In a candid conversation with Billboard magazine, Sharon Osbourne peeled back the layers of the decision-making process behind denying Kanye West the green light to sample an Ozzy Osbourne classic during a high-profile listening event for the rapper’s latest album in the heart of Chicago.
Gathered within the hallowed halls of the United Center, Ye, flanked by collaborator Ty Dolla $ign, orchestrated a mesmerizing spectacle ahead of the impending release of the Vultures LP. Amidst the pulsating beats and electrifying atmosphere, a momentous track unfurled, weaving a tapestry of sound that harkened back to Ozzy’s iconic solo performance of “Iron Man” at the legendary US Festival in 1983.
But as the echoes of Ozzy’s haunting vocals reverberated through the arena, it became apparent that not all was as it seemed. Initially, rumors swirled that West had set his sights on sampling “War Pigs,” only for the truth to emerge – it was “Iron Man” that had caught his creative eye.
Sharon, with an unflinching resolve, revealed the reasoning behind their staunch refusal. “We field countless requests for these cherished songs, but when this one came knocking, we knew it was a hard pass,” she remarked. “The bottom line is, we refuse to be associated with someone who peddles hate. No amount of excuses – whether it’s attributed to bipolar disorder or any other rationale – can absolve that fact. It boils down to a simple ‘no,’ and a resounding ‘screw you.'”
Delving deeper into the intricacies of music licensing, Sharon elucidated that the very essence of “Iron Man” is enshrined within the collaborative efforts of the entire Black Sabbath ensemble – Ozzy, Tony Iommi, Geezer Butler, and Bill Ward. Thus, the consent of all four songwriters is an immutable prerequisite before West could even entertain the notion of utilizing the sample.
In a curious twist of fate, Ozzy and Sharon’s Halloween costumes – portraying Kanye West and Bianca Censori – raised eyebrows and sparked speculation. However, Sharon swiftly dismissed any insinuations, chalking it up to a playful jest amidst the season’s festivities.