Duff McKagan Talks Collaboration With Ozzy Osbourne
(hennemusic) Guns N' Roses bassist Duff McKagan is sharing details about his involvement with the forthcoming Ozzy Osbourne album, "Ordinary Man." Due February 21, Ozzy's first new studio release in a decade sees him teamed with producer and guitarist Andrew Watt and includes the rhythm section of McKagan and Red Hot Chili Peppers drummer Chad Smith.
"The session I got called to do," McKagan told Sex Pistols guitarist Steve Jones on the January 20 episode of his KLOS Los Angeles radio show, Jonesy's Jukebox. "I'd been playing these gigs with Chad Smith, the drummer from the Chili Peppers - these wild cover-band things. Like, we'd play Van Halen with Taylor Hawkins singing and Mike McCready playing guitar. And we played Montana. But playing with Chad, playing bass, he's such an aggressive drummer, and our styles are pretty similar. And we love playing with each other as a rhythm section.
"This guy Andrew Watt called," he continued. "I think it was a Saturday, and I happened to be in L.A. He said, 'Do you have some days this week in the daytime? I need to write an Ozzy record. We have four days to do it.' So, we showed up at Andrew's studio. Everything was kind of set up - Chad's drum kit was set up. And it was basically one of those things: 'Who's got a riff?' And it was really inspired.
"The three of us - Andrew Watt and Chad and myself - we'd never written together, and that can go sideways in a hot second. But it didn't. The first riff that we threw down... Mick Bob was there, my tech. He's, like, 'You know Ozzy likes The Beatles. Make sure there's some Beatles in there.' So we just [approached it like], 'Who's got a riff, man?' And we just threw down in four days and wrote nine songs. 'Ordinary Man', the ballad, with Elton John on it, is one of 'em. And 'Straight To Hell'. I think we wrote and recorded nine songs in four days, and the sounds and everything, which is perfect. And that was it. We were done."
"Ozzy came and Ozzy just loved it," McKagan added. "He just came in and started writing words and laid down the vocals. And it was kind of like that. There was definitely urgency to the whole situation. We had so much time to do it, which was only four days... So, it just happened to work out great. And I think the record is really, really good." Stream the interview here.
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