ON THIS DAY, A METAL LEGEND WAS BORN! Ozzy was born as John Michael Osbourne on December 3rd, 1948 in Aston, Birmingham, England. And the rest as they say… is Rock N’ Roll or Heavy Metal History! He rose to prominence in the early 70’s as the lead vocalist of Black Sabbath. He was fired from the band in 1979 and as we all know went on to have a successful solo career, releasing 11 studio albums, the first seven of which were all awarded multi-platinum certifications in the US. His longevity and success have earned him the informal title of “Godfather of Heavy Metal” and his infamously crazy and sometimes controversial behavior throughout his career, like biting off the heads of both a dove and a bat or urinating on the Alamo while wearing one of Sharon’s dresses etc. all due to drug and alcohol abuse have also earned him the titles of “The Prince of Darkness” and “The Metal Madman!”
Ozzy’s total album sales from his years in Black Sabbath, combined with his solo work, is over 100 million. As a member of Sabbath, he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and he was inducted into the UK Music Hall of Fame as a solo artist as well as a member of the band. Possessing a distinctive singing voice and as a native of Birmingham, he is known for his strong Brummie accent – he has a star on the Birmingham Walk of Stars in his hometown as well as the Hollywood Walk of Fame. At the 2014 MTV Europe Music Awards, he received the Global Icon Award. In the early 2000s, he became a reality television star, appearing as himself in MTV’s The Osbournes, alongside wife and manager Sharon and two of their three children, Kelly and Jack. And now he appears with son Jack in the travelogue docuseries Ozzy & Jack’s World Detour on A&E.
“Rock ‘n’ Roll Rebel” is off the Bark at the Moon album, originally released 15 November 1983. And it features guitarist Jake E. Lee, who of course had replaced Randy Rhoads after being killed a year earlier in that tragic plane crash.
Upon hearing their first hit single at age 14, Ozzy became a huge fan of The Beatles. He said in the 2011 documentary God Bless Ozzy Osbourne that “as soon as he heard ‘She Loves You’ on the radio, he knew he wanted to be a rock star for the rest of his life”. He left school at 15 and worked several odd jobs like a construction site laborer, plumber, apprentice toolmaker and even as a car factory horn-tuner. He attempted to to steal a television (which fell on him during his getaway and had to be abandoned), a handful of baby clothes (originally thought to be adult clothes as it was too dark to see when he committed the burglary, and which were stolen to sell to people at a pub), and some T-shirts. He spent six weeks in Winson Green Prison when he was unable to pay a fine after being found guilty of robbing a clothes shop; to teach his son a lesson, his father refused to pay the fine.
“Breakin’ All the Rules” is from the No Rest for the Wicked album released September 28, 1988. It was the first album to feature guitarist Zakk Wylde and the first to feature bassist Bob Daisley since Bark at the Moon. Ozzy originally retired in 1995 and then he and Sabbath called it quits last year and now he himself has said he is officially retiring, at least from touring anyway and still plans on making music and is not opposed to performing one-off gigs here and there with Sabbath and as a solo artist. (Of course that all depends on what day of the week you ask him) No matter what Ozzy does, hopefully he will continue to remain sober and stay on the path to a healthier life and in the end when his time does come, his music and legacy will live on forever! Long Live the Legend of Ozzy Osbourne!