Black Sabbath Confirms It’s Over

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The band posted this on March 7, 2017 on their Facebook and Twitter accounts

(Update: March 7): If there was any doubt that the band was calling it quits, their Facebook and Twitter post today should end those discussions. For now…

Here’s our earlier item from Feb. 5 about their final performance…

They never quite made it to the 50-year mark like some of their peers and—unless they change their minds—they never will: Black Sabbath played their final gig last night (Feb. 4) in Birmingham, England, the city where it all began for them in 1968. With “Paranoid,” one of their early anthems, serving as the encore, the band that many credit with drawing up all the rules that heavy metal still follows finished their farewell tour, appropriately titled “The End,” in front of 16,000 fans at the Genting Arena.

Only three of the original members—singer Ozzy Osbourne, guitarist Tony Iommi and bassist Geezer Butler—were on board for the momentous occasion: drummer Bill Ward, who left the band in 2011 over a contract dispute, did not make a special guest appearance, as had been rumored. (Tommy Clufetos was the drummer for the tour.) Nor did any other big-name celebs; it was all pure Sabbath from the opening tune, “Black Sabbath”—which also opened their self-titled 1970 debut album—through such classics as “Iron Man” and “War Pigs,” as well as a handful of lesser known songs.

Within minutes of the band’s posting, a clever fan created an apt response

Related: Sabbath keyboardist Geoff Nicholls dies

Osbourne announced from the stage, “So it’s the final show, and I’ve got to tell you something. What a journey we’ve all had. It’s fucking amazing. We started this in 1968 and now it’s 2017. I don’t fucking believe that shit, man. But you know what? We would not survive if it wasn’t for the fan base. So if you’re a veteran fan, great. If you’re new, welcome. But I can’t tell you enough how grateful we are for your support.”

Below is the set from the final show, plus the video of the very last tune Black Sabbath will, very likely, ever perform live.

Related: October 27, 1970: Black Sabbath’s first U.S. show

As far as what the Sabbath musicians will do with their time now, Iommi, who has battled cancer, currently has plans to get as far away from hard rock as possible. The 68-year-old guitarist recently composed a short choral work titled “How Good It Is,” inspired by Psalm 133, which has already been performed by the Birmingham Cathedral choir and cellist George Shilling. Iommi told Britain’s Daily Mirror that he also hopes to compose film scores and that these days his personal playlist runs more toward easy listening and jazz.

Iommi told the newspaper, “I have albums by Frank Sinatra, there’s quite a bit of jazz music. I like The Carpenters, that sort of stuff. I don’t listen to Black Sabbath albums. I’ve been playing those tracks for most of my life. I don’t need to play them at home. At the moment I’ve been listening to a lot of Doris Day after taking a liking to her music. My pal Bev Bevan, from ELO, was round for dinner the other night. We were listening to Doris Day. How on earth did she get away with ‘Move Over’ Darling back in 1963? It’s such a steamy, suggestive song. And they think that they’re daring these days…”

Black Sabbath in the ’70s

Final Show Set List
Black Sabbath
Fairies Wear Boots
Under the Sun/Every Day Comes and Goes
After Forever
Into the Void
War Pigs
Behind the Wall of Sleep
Hand of Doom
Supernaut/Sabbath Bloody Sabbath/Megalomania
Rat Salad
Iron Man
Dirty Women
Children of the Grave


Watch Black Sabbath perform their final-ever encore, “Paranoid,” in Birmingham

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1 Comment so far

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  1. Mike Lenowsky
    #1 Mike Lenowsky 8 March, 2017, 16:02

    I grew up loving Black Sabbath in a major way. They were one of the first hard rock bands I was ever into. Really wish I could have seen them play with the original lineup early on. But in my late teens Ozzy had moved on and formed Blizzard of Oz or is it Ozz..I forget..gettin old! Blizzard of Oz were incredible though and I soon became a Randy Rhoads fanatic!! His early death hit me hard. Really saddened me! What really sucked too was that I was all set to see him play with Ozzy at MSG..but he was killed about 4 months prior. Ozzy eventually continued the tour but it was a pretty sad occasion at MSG seeing a sorta Randy lookalike in Bernie Torme filling in. When I.finally saw Sabbath it was with Ronnie James Dio which was incredible. I think those first two albums he did with them are classics and wow were they amazing the two times I saw them at The Beacon theatre way back. I also saw Sabbath with Ian Gillan fronting the band..that was ok but didn’t have the impact of Dio! I think I might have seen them another time with Joe lynn Turner as lead singer but he ain’t no Dio, Ozzy or Ian Gillan. I finally saw them with Oz a little while back but it kinda felt like they were just going through the motions. It was good..but didn’t have the same impact as when Dio was lead singer. They did all their classics but it would have been better if they would have thrown in some tunes that were perhaps less Symptoms of the universe etc.. The final setlist looks great and I’m sure the final show was a blast. It probably would have been more powerful to see them in a smaller venue than a huge arena. I think that’s why it was so great seeing them with Dio at the was intimate and I was second row for one of the shows. Still though…Sabbath influenced a generation of musicians and bands..and they’re influence can still be felt today. I think it’s the right time to finally put it to rest..go out on a high note of showing that they could still rock and be good mates..though I think they kinda threw Bill Ward under the bus by trying to pay him less..if that is the case as to why he wasn’t touring with them. They Def should have done their best to have him tour with them. He was there from the beginning and certainly deserved to make just as much as the other guys! So in a way that diminishes them going out on a high note..but whatever. It’s over and good luck to them.

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