SABBATH’s TONY IOMMI: ‘I Can’t Actually Do This Anymore’

September 6, 2015

Black Sabbath recently announced the details of a world tour that’s being called “The End”. The North American leg of the tour starts January 20, 2016 in Omaha, Nebraska and ends February 25 in New York City.


Sabbath’s guitarist Tony Iommi (who battled has been battling lymphoma since late 2011) did an exclusive interview with The Birmingham Mail and talked about the band’s decision to call it quits: “I can’t actually do this anymore. My body won’t take it much more.

“I don’t want [the cancer] creeping back again,” he continued. “And all the travelling involved in Sabbath tours increasingly takes its toll. That’s why we’re going out on one last tour, to say our farewells. And then it very definitely is the end. We won’t be doing it again.”


According to Iommi, his health comes first and he wants to be sure that nothing intrudes on that.

“We’ve been doing this for getting on for 50 years now,” Iommi said. “It’s about time we draw the line, don’t you think? It’s been great but it’s time to stop now.”

He continued: “Don’t get me wrong, I still love gigging. It’s all the travelling and the exhaustion that goes with it that’s the problem. That side of things has a big impact on me. Yes, we may fly in luxury, stay in the very best hotels, ride in the most comfortable limos, but there’s still a physical cost to touring. Even when we build in rest breaks — I have to have blood tests every six weeks — I find it tough going. You take a long haul flight, arrive somewhere at five in the morning and book into a hotel. There’s the soundcheck, the promotional work, the gig itself, then you’re back at the hotel to collapse into bed. Then next day you get to do it all over again.”

Iommi added: “I love being up there onstage, playing with Sabbath. What I don’t love is all the other stuff necessary to enable that to happen. None of us are getting any younger, you know.”

Sabbath’s farewell tour will be “around a year long, including the rest breaks,” said Iommi. “Maybe a little longer. It’ll be a big production and we’ll be putting together a setlist that traces the band’s career from our eary days in Birmingham. All the fan favorites will be in there, and we’re looking to include some songs we’ve rarely performed live, too.”


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