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metal talk
28th January 2017

geoff nicholls

Geoff Nicholls, Black Sabbath keyboardist from 1979 to 2004, passed away today, Saturday 28th January 2017, after suffering with lung cancer. He was 68-years-old.

Birmingham born Geoff also played in the NWOBHM band Quartz before joining Black Sabbath and in the late 1960s/early 1970s played lead guitar for the Birmingham band Johnny Neal And The Starliners.

Geoff was originally brought into Sabbath as a second guitarist when the band were going through huge changes after Ozzy left, He then switched to bass when Geezer Butler left briefly and then became the band's keyboardist upon Geezer's return.

geoff nicholls

His first appearance on a Black Sabbath album was on 1980s 'Heaven And Hell', the band's first with Ronnie James Dio as frontman, He was credited as keyboardist on the next nine Sabbath releases, although he was not an official member until 1986.

Geoff also played some rhythm guitar on the reunion tours but rarely appeared on stage proper during Sabbath shows, instead usually playing from a side-stage or backstage position. One exception to this was the tour in support of the 1986 album 'Seventh Star' where he played on stage as an equal member of the band. Another is a concert in May 1988, where he played bass at a charity function.

Nicholls' involvement with the band ended when Adam Wakeman, a member of Ozzy Osbourne's solo band, was chosen to play keyboards during Sabbath's 2004 and 2005 tours as part of Ozzfest and Scott Warren (Dio) handled keyboard duties on the 2007 Heaven and Hell tour.

Until his death, Geoff played keyboards with former Black Sabbath singer Tony Martin in his band Tony Martin's Headless Cross, and had previously performed on both of Martin's solo albums and their support tours.

He returned to a reunited Quartz and appeared on their 2016 comeback album 'Fear No Evil'.

Geoff was in remission from cancer, but reportedly succumbed to the side effects of chemotherapy.

judas priest


monsters of rock

Monsters Of Rock In Full Flight is strictly limited to 300 worldwide and is available from 30th November but those ordering before 31st October will have their name published within a dedicated page in the book.

It's a deluxe 128 page hardback book in a metal flight case with a narrative by Jerry Bloom.

When promoter Paul Loasby put on the first Monsters Of Rock Festival in 1980 he could probably never have imagined it would become an annual event that would endure for so many years.

Featuring bands from the UK, Germany, Canada and USA, Loasby chose to stage the event at the Donington race circuit in the middle of England and it would prove to be a defining moment for many of the bands on the bill.

Not least for headliners Rainbow as it was the their last ever show to feature drum legend Cozy Powell. As it would happen it turned out to be the last for vocalist Graham Bonnet as well. For many of the other bands on the bill such as Scorpions, Judas Priest and Saxon, they were all on the ascendancy and would soon go on to even greater success.

Now in celebration of this first ever Monsters Of Rock Festival comes this hardback book full of glorious photos of the bands that took to the stage for that inaugural event including back stage shots. Most of these shots have not been published before which add to the uniqueness of this deluxe 128-page book which is packaged in its own flight case.

Also included are stories surrounding the event with tales and recollections from those who were there, including artists and fans alike. Each book will be signed by the author. The 300 will sell fast and definitely go on to become collector's items so order yours now right here to avoid disappointment.


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