Chuck it on the pile of “stuff Ozzy did that is downright crazy”, we’ve got a live one here. Ozzy Osbourne, the Prince of Darkness, has been involved in many a crazy rock and roll story but this time he has taken a rock star trope and multiplied it by 1000. Hear how Ozzy Osbourne trashed a hotel room with a bloody shark.
The stories n Ozzy Osbourne’s ‘affinity’ with animals is a long and varied one. Those of us who grew up with Ozzy as a reality TV star and saw his devotion to his pets may well be a little shocked when they hear the countless mishaps animals faced when in the proximity of the Prince of Darkness. From biting the heads off bats (he didn’t know it was real until it was too late) to throwing a chicken into the crowd to be ripped apart by his crowd – Ozzy has done it all.
This story comes via Tony Iommi’s 2011 interview with New York Post to promote his book Iron Man: My Journey through Heaven and Hell with Black Sabbath and puts Ozzy into a brand new realm of rock and roll storytelling. But first and extra morsel of Black sabbath fun. In the interview, Iommi also shares a story regarding setting drummer Bill Ward.
He recounts that because of the band’s drug-taking they found the time between gigs and taking said drugs very boring. As such, they often liked to pull pranks on one another. Iommi maybe doesn’t know what the word prank means as he recalls asking to set the percussionist ablaze: “Bill, can I set fire to you?” to which Bill responded, “Busy, so not just yet.” After a while, Bill said, “I’m going home now, so if you want, you can set fire to me.” Iommi took his chance recalling, “I threw a bucket (of alcohol) over him, and he went on fire. It soaked third-degree burns into his legs.”
This is the level we’re dealing with. He set him on fire. So it is to be expected that when we say Black Sabbath trashed their hotel room that they were going to kick it up a notch. Or maybe seven.
So with the band’s downtime being widely filled with drugs and booze, the reprieve they got from the so-called pranks was likely a welcomed relief. A relaxing moment in an otherwise frenetic scene. However, if you ever see Ozzy Osbourne holding a bleeding, dismembered shark, we think the chances are that your blood pressure may go up. Iommi recalls “With drugs always you get bored, so you must do something to one another. Like Ozzy hauling a shark through a window, dismembering it and soaking our room in blood.”
So whether it’s dousing their drummer with alcohol and setting him on fire, or Ozzy cutting up a deadly sea creature in your hotel room, safe to say, Black Sabbath are the kings of rock and roll pranks.