10 Live Black Sabbath Performances [VIDEOS, LIST]
One of the Godfathers of heavy metal, guitarist Tony Iommi is celebrating his 64th birthday this weekend. Tony is one of the all-time greatest musicians and a pioneer of a whole genre of music. To honor him, we've put together ten performances of classic Black Sabbath songs both with Ozzy and the late, great Ronnie James Dio on vocals. Thanks for giving us so much great music over the years Tony and here's to many more years of amazing music still to come!
SABBATH BLOODY SABBATH
The main riff for this song set the tone for the entire album and also became the title track. The album was released in November of 1973 and was one of their first albums to receive critical acclaim.
Originally assumed to have meant 'Nativiy in Black,' the song N.I.B was named 'nibby' referring to drummer Bill Ward's beard. The song contains very similar anti-war themes as “War Pigs” and “Electric Funeral.” Two separate unreleased versions of the song were created that were later released on deluxe edition of Master of Reality.
Die Young was the second single of Heaven and hell, written by Ronnie James Dio. It became a staple in the setlists of all future Dio shows, as well as the Heaven and Hell reunion shows years later.
To date, Paranoid was the band's quickest song they ever wrote. The whole song was written and recorded within a matter of 25 minutes as the band needed an extra song for the album which already had the same name as the song. Paranoid is still the band's only top ten hit on the music charts.
The follow-up album to Heaven and Hell, Mob Rules was certified gold. The title track was recorded at John Lennon's old house in England and was featured in the 1981 animated film Heavy Metal.
FAIRIES WEAR BOOTS
According to Geezer Butler, the song was inspired from an encounter with a group of skinheads. The skinheads were referred to as the derogatory 'fairies.'
HEAVEN AND HELL
A song that they later renamed the group as, Heaven and Hell was released in 1980 when Ronnie James Dio took over for Ozzy on vocals. The album Heaven and Hell peaked at number 9 in the UK and number 28 on the U.S. charts. The album wound up selling over a million copies worldwide.
Off of their second album, Paranoid, Iron Man is possibly one of the bands most popular and well known songs. Almost thirty years after they wrote Iron Man, a live version won the Grammy for Best Metal Performance in 2000.
The song War Pigs was written to be critical of the Vietnam War. The opening track off of 'Paranoid,' Guitar World ranked it as #56 on their list of the top 100 Greatest Guitar Solos.
The song that started it all, released on the band's self-titled debut album, Black Sabbath was written after Ozzy Osbourne and Geezer Butler had a dealing with a book about witchcraft. The song is still known as one of the earliest examples of heavy metal music with ground-breaking guitar riffs.