Topic: Single greatest individual contributor to Heavy Metal
Published: Monday, August 22, 2005"To you, who is the single greatest individual contributor to Heavy Metal
over the last 30 years—can be based on output, skill, influence, etc.--and why?"
Tim 'Ripper' Owens - www.timowens.com
[Other Maximum Metal Columns]
Metallica...Because they were Heavy Metal and made it at the time when there was nothing
commercial about them!
Rob Rock - www.robrock.com
If you want to talk about a popularity vote, I'd have to say Ozzy Osborne, because of his
TV show, because of the success of Ozzfest. Obviously his albums, along with Black Sabbath
and Randy Rhoads and all the rest. The Godfather of metal, in a public sense, I would say.
But the biggest contributors to metal, I think you'd have to start mentioning bands like
Zeppelin and Queen. These bands not only influenced metal, but they've also crossed over
into pop radio and stuff. It's hard to tell where a band's influence begins and ends, but
as far as publicity, the publicity train belongs to Ozzy!
Martin Popoff - AUTHOR - www.martinpopoff.com
The answer is Tony Iommi, the music writer of the band who invented heavy metal. Sabbath,
of course, was the dominant force in the invention of the genre as a whole, but also more
specifically had a huge hand in movements such as stoner rock and doom, not to mention
grunge, black metal and death metal, and... yes... nu-metal. I mean, just listen to the
riffing and the crooning and the down-tuning... Sabbath is in all that. Plus Tony had a
commercially successful and thus influential run with Dio (influencing power metal along
the way), and then lots of records with Tony Martin. Capping it off, he's been productive
in the '90s and '00s through more recordings and more so, in bringing metal to large
crowds through Ozzfest. Boring, predictable answer, but the only one possible.
Joe Stump - www.joestump.com
For me the answer guitar-wise is Ritchie Blackmore. Just about all of the guitar driven
European power metal is in some way influenced by his playing, composing and riffs. He was
the first one to combine killer hard rock riffs and classical music, a blueprint that
would be followed for generations to come. And his work in both Purple and Rainbow had and
continue to have a huge impact on almost any form of classically influenced European style
metal. Along with Tony Iommi he wrote the book. Just about all forms of guitar driven
metal can be traced back to those two guys.
Krunt - TAD MOROSE - www.tadmorose.com
I think that Tony Iommi is by far the greatest individual contributor to Heavy Metal. He
had a huge impact on rock music. A pretty "obvious" choice I guess, but to me,
he invented Heavy Metal. I just wish that he would put out new material on a more regular
Brian Keene--AUTHOR (The Rising, City of the Dead, and Terminal) -
Ozzy Osbourne. He is our Elvis. (laughs). In all seriousness, Ozzy has never taken himself
too seriously, and is the master of reinventing himself to match the times, while
remaining true to himself--and his fans.
DM - THE MISSING: - www.themissing.com
Okay, so I'm gonna have to go with the big man himself: Ozzy Osbourne. For one, his early
work with Sabbath helped lay the groundwork for what would later become heavy metal; there
are so many metal bands today that still quote Sabbath as their biggest influence. Two,
his solo career petty much defined the genre. And three, his Ozzfest tours have sort of
unified the scene: goth metal meets hardcore metal meets death metal meets old skool
metal. He helped reintroduce classic bands like Judas Priest to a whole new generation,
while also giving small, local bands the chance to play alongside legends. I mean, do you
know how good it looks on your musical resume to say that you played Ozzfest? So yeah,
that's my two cents. Ozzy rules!
JK - TYPE O NEGATIVE, DANZIG
For me, its Jimmy Page of Led Zeppelin. He was an incredible guitar player and is
considered one of the founding fathers of heavy metal. The spin that Zeppelin put on the
blues is still making an impact for almost 40 years. Musically, he incorporated many
different types of music that was widely accepted by hard rock fans. He didnt just
find his niche and stick with it. He continually expanded his horizons into different
territory. Zeppelin was able to play many different styles of music yet still be regarded
as Heavy Metal. I wouldnt exactly consider a song like The Battle of Evermore heavy
metal but they could pull it off and it was on a record that had other songs on it such as
Black Dog and Stairway to Heaven that would definitely be considered metal. Jimmy
Pages contributions didnt end with his guitar playing and songwriting. He was
an incredible producer having produced all of Led Zeppelins records. On the business
side of things, Zeppelin changed the way bands would do business with promoters and record
companies. Absolutely unheard of at the time, Jimmy Page was the first to receive a cash
advance from a record company for a record. Zeppelin turned around the practice of
promoters paying the band a smaller fee for a performance and the keeping all the money
for themselves. They told promoters and agents that they would pay them a percentage rate
for a performance and the band would be keeping the rest of the guarantee. 10% of a
Zeppelin show was better than nothing. These practices are commonplace now and Zeppelin
was the first to do these things. I think that Zeppelin brought metal into the spotlight.
