Sadly, a good portion of our recent interview with Ozzy Osbourne won’t make it onto MainStreet.com. The man drops F-bombs approximately every 12 words. So we’ll just edit them out. Obscenity aside, Ozzy had plenty of interesting things to say about his reputation, the music business and, ahem, his bowels. He’s got a book coming out today called I Am Ozzy, which is why we were lucky enough to score 15 minutes on the phone with him -- living legend that he is
I wanted to start off by talking to Ozzy about his current public persona, compared to his image during his rock ‘n’ roll heyday with his band Black Sabbath and going solo thereafter. We write a lot about personal branding on MainStreet and it’s not a stretch to say that Ozzy has experienced a kind of PR metamorphosis. He went from being known as a kind of scary prince of darkness who bit the heads off bats and doves, to a kind of warm and fuzzy prince of darkness, fit for prime time TV (Ozzy, his wife and manager Sharon, and their two kids famously starred in the MTV reality show The Osbournes, one of the network’s biggest hits).
Ultimately, Ozzy rejects the notion that either his former or current public image is or was in any way scripted or contrived, and I believed him.
“What you get up from me is what I am,” he told me. “Believe me. My antics weren’t for anything but the antics. It wasn’t like I thought, ‘I’ll bite the heads off these things and then I’ll be on the front page tomorrow.’ If I had the trick of doing that I’d have made a zillion dollars.”