According to Blabbermouth.net, Nathan Carson of Willamette Week recently spoke to BLACK SABBATH guitarist Tony Iommi about the making of the band’s new album, “13” — the first in 35 years to feature Tony, singer Ozzy Osbourne and bassist Geezer Butler.
Asked about how SABBATH decided to recruit RAGE AGAINST THE MACHINE‘s Brad Wilk to play on “13” following the decision by original SABBATH drummer Bill Ward to bow out of the band’s reunion, Iommi said: “[Producer] Rick [Rubin] suggested Ginger Baker, which we put a stop on. We didn’t think Ginger Baker would have been… We didn’t want to go in the studio and have, um, problems. And we did try some big-name drummers, some very big-name drummers. And they were great. But Rick particularly suggested Brad Wilk. And it was great because Brad had no idea what we were gonna be doing. We wouldn’t let him hear the tracks with drums. We just wanted to see what he was gonna put to it. And Brad was a really nice guy. He did work hard, you know, because he was thrown in the deep end so much, and he was very nervous. And then he got used to us. He got used to our jokes, the way we prank around.”
Iommi also spoke about his health status more than a year a half after he was diagnosed with lymphoma.
“Ronnie [James Dio, who fronted the BLACK SABBATH offshoot band HEAVEN & HELL on its 2009 tour and died in 2010] was getting stomach pains, and he was telling me before we were going onstage some nights, ‘Oh, my stomach’s really playing up,’ and he’d ask me if I’ve got any Tums or anything. And I said, ‘You should get it checked, you know, Ronnie.’ Of course, he did, but it was too late. And that’s the problem. It’s easy to overlook these things. I mean, I’m probably more over the top than I ever have been now. I check everything every day. You just don’t know. A lump pops up and you’ve gotta get it sorted.”
Regarding whether there is a chance BLACK SABBATH will follow up “13” with another studio album, Iommi said: “It all depends on my health, really. But I don’t think it would be hard to do another album, because we work so well together once we start cracking. And I’ve got plenty of ideas and stuff. But we’ll have to see what happens at the end of the year, after tour. I mean, for me, this is a whole new venture, because it’s the first time I’ve been out on tour since I’ve been ill for the last two years. And I have to treat things very differently to how I did five years ago. I’ve always put the band first, but now, of course, I have to put my health first.”