just hours after the show. The Daily Camera reports 23 year-old University of Colorado student Jannik Andersen died after being hit by a train in Indio, California at 3:05 a.m. Saturday, about 4 miles northeast of the site of the music festival. Andersen's friends said the San Diego native had attended Coachella before but that he was particularly excited to see AC/DC and Mac DeMarco this year. Police in Indio said the Union Pacific Railroad Police are conducting the investigation into Andersen's death.

Read more: Tuesday April 14

Monday April 13



Metallica Making Progress On New Album

(hennemusic) Metallica guitarist Kirk Hammett is sharing an update on the progress of the band's first new studio album in seven years. Hammett hosted his second annual Fear FestEvil this weekend in San Jose, California and will return to the studio to continue work on the follow-up to 2008's "Death Magnetic." "We have a lot of good songs," Hammett tells Billboard. "The songs are ever-changing at this point. Nothing is etched in stone. We still have a lot of material have to sift through, still. We have well over a dozen songs and we still have well over two or three hundred riffs, too, so it's hard to say at what point we actually are in in the project. "I don't think we hit the middle point yet. I would say we're at the 25 percent point, maybe 30 percent point. It's hard to say, but I mean we are working on it and there are songs and we're making plans to write more songs and record."

Read more: Monday April 13

Friday April 10



AC/DC Receive Wisdom From Paul McCartney

(hennemusic) As AC/DC prepare to make their debut at the Coachella festival this Friday, frontman Brian Johnson says he received some advice about performing at the festival from Paul McCartney, who played Coachella in 2009. "I ran into him downstairs this morning," Johnson told The Los Angeles Times. "He goes, 'Brian, you get on that stage and I'm telling you, you see all these kids looking for the hip-hop acts. Then they see you, and they're like, 'Who's he? Oh, yeah - me dad talks of him.' "But he said it's great because you're doing your thing, and eventually all the kids go, 'He's cool, this dude!' It kind of takes you right back to the start, when you had to win over an audience. I'm excited."

Read more: Friday April 10

Thursday April 9



Black Sabbath Cancel 'Farewell' Concert

Black Sabbath has announced that they will not be appearing at this year's Ozzfest Japan despite Sharon Osbourne announcing last month that the performance "will be Black Sabbath's farewell." Osbourne said in the announcement video for Ozzfest Japan, "Ozzfest will be back in Japan on Nov. 21 and 22 and this will be Black Sabbath's farewell. We're also announcing Korn, who are celebrating their 20th anniversary. Now you can't miss that." That appears to have changed as the legendary metal band posted the following message on their Facebook page on Wednesday (April 8th), "Despite previous reports, Black Sabbath will not appear on this year's Ozzfest Japan, the show will instead feature the festival's namesake, Ozzy Osbourne (and friends)." The Black Sabbath camp has not yet revealed why they will no longer be playing at the event which will be taking place in Makuhari Messe on November 22nd. This news follows the announcement that Ozzy had canceled plans for the Ozzfiesta in Mexico that was supposed to take place in May. Organizers said last month, "Ozzy is having surgery, scheduled for May, following his South American tour. He requires at least four weeks of recovery time. We are very disappointed that we need to cancel."

Read more: Thursday April 9

Wednesday April 8



Twisted Sister Recruit Mike Portnoy For Farewell Tour

Dee Snider has confirmed an online tabloid report that Twisted Sister will be launching a farewell tour next year and have recruited Mike Portnoy to perform in the place of drummer AJ Pero, who died on March 20th. Snider linked to a report by TMZ on his Facebook page with the caption "It's official: Farewell, New drummer announced." The report says that the band will be launching their "Forty and F*** It" farewell tour next year. The gossip site also said that a representative for the band also told them that the band had made the decision to retire a week prior to Pero's death from a heart attack. They report that Mike Portnoy will be joining the band on the tour which will feature longtime members Snider, guitarist Jay Jay French, bassist Mark Mendoza and guitarist Eddie Ojeda.

Read more: Wednesday April 8

Tuesday April 7



Sammy Hagar and Metallica's James Hetfield Plan Acoustic Benefit

Sammy Hagar and Metallica frontman James Hetfield have announced that they are once again teaming up to host the "Acoustic-4-A-Cure" benefit concert. The second annual "Acoustic-4-A-Cure" will be taking place at The Masonic in San Francisco on May 15th and will raise funds for children's brain tumor research at the UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital. So far the artists confirmed to take part in the event include Alice In Chain's Jerry Cantrell, Linda Perry, Red Hot Chili Pepper's Chad Smith, Train's Pat Monahan and Joe Satriani. According to the announcement, "each legendary artist will be performing acoustic sets - with once-in-a-lifetime musical moments, duets, jams and surprise guests planned."

Read more: Tuesday April 7

Monday April 6



Original Lynyrd Skynyrd Member Bob Burns Killed In Car Crash

(hennemusic) Original Lynyrd Skynyrd drummer Bob Burns died Friday in a single-car accident in Cartersville, Georgia. He was 64. The Cartersville Patch reports Georgia State Patrol say the crash occurred close to midnight when Burns was driving and his vehicle left the road while making a right turn before hitting a mailbox and a tree with the front of his car. Police say Burns was not wearing a seatbelt and was the only occupant in the vehicle; it has not been determined if weather played a role in the accident. A founding member of Lynyrd Skynyrd, Burns played in the band's pre-Skynyrd groups the Noble Five and One Percent before the members were inspired to name the group after their physical education teacher, Leonard Skinner.

Read more: Monday April 6

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