Tuesday night’s Classic Rock Honours in Los Angeles was a family affair for the Osbournes, with Ozzy, Sharon and Kelly on hand to see Ozzy take home the Classic Album Award for Blizzard of Ozz and Sharon get the VIP honor.
May 27-31, the family will be together in Mexico for the first Ozzfiesta, a five-day event similar to a musician cruise, but Sharon says the landlocked celebration is superior. “It’s a great intimate thing for your die-hard fans and it’s better than being on a cruise because we don’t like boats, so we think it’s a great idea.”
She has no doubt Ozzfiesta, which is offering meet-and-greets to the first 500 rooms sold, will be successful based on the fervor of the last Sabbath tour. “People were coming from South America to Japan to Australia, following the tour around. If you’re into someone, that’s what people do now, which is fantastic,” she said.
We asked for a preview and got Ozzy humming mariachi, which already gets us excited, but we also got some more details. “It’s gonna be great because everyone who is associated with us, Zakk [Wylde] is gonna be there, I think Robert Trujillo is gonna be there,” Sharon said.
“The stage is amazing, the way they built that stage up, ’cause we just saw the blueprints and it’s right on the beach. It literally comes on a flatbed truck and unfolds like a transformer into a massive stage,” Kelly added.
Kelly also had some reassuring news for Sabbath fans bummed by Ozzy’s recent statements that the next Sabbath album and tour will be the end of the band. “I’m telling you right now, this is going to be like Cher‘s never-ending farewell tour, one that never ends,” she said.
While the focus Tuesday was on the future, for both Ozzy and Sabbath, the frontman looked back to Billboard in a moving tribute after the ceremony. He was honored for Blizzard of Ozz, which allowed him to recall his late great guitarist Randy Rhoads. Speaking to Billboard after the event, Ozzy talked about the impact Rhoads had on him and why he wouldn’t be here today without Rhoads.
“He was like a lightning bolt that came into my life, changed everything, he was a wonderful, wonderful guy. He was a very patient guy, he knew what he wanted to do, he was very focused and he was just a true musician,” Ozzy said of Randy. “On days off when we were touring, he would get the yellow pages and phone up a classical guitar teacher and have a lesson in his room every day. He was a special guy. I kind of knew, I remember saying to someone, ‘He ain’t gonna make old bones.’ I don’t remember why I said it, but I kind of knew he wouldn’t make old bones. In the journey of life, I’m a believer in what’s meant to happen. But if I could have him back I’d love to see him again. One day we’ll meet again.”
Accepting the award, Ozzy said he’d have no career without Rhoads, and afterward he elaborated. “I was in a very bad place, my alcoholism was f—ing rampant, my drug abuse…He came in and he said to me, ‘Why do you drink so much? Why don’t we just make music?’ He came to my house in England and he’s probably seen more of England than I have, he’d just go out driving around, it was a magical time. If he hadn’t come when he did, on the Blizzard of Ozz album, I wouldn’t be here now. When I say I owe my career to him, I was lost before I met Randy Rhoads but he delivered what I was looking for because at the end of Sabbath, we were all f—ed up and couldn’t play music anymore.”