OZZY OSBOURNE DEBUTS NEW GUITARIST GUS G., PUTS ZAKK WYLDE IN THE HOSPITAL
First, let’s just talk about how we arrived at this place we currently find ourselves:
- Ozzy gave an interview where he announced that Zakk Wylde was no longer his guitar player.
- Zakk Wylde’s response was basically “HUH?!”
- Ozzy dodged speaking to Zakk for weeks.
- Word got out that Gus G. was getting Zakk’s job and would make his debut at Blizzcon.
- Randall Amps confirmed that Gus G. was getting Zakk’s job and would make his debut at Blizzcon.
- Ozzy’s camp finally confirmed that Gus G. was getting Zakk’s job and would make his debut at Blizzcon – but blamed Zakk’s touring schedule with BLS for the switch, despite the fact that Zakk had been giving interviews where he talked about doing the Blizzcon show.
And what makes me angry about all of this now isn’t that Zakk got screwed – it’s that the Osbournes still refuse to be honest about everything. They’re continuing to handle this situation as though the whole “Whoops, we forgot to tell Zakk he’s fired” thing never happened. Telling the fans that Zakk couldn’t do the Blizzcon gig because of his BLS tour might have sounded like a valid excuse, had we not all been aware for ages now that Zakk was being shown the door. This is one situation where a little “We fucked up”-type honesty would’ve really hit the spot, but apparently Sharon takes her cues from the Dick Cheney “Never admit defeat, continue to ignore reality” playbook.
So. Ozzy did indeed do the Blizzcon gig, and Gus G. did in fact play guitar. (Ozzy also debuted new drummer Tommy Clufetos, who used to play with ongoing bass player Blasko in Rob Zombie’s solo band, and has experience dealing with post-menopausal divas like Sharon from previous gigs with Alice Cooper and Ted Nugent.) And Gus G. is a great guitar player and he did a really good job. He had absolutely no trouble duplicating Zakk’s squeals, which is shocking.
But the performance did seem to highlight the ongoing problem that no guitar player, no matter how awesome, will be able to fix: Ozzy still sucks. He sounds like shit and makes Mick Mars look athletic. And Gus G. will, hopefully, manage to write some awesome songs for Ozzy, and they can autotune the shit out of the Prince of Being Full of Shit and give us a semi-decent Ozzy record.
But live, it’s over. Ozzy is a figurehead now, a mascot for metal (as Rob Pasbani at Metal Injection wisely observed), and nothing more.
Meanwhile, how did Zakk take the news that he was, indeed, out of the job? He went to the emergency room for blood clots.
Sharon just won’t be happy until she kills someone, damn it.
Here’s more of Zakk playing with Gus G., Clufetos and Blasko – a seriously awesome band that seriously needs a new singer.