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Former Assistant To Ozzy To Discuss 1979 Sabbath Split (6/12/2006)

DAVE TANGYE may not look like a wild man of rock. But this mild-mannered Cockermouth chap has seen some of the most outrageous goings on imaginable, and now he’s about to tell the world about his life with legendary rock star Ozzy Osbourne.

Dave, who is originally from Cleator Moor, was a roadie for heavy metal band Black Sabbath when Osbourne was their singer. He then became Osbourne’s personal assistant, even sharing his house for a couple of years.

And Monday night Dave will appear in a new BBC1 series to explain how Osbourne and Black Sabbath parted company.

The series – You Can't Fire Me, I’m Famous – looks at well-known people who have been sacked.

The programme is presented by former Daily Mirror editor Piers Morgan; a man who knows a thing or two about being given the boot.

Dave Tangye was invited to contribute after the producers read How Black Was Our Sabbath; the unofficial biography of the band which he wrote with fellow roadie Graham Wright.

Dave told Reiver: “Graham Wright and I went down to London two months ago to record for the show. We were interviewed for about an hour and a half regarding Ozzy’s dismissal from Black Sabbath back in 1979.

“It wasn’t a sacking as such. It was a failure to agree on a lot of things. There was a lot of drink and drugs going on but it was mainly musical differences. Guitarist Tony Iommi wanted to use keyboards and Ozzy was more for the old style.”

Dave joined Sabbath’s road crew in 1975. He travelled the world with the band and got to know Ozzy Osbourne better than most. “He used to shave people’s eyebrows when they fell asleep. I always made sure I stayed awake.

“Once we were staying in a hotel in America and the room was right above a river.

“At night Ozzy got some fishing gear and put the TV on the window sill with the brightness turned right up to attract the fish. Suddenly the TV disappeared, and exploded when it hit the water.”

These days Ozzy Osbourne is best known to millions as the star of reality TV show The Osbournes. But his musical life was shaped in Cumbria.

The four members of Black Sabbath were from Birmingham but their story started in Carlisle in the late Sixties with a band called Mythology.

Mythology became Earth, who made their debut at the Gretna Tavern, Carlisle, in 1968 and played in Cumbria many times.

The line-up was Ozzy Osbourne, Tony Iommi, Geezer Butler and Bill Ward, who went on to become the classic Black Sabbath.

When Osbourne left Black Sabbath, Dave became his personal assistant, living at his Staffordshire home. “Ozzy used to come and stay at my mam’s in Egremont – he used to love west Cumbria.

“He used to go in the pubs and clubs, like The Globe in Egremont. He was like the Pied Piper. He always had a crowd around him. We went to Cockermouth on market day, when the Rampant Bull would be open all day. We were going through the market and Ozzy was bidding on the sheep.”

You Can't Fire Me, I'm Famous is on BBC1 (TONIGHT!!!!) Monday at 10.45pm.


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