It’s been said before and we’ll say it again – before every other heavy metal band and musician, there was Black Sabbath. In a recent interview with Metal Injection, legendary drummer Gene Hoglan echoed that sentiment by calling Bill Ward the “godfather to us all.” Hoglan also cites Tommy Aldridge (Ozzy Osbourne, Whitesnake, Thin Lizzy, etc.) and Cozy Powell (Black Sabbath, The Jeff Beck Group, Michael Schenker Group, etc.) as drummers he looks up to.
“I have a lot of my favorites, and there’s reasons for why they are my favorite. It would be hard to pare it down, but I will always say that Bill Ward is the godfather to us all. Absolutely. No matter if Black Sabbath was called heavy metal – they didn’t start calling things heavy metal until maybe the Judas Priest-era, Les Binks [who drummed for Judas Priest between 1977 and 1979] kind of thing. But Black Sabbath [are] the godfathers. Obviously. It’s very obvious to me. They might not have been called heavy metal, but Bill Ward is the godfather to us all. He’s one of my all-time favorites.”
Of course Ward didn’t get the chance to finish out his career with Black Sabbath, but you never know if the Birmingham legends maybe have one more record in ’em. Osbourne and Black Sabbath guitarist Tony Iommi recently joined forces at the Commonwealth Games closing ceremony, with bassist Geezer Butler being invited but unable to make it. So who knows – maybe Black Sabbath ain’t totally over.
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