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How Black Was Our Sabbath [Paperback]

Graham Wright
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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Book Description

March 4 2005

Black Sabbath are the ultimate heavy rock band. They have sold millions of albums worldwide, with ardent fans across the globe. Dave Tangye and Graham Wright were in the crew during the seventies, the band`s heyday, and have the stories to prove it. For the first time they cover in detail the early days of the group, including a certain gig in the Scottish borders, where they were almost beaten up by local farmers. As the Sabs rose to fame and notoriety, touring Europe, Australia and America, delighting fans and disgusting law-abiding members of the public, incidents of bad behaviour stack up alarmingly.

Full of new information, How Black Was Our Sabbath is a real Spinal Tap story, a warm, funny, poignant tribute to four mates from Birmingham who became the biggest heavy rock band in the world.



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Review

They were the first and ultimate heavy metal band. Their electrifying brand of hard rock and hell-raising behavior made them legends. Now, two of the band’s crew members look back fondly on life on the road with Black Sabbath.

About the Author

Dave Tangye was Ozzy’s assistant throughout the seventies, and Graham Wright was assistant to drummer Bill Ward.


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Customer Reviews

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Most helpful customer reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great view from the crew. April 11 2004
By mc vie
Format:Hardcover
This book is a most intriguing and fascinating insight into the world of rock music, a concise interpretation into one of the most sucessful and highly original bands on the planet today.
The book covers Black Sabbath from their inception in 1968 through to the departure of their lead singer Ozzy Osbourne in 1979.
The authors manage to cover in great detail the incarnation of Black Sabbath, their tours and recording sessions, at home and at play.
This book is unputdownable, The photographs (of which there are many) are incredibly candid, from the authors own private collection.
If you would like to re-visit this historic period in time, and also read some very funny stories.
I most certainly recommend.
Was this review helpful to you?
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars How Excellent Was This Book May 15 2004
Format:Hardcover
Fantastic view of the band as real people from the very beginnings before even the Polka Tulk Blues Band until the fateful year Ozzy Osbourne and Black Sabbath went their separate ways. Anecdotes abound! Some hilarious and some just plain strange. Another positive thing is the roadies that wrote it were straight forward and upfront about their role. They didn't try to overgrandize or endulge their egos at all. The facts are written as they are. And done quite nicely. A real blast from the past.
This book will give you a new appreciation for up and coming musicians to with the touring/recording stories from Earth/Black Sabbath's earliest days.
No matter how die hard you are there are things in this extremely well-written book you do not know.
5 stars only because there aren't 10.
Was this review helpful to you?
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic Black Sabbath History Book. Nov. 12 2007
Format:Hardcover
Unlike your last reviewer who seems to have wanted to read an fictional take on Black Sabbath; purely to satisfy his cravings for supercilious tales of debauchery, backstabbing, and gross indecency (does he know something that the authors don't??).

I have a totally different view on this book, the fact that it does cover quite succinctly the bands history, for the specific reason that it has corrected many mis-informed time line details of the bands rise to fame and notoriety.

This book goes farther than many other of the 'Rock Bios' that I have read recently, It never strays from the storyline for one, so you get a free flowing book that is a real pleasure to read.

Furthermore; the content is compiled from 100% genuine people who were with the band during the whole time from the beginning of the book right through to the last chapter. The writing is honest and frank, witty and humorous. The anecdotes are very funny and sometimes sad, but nevertheless a great insight into a great band.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Where's the "inside" dirt? Nov. 6 2007
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
The biggest selling point for me regarding this book was the fact that it was written by people very close to Sabbath. I expected a lot of 'insider' information and stories you wouldn't find anywhere else. There is a great deal of this type of thing contained in the book, but I have a strong feeling that the authors' closeness to the band is actually what prevented them from giving us the REAL insider 'dirt'. Being close friends of the band members means they have no interest in giving us a "warts and all" biography. They make no attempt to show the band members in any negative light, and fans of Black Sabbath know that there are certainly unflattering tales that could be told about the goings on in the band. This is a wonderful book that any Sabbath fan will enjoy, but it just feels like it could have contained so much more.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.3 out of 5 stars  15 reviews
26 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome book on the early Ozzy Sabbath years (and more) Nov. 29 2004
By Joseph Siegler - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
This is an absolutely wonderful book written by David Tangye & Graham Wright. There's been plenty of books on Black Sabbath before. Some good. Some not so good. This one falls in the category of being EXTREMELY GOOD. The difference between this book and the others on the Ozzy history of the band is the fact that this one was written by folks who were there. A lot of these things are written by people who retell stories, regurgitating things that are already out there. Not this one. David was Ozzy's personal assistant, and Graham was Bill Ward's assistant. So these stories are told from folks who lived them. There are some other stories by other folks who were involved with Sabbath directly as well.

