Terence "Geezer" Butler helped build Black Sabbath's wall of sound with four mighty bass strings and a clever quill. He's the lyricist for all your Ozzy-era favorites, and boasts the second-longest tenure of any original member after guitarist Tony Iommi. WW caught up with Butler midway through The End tour to ask about his doomsday masterplan after the final curtain call.
1. Write a memoir, if I can remember anything.
2. Complete a solo album. I have hundreds of half-written ideas taking up space on my computer.
3. Travel. I love traveling and exploring new places. I want to take a train journey across the USA and Europe and go hiking in some of the national parks of America.
4. Read some of the 50-plus books I've accumulated since the tour began.
5. Spend time with my family and my dogs and cats. I have three grandchildren whom I've hardly spent time with, and I love taking my dogs for walks.
BONUS! Five more questions for Geezer Butler:
Geezer Butler: I liked the Hammer horror films in the 1960s and magazines such as Man, Myth and Magic, but I had a few supernatural experiences as a child and dreams that came true. That, more than anything, shaped my interest in the occult.
Similarly, many of your lyrics have science fiction themes: "Iron Man," "Into the Void," and even recent tracks like "End of the Beginning" reach toward the future. What science fiction literature do you personally recommend?
I liked the H.G. Wells books, but I don't really read science fiction these days. I'm more into crime fiction.
The term "doom metal" has gained a lot of popularity and credibility in recent years. When is the first time you recall that term being applied to your music?
Probably sometime in the mid-'70s. That and "downer rock." I don't really pay much attention to labels, we just wrote music that we liked to play.
I know you're a fan of Neurosis. And last year, Sabbath took Uncle Acid out in Europe. When there are such incredible underground bands like those out there, do you ever feel frustrated having to tour so often with generic commercial support?
I really like our current support band, Rival Sons. They have good songs and are great musicians, so I do not feel frustrated.
I asked Tony this a few years back, but when was the last time you and he and Ozzy all shared a joint?
SEE IT: Black Sabbath plays Sunlight Supply Amphitheater, 17200 NE Delfel Road, Ridgefield, Wash., on Tuesday, Sept. 13. 7:30 pm. $24-$686. All ages.