Written By Braddon S. Williams

Ozzy Osbourne: No More Tears

And then there was Zakk…No More Tears (1991) was the second Ozzy Osbourne album to feature the Viking biker madman man mountain known as Zakk Wylde.

Additionally, Lemmy Kilmister from Motörhead wrote the lyrics for 4 of the songs, helping Ozzy to score one of the biggest successes of his career.

The title track was a spectacular epic of a song, beginning with that tricky little bass guitar intro, and featuring some dramatic keyboards and a monster solo from Wylde. Mama I’m Coming Home, Road To Nowhere, and Time After Time were 3 huge power ballads with great choruses and more signature melodic mayhem from the Zakk attack. Hellraiser, Mr. Tinkertrain, I Don’t Want To Change The World, Zombie Stomp, and Desire were all suitably full of hard rock madness from the Prince of Darkness, and Ozzy proved once again that he could literally succeed with any guitar slinger he chose to work with.

No More Tears came out at the same time as the Use Your Illusions albums from Guns ‘n Roses and the Ozz man did just fine in the competition, as if any of us had any doubts.


Influences And Recollections of a Musical Mind

Guitarist Zakk Wylde (OZZY OSBOURNE, BLACK LABEL SOCIETY) recently guested on SiriusXM‘s “The Jenny McCarthy Show”. The full interview can be viewed below. A few excerpts follow below.

On the last time he was clean-shaven:

Zakk: “Probably after I did that ‘Rock Star’ movie. I had to shave every day when we did the movie, but at the end of the movie, they did this thing of, ‘Where are they now?’ I had this big beard I had to wear — just, pretty much like what I got now. I remember doing it, and I just go, because I had to put it on every day for the scenes, I was, like, looking at myself and I go, ‘I look like a complete jackass with this thing on. I’m definitely going to grow this out once this movie’s over.'”

On BLACK LABEL SOCIETY‘s new album, “Grimmest Hits”:

Zakk: “The lyrics are grim, and there are no hits. People ask me, ‘Is this a greatest-hits record?’ I go, ‘No. In order to have a greatest-hits record, you’ve had to have hits.’ We don’t have any hits, so therefore, it can’t be. But you shoot low, so this way, if people listen and go, ‘This is horrendous,’ you go, ‘Well, I told you going in.'”

On his memories of joining Ozzy Osbourne‘s band:

Zakk: “I was 19 — right before I turned 20. That’s when my drinking problem began. I drank until then, and then it was just double-fisting from that point on. When I first started with [Ozzy], I remember Sharon [Osbourne] — who I lovingly refer to as Mom, because she’s been, like, my mom since I was 19 years old — she called [Zakk‘s wife] Barbaranne up and goes, ‘Excuse me, Barbaranne…’ I would be the only one that would hang out with Ozz, because everyone else was, like, ‘I don’t want to get stuck in the web and get, you know, canned over here because I’m the one enabling him.’ But I would always hang out with him, because I was just like, ‘Man, how come nobody wants to hang out with Ozzy?’ Then they go, ‘Jackass, you must be a rookie, and you have no idea what’s going on around here.’ So anyway, I’d hang out with [Ozzy] all the time and we’d be drinking, but the whole thing is, she’d go, ‘Barbaranne, does Zakk have a drinking problem?’ [Barb] goes, ‘Oh, no, no. He drinks milk.’ [Sharon] goes, ‘Not anymore, he doesn’t.’ A lot of my friends went to college, and I went to Ozzy Osbourne University, which was like ‘Animal House’ on steroids.”

On sneaking Ozzy beer while on tour:

Zakk: “That was the best. That wasn’t that long ago — that’s when we were doing ‘Live At Budokan’. Ozzy‘s like, ‘Zakk, you got any beers?’ I’d always have them in my backpack. I go, ‘What, are you trying to get us both fired?’ I was like, ‘I’ll meet you in the bathroom.’ I kid you not — I’m in the bathroom, then he goes in. I was in the bathroom stall and I heard him come in. He was right next to me, shut the door and goes, ‘Okay, Zakk.’ I just slid it over. I hear him crack open a can of Sapporo and then just guzzle it down, and then [he] sneaks and just pushes the empty can back to me, so I can throw it in the garbage as responsible booze-hounds.”

On what makes a BLACK LABEL SOCIETY fan a “berserker”:

Zakk: “That’s [how] we lovingly refer to our BLACK LABEL family, if you’re a berserker. It’s an all-or-nothing mentality — either you’re all in, or you ain’t, so you live like a berserker. Whether you’re fondling the genitalia or whether you’re going to learn how to play the guitar or whether you’re going to have a tomato garden outside, it’s all-in — it’s all-in or nothing.”

On Ozzy Osbourne‘s farewell tour:

Zakk: “The game plan is to go out on this one. It’s great being with [Ozzy] again. It’s hysterical as always. We go out for this thing until 2020, and then we start the ‘Bad Investment Tour’. Basically, the whole reason why we’re touring right now is because Ozz told me, ‘Everything you’ve got, everything you’ve made since you started with me, put it all down on Conor McGregor to win this fight against Mayweather. He did, and I did — and that’s the reason why we’re getting back together to do this tour. We’re broke — we both live in a box down by the river. Hopefully he’ll get better advice from 2020 onward.”

