Former Ozzy Osbourne bassist Bob Daisley is suing the Black Sabbath frontman for $2 million in unpaid royalties. Daisley filed a suit against Ozzy and his company Blizzard Music Limited according to documents released after their filing at a Nevada court on Monday (August 8th 2016).
Daisley has a songwriting credit, along with the late guitarist Randy Rhoads, on the track ‘Crazy Train’, the first single from Ozzy’s debut album ‘Blizzard of Ozz’ which was released in 1980 and the dispute centers around the royalties for this song.
Daisley’s lawyer Alan Howard alleges that: “Although royalties have been paid to Daisley over the years, an audit conducted in 2014 showed that Osbourne and his company had been improperly deducting undisclosed fees before distributing royalties to Daisley and improperly withholding Daisley’s rightful share of royalties owed under the publishing agreements for the commercial exploitations of the songs.
“While Mr Osbourne was benefitting from the songs co-authored by our client, the audit shows that he was systematically short-changing Mr Daisley. Mr Daisley had no choice but to bring this action to secure his fair share of the proceeds those songs have generated.”
Daisley, who played bass on Ozzy’s first two solo albums, previously said that he was “devastated” and “flabbergasted” by the Los Angeles Federal Court’s August 2002 ruling dismissing the lawsuit over unpaid performance royalties brought by himelf and ex-Ozzy drummer Lee Kerslake against the singer and his wife and manager, Sharon Osbourne.
Daisley has always been paid his songwriting royalties for the songs he co-wrote on the ‘Blizzard Of Ozz’ and ‘Diary Of A Madman’ albums”. The issue is, and always has been, about performance royalties.
Ozzy has responded to the lawsuit in a statement issued by his reps, saying: “For the past 36 years Mr Daisley has been receiving bi-annual royalty statements and checks from Blizzard Music, totalling in the millions of dollars, which have been routinely cashed. Mr Daisley has audited Blizzard Music accounts over the years using several different auditing firms who found no discrepancies. He has previously filed lawsuits in the UK and the US and has lost on each occasion.
“We understand that Mr Daisley is now in retirement and that these funds are his main source of income, so it is his right to be diligent with his money, but after 36 years, this is tantamount to harassment. We would have hoped that after 36 years that Mr Daisley would have lost his unhealthy personal obsession and resentment towards Mr Osbourne’s success. Blizzard Music and Mr Osbourne plan to vigorously defend these proceedings.”
Daisley and Lee Kerslake spoke to MetalTalk in 2013 about this and many other things and you can see the video interview as well as read all about ‘For Fact’s Sake’, his compelling autobiography, right here.