OZZY And IOMMI Played a Harsh Trick On Bill Ward

Even our idols have their moments of poor judgement. Ozzy Osbourne and Tony Iommi are no exception to the rule. Their dearest victim was drummer Bill Ward. History goes that once Tony almost set him on fire. This time they painted him gold. Read here the story Tony told Chris Phipps:

“The things we’ve done… When we lived in California, we had a house that we rented off John DuPont, who was famous for DuPont products – you know, the lighters and all that stuff… paint, DuPont paint. It was his house. A fantastic house. It got a ballroom and everything.

“Anyway, we rented this house for six months and we’ve done an album there. Of course, we go rummaging around in the garage and there’s all these paints in there.

“And one night, Bill again came back pissed. So me and Ozzy decided to take all of his clothes off, and we got some of the gold paint and we sprayed him gold from head to toe. Honest to god. And not only that. We’ve got some of this clear lacquer and we’ve lacquered him off.

“It was a laugh… And then he started throwing up. And it got really bad. I thought, ‘Oh God, what’s happened to him?’ Anyway, I had to phone the ambulance. And they said, ‘What’s wrong with him?’ I said, ‘Well… He’s sprayed gold.’

“They sent an ambulance out… And god, did they tell us off. They said, ‘You could have killed him!’. Because apparently, his skin couldn’t breathe. It was convulsions, you know?”

He talked also about famous Ozzy’s escapades:

“What happened was we checked in the hotel in Atlanta. It was a high-rise house with the glass lifts on the outside and all that rubbish. We go in there and Ozzy wasn’t feeling that great beforehand. He drank a bottle of… Instead of having a spoon, he drank a bottle.

“So we go to our rooms and he’s walking along the corridor. Of course, he sees his room open, he walks in it and passes out on the bed. But it wasn’t his room, of course. All his luggage is in his room.

“Anyway, it was time for the gig and we went to find out if he’s ready. No answer. And we sent security up. They opened the door, the bed hasn’t been sat on, his luggage is there. We thought, ‘Oh, blimey, where is he? Where has he gone?’

“So we had alerts out, we had police, we had him on the TV every 15 minutes, we had him on the radio every 15 minutes. We thought he had been kidnapped or something.

“It was really bad. I think we had Van Halen on with us then, they were supporting us. And they’ve done their spots, and me and Bill and Geezer went down to the gig to say we can’t do the gig. Obviously, the fans thought we haven’t turned up, but we were there.

“We just said, ‘We can’t find Ozzy.’ It became quite a worry and we were up all night panicking. ‘What happened to him? Somebody bumped him off.’ You never know over there.

“About sort of 9 o’clock in the morning, we had a phone call. ‘Hello?’… ‘It’s Ozzy. What time we leavin’?’ [Laughs] He’d only lost it by a day. So that was it really. [Laughs]”