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Bill Ward

Fifth Audio Diary Posted

by on Jul.05, 2005, under Bill Ward

Bill phoned in from Sweden with the fifth in his 2005 Audio Diary series. There was a little bit of a bad phone connection on this and it generated some technical issues so the sound quality is a little scratchy, but is still pretty good. This new edition, totaling exactly 30:00 in length has these highlighted points:

* – Difficulty trying to find Vegan food

* – Bill talks about the following gigs: Sofia, Bulgaria, Vienna, Prague, Athens, & Roskilde Denmark

* – Some thoughts on Bulgaria itself.

* – European audiences in general

* – Ticket availability and his thoughts on scalpers

* – The Pink Floyd reunion at Live 8!

There is of course a lot more than that, so make sure and download the entry and check it out!

http://www.billward.com/sounds/diary070405.m4a

(Right click and select “Save As” or “Save Link As” and save the file to your hard drive, don’t just click this)

You need one of any number of free audio players (Winamp, iTunes, or Musicmatch Jukebox) to play this file. Don’t forget about Bill’s Podcast for the diaries, you can get more info on that here.

You can discuss the audio diary in this thread on Bill’s forums here on billward.com. A short note, if you have Windows Media player, you may have to rename the file extension from m4a to mp4 to get the file to play right in that player.

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Bill to be interviewed on the WRAT

by on Jul.01, 2005, under Bill Ward

An interview with Bill will air on New Jersey Rock Station THE WRAT,
95.9, this Sunday, July 3 at 10:00 PM EST on “The Electric Ballroom” show. If you’re not in the NJ area, you can listen on the web at http://www.wrat.com.

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Bill’s Diaries Available via Podcast in iTunes!

by on Jun.29, 2005, under Bill Ward

UPDATE: Bill’s diaries are available in iTunes now, you don’t need these manual instructions anymore. To see the automated instructions, see the bottom of this news story.


A recent trend in online audio publication is that of podcasting. Podcasting is where you subscribe to an rss feed like you would any other rss news feed. The difference with a podcast feed is that it will pull down media – in this case Bill’s audio diaries!

It’s called podcasting, as it originted with the Apple iPod. You don’t need an iPod to make use of this, however. What’s cool about podcasting is that you don’t have to seek out Bill’s site to get the diaries, they’ll be automatically delivered to whatever you’re using as your software. It’s all very cool, and all very automatic.

First off, if you’re already doing podcasting, then this is the link you will want – it’s the feed for Bill’s Diary Podcast:

http://www.billward.com/diarypodcast.xml

iTunes Update!

On Tuesday, Jun 28th Apple Computer released a new version of their music store/player software, iTunes. This new version has built in support for Podcasting. This means that you can now listen to Bill’s audio diaries in iTunes v4.9! As of right now, Bill’s diary isn’t listed in their online database of Podcasts, but that doesn’t have to stop you from checking it out there.

You can add it manually until such a time that Bill’s Diary Podcast shows up in iTunes. Anyway, The steps to add it manually are pretty simple, and we’ve included a couple of screen captures to make it easier for you.

Step 1: First, you need to go to the new podcast icon in iTunes (v4.9+)

Step 2: Once there, you select the “Advanced” menu option at the top of the screen. Then select “Subscribe to podcast”.

Step 3: You’ll then see the screen below where you can manually enter the URL for the rss feed for a podcast. You’ll need to enter Bill’s Podcast info here:

And that’s it! You’re subscribed. You’ll get new editions of the diaries as they’re released, based on the update schedule you choose for yourself in your local copy of iTunes.

If you don’t have iTunes, or need to upgrade to v4.9 with Podcasting support, visit Apple’s iTunes download page now, and grab your free copy of iTunes.

If you want to read more on podcasting, check out this link. this link, and this link These are some good explanations of podcasting, and how to get involved.


Update: You can now get Bill’s podcast in the iTunes Music store without the need of these manual instructions. All you need to do is go to the iTunes store, select the “Podcast” section, and search for Bill Ward. You’ll see something similar below. Click the subscribe button, and you’re all done!

itunes-podcast.png
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Fourth Audio Diary Entry Posted

by on Jun.21, 2005, under Bill Ward

Bill phoned in from England with the fourth in his 2005 Audio Diary series. This new edition, totaling 17:41 in length has these highlighted points:

* – Touring in Germany, and the hospitality there
* – Thoughts on his own drumming – and some problems he had playing the song “Black Sabbath” in one gig.
* – Zakk Wylde being on stage at one gig.
* – Hotel accomodations

There is of course a lot more than that, so make sure and download the entry and check it out!

http://www.billward.com/sounds/diary061905.m4a

(Right click and select “Save As” or “Save Link As” and save the file to your hard drive, don’t just click this)

You need one of any number of free audio players (Winamp, iTunes, or Musicmatch Jukebox) to play this file.

