Back In Black: Bill Ward To Join Sabbath For Ozzfest

Original drummer to play with Black Sabbath after all.

Original Black Sabbath drummer Bill Ward will take his rightful place behind the kit after all.

Ward will join his bandmates Ozzy Osbourne, Geezer Butler and Tony Iommi when the pioneering metal band reunites for this summer's Ozzfest.

The drummer's enlistment comes after weeks of conjecture about the state of his relationship with his old bandmates and Ozzfest organizers. Last month, a day after it was announced that Black Sabbath would headline the annual metalfest with Ozzy's solo drummer Mike Bordin in tow, Ward admitted in a post on his Web site that he declined the invitation to reunite as he wasn't happy with the proposal submitted to him by organizers. But he also alleged that the Ozzfest camp may have made a hasty decision to write him off completely, since he was willing to "compromise" and "be flexible" (see "Bill Ward Drummed Out of Sabbath? Depends How You Look At It"). A few days later, Ward eased Sabbath fans' minds with another post that claimed the door between him and organizers wasn't fully closed.

The last Ozzfest trek that featured all the original members of Black Sabbath was in 1999. The band headlined again two years later with Bordin on drums.

Kicking off July 10 in Hartford, Connecticut, Ozzfest 2004 also features Slipknot, Slayer, Hatebreed and a reunited Judas Priest (see "Judas Priest, Slayer, Slipknot To Join Ozzy On Ozzfest").