LISTEN TO THE NEW OZZY TRACKS!!
A number of audio clips from OZZY OSBOURNE’s forthcoming album have been posted online at Ozzy.com (Note: You have to scroll over and click on the books and other images on the main page to hear the audio).
The first single, “I Don’t Want to Stop”, from the upcoming CD will receive its online premiere on Friday, April 13.
Ozzy Osbourne recently told Rolling Stone magazine (web site) that the war in Iraq weighed heavily on his mind during the recording sessions for his first album of new material in six years. “Bombs are falling and tears are falling,” Ozzy reportedly sneers across what Rolling Stone described as “a modern metal anthem,” entitled “Countdown’s Begun”. But Osbourne told the magazine that he didn’t set out to write another “War Pigs”, the BLACK SABBATH classic inspired by an earlier generation’s unpopular war. “I don’t want to get political,” said Ozzy, who has visited maimed soldiers in military hospitals during recent tours. “I try to mask it so you can think what you like. The things around you affect you but you don’t realize it. You look at CNN and a fucking car bomb has gone off.”
Among the eleven new tracks Osbourne has recorded is “Not Going Away”, which Rolling Stone describes as “a fiery rocker with ominous riffs from guitarist Zakk Wylde,” and “Lay Your World On Me”, which was inspired by Ozzy’s wife and manager’s recent battle with cancer. Other songtitles set to appear on the CD include “The Almighty Dollar” and “Not Going Away”.
The follow-up to 2001’s “Down to Earth”, was recorded with the same band that backed Osbourne on his scattered 2006 Ozzfest dates — Zakk Wylde on guitar, Mike Bordin on drums, and former ROB ZOMBIE bassist Rob “Blasko” Nicholson. The album has no official producer, although longtime Mutt Lange protégé Kevin Churko is serving as the engineer.
“Kevin’s working the machines and helping me with the songwriting,” Osbourne recently told Revolver magazine. “He really knows what he’s doing with the ProTools, which is good because I can’t work the fucking thing. I can barely work a light switch!”
The new CD is the first to be recorded in Osbourne’s home studio, located in the newly soundproofed guest house behind his Beverly Hills mansion, which he’s outfitted with a mixing desk and a ProTools rig. “If you ever have inspiration, you can put down an idea,” Osbourne told Rolling Stone of recording at home. “The bad thing is your wife can get ahold of you all the time for whatever she wants you to do.”
Former Kiss Guitarist Mark St. John Dead at 51
Acccording to KissFAQ.com, Mark St. John was born Mark Norton, in Hollywood, California, on February 7, 1956. His parents moved in the early 1960s to Garden Grove, CA where Mark was initially more interested in sports than music. In an interview with KISS Strike, Mark recalled, “I played all sports, in fact I played sports before I got into music. Especially basketball, I mean I tried all sports but basketball is what I excelled in. And when I got into high school we started playing CIF with other teams from L.A. and they were all black and I felt that I wasn’t a very good basketball player. I mean they just slip and slide all over you, they jump higher and they run faster and you felt belittled after the first five minutes and I gave it up after that.”
Growing up in Southern California, Mark didn’t start playing guitar until he was a sophomore in highschool in 1972 when he also started to grow his hair longer, undoubtedly part of that age-group’s rebellion from their parents and society. Initially guitar playing started as a hobby, but within a year Mark had become quite serious about it.
As to why he started plaing guitar, Mark recalled, “I guess because the guitar was the new thing happening — it was the sound. I’m from a generation that went through a whole different thing in music, like a culture-type thing. It was the voice of the people. It was a source of rebellion and the guitar was one of the biggest things. I remember watching television and seeing THE BEATLES and THE ROLLING STONES on the ‘Ed Sullivan Show’. They didn’t have tubas, they had guitars and everyone was going crazy and that put a spark in my mind… The guitar is rock ‘n roll. That’s what it’s all about. From the ’50s on, the emphasis was on the guitar sound. Everyone was trying to make the guitar sound like other instruments, but it’s not so easy to make other instruments sound like the guitar. The guitar is what’s happening”
Mark has a brother, Michael (born 1964), who plays bass. The two would be in bands together following Mark’s tenure in KISS. They also have one sister (born 1960).
Mark replaced Vinnie Vincent as lead guitarist for Kiss in April 1984, following Vincent’s falling-out with the band (Mark was suggested to Paul Stanley by Grover Jackson of Jackson Guitars). St. John played on the majority of the band’s 1984 album Animalize (Bruce Kulick was featured on the song, “Lonely Is The Hunter”). During work for the album, St. John clashed with the other members of the band, and eventually developed arthritis (Reiter’s Syndrome), which caused his hands and arms to swell. He was all but unable to perform live as a member of Kiss, and only played three (one in full) shows during the “Animalize” tour, with Kulick filling in for the rest. He was officially replaced by Kulick in December 8, 1984.
St. John’s only video appearance with Kiss is in the video for Heaven’s On Fire”.
After leaving Kiss, St. John formed his new group White Tiger with one-time Black Sabbath vocalist David Donato and released one LP in 1986.