Black Sabbath drummer says may pull out of reunion

Fri Feb 3, 2012 9:30am EST
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LONDON (Reuters) - Black Sabbath drummer Bill Ward has said he will not participate in the British heavy metal band's reunion recordings and tour unless he is offered a "signable" contract.

The statement on his website casts further doubt on the much-hyped return of the veteran rockers, who announced last November that the original line-up were getting back together to write and record their first album in more than 30 years.

They also unveiled plans for a world tour in 2012.

But last month, guitarist Tony Iommi was diagnosed with the early stages of lymphoma and, to accommodate his treatment, the band moved from the United States to Birmingham in Britain to continue writing and recording.

The founding members of the heavy metal pioneers were Ozzy Osbourne on vocals, Iommi, Geezer Butler on bass guitar and Ward.

"At this time, I would love nothing more than to be able to proceed with the Black Sabbath album and tour," Ward said on his website.

"However, I am unable to continue unless a 'signable' contract is drawn up; a contract that reflects some dignity and respect toward me as an original member of the band."

He said he worked with the other Black Sabbath members "in good faith" last year and agreed to appear alongside them at the November press conference in Los Angeles.

"Several days ago, after nearly a year of trying to negotiate, another 'unsignable' contract was handed to me."   Continued...

<p>Original members of the rock band Black Sabbath, Bill Ward (L), Ozzy Osborne (2nd L), Geezer Butler and Tony Lommi (R), announce their reunion during a news conference at the Whiskey A Go Go, the club where the band first performed 41 years ago, in Los Angeles, California November 11, 2011. REUTERS/David McNew</p>