The Wizard (Black Sabbath song)

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"The Wizard"
Paranoid and The Wizard Dutch picture sleeve.png
Cover artwork for the single, as used in the Netherlands
Single by Black Sabbath
from the album Black Sabbath
A-side "Paranoid"
Released13 February 1970 (1970-02-13)
Genre Hard rock, blues rock [1]
Length
  • 4:24 (album version)
  • 4:46 (studio outtake)
Label
Songwriter(s)
Producer(s) Rodger Bain
Black Sabbath singles chronology
"Evil Woman"
(1970)
"The Wizard"
(1970)
"Paranoid"
(1970)
Audio sample

"The Wizard" is a song by the British hard rock band Black Sabbath, taken from their 1970 album Black Sabbath . It is the second track on the record. The song was composed by all four members of the group and was produced by Rodger Bain. "The Wizard" was the B-side to the title track of the band's second album Paranoid .

Hard rock is a loosely defined subgenre of rock music that began in the mid-1960s, with the garage, psychedelic and blues rock movements. It is typified by a heavy use of aggressive vocals, distorted electric guitars, bass guitar, drums, and often accompanied with keyboards.

Black Sabbath British heavy metal band

Black Sabbath were an English rock band, formed in Birmingham in 1968, by guitarist and main songwriter Tony Iommi, drummer Bill Ward, bassist and main lyricist Geezer Butler and singer Ozzy Osbourne. Black Sabbath are often cited as pioneers of heavy metal music. The band helped define the genre with releases such as Black Sabbath (1970), Paranoid (1970), and Master of Reality (1971). The band had multiple line-up changes, with Iommi being the only constant member throughout its history.

<i>Black Sabbath</i> (album) 1970 studio album by Black Sabbath

Black Sabbath is the debut studio album by the English rock band Black Sabbath. Released on 13 February 1970 in the United Kingdom and on 1 June 1970 in the United States, the album reached number eight on the UK Albums Charts and number 23 on the Billboard charts. Black Sabbath is widely considered the first heavy metal album. Additionally, the opening track of the album—Black Sabbath—is widely considered to be the first doom metal song.

Contents

Information

"The Wizard" is about a wizard who uses his magic to encourage people he encounters. In a 2005 interview with Metal Sludge, Black Sabbath bassist and lyricist Geezer Butler said the song's lyrics were influenced by the wizard Gandalf from The Lord of the Rings . [2] It was also believed to be about the band's drug dealer at the time.[ citation needed ]

Geezer Butler English musician, bassist and lyricist of Black Sabbath

Terence Michael Joseph "Geezer" Butler is an English musician and songwriter. Butler is best known as the bassist and primary lyricist of the heavy metal band Black Sabbath. He has also recorded and performed with Heaven & Hell, GZR, and Ozzy Osbourne. He currently serves as bassist of Deadland Ritual.

Gandalf is a fictional character and a protagonist in J. R. R. Tolkien's novels The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings. He is a wizard, member of the Istari order, as well as leader of the Fellowship of the Ring and the army of the West. In The Lord of the Rings, he is initially known as Gandalf the Grey, but returns from death as Gandalf the White.

<i>The Lord of the Rings</i> 1954–1955 fantasy novel by J. R. R. Tolkien

The Lord of the Rings is an epic high fantasy novel written by English author and scholar J. R. R. Tolkien. The story began as a sequel to Tolkien's 1937 fantasy novel The Hobbit, but eventually developed into a much larger work. Written in stages between 1937 and 1949, The Lord of the Rings is one of the best-selling novels ever written, with over 150 million copies sold.

Personnel

Ozzy Osbourne English heavy metal vocalist and songwriter

John Michael "Ozzy" Osbourne is an English singer, songwriter, actor and reality television star who rose to prominence during the 1970s as the lead vocalist of the heavy metal band Black Sabbath, during which he adopted the nickname "The Prince of Darkness". Osbourne was fired from the band in 1979 due to alcohol and drug problems, but went on to have a successful solo career, releasing eleven studio albums, the first seven of which were all awarded multi-platinum certifications in the United States. Osbourne has since reunited with Black Sabbath on several occasions. He rejoined the band in 1997 and recorded the group’s final studio album 13 (2013) before they embarked on a farewell tour which culminated in a final performance in their home city Birmingham, England in February 2017. His longevity and success have earned him the informal title of "Godfather of Heavy Metal".

