Now back working with his band Firewind, Greek guitarist Kostas Karamitroudis, better known under his stage name Gus G, reflected on his time in Ozzy Osbourne‘s band. Appearing in an interview with Talk in the Fast Lane, Gus was reminded of how he was “handpicked by Ozzy” to play in his backing band which, eventually, even resulted in him playing on the singer’s 2010 album “Scream.”
When the interviewer brought up how this gig “brought the spotlight to you as a guitar player” and “elevated you in everything that you did outside of Ozzy,” the guitarist replied (transcribed by Killer Guitar Rigs):
“I mean, the guitar player position in Ozzy’s band has always been kind of like the ‘Holy Grail’ of heavy metal, being a metal guitarist. So it doesn’t matter if you’re in that band, you’re standing on stage with him just for a few gigs, or for a few years, you become instantly like one of those guys in that list.”
“So, in a sense, it kinda makes sense, all the spotlight that came with it. I mean, I knew there was a lot of that kind of stuff was gonna follow, a lot of attention from media, and all the endorsements, and all that stuff. And the press and all that stuff that goes with it.”
Despite the success, Gus G also points out that, for someone who wasn’t as widely known at the moment and was around 30 years of age, it felt like it was “hard to digest.” He continued:
“So, yeah, a lot of big things were happening at the same time, it was kind of hard to digest everything, and process everything at that time, and I was still very, very young.”
Nonetheless, the musician still believes this was not only a good thing for his career but he also points out that he had a really good time:
“But all things considered, I did the best I could, I enjoyed my time with him. I wish we would have made another album. We only made one album. But I’m not complaining, I got to play on one of all these albums.”
As he also added, this opened many doors for him:
“It was a great time. I enjoyed it. And it opened up a lot of doors for me afterwards, for my name personally, it has helped my band. So it definitely put me in the spotlight on a worldwide level.”
Back in 2009, Gus G was invited to Los Angeles to audition for Ozzy Osbourne’s band. The audition was a success and he was invited to play a show with Ozzy. Apart from the “Scream” album, Gus G was also involved in the Ozzy & Friends European Tour in 2012 which served as a replacement for previously planned Black Sabbath shows.
In 2023, after numerous postponements, Ozzy Osbourne finally canceled his tour, cleverly dubbed “No More Tours II.” The reason for this decision was due to his health issues and the injuries he suffered back in 2019.
In another recent interview, Gus G discussed Ozzy’s current state. When asked if he’s still in touch with the singer, he replied that he’s not although that there’s an occasional e-mail directed at Ozzy’s camp. He said:
“I sent a couple of e-mails, like in the beginning when I heard he got injured. I just sent him my wishes; I e-mailed Sharon [Osbourne] and stuff. But, yeah, I’m pretty much keeping up with them online, like the rest of the world, whenever he issues an update for his health.”
Addressing Ozzy’s current health, Gus said:
“I hope he can get back on track. I don’t think he’s gonna be able to tour again on the scale that he used to, but at least he can do a couple of nice farewell shows, at least a couple of one-offs. I think he would really like that. And I think he will because he’s the ‘iron man.’ I don’t think you can take him off stage that easily. [Laughs]”
Earlier this year, Ozzy planned to do a one-off show at the Power Trip festival. The event was scheduled for this October in Indio, California. However, the former Black Sabbath frontman had to cancel the appearance with his slot being replaced by Judas Priest.
On July 25, Ozzy Osbourne shared the following statement:
“When I had the blood clots in my legs, they put a filter in your artery to stop the blood clots going to your heart and your brain. It sounds worse than it is.”
“So, on Monday, I went to have it removed. The blood clots have jammed you all up. It’s just disappointment after disappointment. Just get this thing fucking done so I can go get on with my life.”
So far, Ozzy is still planning to stay active and do an occasional live show. Other than that, he’s released two albums close together, “Ordinary Man” in 2020 and “Patient Number 9” in 2022. Both records saw him collaborating with producer Andrew Watt, as well as an incredible lineup of all-star guest musicians, including Slash, Duff McKagan, Elton John, Post Malone, Jeff Beck, Tony Iommi, Eric Clapton, and many others.