On Wednesday, July 29, Carl Sundberg from Eugene, Oregon's 101.5 KFLY radio station conducted a phone interview with Zakk Wylde (BLACK LABEL SOCIETY, OZZY OSBOURNE). When asked about his status in Ozzy's band and recent reports that Osbourne was auditioning other guitarists for his solo group, Zakk said, "I've gotta be honest with you. The boss [Ozzy] hasn't even given me a phone call, so I mean... I'm just like... I don't know what's going on over there. Are we doing this thing or are we not doing it? When I keep getting asked these questions, I go, 'Call the boss. When he tells you, then he can call me back.' I mean, it's just like... I love you, man. Whatever you want, that's cool. But if we're doing this, let's do it, and let's whoop some ass. But if you don't wanna do it, then just give me a heads-up. Call me, man. Tell me what the hell's going on. I don't know what the hell's going on over there. We're working on the new record, we'll be back in September, we'll work on finishing the record. And then we're supposed to do the tour. I mean, it's like, dude, you don't wanna play with me anymore? Fine. Play with whoever the hell you wanna play with. I couldn't give a rat's ass. Like I'm gonna get all jealous or whatever. But you know what?! Man up and give me a phone call and tell me what the hell's going on. You finished with me? Cool. I mean, it's just like... Everything's sounding like BLACK LABEL? [Referring to Ozzy's claim in a recent interview that his solo albums were beginning to sound like BLACK LABEL SOCIETY due to Wylde's involvement with both projects — Ed.] I guess everything sounded like BLACK LABEL when I first started with you, when I was 19. It was still the same guy; I don't know what the hell you're talking about."
Zakk's rambling response — including a 30-second, expletive-filled rant directed at Ozzy (which wasn't transcribed above due to extensive bleeping) — is available for download as an MP3 audio file at this location. It can also be streamed below.
Carl Sundberg's entire interview with Zakk Wylde will air this Sunday, August 2 on "The Edge" on Eugene, Oregon's 101.5 KFLY. You can listen to the program live via the Internet at this location.
Ozzy told Classic Rock magazine in a new interview (stream audio in YouTube clip below) that he's on the lookout for a new guitar player, apparently to replace Wylde. Ozzy appeared late last month as a guest at Slash's headlining concert in Norway, where rumors indicated that he was lining up ROB ZOMBIE guitarist John 5 to take Wylde's spot. Ozzy didn't deny the rumors, saying, "Well, I'm getting a new guitar player as we speak, and everyone has been saying to me for a long time, 'Get Johnny 5!' And I tried him at one time and I didn't really give him a chance. We'll see, I don't know."
As for why he wanted to break away from Wylde, who has played with Ozzy on and off since 1988, Ozzy said, "I haven't fallen out with Zakk, but Zakk's got his own band, and I felt like my stuff was beginning to sound like (Wylde's band) BLACK LABEL SOCIETY. I just felt like I wanted a change, y'know?"
Ozzy also indicated that he was auditioning a guitarist from Greece, but declined to give further details.
The former BLACK SABBATH singer has been working on his latest solo album at his home studio in Los Angeles, He said that Wylde had recorded material for the project, but added, "I don't know if I want to use it."
Wylde seemed unaware that he might be out of a job, posting on his Twitter account, "This is news to me."
Wylde joined Ozzy in 1988 on his "No Rest For The Wicked" album, replacing Jake E. Lee. He has played on every solo Ozzy album since, although he was replaced in the touring band from 1995 to 2001 by Joe Holmes.
Zakk Wylde talking to Carl Sundberg from Eugene, Oregon's 101.5 KFLY about Ozzy Osbourne on July 29, 2009 (audio clip hosted by Metal Insider) (click on play button to launch audio):
Ozzy Osbourne interviewed by Classic Rock magazine on June 30, 2009 at Quart festival in Norway (courtesy of Metal Hammer podcast):