I don't want people to not know who I am. I don't want to be pigeonholed as the new George Michael, or the guy that won the reality TV show, or Mick Hucknall for the Noughties, or whatever nonsense gets said. It's just me and it's about having a bit of self-belief and turning up the volume a bit" – Will Young, in a café by the Thames, November 2005 Hold onto your trilby... In fact, take off ...
John Michael Osbourne was born on December 3, 1948 in Birmingham, England. Throughout an extraordinary career, which has so far spanned three decades, Osbourne has made major contributions to the worlds of music and popular culture. As co-founder, lead singer, and songwriter for Black Sabbath (1970-79) he was, in effect, a chief architect of the genre now known as “heavy metal”, creating the powerful new sound and provocative performance style that would forever expand the definition of rock music. Black Sabbath has sold more than 25 million records in the U.S. alone.
In 1980, Osbourne debuted as a solo artist to widespread popular claim. Over the next two decades, his career continued to gain momentum with a series of highly successful albums, and he has brought his notorious live show to sold-out arenas in virtually every corner of the world. As a solo artist, Osbourne has sold more than 35 million records worldwide, bringing his cumulative sales to more than 60 million albums.
Osbourne is currently visible on the smash MTV series “The Osbournes”, a melding of reality show, soap opera, and sitcom that follows the lives of Ozzy and his family. It recently became the highest rated original program in MTV’s 24-year history. The show is so popular in part because Ozzy’s loving wife Sharon and children Aimee, Kelly, and Jack (Ozzy has two grown children, Louis and Jessica, from a previous marriage) provide Ozzy a nuclear family life that one would not normally associate with a star sometimes referred to as the “Madman of Rock”.
As the founder and star attraction of the annual “Ozzfest” tour, he continues to win legions of new fans while at the same time building the hard rock audience by introducing standing-room-only crowds to emerging artists in the genre. Ozzfest was launched in 1996, and since its inception has sold over four million tickets for a total of more than $80 million dollars in revenue. Ozzfest is scheduled for a July 6 U.S. kick-off this summer and will visit the United Kingdom, Holland, Germany, Spain, Italy, and Russia, among other countries Osbourne’s latest release, Down to Earth, is rapidly approaching Platinum in the U.S, while his other 23 albums (including those with Black Sabbath) have all achieved at least Gold certification, with all but a handful passing the 1,000,000 mark in sales. Blockbusters such as Black Sabbath’s seminal Paranoid and Ozzy’s solo smashes Blizzard of Ozz and No More Tears are 4x Platinum and still selling thousands of copies each week. Moreover, the influence of Ozzy Osbourne can be felt just as strong, if not stronger, in 2002 as it was in the Seventies. As the principal member of the founding heavy metal band, Black Sabbath, and throughout his enormously successful solo career (and now, television popularity) Ozzy has transcended all boundaries and categories and is now among the elite few who can lay claim to being eternally “cool”, viable, and vital in a pop world under constant upheaval and change. Put simply, Ozzy rocks!
Here are the milestones from Grammy Award-winning Ozzy Osbourne’s 32-year career:
. Ozzy releases his first record with Black Sabbath in 1970 (released Friday, February 13th). The self-titled record goes platinum that same year in the U.K. and U.S.
. Ozzy releases 10 records with Black Sabbath.
. Black Sabbath has sold over 25 million records (to date) worldwide.
. Black Sabbath embarks on several world tours and performs to legions of fans around the globe.
. Black Sabbath performs at the the first California Jam in June 1974 to over 250,000 fans.
. Ozzy leaves Black Sabbath and goes solo in 1979.
. Ozzy releases his first solo record Blizzard Of Ozz in 1980. The record quickly goes 4x Platinum.
. Ozzy releases seven records throughout the decade. Each one sells over two million copies.
. Ozzy has sold over 35 million CD’s as a solo artist worldwide.
. Ozzy performs at the US Festival in 1983 in front of 250,000 fans.
. Ozzy performs at Live Aid in 1985, the legendary benefit concert for world hunger.
. Ozzy performs at the Russian Peace Festival in 1989. This was the first major rock concert in the Soviet Republic by Western artists.
. Ozzy releases five records this decade. Each record goes multi-platinum.
. Ozzy has performed to millions of fans around the world. His live concerts are guaranteed sell-outs.
. Ozzy won a Grammy Award in 1993 for Best Metal Performance for “I Don’t Want To Change the World.”
. Ozzy and his wife/manager Sharon launch OZZfest in 1996, the first national music festival of its kind dedicated to hard rock music and breaking new artists.
. 1.4 million fans attend the annual OZZfest music festival which Ozzy headlines.
. Ozzy donated a portion of the OZZfest proceeds to various charities across the country including Lifebeat.
THE NEW MILLENIUM:
. Ozzy won a Grammy for Best Metal Performance in 2000 as a part of Black Sabbath for “Iron Man.”
. Nearly a million fans attended the sixth annual OZZfest 2000.
. Ozzy headlined OZZfest 2001 with Black Sabbath. A million-plus fans attended the sold out 32-date festival.
Noted film director Penelope Spheeris shot a full-length documentary on OZZfest titled “We Sold Our Souls For Rock ‘n’ Roll,” that debuted at the 2001 Sundance Film Festival. Ozzy also appeared in Adam Sandler’s “Little Nicky.”
. Ozzy received an MTV Movie Awards 2001 nomination for “Best Cameo” for his role in “Little Nicky.”
Ozzy has released 13 albums during his 20-year career with Epic Records.
Ozzy will received a Star on the world-famous Hollywood Walk of Fame, April 2002.
“The Osbournes” debuts on MTV to a record-breaking audience for a new program. Further episodes create a national sensation around the Osbourne family and ratings skyrocket to become the highest-ever in MTV’s 22 year history. Ozzy dines with President Bush at the Washington Correspondents Association Dinner in May