The 1999 OzzFest will bring its heavy metal noise to the masses in May in West Palm Beach, Fla., as the popular festival kicks off a two-month, 28-date tour headlined by reunited metal legends Black Sabbath.
This summer’s OzzFest — which opens May 27 and closes shop July 24 with a show in San Bernardino, Calif. — will offer the most eclectic bill in the 3-year-old festival’s history. Capped with swan-song appearances by Sabbath, the tour’s main stage also will showcase rock trio Primus, industrial act Rob Zombie and heavy-metal artists the Deftones, Slayer, Godsmack and System of a Down, according to Michael Guarracino, assistant to OzzFest founder Sharon Osbourne, wife and manager of heavy metal icon Ozzy Osbourne.
“We were just trying to keep it interesting and not repeat the same bands we had last year,” Guarracino said.
Completing the hard-rock slate of bands will be such heavy rocking second-stage acts as Fear Factory, Pushmonkey, Drain STH, Static-X, Apt. 26, Hed(pe) and Puya. While Judas Priest was expected to headline the second stage for the whole tour, Guarracino said both that veteran metal band and Grammy-nominated hard-rockers Nashville Pussy recently dropped out of the tour due to previous scheduling commitments. The second stage will now be headlined by Fear Factory with the rest of the second-stage acts rotating into the first slot on the main stage daily.
Sabbath’s OzzFest shows are the final dates by the recently re-formed outfit, featuring lead singer Ozzy Osbourne himself, before it disbands again to work on solo projects.
Primus bassist/singer Les Claypool — whose band is best known for such quirky
avant-rock songs as “Shake Hands With Beef” (RealAudio excerpt) — said he’s likely to be in the wings during Sabbath’s performances.
Claypool said he doesn’t see anything odd about his decidedly metal-free band’s participation in OzzFest. “I could play [Sabbath staple] ’Iron Man’ (RealAudio excerpt of live Sabbath version) from start to finish when I was 16 years old,” Claypool said. “I know more … Butler [bass]lines than any of those guys.”
Claypool said the slot on OzzFest completes a kind of summer festival trifecta for his group and officially makes them “summer tour whores.” Primus played Lollapalooza in 1993 and H.O.R.D.E. (Horizons of Rock Developing Everywhere) in 1997.
Last year’s 18-date OzzFest did impressive business in its second outing, averaging 23,700 attendees per show for a bill that featured Megadeth, Tool, Motorhead and the Melvins, in addition to Ozzy Osbourne.
This year’s OzzFest will head to Europe in late July or early August, according to Guarracino.
’99 Ozzfest Tour Dates:
May 27; W. Palm Beach, Fla.; Coral Sky Amphitheater
May 29; Atlanta, Ga.; Lakewood Amphitheater
May 31; Nashville, Tenn.; Starwood Amphitheater
June 2; Charlotte, N.C.; Blockbuster Pavilion
June 4; Washington, D.C.; Nissan Pavilion
June 6; Philadelphia, Pa.; Entertainment Center
June 8 & 10; Holmdel, N.J.; PNC Bank Center
June 12; Pittsburgh, Pa.; Starlake Amphitheater
June 14; Columbus, Ohio; Polaris Amphitheater
June 16 & 18; Mansfield, Mass.; Great Woods Amphitheater
June 19; Hartford, Conn.; Meadows Music Theater
June 25 & 27; Detroit, Mich.; Pine Knob Amphitheater
June 29; Indianapolis, Ind.; Deer Creek Amphitheater
July 1; Minneapolis, Minn.; Float-Rite Amphitheater
July 3; Milwaukee, Wis.; Alpine Valley
July 5; Chicago, Ill.; World Music Theater
July 7; St. Louis, Mo.; Riverport Amphitheater
July 9; Kansas City, Mo.; Sandstone Amphitheater
July 11; San Antonio, Texas; Retarna Park
July 13; Dallas, Texas; Starplex Amphitheater
July 16; Vancouver, B.C.; Thunderbird
July 17; Seattle, Wash.; The Gorge
July 20; Shoreline, Calif.; Shoreline Amphitheater
July 22; Phoenix, Ariz.; Desert Sky Amphitheater
July 24; San Bernardino, Calif.; Blockbuster Pavilion