You can discuss the audio diary in this thread on Bill’s forums here on billward.com. A short note, if you have Windows Media player, you may have to rename the file extension from m4a to mp4 to get the file to play right in that player.

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Bill Appears on Classic Rock Compilation

by on Jun.15, 2005, under Bill Ward

Bill Ward’s 1997 solo track “Children Killing Children” (from his When the Bough Breaks album) has been tapped to be part of a new digital compilation album entitled “The New Road Ahead Volume 1”. Put together by classicrock.com & Cowtown Digital, this compliation has artists such as Rik Emmett, Joe Lynn Turner, Shooting Star, Living Loud, Walter Rossi, Foghat, King Kobra featuring Carmine Appice, Manny Charlton, Bouchard, Dunaway & Smith and Fourth Estate. These artists either founded or are current or former members of Black Sabbath, Triumph, Rainbow, Deep Purple, Uriah Heep, Wilson Pickett, Ted Nugent, Beck, Bogart, Appice, Rod Stewart, Ozzy Osbourne, Cactus, Kansas, The Dixie Dregs, Blue Oyster Cult, The Original Alice Cooper Band and Nazareth.

It is available solely through Apple’s iTunes. If you have iTunes installed (or even if you don’t), click here to be taken directly to the album via iTunes. If you don’t have it, you’ll be prompted to download the program.

In addition to the album being released, there’s plenty of cool giveaways to be had. The one that will probably be of most interest to visitors of this site is a pair of autographed drumsticks from the Black Sabbath gig on June 11th, 2005 – the download festival at Donington!

Head on over to the Classic Rock site for more details on the giveaway and a full list of contest prizes. The classicrock page also has a few short comments about each song from the artist who provided them. Also make sure to head over to iTunes to check out the album, where you can check out song samples for all the songs on the album.

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Bill’s Third Audio Diary Posted

by on Jun.13, 2005, under Bill Ward

Bill phoned in from England with the third in his 2005 Audio Diary series. This new edition, totaling 20:30 in length covers several topics, some of which are:

* – A big report on the Download Festival at Donington including a blow by blow of the gig. This takes up most of the report.
* – Meeting the band ‘In Flames’, and a “review” of their gig.
* – Some more “downtime” activities, including old friends backstage.

http://www.billward.com/sounds/diary061205.m4a

(Right click and select “Save As” or “Save Link As” and save the file to your hard drive, don’t just click this)

You need one of any number of free audio players (Winamp, iTunes, or Musicmatch Jukebox) to play this file. You can reach the older entries via the following links: Diary #1 | Diary #2.

You can discuss the audio diary in this thread on Bill’s forums here on billward.com. A short note, if you have Windows Media player, you may have to rename the file extension from m4a to mp4 to get the file to play right in that player.

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Second Audio Diary Posted

by on Jun.10, 2005, under Bill Ward

Bill has phoned in from England with the second of his audio diaries! Recorded today the 10th of June, this new diary touches on several topics, including..

* – Tour rehearsals, the start of tour, and Bill’s recalls of the gigs that have happened to this point.
* – Meeting Slash backstage at the warmup gig on Monday.
* – The age of concert audiences seeing Sabbath nowadays and how it seems to be getting younger and younger.
* – Plenty more backstage news items about life on tour including a walking tour of Europe Bill is doing with Tony Iommi while on tour.

The entire audio diary entry is 13 minutes and 25 seconds long. You can download the file here. It’s an m4a (aka mp4) audio file. If you were familiar with the first audio diary, the audio quality of this one is a bit lower, because of the fact that it was Bill talking into a phone in the UK to a speakerphone in Los Angeles and into the recorder. Not the best fidelity, but definitely listenable.

And you won’t want to miss this, as Bill has some great insight into life on tour with Black Sabbath.

http://www.billward.com/sounds/diary061005.m4a

(Right click and select “Save As” or “Save Link As” and save the file to your hard drive, don’t just click this)

You need one of any number of free audio players (Winamp, iTunes, or Musicmatch Jukebox) to play this file.

You can discuss the audio diary in this thread on Bill’s forums here on billward.com. A short note, if you have Windows Media player, you may have to rename the file extension from m4a to mp4 to get the file to play right in that player.

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Bill Ward’s Audio Diary Available

by on May.03, 2005, under Bill Ward

Bill Ward has left the States to head to England for rehearsals for the European Black Sabbath shows and Ozzfest. As a present, Bill has recorded an audio diary for you, his website visitor. The diary talks about a bevy of topics. Some of the topics he talks about are:

Bill’s radio show Rock 50, The start of Sabbath rehearsals, how he gets in shape for Sabbath’s drumming and his exercise regimen, some of the things he does offstage on tour, some of Bill’s favourite music, the other bands on Ozzfest, Ozzy’s bike accident and his recovery from that, what it’s like playing with Geezer Butler, updates on Bill’s new record deal, future things on billward.com, various Sab members’ solo albums, and of course the prospects on a new Black Sabbath album!

