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Black Sabbath’s Guitarist Tony Iommi Wraps up Chemotherapy Treatments

Tony Iommi just completed his last chemotherapy treatment for lymphoma.
Tony Iommi just completed his last chemotherapy treatment for lymphoma.
Reuters News/Black Sabbath/Live Nation

By Paul Fitzgerald – Get ready Hamilton, ON, this Friday night at the First Ontario Credit Centre one of the world’s most popular heavy metal bands of all time will take to the stage and perform to an audience of over 15,000 people.

Yes, Black Sabbath is coming to town, and their North American tour is getting superb reviews. So, it’s going to be an electrifying night on many levels.

While the band has reunited and are now touring with their newly released Grammy-winning album, 13, keep in mind this just might be the last time you are going to ever see them together live. Let’s hope not though.

Only a week ago the band’s lead guitarist, Tony Iommi, completed his last chemotherapy treatment for lymphoma.

While the 66 year-old - one who has influenced many rock greats on the guitar – is back on the road, he is still cautious on saying he is cured for good.

“It's not too bad at the moment, dare I say,” Iommi, 66, says in his pleasant British accent in an interview with the Metroland Media and the Hamilton Spectator. “I'm bearing with it. I don't have any option so I just plod on. I finished the course of treatment last week. Now, I've just got to wait and see,”

When Iommi was diagnosed with cancer two years ago, many around him assumed right off the bat that we would pack in music, recording, and performing live, and focus mainly on getting better.

However, this rock star decided to up the ante and get back in the studio with his band mates and launch a worldwide tour like no other.

“I thought it was best for me to still focus on doing something as opposed to sitting at home moping about," he explains during his interview which has been published in local papers promoting the big show this Friday. “You can't help but worry about it. To me it meant that I was going to die. (At first), that's what I kept focusing on.”

“Then I realized I can't just sit here wondering how long I've got. It was great because the guys came to England and we worked in my studio here at home. They got my mind off it. They were keeping me occupied with jokes and things. They were caring and concerned for me. They were really supportive. I think it pulled us more together.”

Singer Ozzy Osbourne says that Iommi never let his treatments slow him down during the making of their new album and tour.

“My hat goes off to him 'cause he really is Iron Man," he says. "I mean, that chemotherapy knocks you sideways, you know. I mean, when my wife had cancer a few years back, she was having three chemo things a month and it would knock the life out of — literally every time she'd have a treatment, she'd have a seizure. It's scary stuff. But he came down, plugged in and carried on. He's my hero, I swear to God he is."

Set List for this Friday Night’s Show:
War Pigs
Into the Void
Under the Sun/Every Day Comes and Goes
Snowblind
Age of Reason
Black Sabbath
Behind the Wall of Sleep
N.I.B.
(Preceded by "Bassically" … more)
End of the Beginning
Fairies Wear Boots
Rat Salad
(with "Supernaut" instrumental and Drum Solo)
Iron Man
God Is Dead?
Dirty Women
Children of the Grave
Encore:
Paranoid