This book goes into some areas of the band's history that have never been talked much about before. Specifically the days when they were known as Polka Tulk, as well as Earth. There's tons of stories about life on the road, the legendary "Satanist attacks Tony Iommi on stage with a knife" story, to one their hotel room doors being painted with a bloody red Cross, to the story about the band blowing out the candles of a group of Satanists in the hallway by singing "Happy Birthday" to 'em. There's other things, like Ozzy's first wife Thelma, and the kids Oz had with her. That's something that's almost never talked about. Graham tells stories about Bill's drive over the Australian Outback in 1974 for about 500 miles to avoid flying. And a few about how some vehicles ended up in swimming pools.

What's best about this book to me is that it's an easy free flowing style. I've read many books, and some are hard reads, but this was one that I could quite easily have read in one sitting, had I had that much time available when I read it. David & Graham are to be applauded for their work on the book, both in content and in style.

The only negative thing I have to say about it is that it's not the easiest book to get in the US. There's no direct US publisher that I'm aware of, and as such, it can be a bit expensive to get it here in the States. In fact, if you're in the US, it might be cheaper to buy it from the Amazon UK site. That issue aside, I feel it's well worth it due to the quality of the stories and the writing in the book. You can't go wrong reading this if you're a fan of Black Sabbath.

Joe Siegler

[...]
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars How Black Was Our Sabbath: An Unauthorized View From The Cre Sept. 14 2004
By SLEEPING VILLAGE - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
This is quite a fascinating book about Black Sabbath written from the insider view of two roadies.

Actually these two authors were more then just roadies for Black Sabbath, which is one reason

they are so knowledgeable on the subject.

This book is well written, enjoyable to read and I have to say I didn't find any mistakes.

The book covers Black Sabbath from the pre Sabbath days to shortly after Ozzy's leaving.

A much clearer picture of Black Sabbath is shown through this book, then most previous efforts.

This book also includes an additional 28 pages of photographs not counted throughout the book.

I generally say get every book about Sabbath you can but this one is at the top of the list.

If you are a fan of Black Sabbath or if you just like a good read then you must get this book.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars How Excellent Was This Book May 15 2004
By "sabbathology" - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Fantastic view of the band as real people from the very beginnings before even the Polka Tulk Blues Band until the fateful year Ozzy Osbourne and Black Sabbath went their separate ways. Anecdotes abound! Some hilarious and some just plain strange. Another positive thing is the roadies that wrote it were straight forward and upfront about their role. They didn't try to overgrandize or endulge their egos at all. The facts are written as they are. And done quite nicely. A real blast from the past.
This book will give you a new appreciation for up and coming musicians to with the touring/recording stories from Earth/Black Sabbath's earliest days.
No matter how die hard you are there are things in this extremely well-written book you do not know.
5 stars only because there aren't 10.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great view from the crew. April 11 2004
By mc vie - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
This book is a most intriguing and fascinating insight into the world of rock music, a concise interpretation into one of the most sucessful and highly original bands on the planet today.
The book covers Black Sabbath from their inception in 1968 through to the departure of their lead singer Ozzy Osbourne in 1979.
The authors manage to cover in great detail the incarnation of Black Sabbath, their tours and recording sessions, at home and at play.
This book is unputdownable, The photographs (of which there are many) are incredibly candid, from the authors own private collection.
If you would like to re-visit this historic period in time, and also read some very funny stories.
I most certainly recommend.
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Original Sabbath Fans rejoice! Nov. 1 2005
By M. Uuereb - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
I heard the hype, so I HAD to get this book. I will say that it lived up to most of the hype, but there were a few things I wished they would have gotten into more depth about and a few things left out, I think, to protect the band members. But, in all it was very well written and well researched. The very early years prior to the band being signed to a major record deal was well covered and the band's personal lives with fun to read about as well. I enjoyed reading it and I would read it again. Well done!
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