They were playing some of the heaviest music and filling stadiums around the globe with
dynamics and intensity that has still, yet to be replicated and still influencing,
Henny Wolter - DONNERKOPF, THUNDERHEAD, SINNER, PRIMAL FEAR - www.donnerkopf.de
I didn´t take too long to decide: To me, Lemmy Killminster of Motörhead is the one of a
kind, reptile, can´t be killed, rock´n roll monster that you are looking for with this
question. I´m not even sure if he considers himself metal. Rather Rock´n Roll. But this
guy is surely true and at whatever he has done these past decades.
Marc Storace - KROKUS - www.krokusonline.com
"Not an easy question, but I think Judas Priest are one of the very influential bands
and Rob Halford's solo albums came out when there wasn't much happening, keeping the
pioneering spirit goin' on."
Martin Sigtyr - EXMORTEM - www.exmortem.com
Thats a tough fucking question! I could say Iommi for being the man behind those
groundbreaking Black Sabbath Riffs. I could say Kerry King for being the evil metal troll
that he is. I could say Lemmy for being drunk the last 30 years, but in the end of the
day, Ill have to say Trey A., simply because that Morbid Angel has been among my
favourites for the last 15 years or so!
Chris Caffery - SAVATAGE - www.chriscaffery.com
This question is simple...however it is an individual band and its members. Black Sabbath
- Not only was Black Sabbath the first heavy metal band in every sense...lyrics, name,
music, LP covers, look, attitude....Black Sabbath the song was the first heavy metal
song....the thunder, the drama, the sense of evil and mystery. Consistently the band has
contributed more "Classic" CD's throughout a muti-decade span. No matter what
formation. Just about every CD can be considered a classic. From the very first til some
of the most recent. "Sabotage", "Paranoid", "Masters of
Reality","Black Sabbath", "Heaven and Hell", "Mob
Rules", "Born Again", "Eternal Idol", "Headless Cross",
"Tyr"...just about everything the band ever did. I consider Tony Iommi the
single most influential "Heavy Metal" guitarist. This goes beyond skill, he is
the greatest metal riff writer. Even ones who came close were a birthchild of him.
However, you cannot disconnect Ozzy from this...as a solo artist he became just as
powerful and in time more-so than the sum of the whole band. Why? His is heavy metal, he
lives it, breathes it...even in the simple sense of watching his family life there is
something very "Metal" about Ozzy. The first "Metal" frontman ever.
Geezer Butler was an amazing lyricist...wrote a lot of the Sabbath stuff. War influenced
and fantasy influenced lyrics. The rhythm section of Ward and Butler laid down beats that
have been imitated more times than you can mention in your present day. The songs and
riffs have iinfluenced more bands directly than all other heavy metal bands combined. Even
when Ozzy was fired, the soul of the band remained and left "Heaven and Hell"
and "Mob Rules". Two CD's that never get too far from top 10 in anyone's all
time favorite list. Identically "Blizzard of Oz" and "Diary of a
Madman" do not either. I sign of just how strong the forces and spirit of Black
Sabbath were at this time. Randy Rhoads is a direct piece of the circle of sound and cycle
of influence that has moved on into Zakk Wylde and continues to influence millions....but
however were all a direct influence of the first time we all heard these classic seven
words..."What is this that stands before me?" Very simple, Black Sabbath...the
single greatest contributor to Heavy Metal.
John K. - BIOMECHANICAL - www.biomechanical.co.uk
Even though this is an extremely difficult question I'll answer from a singer's point of
view. I think it would have to be Bruce Dickinson. Top vocals, awesome writer and has
influenced shitloads of singers!!
Joakim Brodén - SABATON - www.sabaton.net
Without a doubt Tony Iommi of Black Sabbath. The man wrote the book on how metal should
sound, and right beside him stands Ritchie Blackmore who wrote the book of hard rock. In
my opinion it's on the earliest Sabbath albums you can hear the first traces of heavy
metal, hell... the man invented metal with his kickass riffs.
Gordon Tittsworth - IMAGES OF EDEN - www.imagesofeden.com
In my opinion, the single greatest individual contributor to Heavy Metal over the last 30
years would be Ozzy Osbourne, for several reasons...
- In 1969, Heavy Metal was born with the release of Black Sabbath I. The first
"true" metal album. Over the years, the band would expand and perfect the genre.
Ozzy and Sabbath defined the sound of metal as well as its image of evil and doom.
- After leaving Sabbath, he had a very monumental solo career and co-wrote landmark albums
with some of the metal's greatest guitarists (Randy Rhoads, Zakk Wylde).
- His longevity outlasted anyone in the genre. It's been 36 years since metal's first
album and he is still going strong with Ozzfest. He is the Grandfather of Metal and no one
can deny that. Every metal musician/ fan was influenced by Ozzy and/or Black Sabbath in
some way, shape or form. Without Ozzy, metal as we know it would not exist... or would at
least be very different than what we all know and love.
Benjamin Niebla II - DESERT ROCK PROMOTIONS - www.desertrockpromotions.tk
MAGIC CIRCLE MUSIC management / A&R consultant - www.magiccirclemusic.com
Without a doubt, it would have to be Joey DeMaio (MANOWAR bassist and
founder of MAGIC CIRCLE MUSIC). He is the one musician that has NEVER bucked to any of the
flavor of the day musical trends. He has stood on his own pedestal and carved his own
piece in the metal music history books, while people periodically talk shit many times
about him or MANOWAR because of his peculiar look at life in general and his grand
standing persona. You have to give major credit to the man for single handedly carrying
the heavy metal torch. In addition, he is the one person whom I have personally worked
with and has put his money where his mouth is by supporting the world-wide metal scene via
his record label MAGIC CIRCLE MUSIC. Simply the best label that I have ever worked with.
Totally fuckin PRO.
Marco - HIBRIA - www.hibria.com
I could think at least in 5 different guys, but if I have to pick only one, my choice
would be Lars Ulrich...The music when they were a "Bay Area" band was just
killer with KiIl ´em All...With Master of Puppets they brought the band and Metal to a
totally new thing. With the Black Album they have made Metal popular all around the world.
As the Rock band they are now, they also keep conquering younger fans... For sure Lars is
not the sole responsible, but as a drummer he also has been, since the early begining, a
top technical drummer with very incredible musicianship. His prformance on stage is just
great even playing an instrument which demands to be sat all the time...Besides that, to
conduct a band for so many years and still conquering new fans is not for anyone...Due to
the sum of qualities above, I salute Lars!!!
Sole Genúa - HUMAN FACTOR
We consider Steve Harris asis one of the most important contributors to theHeavy Metal
scene, because if you ask anybody about Heavy Metal the answer is "Iron Maiden"!
Jim Springer - SPELLBINDER
Yngwie Malmsteen, his combination of classical and metal guitar with that speed is
King Fowley - OCTOBER 31, DECEASED - www.upthetombstones.com
"Steve Harris! He's never changed for the "moment" and he's always stayed
the same in spirit as well as dedication. He is metal 100%".
Tony McBrayer - LOW EARTH ORBIT - www.lowearthorbit.net
Man, That's a tough question!! There are so many. For my money I think that
"Lemmy" & Motorhead would be hard pressed to beat. I know that a lot of
people may disagree with me on that but, damn!! That those guys have been doin it for
thirty years and he was with "Hawkwind" before that!! He was a roadie for
"Jimi".Lemmy is "GOD" and that's all there is!!! I just wish that , no
I think that he should have gotten the Grammy years ago for the "Aces of Spades"
it was revolutionary in my opinion. Even to this day I can plug it in and it still sounds
fresh to me...you know real edge of the knife kinda thing. To me it was what Metal was all
about. Don't get me wrong , there are a lot of bands/artists out there who influenced me a
lot more musically. But, none of them paved the road like Motorhead. You know even today
you see the "punks" with Motorhead t-shirts and the rocker's and the 'heads as
well ,they all love Motorhead!! As do we all....in some form or fashion. The ones that
don't are the ones dressing like Motorhead , playing like Motorhead .... and they think it
is because of some band from 5 years ago. It's real funny because Motorhead/Lemmy still
affect the status quo in Rock/Metal as if they just arrived ..... it's now like 3rd
generation and the kids don't even know were it came from sometimes. It's crazy!! They
will always be underground till the end and really I believe that Lemmy wouldn't have it
any other way and to me that says it all!!! Godspeed to Lemmy & the boys....may they
keep on doin' it till they die!!!! LEMMY FOR PRESIDENT 2008!!!
Ozzy Osbourne - 5
Tony Iommi - 3
Steve Harris - 2
Lemmy - 2
Rob Halford - 1
Jimmy Page - 1
Ritchie Blackmore - 1
Bruce Dickinson - 1
Joey DeMaio - 1
Lars Ulrich - 1
Yngwie Malmsteen - 1
Trey A. - 1
Metallica - 1
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