As Classic Rock Magazine notes, Black Sabbath guitarist Tony Iommi has been talking to WWeek about the possibility of Cream drummer Ginger Baker joining Black Sabbath. While producer Rick Rubi reportedly put the name forward as a replacement for Bill Ward, the band didn't think that he would have worked out:
"We put a stop on. We didn't think Ginger would have been ... we didn't want to go into the studio and have, um, problems."
The band ultimately went with Rage Against the Machine drummer Brad Wilk. As Iommi notes, it took Wilk a while to adjust to Sabbath's prankster nature:
"We did try some big name drummers some very big name drummers. They were great, but Rick particularly suggested Brad. He did work hard; he was thrown into the deep end and he was very nervous. He got used to us, our jokes, the way we prank around."
Emmerson, Lake and Palmer and Asia sticksman Carl Palmer recently revealed he was consulted about playing with Sabbath, but had to turn it down.
And while bassist Geezer Butler believes the band could be playing their final tour, Iommi hasn't given up hope on another record. "It all depends on my health but I don't think it would be hard to do," he says. "I've got plenty of ideas and stuff, but we'll have to see what happens after the tour."
Meanwhile, big-name drummer Mike Portnoy has claimed Sabbath's current incarnation shouldn't be regarded as a reunion.
He tells Energize With Lonn Friend: "I have no issue if Bill Ward is not fit to plat, as they're saying. I have no issue if they're having problems and couldn't agree on something that was fair.
"My issue is that they're calling it a Black Sabbath reunion. It's not without the four of them it's now just the latest Black Sabbath lineup.
"Why is this Black Sabbath, but "Heaven and Hell" wasn't Black Sabbath? If they need to do it without Bill, don't call it a reunion."