SHARON OSBOURNE Issues Statement On OZZY's Dropped AEG Lawsuit - "This Was Not A Battle Solely For Ozzy, As Much As One For Other Artists Who Were Being Forced To Abide By These Rules And Regulations"
September 25, 2018, 3 years ago
Back in March, Ozzy Osbourne filed a lawsuit against AEG, claiming the concert agency was "blackmailing" him. The singer alleged that AEG was using a practice called "block-booking" to force him to perform at the Staples Center in Los Angeles against his wishes.
Ozzy had tentatively agreed to perform at London's O2 Arena on February 11th, 2019 as part of his No More Tours 2 farewell run, but he claims that AEG added a provision stating that if Osbourne played an indoor arena within 25 miles of Los Angeles that was promoted by competitor Live Nation during the tour, he would have to play the AEG-owned Staples Center as well.
Ozzy's attorney agreed this past Friday (September 21st) to drop the lawsuit against the live-entertainment giant stemming from its block-booking policy, which the company ended last week. The lawsuit was dismissed with prejudice. Read a report here.
Now, Sharon Osbourne weighs in with the following open letter to Philip Anschutz, founder of concert promoter AEG:
"We know Mr. Anshultz (aka "Daddy Big Bucks") is living in his billionaire bubble, but the fact is that Ozzy sued AEG for the right to perform at the O2 in London. We won the case and Ozzy's show at the O2 went on sale on September 5 for a show next year (February 11, 2019) - so in my world that means we won the case. Ozzy is playing the O2 without having to play the Staples Center, which is all that mattered to us. From the start of this dialogue in February, this has been a battle about respect for the artists and their personal preferences. It wasn't then and isn't now a battle between promoters, which is how this is being portrayed by the recent statement from AEG claiming this as a "victory."
"To say that this "suit was instigated by Azoff and paid for by MSG and Live Nation," and that "it was hatched on the back of an artist who we believe had no idea what he was biting off," is untrue and disrespectful to Ozzy, myself and the entire team working on this tour. Whatever differences you have with Irving Azoff, don't presume you know who instigated the lawsuit or you know anything about Ozzy Osbourne, because you obviously don't know anything about Ozzy's history or mine. So stop with your hubbildy, bubbuldy BULLSHIT and your little pissing contest with Live Nation and MSG.
"Regarding the allegations in the AEG statement that this "suit was a transparent public relations ploy," if that was indeed the case, why then did AEG rush out a statement of victory? While we, throughout this process, until now have only made one statement around the initial filing.
"Ozzy's preference was to perform at The Forum, a venue that has been a part of his music history for more than 46 years. From the start, this was not a battle solely for Ozzy, as much as one for other artists who were being forced to abide by these rules and regulations. Let's not all forget why you're here... the artists.
"The only thing remotely interesting in your statement was your pitiful attempt at humor with your quote that Ozzy "had no idea what he was biting off." If you're interested, Ozzy and I have got something nice for you bite on... our assholes... see ya loser!"