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Ozzy Osbourne

Ozzy Osbourne and His Nine Lives

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By Brian Hurwitz

Rock stars lead notoriously fast-paced lives. The most successful of them routinely tour the world as they hop from one time zone to another. Fans will them to push themselves to their mental, physical and emotional extremes. All-night parties full of supermodels and millionaires where nothing is taboo and the only rule is to live for the moment. Few are known to lead sedate lives away from the public eye. In fact, many are as well known for their personal exploits as they are for their transcendent music. In a career spanning nearly fifty years, singer and songwriter Ozzy Osbourne has proven to be just such an individual.

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The Drugs

Black Sabbath
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Ozzy Osbourne rose to prominence as the frontman for heavy metal supergroup Black Sabbath. In 1978, they were touring across America with Van Halen as their opening act. As the story goes, after a performance in Birmingham, Alabama, Osbourne and Van Halen frontman David Lee Roth engaged in a cocaine duel that lasted until nine the following morning. Osbourne was in such a daze that he literally disappeared. Presumed dead due to the amount of the narcotic he had ingested, the band had to cancel their next show in Nashville and the FBI and local police began searching for the infamous Osbourne. True to form, 24 hours later Osbourne simply walked into the hotel lobby where the band was staying and acted as though nothing had happened.

The Bat

Ozzy Osbourne
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During a 1982 concert in Des Moines, Iowa, Osbourne when an audience member threw a seemingly comatose bat on-stage. At first, Osbourne thought it was a toy and began playing with it. But, things changed when the creature shook off its stupor and flapped its wings. According to Osbourne, the bat bit him and he later had to be treated for rabies. But in the moment, Osbourne chomped down on the bat's neck and bit off its head. The audience went wild.

The Dove

White Doves
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To celebrate the signing of his first solo record deal in 1981, Osbourne brought a cage full of doves and intended to release them out the window as a sign of peace and good will towards his and the record executives' future together. However, none of the executives noticed how drunk Osbourne was, and upon releasing them he felt compelled to grab one and bite its head off. He then spat the head onto the ground at the executives' feet with blood dripping from his lips.

The Regularity

Ozzy Osbourne
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Osbourne describes himself as a "medical miracle" and freely admits his hard-partying lifestyle would've killed most others decades ago. His hard-partying continued long after becoming a father, and he says he's been on a 40-year alcohol bender. At one point, Osbourne claims to have drunk four bottles of cognac on a daily basis. When Motley Crue frontman Nikki Sixx dared him to snort a line of ants off the ground, Osbourse gladly complied. And over the course of 2003, Osbourne's doctors prescribed him with 13,000 doses of 32 different drugs. He maintained a daily regimen that included eight doses of amphetamines, nine doses of tranquilizers, 16 barbiturates, two anti-seizure tablets, two anticonvulsant pills, two painkillers, and three sleeping pills.

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