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Iommi explains when the term “Heavy Metal” was used for Black Sabbath

Tony Iommi

Classic Rock

Iommi explains when the term “Heavy Metal” was used for Black Sabbath

In an interview with Chris Phipps, Tony Iommi talked about what we’d all like him to say. The question was “When did the term ‘heavy metal’ become associated with Black Sabbath?”


Read an excerpt below:
When did the term ‘heavy metal’ become associated with Black Sabbath?

“A lot further down the line. Because we always classed ourselves as heavy rock. And somebody mentioned… I was doing an interview, and they said, ‘You’re playing heavy metal.’ ‘Heavy metal? What’s that?’ And they said, ‘That’s what you play.’

“We’d never admit to being heavy metal, we were always heavy rock. And at the end, we gave in. Because, you know, everybody called it heavy metal. So alright, we’re heavy metal.”

Is it true that heavy metal was hated by the press?

“Here [in the UK] it was. I’ll never forget – we played a gig in London. [A journalist] came to review the show. He’d done us a terrible review, but the thing was – we canceled the gig. We didn’t play. He reviewed the show that we never played. So he didn’t like us. [Laughs]”.

Black Sabbath

Black Sabbath were an English rock band, formed in Birmingham in 1968, by guitarist and main songwriter Tony Iommi, bassist and main lyricist Geezer Butler, drummer Bill Ward and singer Ozzy Osbourne. Black Sabbath are often cited as pioneers of heavy metal music.

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I'm a Brazilian journalist who always loved Classic Rock and Heavy Metal music. That passion inspired me to create Rock and Roll Garage over 6 years ago. Music has always been a part of my life, helping me through tough times and being a support to celebrate the good ones. When I became a journalist, I knew I wanted to write about my passions. After graduating in journalism from the Pontifical Catholic University of Minas Gerais, I pursued a postgraduate degree in digital communication at the same institution. The studies and experience in the field helped me improve the website and always bring the best of classic rock to the world! MTB: 0021377/MG

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