Black Sabbath's Ozzy Osbourne and Tony Iommi bury the hatchet

Death of Ronnie James Dio spurs bandmates to settle legal dispute over rights and royalties

Ozzy Osbourne and Tony Iommi have settled their lawsuits over the Black Sabbath name. According to a statement, the pair have "amicably resolved their problems", discontinuing court proceedings in New York.

Iommi, Black Sabbath's only constant member, registered the US trademark for the band name in 2000. Osbourne only seems to have discovered this last year, when he launched a suit demanding a share of the rights and royalties. "Please do the right thing," he asked the guitarist, who claimed that Osbourne had relinquished his right to the name, having quit the band several times before.

It took a tragedy to push the pair toward reconciliation: following the death of Ronnie James Dio, who replaced Osbourne in Black Sabbath, the singer was moved to patch things up with Iommi.

"Sharon took my car into town yesterday, and she found a cell phone of mine in the car that I never fucking use," Osbourne told Kerrang in May. "There were two messages on it from Tony, one of them from the day Ronnie died. The message started with: 'I have a bit of bad news.' I'll have to call Tony back soon."

Although Iommi and Osbourne did not provide details of their court settlement, they are "glad to put this behind them and to co-operate together for the future". "The issue was never personal," they insisted. "It was always business."


Sean Michaels

The GuardianTramp

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