Ozzy Osbourne Shares Health Update, Ambition for Final Concerts

He's had a harrowing couple of years

Ozzy Osbourne
Ozzy Osbourne of Black Sabbath performs onstage on "The End Tour" at Nikon at Jones Beach Theater on August 17, 2016.
Kevin Mazur/WireImage

Lately, reading about Ozzy Osbourne can summon up melancholy thoughts — from his candid discussions of his Parkinson’s diagnosis to his announcement last year that he would be leaving Los Angeles to return to the U.K. For a man who once seemed both invulnerable and capable of almost anything, it can be jarring to hear Osbourne taking stock of his life and pondering his legacy.

In a recent conversation with Nick Reilly for Rolling Stone UK, Osbourne was as candid as ever, touching on subjects from his own health to friendships and rivalries with former bandmates. He also addressed the question of whether we might see him take to the stage again, whether on tour or for one farewell event to remember. It’s worth noting here that Reilly describes Osbourne as being in good health when they spoke, calling particular attention to his “vim and vigour.”

That said, Osbourne himself brought up a host of health issues that came up after he underwent spinal surgery multiple times. “I thought I’d be up and running after the second and third, but with the last one they put a fucking rod in my spine,” Osbourne told Reilly. “They found a tumour in one of the vertebrae, so they had to dig all that out too. It’s pretty rough, man, and my balance is all fucked up.”

As for his Parkinson’s diagnosis, Osbourne stated that it hasn’t affected him as much as some reports have said. “I don’t even think about Parkinson’s that much,” he said in the interview.

Osbourne’s candor extended to the possibility of a return to live music, even for a farewell show. “That’s one of the things I’ve been the most fucking pissed off at: I never got the chance to say goodbye or thank you. Because my fans are what it’s all about,” he said to Reilly.

“For whatever reason, that’s my goal to work to,” he added. “To do those shows.”

Could we see Ozzy Osbourne back on stage before too long? It sounds a lot less unlikely than it might have been a year ago — which makes for encouraging news for longtime fans of Osbourne’s vast discography.

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