Ozzy Osbourne has announced that he is retiring from touring due to declining health. The 74-year-old Black Sabbath singer was due to embark on a tour of the UK and Europe later this year, but in a statement said that he has “come to the realisation that I’m not physically capable … as I know I couldn’t deal with the travel required.”
“This is probably one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to share with my loyal fans,” he continued. “As you may all know, four years ago this month, I had a major accident, where I damaged my spine. My one and only purpose during this time has been to get back on stage. My singing voice is fine. However, after three operations, stem cell treatments, endless physical therapy sessions, and most recently groundbreaking Cybernics (HAL) treatment, my body is still physically weak.”
“Believe me when I say that the thought of disappointing my fans really FUCKS ME UP, more than you will ever know,” he wrote. “Never would I have imagined that my touring days would have ended this way.”
In the statement, Osbourne said that he was looking into “ideas for where I will be able to perform without having to travel from city to city and country to country”, and thanked his fans for “their endless dedication, loyalty and support, and for giving me the life that I never ever dreamed I would have”.
Osbourne’s tour, dubbed No More Tours II, was announced in 2017 but postponed a number of times, due to both ill health and Covid. Last May, he revealed that he was awaiting surgery on his his neck; his wife, Sharon Osbourne, said that the surgery would “determine the rest of his life”. In September 2022 he released his 13th solo album, Patient Number 9, which was hailed in a four-star review by the Guardian’s chief pop critic Alexis Petridis as “finely balanced, the choruses big and bold enough to attract attention but not overshadow the main attraction’s essential essence”.
Patient Number 9 is nominated for best rock album at the 2023 Grammy awards; its title track, featuring Jeff Beck, is nominated for best rock song and best rock performance; and the Tony Iommi collaboration Degradation Rules is up for best metal performance. “The whole thing shocked me,” Osbourne told Billboard upon hearing of the nominations. “I mean, if I won anything for the album I’d be floored.”