The entire audio diary entry is 21 minutes and 15 seconds long. You can download the file here. It’s an m4a (aka mp4) audio file.

http://www.billward.com/sounds/diary050305.m4a

(Right click and select “Save As” or “Save Link As” and save the file to your hard drive, don’t just click this)

You need one of any number of free audio players (Winamp, iTunes, or Musicmatch Jukebox) to play this file.

The plans are for Bill to continue these audio diaries once the Sabbath tour starts, so make sure and check back during the summer for more from Bill! In the meantime, download and enjoy Bill’s audio diary!

You can discuss the audio diary in this thread on Bill’s forums here on billward.com. A short note, if you have Windows Media player, you may have to rename the file extension from m4a to mp4 to get the file to play right in that player.

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DISCLAIMER – NOT THE STICKS I USE

by on Apr.21, 2005, under Bill Ward

A few months ago, a drumstick became available in the marketplace. The stick is made by Vic Firth (the same company I use for my own sticks) and has Black Sabbath printed along the length of the stick and the Sabbath logo at the butt end of the stick. The drumstick is licensed by Signatures Network.

Buyer Beware. Sabbath fans, drum students, fellow drummers, or anyone who thinks that by purchasing this stick they1ll have an authentic pair of drumsticks as played by yours truly, Bill Ward. These sticks are not used by me, and I have no association to the making, endorsement, or promotion of this stick.

Thank you,
Bill Ward

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Bill Ward’s Year in Review

by on Dec.31, 2004, under Bill Ward

HAPPY NEW YEAR READER,

Well Ho, Ho, Ho came and went. I’m still trying to figure out who I want to send Christmas cards to. I’ve been trying to get myself to sit down and put pen to paper these past couple of weeks now to do a Year in Review.

It’s raining tonight, and the surf is high. We’re in the second night of a winter storm passing over Southern CA, U.S.A. Living on the beach, we’ve received notice of possible mild to moderate flooding. I put sandbags out earlier, dropped them against the front door, we ought to be OK.

My wife and I are supposed to be in TX tonight getting our daughter, and coming back home to LA. At about 5AM this morning, we made a decision to call off the TX trip until Sat., Jan 1st.

This Christmas has been really quiet, no kids this Christmas. I actually got to sleep in!! On Christmas Day, that was pretty good.

In thinking about the year, I’m grateful to be sober, and still alive. On Jan 2nd or 3rd 21 years ago, I was at the end of my life, as I understood it, I didn’t get to the end of my life overnight, I killed myself slowly, little by little. I never want what I had drinking, back again.

I’ve tried to be a human doing this year, and I’ve done my best to give when and where I could.

My personal life began to bloom again in ’04 with my wife and I and my daughter, Em, all putting in an incredible amount of hard work to better overcome the hurdles and impasses. My two boys, Nigel in TX, and Aeron in England, are doing great. Aeron, my oldest boy is making incredible music. My younger son, Nigel is participating in life. I feel most fortunate in knowing that both men live healthy lifestyles, not from my doing, it’s just working out that way. I have little or nothing to feel miserable about when I compare my kids to how I was when I was their ages.

I regret not finishing ‘Beyond Aston,’ and having it released in ’04. Everyone here who’s behind the project, all want to see the end result. I’ve had a tough time hanging with the project, myself. It’s been a long time in the making. I’ve written a lot of new stuff this year, in between ‘Beyond Aston’ tracks. Hopefully, this work is going to find a good home that can distribute it. We are shopping with one record company at this time.

The ‘Straws’ project has turned out pretty good. I was hoping to earn a lot of money for the various charities. We slashed the asking price, we’ve definitely raised money, and I thank all of you who have supported ‘Straws.’ The money will get to the proper people. I feel good that we did the project. We had some nice letters back from one or two actors and statesmen/stateswomen, and of course we got great feedback from you, the folks who bought it. Ozzy loves the song, raved about it, that helped a lot.

If there are any ‘Straws’ CDs left for sale, and you haven’t gotten one – Buy One! No, do as you will, I’m just jiving your ass.

Ozzfest, I had a good time. Tony I. and yours truly went out walking as often as possible. We had great conversations and great walks. He’s the best, and I’m honoured that I get to play drums with him. We’ve been together since we were nearly 16 years old. We’re both 56 now. We had a lot to talk about, especially the fact that it’s Sabbath’s 35th Anniversary in ’05. We’ ve been coming stateside for 35 years, in ’05. Of course at this time amidst the rumors gathering in clumps, and scattering across the airwaves of a new Sabbath album, I shall say nothing, but I do hope for a great time with Sabbath in ’05, if it can happen.

