When a conversation occurs about heavy metal music, Black Sabbath is sure to be mentioned as one of the pioneers and greatest examples of bands in that genre of hard rock. Having a flamboyant and sometimes over-the-edge lead singer like Ozzy Osbourne brought the band quite a lot of attention during the early 70s, which often focused the spotlight away from the other musicians in the band. However, any true fan of this or any heavy metal band knows that the sound they hold near and dear is that of the lead guitar, which creates that solid sonic tone that penetrates deep into the pleasure center of the brain (and other movable body parts).
Throughout its 38-year history (1969–2006), during which it sold over 100 million albums, Black Sabbath had 27 different members, including original and final version members Geezer Butler on bass and Bill Ward on drums, as well as renowned musicians like Ronnie James Dio (Rainbow, Dio), Ian Gillan (Deep Purple), Bev Bevan (the Move, ELO), and Cozy Powell (too many to list), but the one constant member throughout its existence was the band’s lead guitarist and foundation of its hard rock heaviness, Tommy Iommi.
Iommi is ranked number 86 in Rolling Stone magazine’s list of the “100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time.” You can imagine that after such a long and successful career, Iommi has quite a few stories to tell, even without mentioning Ozzy, so it comes as no surprise that this past week he published a biographical book, Iron Man: My Journey through Heaven and Hell with Black Sabbath (hardback published by Perseus Books/DeCapo Press).
At AXE HEAVEN®, we have been paying homage to this legendary rock guitarist for years with two Tony Iommi miniature guitar replica collectibles that capture the essence of his instruments and place them in the palm of your hand.
We suggest you acquire a copy of Iommi’s new book and one of his mini guitars. Then go find an old LP or cassette of your favorite Black Sabbath album.
When you are alone in the house one night, grab a candle and a cold six pack. Light the candle and place it, a beer, and the mini guitar on a table next to a comfy couch or that Naugahyde® La-Z-Boy® you still have down in the basement. Then, turn on the music (loud like the good old days), turn out the lights, and read the book by candlelight. When Tony Iommi’s classic guitar riffs wail, just glance at the meticulously hand-crafted miniature guitar glowing by the dancing light of the flickering flame and you’ll be instantly transported (with the help of a few brewskies) back to the 70’s and the glory days of heavy metal madness. Rock On!
Below is a recent video interview of Tony Iommi at a book signing for the U.S. release of his new biography, followed by a lengthy high-quality clip of Black Sabbath performing “War Pigs” in concert, in Paris in 1970, that is a great example of Iommi’s playing, as well as the raw energy and explosive excitement the band generated during it’s formative years.
By the way, if you clicked the first link in this article and visited Black Sabbath’s official website, you saw only the band’s name and the date 11-11-11 posted there. No links. No other pages. No other information. Hmmmmmm. What could that be about?
According to a LoudWire.com article posted a few days ago, that mysteriously minimal message means the band will announce yet another reunion on Friday. Awesome! Perfect timing to coincide with the return of Beavis and Butthead. With the resurrection of these two cultural icons of enlightened entertainment, who needs to get wasted on beer to get back to the good old days? They are still here. Rock Your Passion!