Black Sabbath guitarist Tony Iommi – currently receiving treatment for lymphoma – posted a message on his website to update fans about his current condition. “I’ve had the last dose of chemotherapy so hopefully my body will start to get back to normal soon,” he wrote. “The steroids were the worst. I’ve now got three weeks of radiotherapy coming up which I’m told can be very tiring, so we’ll see.”
Last November Black Sabbath announced they were recording with Ozzy Osbourne (their first album with that lineup since 1978’s Never Say Die!) and launching a world tour, but in January Iommi revealed he had been diagnosed with the early stages of lymphoma. The recording sessions moved from Los Angeles to London so Iommi could be near his treatment center.
Just weeks later the reunion hit another snag when drummer Bill Ward said he wouldn’t participate in the reunion until he was presented with a “signable” contract. That situation appears to be unresolved and Ward’s name is not mentioned in Iommi’s newest statement, though he does write, “A big thanks to Ozzy and Geezer [Butler] for coming over to England, it was a big incentive for me, we managed to work most days and have some great new tracks.”
Sabbath originally planned on launching an extensive European tour this summer, but most of those plans were scrapped due to Iommi’s condition. Osbourne, bassist Butler and guitarist Zakk Wylde will perform at many of the dates as “Ozzy and Friends.” It’s unclear who will play drums. Black Sabbath including Tony Iommi will perform at the Download Festival in the U.K on June 10th. That show is being billed as their sole European performance. In a recent radio interview, Sharon Osbourne said that Black Sabbath were going to perform one show in America this August. She declined to name the location, but Lollapalooza is being held at Chicago’s Grant Park in August, making that one of the likely candidates.