Longtime Ozzy Osbourne collaborator and guitarist Zakk Wylde has discussed the moment he first listened to Black Sabbath as a child, and jokingly claims that the discovery turned him into a “full-blown Satanist”.
Wylde, who was a Catholic schoolboy at the time, opens up about his entry into Sabbath worship in a new interview with Revolver, where he also talks about his contributions to Osbourne’s latest album, Patient Number 9.
Speaking of how he first came across the Prince Of Darkness’ music, Wylde says: “I remember being in art class. My one buddy Tommy — he must have been like 11 years old — he had a sculpture of a jawless skull, which is basically the Black Label skull now: Skully. It was a jawless skull with a lightning bolt going through it that said, ‘Black Sabbath 666.’
“Wow, what is that?” And he goes, ‘Oh, it’s just a rock band my older brother listens to.’ And I thought it looked so cool. I just wanted to figure out what it was. So, I was at the mall with my mother and my mom was like, ‘You can get a record.’ OK, so obviously, I ended up buying [1975 compilation] We Sold Our Soul for Rock ‘n’ Roll — but we know it’s a double album.”
“I had never heard a Sabbath song before in my life,” he continues. “So, I put the record on and I was beyond terrified the whole time I listened to the album. I was Catholic when I first put the needle down on it, and halfway through the second LP, I was a full-blown Satanist. And by the end of the album, I converted back to Catholicism just so I could thank God for creating Black Sabbath.”
In the same interview, Wylde enthuses over the significance of working on Osbourne’s recently-released, star-studded new album, Patient Number 9.
“If you would’ve told me when I was 15 years old to imagine someday I actually was on a record with Ozzy, Lord Iommi, Eric Clapton and Jeff Beck, forget about it,” he says. “It’s definitely beyond an honour to be on the record with all of them, and then playing guitar behind him, without a doubt, man.”
Ozzy Osbourne’s Patient Number 9 is out now.