BLACK LABEL SOCIETY‘s 10th full-length album, “Grimmest Hits”, will be released January 19, 2018 via Entertainment One (eOne).

Wylde reunited with the iconic BLACK SABBATH frontman for this past summer’s tour that marked the 30th anniversary of when the two first collaborated together.

Wylde originally joined Osbourne‘s band three decades ago and backed the legendary frontman from 1987 to 1995, then again in 1998, from 2001 to 2004 and also from 2006 to 2009. His guitar playing can be heard on Osbourne‘s studio albums “No Rest For The Wicked”, “No More Tears”, “Ozzmosis”, “Down To Earth”, “Under Cover” and “Black Rain”. The first album with Wylde went double platinum and “No More Tears” remains Ozzy‘s most successful album, going four times platinum in the United States with four Top 10 songs on the U.S. Billboard chart. Wylde also appeared with Ozzy on three live albums.

ZAKK WYLDE: ‘My Friends Went To College. I Went To OZZY OSBOURNE University’

The video is for the newest single from the band’s upcoming album, ‘Grimmest Hits.’

Zakk Wylde and Black Label Society have premiered the music video for their new single, “All That Once Shined.”

The video—like the band’s most recent music video, for “Room for Nightmares”—was directed by longtime Black Label Society collaborator Justin Reich. It seems to be a tongue-in-cheek half-homage, half-parody of Bob Dylan’s legendary “Subterranean Homesick Blues” music video.

The single is taken from the band’s upcoming album, Grimmest Hits. The album—the band’s tenth—is slated for a January 19, 2018 release via Entertainment One (eOne).

You can preorder Grimmest Hitshere.

For more on Black Label Society, stop by blacklabelsociety.com.

Zakk Wylde & Black Label Society Premiere “All That Once Shined” Music Video


On this date in history, 4/26/2016, I was transported to Guitar Heaven! The Generation Axe tour took place at an incredible venue inside The Old National Centre in Indianapolis, the Murat Theatre.

17861947_748814181963029_5157689078307921060_nThis tour was orchestrated by Steve Vai, and featured Vai, Yngwie J. Malmsteen, Zakk Wylde, Nuno Bettencourt, and Tosin Abasi.

Each guitar god played an individual set, and played together in various configurations throughout the show.

All 5 began the concert playing “Foreplay” by Boston in a veritable fusillade of guitar pyrotechnics that hit like a ten ton hammer.

17523166_748416988669415_6828448629776624129_nAs soon as we had time to digest what had just knocked the collective wind out of us, Abasi was alone on stage with the backup band that played for all the featured artists. These guys were amazing, too…as they had to complement the varying styles of the principal players.

Abasi is the lead guitarist for Animals As Leaders, and his djent style of syncopated alternately crushing and soothing 8 string guitar wizardry was challenging but rewarding in its intensity. For his last song, Tosin was joined by Nuno Bettencourt on “Physical Education” and they managed to be complex and funky at the same time.

Nuno took the funk and ran with it, performing a medley of his best stuff from his Extreme days, and also throwing down some spicy acoustic playing. His last song was one of the highlights of the entire show for me. It is called “Sideways” by Citizen Cope, and featured Nuno and Zakk on tandem guitars and lead vocals. The song was mellow, full of passion and heart and made me long for a whole album and tour with these two amazing musicians.

17757384_748814275296353_8478806317146756870_nThe Zakk attack commenced immediately after, with the Wylde man demonstrating his dizzying speed and velocity on a trio of rock classics by Black Sabbath (N.I.B.), The Allman Brothers Band (Whipping Post), and Jimi Hendrix (Little Wing). The Viking biker ventured far into the crowd, getting up front and personal with many lucky audience members who got to see closeup views of his manic style.

18033257_750922301752217_1334904862003645433_nFor some reason, Zakk and Yngwie didn’t play together, but Mr. Malmsteen didn’t waste any time demonstrating his virtuosity on various Fender Stratocasters. Personally, I feel like some of his stage moves are a little unnecessary, but his playing is breathtaking and magnificent. When he played his signature song, “Black Star”, he was joined by Steve Vai, and the results were some of the most flawless playing I have ever heard. Vai took over from there, earning his top billing with a master class in guitar genius.

18010732_750560395121741_7948507229128577700_nSteve has such command of his instrument, and effortlessly lets his physical grace and charming personality shine through his signature unique style of songwriting.

After Vai’s set, all but Malmsteen combined for a crushing version of Edgar Winter’s “Frankenstein”, and then Yngwie came out to sing and help the entire band lay down the ultimate “Highway Star” (Deep Purple) to close out this once in a lifetime assembly of guitar godliness…until the sequel…I hope!

Written By Braddon S. Williams aka The Concert Critic

Generation Axe – Foreplay


On This Date in History