Metallica bassist Robert Trujillo recently took a trip down the memory lane and opened up on the “cursed” experience of opening for Black Sabbath legend Ozzy Osbourne while playing with Infectious Grooves in the early ’90s.
Robert Trujillo talks about the cursed gig
Rob Trujillo and The Prince of Darkness go way back. During a recent interview with Revolver; in light of his own contributions to Ozzy’s latest studio album “Patient Number Nine”, Trujillo recalled first meeting Ozzy Osbourne in 1991, when Infectious Grooves were working on their debut album “The Plague That Makes Your Booty Move… It’s the Infectious Grooves” in the same studio where Ozzy was recording his Grammy-winning LP “No More Tears”.
Trujillo noted that his band hit it off with Ozzy right away which soon led to Infectious Grooves opening for Ozzy Osbourne via some road shows. There’s probably never a dull moment when touring with Ozzy and Robert made this very clear as Rob recalls being hit with the weirdness right from the get-go:
“There’s kind of a crazy story that happened in Austin, Texas. … When Infectious Grooves first opened for Ozzy it was a theater in Austin. We were really excited. We had done a warm-up show just before that in Houston — and now we’re pulling up to the back of the venue in Austin.
“And the first thing we see when we get off the tour bus is … a pentagram on the ground and a dead raven, black roses and candles. [Laughs] And we’re like, Oh my God. [Laughs] It’s like, Welcome to the tour. We’re literally like, ‘What are we getting ourselves into?’ [Laughs]”
The bassist went on to talk about how Infectious Grooves’ part of the gig went:
“The actual show itself was interesting because we hadn’t learned how to pace our set yet. And with Ozzy, similar to most well-known metal bands, the crowd starts chanting the name – Ozzy! Ozzy! – and they didn’t know who we were. They didn’t know who Infectious Grooves was.
“So, they’re chanting and the balcony was literally moving. … But we knew once we got into the songs, we could divert that energy and that attention. So the whole thing was kind of edgy: from the pentagram to the show itself … And we were just like, like, ‘Oh my God, we survived, but barely.’”
He revealed how the trouble began when it came time for Ozzy to headline the night:
“And then and topper was … Ozzy’s playing, and we’re all excited. I think it was myself and two of the band members we had a beer and we’re like creeping around the backstage as Ozzy’s playing and it’s dark – and I tripped over a pile of cables. I basically fell [into the] connectors for the monitors, the power lines and everything – and I knocked out the power to the monitor system!
“[Laughs] It was like slow motion. I see myself falling … and I’m knocking out like three of the input jacks and all of a sudden the power’s out onstage.”
Rob recalled that the had thought his new job might well be over. However he revealed:
“All you hear is Ozzy and the drums, acoustically. Ozzy looked over, everybody looked over and no one knew what happened. I was so scared. Luckily the monitor guy saw that that’s what happened. And he was able to patch it back in really quickly. I was like, ‘Oh man, we’re going home.’
“So I went into the catering and I was trying to just play it off. Like, you know, maybe no one noticed. And Ozzy’s tour manager came behind me and he was really nice about it, luckily. He put his arm around me and said, ‘Robert, did you knock out the power to the monitor rig?’ And then I said, ‘Yes.” And he goes, ‘Okay, don’t do that again, please.’ I go, ‘Are we going home?’ And he goes, ‘No, just don’t do that again. … You’re lucky. Ozzy thinks that there was a power outage in Austin.’ [Laughs]
“I just remember that because between the pentagram and that being our introduction to the crowd in a small venue to me knocking out the power to the monitor rig…”
Obviously, there has to be only one logical conclusion to this turn of events:
“[Laughs] It was a cursed first gig. Welcome to the world of Ozzy Osbourne. [Laughs]”