“Yeah, no, totally, I still talk to Oz,” he said. “No, no fallin' out or nothin'. No, we never got in any arguments ever. I mean, we were too busy dyin' of laughter. It was just like with Oz, ‘Zakk, I don't wanna be the lead singer in Black Label,' you know what I mean? I mean, if Randy Rhoads, if Saint Rhoads was still around, and if Randy was leavin' Oz goin' to Quiet Riot and comin' back to Oz, Quiet Riot, Ozzy, Quiet Riot, after a while you go, ‘Uh, Randy, it's startin' to sound like Quiet Riot. I don't wanna be in Quiet Riot ... I wanna have my own thing.' And you know, you can't blame Ozzy for that at all.
“He knows I'm at his disposal whenever he needs me. It's like, ‘Oh, you want me to come over and clean the dog run before you have company over? No problem.' And Gus G (Wylde's replacement), aside from being a killer guitar player, he's a super cool dude ... Mom and the Boss (Sharon and Ozzy Osbourne), I mean, what more could Ozzy do for me? He introduced me to the world and then on top of it, Mom and the Boss always had me opening up on the Ozzfest and helping me all the time, so I mean, how could I not be eternally grateful to them?”
No time for AA, booze
And as for adjusting to a life of sobriety, on orders from his doctor, Wylde says he's faring just fine.
“Over two years now,” he said. “No, it's no big deal. It's just like, I don't go to AA meetings. I got a million things goin' on in my day, the Black Label to-do list. Before my feet hit the floor I've got stuff that I gotta do. Goin' to an AA meeting? I'll go to the gym. That's my therapy. I know Ozzy was havin' AA meetings. I went to one of 'em. I said, ‘Ozz, nothin' for nothin'. Like, I gotta go clean the dog run, I got things I gotta do around the house, I could be practicing right now, I could do other things.”
One of those other things includes an “Unblackened” DVD, a continuation of the “Song Remains Not the Same” project, coming soon, complete with a string section and several of Wylde's musician buddies making guest appearances in the live performances. But first comes the tour, which begins Friday night at the Diamond Ballroom.
Until then, Wylde said, “Just tell the rest of the Oklahoma chapter to stay strong, keep bleedin' Black, man.”