Tony Iommi Kicked Madonna Out of Black Sabbath’s Live Aid Reunion Rehearsal
The 35th anniversary of the Live Aid benefit concert came earlier in July and several of the artists who performed at the historic event have reflected on their involvement. The 1985 concert featured a one-off reunion of the original Black Sabbath lineup and when looking back on it with SiriusXM, Sabbath founder and guitarist Tony Iommi said he kicked Madonna out of their rehearsal — and didn't even know who she was.
At the time of the reunion, Iommi was the only remaining original member of Black Sabbath left in the lineup and the future of the band remained uncertain, as evidenced by the 1986 album Seventh Star, which the guitarist had intended to be a solo release. But this being a massive fundraiser on the line, the original lineup was coaxed into getting back onstage, even if it meant not getting much of a chance to rehearse.
"It was a bit of a disaster, really, to be honest. They had a room booked for us to rehearse. We started rehearsing and then we started talking about the old times; so most of the rehearsal was talking," Iommi told SiriusXM (audio below).
Continuing, the riff lord recalled, "And the time when we did rehearse, it was a closed session, and it would be embarrassing really because I saw these two girls come in at the back of the room. And I said to one of our crew, ‘Look, there’s people walking in,’ you know, 'you better tell them to get out, this is a private rehearsal.'"
One of those girls was the "Material Girl" — pop star Madonna, who was riding high off her 1984 sophomore album, Like a Virgin. Despite her celebrity status, Iommi remained clueless as to who had just tried to peep his band's reunion rehearsal.
Finishing off the story, the Black Sabbath legend said, "Anyway, he goes up and tells them and it turns out to be Madonna. So it’s a bit embarrassing. But anyway, we had the rehearsal and then went back to the hotel."
A night of heavy drinking ensued, making for a rough day under the sun for Black Sabbath and their guitarist who was suffering from a "dreadful hangover" onstage.
Ever since Black Sabbath played their final show on Feb. 4, 2017, fans have been clamoring for a reunion of any sorts, even if it's just a one-off gig. The band's members have waffled on the idea over the years and earlier in 2020, Iommi reaffirmed he is "not opposed" to the idea of a standalone Sabbath gig.
Tony Iommi Recalls Kicking Madonna Out of Black Sabbath's Live Aid Reunion Rehearsal
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