On my radio show, ”Rock 50,’ at wpmd.org, we’ll be doing a special 35th Anniversary portion for the entire 12 months of ’05. First show is January 15th, 11:00 AM ‘ 1:00 PM Pacific Time at wpmd.org. Check it out.

Back to Ozzfest, so we got rained on, and I was sorry we didn’t make West Palm Beach. The summer storms across America are most formidable, and this year’s Ozzfest had some brilliant storms. I call it God’s effects or God’s lending a hand to the stage show. Mind you, Priest got plenty of thunder and lightning on their shows, too. I had a great summer with Ozzfest. I loved playing, and it’s a pleasure, it’s a treat, to play with Tony and Geezer. They’re just such great players. It’s just incredible how things are turning out with the band. I thought Ozzy was absolutely brilliant coming from where he was mentally and physically. He overcame, he constantly improved, and he performed with a level of personal strength and conviction that must be recognized and applauded.

When he fell sick, we had a very difficult situation to deal with, and before going any further, I want to salute every single audience member at the now infamous Camden, NJ gig. I love playing Camden, and my heart went out to that audience. Rob Halford deserves a medal for coming in like he did. Rob was great. There is no doubt. I think that night everybody ‘ Tony, Geezer, Rob and myself worked our nuts off. We were very sorry that the Camden audience was disappointed, and at such a late hour in that day. We poured it out, and now I think there’s a live bootleg somewhere, of that show.

Ozzfest, with so many great bands. Slipknot, I think they made the best album of ’04. They need to be honoured. I think the guys are up for a Grammy. Outside of that, I think they deserve Best Album of ’04. Slayer, always brilliant, a great live band. Dimmu Borgir, outstanding band. Lacuna Coil, great people, great band. Judas Priest, what can you say, absolutely fucking great. I want to compliment all the drummers who played Ozzfest this year. The bar is lifted, and a new history of drumming is being born. There are many great drummers who’ve been carving new ideas and techniques for a while now. At Ozzfest this year, I thought we saw a pinnacle of just plain great drummers. I met most of them, some I’ve known for a while. Drumming in ’04 needs much applause. The advancements are nothing short of incredible and beyond.

We say goodbye to many this year. Most notably, and because of the recent tragedy, is Dimebag from the great band Damageplan and of course Pantera. Among others, we also say goodbye to Ray Charles, British radio pioneer John Peel, and on a personal note, Rigger Dan from the Ozzfest crew.

Going back for a moment to Mr. Peel, I think it’s valid to raise a speculative question. Had it not been for John Peel, I question whether Sabbath’s music would have ever reached the airwaves at a national media level in the U.K. in 1969. Pondering that thought for a moment, it’s scary to realize that without airplay, Sabbath’s demise could have come in ’69. Scary thought, leaving hard rock/heavy metal in the balance.

Bush is still President, and music will be as it has always been, powerful and comforting, enlightening and energizing in times of despair or hopelessness, or in times of happiness and strength. We’re still at war, and while young men and women continue to die and receive injury, I’ll do all I can to participate in helping organizations who really help those in harm’s way. I’ll continue, along with my peers and as many musicians that come across my path, to uphold life for all beings and continue to encourage peace. And yes, I support war because sometimes war is inevitable. I’m not anti-war, but at the same time, I hate war, and I hate that people are suffering and dying because of it.

So we go into ’05 at war, and in the shadow of a tsunami that killed thousands and thousands. Old institutions are dying and youth deserves more credibility. Not enough people are saying ‘objectification’ is a crime against mankind. We have really good medicines now for people like me with heart diseases. I hope someone will stand up for old buildings in the U.S.A. and pass a law to stop knocking them down. Again, Bob Dylan’s lyrics from ‘The Times They Are A-Changin” wreak with intelligent insight and form pillars as strong as time itself. The song’s great, play it.

So what time is it? It’s Midnight, Dec. 28th, I just ended writing this piece, the wind is howling and the seka palm and palms period are bowing 45 degrees. The waves are pounding onto the shore and rattling this house’s very foundation.

Happy New Year, Everyone. There’s much to look forward to, and yeah, even if your life is ending or you want to end your life, there’s still much to look forward to. Remember (I know we’ve heard it all before), but suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem. So go out and kick ass.

Shit, there’s even really good solutions and ways out of despair and life threatening mental illness and addictions. Not bad, I guess, if that’s your bag in ’05. Again, Happy New Year.

Yours,
Bill Ward

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