Where Did This Blog’s Name Come From?

If you asked 100 people who Black Sabbath’s singer was, most of them would say Ozzy Osbourne. That’s true, he was their singer… but he was only their first singer! In 1979, Black Sabbath fired Ozzy and continued on with other singers including Ronnie James Dio (Rainbow, Dio), Ian Gillan (Deep Purple), Ray Gillen (Badlands), Glenn Hughes (Trapeze, Deep Purple) and Tony Martin. The latter name is the one people generally know the least about, but was actually Sabbath’s singer for the longest amount of time, beating out Ozzy by a couple of years. I’ve always been very fond of Sabbath’s later years and actually prefer those albums!

In 1995, Black Sabbath was in talks with Ozzy about a reunion but there was a big problem – they were still obligated to release another album. They quickly threw together an album to get out of their contract with the IRS Records label. The album was titled Forbidden. This is by far Black Sabbath’s least critically acclaimed album and is generally panned by critics. It is certainly odd! Would you believe it actually features Ice T rapping on a song? Yep, this is the first and only case of a guest singer on a Black Sabbath album.

The best song on this album, by far, is the final track: Kiss of Death. This was a very strong way to finish off Sabbath’s studio catalogue and it indeed looked like it was going to be their final chapter until their reunions with Dio (as Heaven and Hell) and Ozzy.

Overall, I enjoy Forbidden… but we’re here to talk about the song that gave this blog its name.

This song starts out with a very repetitive riff in 4/3 time signature. Honestly, the vocal melody is a poor example of what Tony Martin can contribute as a singer. His vocals follow the melody of the guitar the same way Ozzy did in Sabbath’s classic songs N.I.B. and Iron Man, but the melody is far less catchy in this case. However, at 1:28 Tony Iommi plays a riff that’s much more appealing to the ear. As a matter of fact, I enjoyed this riff so much when I first heard it that I ripped it off in some of my earliest basement recordings.

I didn’t name this blog after the song’s guitar riffs though. When I decided to create this blog I didn’t spend much time brainstorming or wavering back and forth between several choices – this name came to me immediately and I stuck with it. In addition to the title, many of the lyrics apply to this topic.

Is life everything you want to be?
Does it give you everything that you need?
Does it live up to your expectations?
Are you ready for the celebrations?

This is not for the weak of mind,
Are you sure that you’re my kind,
Do you want to be part of me,
Are you sure that you can really see.

Are you chained to a life that you don’t want?
Is it hard for you to find a way out?
Can you live without the love that you need?
Are you sure that what you have is so real?

This is not for the weak of mind,
Are you sure that you’re my kind,
Do you want to be part of me,
Are you sure that you can really see.

All of your life, they try to take your cover,
Turn you into another, and make you change your name.
When you fall, it’s up to you to recover,
You can’t depend on another, to help you with the pain, yeah.

I’m shaking off the chains, I’m shaking off the chains.

This is not for the weak of mind,
Are you sure that you’re my kind,
Do you want to be part of me,
Are you sure that you can really see.

In the night, you say that are falling
People always calling, calling out your name.
What do you know, a face appears at the window,
Tapping on the window, the window of your soul.

I’m shaking off the chains,
I’m tired of all the pain.
I’m shaking off the chains,
Let me live again!

I’m Shaking off the Chains!

 

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