During an appearance on a recent episode of the “In The Trenches with Ryan Roxie” video podcast, legendary vocalist/bassist Glenn Hughes reflected on his time fronting BLACK SABBATH in the mid-1980s. Regarding how his collaboration with the Tony Iommi-led outfit came about, Glenn said (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): “Tony was going to make a solo album in 1985. Myself, my dear friend Ronnie James Dio and Rob Halford were all gonna sing a couple of songs each. I was the first guy to go down to Cherokee Studios in Hollywood to do a couple of songs with Tony. And I wrote and sang a couple of songs in the first night. And he asked me to come back the next day, and it kept going and going and going, and I ended up being the only singer on that solo album. On the last song, Don Arden — Sharon‘s [Osbourne] father — who was managing Tony at the time, suggested, with Warner Brothers, that we should call it ‘BLACK SABBATH featuring Tony Iommi.’ So it wasn’t a Tony Iommi album anymore; it was a BLACK SABBATH album called ‘Seventh Star’. It was a time for me where I was changing lifestyles, if you will. So it was a difficult time for me.”
Hughes added: “Being in BLACK SABBATH was not something I wanted to do. I was trying to help Tony out, doing his solo album. But I enjoyed working with Tony. I’ve made three albums with Tony now. So, long may that continue.”
Hughes previously discussed his SABBATH stint during a 2017 interview with Cat Unwrapped of the “Collision” radio show on Australia’s Voice FM. He stated about the experience: “It was a little different, because number one, some of those songs were not written for me, kind of, to sing in the way I sing. It was a very dramatic change for me to be in a band that had this huge fan base of really cult, kind of, you know, metal kind of, dark, kind of image. Let’s be clear, because Ozzy [Osbourne], Geezer [Butler], Tony and Bill Ward, like, were all my family — we all grew up together, so I know these guys personally, but their catalog is very dark and sinister, but they’re not, you know. And for me to wear that cloak and dagger, mystery thing, was a little bit strange for me.
“I really did enjoy making ‘Seventh Star’, and I made another album called ‘DEP Sessions’ with Tony, and [then] we did ‘Fused’, so I’ve done three records with Tony,” he continued. “But it was a little bit different for me singing in BLACK SABBATH. It wasn’t quite who I am. I’ve always liked a challenge, you know — I always like a challenge — but I think Ozzy‘s voice, and Ronnie Dio‘s voice, is perfect for that band, although I did enjoy working with those guys.”
Hughes confirmed in a 1995 interview that he got into a fistfight with BLACK SABBATH production manager John Downing four days before the start of the “Seventh Star” tour. The injuries he obtained affected his ability to perform live, and vocalist Ray Gillen was subsequently recruited to complete the tour.
Originally released in 1986, “Seventh Star” saw Iommi recruiting the skills of Dave “The Beast” Spitz and drummer Eric Singer (later of KISS) and for the first time the position of a keyboardist became a visible credit and long-serving back-room operator Geoff Nicholls was finally brought to the foreground as an official member. “Seventh Star” was somewhat of a departure from what was expected from the BLACK SABBATH name, and the songs on “Seventh Star” were more blues inclined and in the case of the single release “No Stranger To Love”, an altogether more radio-friendly breeze was adopted.
Hughes is currently a member of THE DEAD DAISIES. He is joined in the band’s lineup by Doug Aldrich (DIO, WHITESNAKE) on guitar, Tommy Clufetos (BLACK SABBATH, OZZY OSBOURNE) on drums and David Lowy (RED PHOENIX, MINK) on guitar.
THE DEAD DAISIES‘ latest album, “Holy Ground”, was released in January. Recorded at La Fabrique Studios in the south of France with producer Ben Grosse, the LP is the band’s first to feature Hughes, who joined the group in 2019 as its new bassist and vocalist, replacing John Corabi (MÖTLEY CRÜE) and Marco Mendoza (THIN LIZZY).
Photo credit: Oliver Halfin