BLACK SABBATH bassist Geezer Butler spoke to Austin360 about the band’s decision to call it quits after completing “The End” tour in early 2017.
“When we started out, we didn’t expect to last more than a few years, never mind almost 50 years,” he said. “I never thought it would turn into a lifelong career. It has been especially pleasing to know that we have influenced so many bands, and that we are still relevant after all this time.”
Asked how he and his bandmates make sure fans remember SABBATH the way they want, Geezer said: “I feel that we are still musically at the top of our game, and we are aware that these last shows are the way people will remember us, so each show is very important to us. We put everything into our performances, and that is very important to us, to be the best we can be for our fans.”
SABBATH will bring its storied career to a close in its native England, with seven shows booked there in January and February. The last two, on February 2 and February 4, will take place in SABBATH‘s hometown of Birmingham and will likely be their final shows.
“It will be bittersweet,” Geezer said about the band’s final shows. “It has been a great achievement lasting so long and still being relevant — it’s something to be proud of, but my life will be very empty without the band. I hope our music will be around for a very long time after we’ve gone.”
BLACK SABBATH will play its last show ever in the U.S. on November 12 at AT&T Center in San Antonio, Texas. The gig will take place nearly five years to the day that the legendary act announced their reunion.
The original lineup of SABBATH came together in 1969 with Ozzy Osbourne on vocals, Tony Iommi on guitar, Butler on bass and Bill Ward on drums. That lineup recorded and toured through 1978, and periodically reformed through the ’90s and 2000s for live work.
They regrouped again in late 2011 for a new album and tour, although Ward dropped out after just a few months. The remaining trio issued the ’13’ album in 2013 and backed it with a successful world tour — despite Iommi being treated for lymphoma since 2012.