Did Van Halen Blow Away Black Sabbath? Tony Iommi Tells It To That Metal Show

Finally: the truth revealed as to whether VH out-rocked Sabbath on tour.

November means That Metal Show here at VH1 Classic, and we’ve been pulling classic clips every day this month. Today, we’ve got a pair of monster moments from Season 8 featuring the mighty guitarist who, with the help of his three bandmates in Black Sabbath, riffed heavy metal itself into being: Tony Iommi.

In the first clip, TMS co-host Jim Florentine raises a long standing metal legend—namely, that, on the 1978 Never Say Die tour, opening act Van Halen blew headliners Black Sabbath clear off the stage. Tony clears up the issue truthfully and graciously and, joined by funnyman Don Jamieson, with good headbanging humor.

Next up, Eddie Trunk talks with Tony about the famous industrial accident that sliced off the young guitar player’s fingertips and necessitated his inventing an entire new approach to his musical craft—the very one, in fact, that resulted in heavy metal.
Bang your head back our way tomorrow, when our That Metal Show video vault raid will feature a double dollop of Metallica drummer Lars Ulrich.

Mike McPadden is the author of the book "HEAVY METAL MOVIES: Guitar Barbarians, Mutant Bimbos, and Cult Zombies Amok in the 666 Most Ear- and Eye-Ripping Big Scream Films Ever!" (Bazillion Points, 2014).