Earlier this week, Chicago’s Lollapalooza festival confirmed rumors that Black Sabbath would be co-headlining, along with the Red Hot Chili Peppers, the Black Keys and Jack White. The metal legends have said that this would be their only U.S. gig of the year, as guitarist Tony Iommi has just finished chemotherapy and is just starting radio-therapy (he’d been diagnosed with lymphoma). But what isn’t yet known is: Who will be playing drums for band?
While founding drummer Bill Ward appeared with the band at a press conference last November announcing the reunion of the band’s original lineup (which also includes frontman Ozzy Osbourne and bassist Geezer Butler), he has since been feuding with the band, taking to his website to tell fans that he wants to return to the Sabbath drumstool, but he’s waiting for a “signable” contract. CBS Local reached out to Black Sabbath’s representatives to ask who will play drums at the show, but so far, no word on who it will be. In recent years, Osbourne, Iommi and Butler have done Sabbath shows without Ward. When they first reunited in 1997, they used Mike Bordin of Faith No More (who was playing in Ozzy’s solo band at the time) for a summer.
Meanwhile, the choice of Sabbath as a headliner for Lollapalooza contains some irony: Sharon Osboune, wife and manager of Ozzy, started Ozzfest after the original Lollapalooza tour told her that Ozzy didn’t fit the bill. But this week, Lollapalooza founder and Jane’s Addiction singer Perry Farrell told Chicago station WXRT that he was determined to get the metal legends on the bill: “Black Sabbath was my pet choice for Lollapalooza. My very first car was a used Camaro and that car had an 8-track [player] in it. My big brother gave me a bunch of 8-tracks and one of them was Black Sabbath’s Paranoid. Just the thought! These are the guys who started heavy metal. I’m just envisioning the earth shaking and quaking because the metal is so heavy.”
Lollapalooza takes place at Chicago’s Grant Park August 3-5.
— Brian Ives CBS Local, with additional reporting by XRT Chicago’s Marty Lennartz
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