Singing act of producing musical sounds with the voice

Singing is the act of producing musical sounds with the voice and augments regular speech by the use of sustained tonality, rhythm, and a variety of vocal techniques. A person who sings is called a singer or vocalist. Singers perform music that can be sung with or without accompaniment by musical instruments. Singing is often done in an ensemble of musicians, such as a choir of singers or a band of instrumentalists. Singers may perform as soloists or accompanied by anything from a single instrument up to a symphony orchestra or big band. Different singing styles include art music such as opera and Chinese opera, Indian music and religious music styles such as gospel, traditional music styles, world music, jazz, blues, gazal and popular music styles such as pop, rock, electronic dance music and filmi.

Harmonica free reed wind instrument

The harmonica, also known as a French harp or mouth organ, is a free reed wind instrument used worldwide in many musical genres, notably in blues, American folk music, classical music, jazz, country, rock. There are many types of harmonica, including diatonic, chromatic, tremolo, octave, orchestral, and bass versions. A harmonica is played by using the mouth to direct air into or out of one or more holes along a mouthpiece. Behind each hole is a chamber containing at least one reed. A harmonica reed is a flat elongated spring typically made of brass, stainless steel, or bronze, which is secured at one end over a slot that serves as an airway. When the free end is made to vibrate by the player's air, it alternately blocks and unblocks the airway to produce sound.

Covers

The song was covered by Bullring Brummies for the Black Sabbath tribute album Nativity in Black.. [4]

The song was covered by Zakk Wylde's band Pride and Glory on the second disc of the reissue of Pride and Glory . Wylde had also been a member of Ozzy Osbourne's solo band at the time.

Zakk Wylde American musician

Zachary Phillip Wylde is an American musician, singer, songwriter, and occasional actor, best known as Ozzy Osbourne's lead guitarist and as the founder of the heavy metal band Black Label Society. His signature bulls-eye design appears on many of his guitars and is widely recognized. He was the lead guitarist and vocalist in Pride & Glory, who released one self-titled album in 1994 before disbanding. As a solo artist he released Book of Shadows and Book of Shadows II.

Pride and Glory (band) American band

Pride and Glory was a side project for Black Label Society guitarist Zakk Wylde. This was Wylde's first self-fronted project, before releasing his first solo-album, Book of Shadows, in 1996. After that he formed Black Label Society in 1998, which remains his current band.

<i>Pride and Glory</i> (album) 1994 studio album by Pride & Glory

Pride and Glory is Zakk Wylde's first self-fronted album. It has more of a Southern rock sound than Zakk Wylde's other albums incorporating the likes of banjo, harmonica and mandolin.

The song was sampled on Fatboy Slim's "The Weekend Starts Here", from his 1996 album Better Living Through Chemistry.

Fatboy Slim British DJ, musician, and record producer

Norman Cook, known by his stage name Fatboy Slim, is an English DJ, musician, and record producer who helped to popularise the big beat genre in the 1990s. In the 1980s, Cook was the bassist for the Hull-based indie rock band the Housemartins, who achieved a UK number-one single with their a cappella cover of "Caravan of Love". After the Housemartins split, Norman Cook formed the electronic band Beats International in Brighton, who produced the number-one single "Dub Be Good to Me". Cook joined acts including Freak Power, Pizzaman, and the Mighty Dub Katz to moderate success.

The phrase "Better Living Through Chemistry" is a variant of a DuPont advertising slogan, "Better Things for Better Living...Through Chemistry." DuPont adopted it in 1935 and it was their slogan until 1982 when the "Through Chemistry" part was dropped. Since 1999, their slogan has been "The miracles of science".

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References

  1. Grow, Kory (18 August 2016). "See Revealing, Lost Black Sabbath Items From UK Auction". Rolling Stone . Retrieved 9 August 2018.
  2. "Black Sabbath (album) review". Metal Sludge .
  3. "Black Sabbath (album) review". Rolling Stone .
  4. Parisien, Roch, Nativity in BlackReview, Allmusic , retrieved 15 July 2011