Published May 29, 2009Is it us or is metal becoming one big episode of All My Children? There's enough drama to confuse the two.
Not being the first time the self-proclaimed "Prince of Darkness" has hit a sour note, former Black Sabbath singer Ozzy Osbourne is really smashing glasses this week, apparently suing his old band-mate Tony Iommi over ownership of the Black Sabbath name.
Y'know, you'd think that with fighting addiction, an overbearing wife, bratty kids and a new album on the way Ozzy would have better things to do, especially given that Iommi hasn't been using the name without his presence. Hell, Iommi has even gone so far as to tour and release albums under the Heaven And Hell moniker so as not to confuse old Sabbath with Dio-era Sabbath.
However, this is about money, not cool points. So the lawsuit has been filed, according to the New York Post. In the suit, Osbourne claims that Iommi has illegally taken sole ownership of the title in a filing with the U.S. Patent And Trademark Office.
He also states that his "signature lead vocals" are the primary reason for the band's "extraordinary success," adding a jab by noting that their popularity declined with his departure from 1980 to 1996. He seems to forget that most people recognize the riff to "Paranoid" immediately while still bumbling over whatever the fuck he says in that bridge (i.e., "Thought you were my brain?" "Occupy my brain," etc.), or that the band are doing perfectly fine with Dio back in the saddle, for that matter.
Of course, it isn't that simple. See, Osbourne's suit follows one Iommi put forth against promoters Live Nation, claiming that a merchandise contract expired in 2006 but the company continued to sell the band's logo, to the tune of $80 million. So Iommi reclaimed the band's trademark. That sparked Osbourne's upset even though he didn't seemingly give a shit until the sum $80 million came up. Now he's knocking down Iommi's door for 50 percent interest in the Black Sabbath trademark and an undisclosed amount of Iommi's profits from use of the name.
It goes on and on like that. If you want to catch the whole ordeal - plus a few choice words from Iommi and Sabbath bassist Geezer Butler - check out this Blabbermouth article.
When Sabbath seemed kosher: