‘My name is Rob Horrocks. I have lived close to Aston for nearly 20 years. I developed Crossroads of Sabbath over two years by testing it on friends when they visited me from other cities. I recently teamed up with Ben Waddington who has been running walking tours of Birmingham for many years to fine tune my efforts.
‘The Crossroads of Sabbath walking tour is an opportunity to walk in the footsteps of Ozzy, Geezer, Tony and Bill and learn about the environment that shaped them. The tour lasts approximately 90 minutes. The route has been programmed to finish at one of the finest pubs in the country where excellent ales and Thai food might tempt you.
‘Black Sabbath are unique. No other Rock N Roll Hall of Fame inductee can make the claim that all its original members grew up is such close proximity to each other. And no other Rock N Roll Hall of Fame inductee is as widely acknowledged by peers, critics and fans as having given birth to a genre that is still as relevant, vibrant and global in its reach as Heavy Metal is to this day.
‘The route stops at 15 locations. You will pass the schools, homes, rehearsal spaces and hangouts of band members and hear stories associated with them. The commentary at each location recounts some of the popular tales about the band and their time growing up in the area. The narration has been developed using local history sources with the intention of presenting a fuller picture of life in the area during the period when our heroes roamed its streets.
‘Much has been made of the influence of the band’s environment on the sounds they made when they first entered a rehearsal room together. On the Crossroads of Sabbath tour you see this environment and learn about it during the period when the Sabbs called it home. The tour ends at a pub they frequented which is just across the road from the room where they first played together.’ — RH
‘The Crossroads of Sabbath booklet is an A5, 20 page, two colour publication produced to accompany the tour. It includes a map of the route and summarises the commentaries from the tour locations. A copy of the booklet is given to everyone who takes part in the tour. The text has been written assuming that readers have a background knowledge of the Black Sabbath story as it has been told in the various biographies, autobiographies and documentary films. Primary sources such as old maps and newspaper clippings are reproduced to present a history of the area as well as of the band. The booklet may be of interest to people who grew up in the area it focuses on.mThe booklet will not be made available to download. The first edition is of 200 copies. You may buy a copy of the booklet on this page.’ — RH
7 + 11 = 18
Black Sabbath’s Birmingham by bus …
The very same bus routes that our heroes would have used as they went to work, went to drink, went on to define themselves, and ultimately – you. Join together – on the top deck.
A journey north from New Street Station to the location of Tony Iommi’s birth.
Love, Life, Loss and LOUD … on a round trip from New Street Staion, through The People’s Republic Of Digbeth and back.
CANALs, CuLTURE, SLeAZE … AND THE BEST RECORD SHOP IN THE WORLD – via the Ozzy Osbourne and Black Sabbath stories that were played out on those ancient street during the 1960s. To be experienced on a full moon. Bring ear plugs.
“To cheer things up a bit, I went out one night with an aerosol can – I’d had a few beers – and did some ‘decorating’. One of the things I graffitied on a wall by a roundabout was ‘Iron Void’. F**k knows what was going on in my head.” Page 64 – I Am Ozzy (2009)
I know where it will start. I know where it will end. But what happens in between is not up to me.
Meet after dark on the full moon at The Black Eagle, Factory Road, Hockley.
A fun general knowledge (popular culture, national/global events) quiz with questions focusing on the period 1948-1970 when the lads were growing up in Aston. You don’t need to be a Black Sabbath expert to enjoy it. And it will be fun. The questions will be road tested at a ‘warm up gig’ (Secret Sabbathology) and with a few exceptions to make it competitive, have been written with a view to raising some smiles.
Friday 19th February (Tony Iommi’s birthday)
The Heart, 28 Grange Road, Aston, B6 6LA.
8 – 11.20pm.
CROSSROADS OF SABBATH IS NOT…
‘About the music heritage attractions of Birmingham city centre or the areas of the city not mentioned in the tour description.
‘An opportunity to spend time inside Ozzy Osbourne’s childhood home or inside any of the other locations visited… except the pub! And what a fine pub it is!
‘Available in any language other than English unless by prior arrangement. Contact me before you make a booking and we’ll work something out!
‘Formally: aligned with, authorised by, a partner of, endorsed by, funded or approved by any other organisation, public or private company, group or charity – yet.
‘Conceived with toddlers in mind. One five year old boy did enjoy it recently but I think his dad wished he’d brought a push chair.’ — RH
Crossroads of Sabbath, in partnership with Newtown Community Centre presents…
OZZY ZIG, THE WITCH & THE WARPIG
A three-act vinyl playback performance
Act One – Ozzy Zig
From Robert Johnson’s Clarksdale, Mississippi crossroads through the Blackboard Jungle and into Brum Beat, pantomime flower power and the rock routes that converge at Crossroads of Sabbath.
Act Two – The Witch
Black Sabbath by Black Sabbath, featuring Black Sabbath, in a room where Black Sabbath rehearsed and honed Black Sabbath and the rest of the tracks on Black Sabbath, from which they sighted the location that inspired the name Black Sabbath.
Act Three – The Warpig
From the bringer of war via a ride with the Valkyries to the number one album that 45 since its release has provided the raw material for every subsequent record that claims the name heavy metal. War Pigs, Paranoid, Iron Man and the rest, played loud, from records.
Sunday 20th September 2015
Newtown Community Centre, Birmingham.
The Witch & The Warpig – Sold Out Message
Ozzy Zig, the Witch and the Warpig – Act One – intro monologue
Ozzy Zig, the Witch and the Warpig – Act One
Ozzy Zig, the Witch and the Warpig – Act Three
Ozzy Zig, the Witch and the Warpig – Act 3 – Murderers
Ozzy Zig, the Witch and the Warpig – closing monologue
Ozzy Zig, the Witch and the Warpig – Act 3 – 100th Red Balloon
LET’S WALK WITH SABBATH …. ?
HAVE YOU BEEN TO SABBEY ROAD …. ?
MESSAGE FROM TWENTY TEWNTY
BLACK SABBATH – “Paranoid” on Top of the Pops 1970
BLACK SABBATH – “War Pigs” (Live Video)
BLACK SABBATH – “Iron Man” & “Black Sabbath” (Live Video)
BLACK SABBATH – “Snowblind” (Live Video)
BLACK SABBATH – “N.I.B.” (Live Video)
p.s. Hey. ** Dominik, Hi!!! Cool, yeah, Jack’s book is killer. Oh, you really were offered that pig tooth thing. Yikes! My weekend wasn’t a whole lot. My understanding is that I’m no safer after 1 shot than I was before, so I’m just behaving like I did before the vax started its trip. Plus I’m feeling kind of strange and dizzy the last couple of days for some reason, so fun isn’t so present. Franklin the Turtle, ha ha. Nice. Love playing pin the tail on the donkey but using the President of Hungary instead of a donkey and with a thallium soaked pin, G. ** Misanthrope, Helluva weekend you had there. Here’s hoping against hope re: David and his bff new phone. I wonder if I would care if they built a Walmart next to my old family home. Well, they wouldn’t because it’s a swanky neighbourhood, but if they did … I think I would think that was merely interesting. Rigby might stay with your family?! That’s a curious thing to imagine. Maybe he can talk some sense into the boy. ** David Ehrenstein, Hi. Well, it’s much more about Wilson than Manson if that helps. ** Tosh Berman, Hi, T. Oh, yeah, the Wilsons were a big mess. ** Bill, Hi. Is that Nam June Paik show a retrospective? That would be awfully nice to see. Envy. I have no idea what the museums will have up for the reopening. I suppose they know. ** Steve Erickson, That Beach Boys Manson cover ‘Never Learn Not to Love’ is fantastic, even with its evil edited down. Everyone, Mr. Erickson has written about the first four films he has seen at Lincoln Center’s and MOMA’s New Directors/New Films’ 2021 edition exactly here. ** Derek McCormack, Hi, Derek! How are you, how are you? I haven’t seen you on Facebook in ages. Have you bailed? Miss you! ** Brendan, Hi, B. Relearning life. It does sound exciting, though. I get the feeling Parisians are just going to slip back into the old ways without even thinking, but we never fully abandoned the old ways. Dodger game! Yip, yip! ** Okay. Here’s a very old and charming restored post by someone who called himself Peter Bloody Peter. Take a stroll, please, thank you, and see you tomorrow.