Bill Ward: From Jazz to Black Sabbath Part 2-2
So, if you feel in your honest heart that you ought to be playing in a garage band, that's where you feel the strongest, then for fuck's sake play in the garage band. There's no shame. It's great because I think sometimes people look at music by, "Well, that band must be great because they played at Madison Square Gardens, and this band in the garage must be crap." People look at things like that, in that way and that's not the truth at all. That's not the truth at all. The same spirit can exist in the garage as it can at Madison Square Gardens (laughs). It doesn't make any difference in the end, and I've been on both sides of that. I've played at Madison Square Gardens and I've played in the garage too! And I played in the garage after Madison Square Gardens. So, you know? You have to survive that too. You have to learn how to play Madison Square Gardens and when all that's over and done with, how do you still carry on? So you have to learn how to carry on as well and be content with playing in the garage.
So, the journey is long. Yeah, I think if you are fortunate, the journey is long. But I love my fellow musicians, I really do. I must sound like the president there, but I love musicians and I have a deep respect for musicians, period. This particular question is a great question because I like to be asked this. It's like, how do you stay alive on the road? What are some of the things that young musicians need to know? And I would definitely steer them down that path, all the time. I have three children, two of them are musicians, and all the time I encourage them to be honest with themselves, all the time. Be honest about your music. Ask yourself: Does it feel good? Does it feel real? Do you get a kick out of it? And if you do, you'll be able to take that all the way around the world and live with it every single day because you believe in it, and you believe you are strong. We believed in Black Sabbath, for God's sake, and that's why we were able to take it all the way around the world all the time because we believed in ourselves and we believed in the band and we believed in each other. That's a very strong bond when you believe like that. It's like, yeah! We liked what we were doing. We thought that what we were doing was important.
AAJ: Do you feel good about where you are as a musician right now?
BW: No, and I can tell you why even though I shared that earlier with you I feel very good about the things that I am learning and the new things that I am entering into as a musician. I'll tell you for why, because something that's never left me is my perfectionism which is borne out of my ego. So, my perfectionism will always say to me, "You think that's good? Well that pretty much sucks!"
So, to answer your question, in reality yeah, I love the things that I involve myself in for the most part, but, I mentioned earlier contempt and contentment, I'm never really content. I always want to move on to the next thing and there is so much more to learn. It's just like, god! (Laughs) It's school every day. School is in every single day. So, I'm just trying to learn and I realize that I just know so little. I just know hardly anything at all after all these years. You know, it's like man, I don't know anything. But I can laugh about that too. I don't take that too seriously.
But perfectionism will always come and spoil it. But I'm aware of perfectionism now, so I try not to let perfectionism rob the magic moments. I enjoy the moments when something gets recorded and you go, "You know what? That's great! I really like that." Or you know you played something that's really good. I won't let perfectionism come in and destroy that, but sooner or later the perfectionism will sit down and have a quiet talk with me and try to say, you know, that wasn't good enough and everything. So, I have to be careful when my head starts telling me it wasn't good enough and I've found ways through that now, as well, in my recovery. I've found ways to say, "You know what this is? Good." But, constantly I want to move on to the next thing. I'm always moving on to the next thing.
I have one more song to record for my newest album, Beyond Aston, which has been five years now I've been trying to get this CD delivered out here in the real world. One song to do. In the meantime, I've written so much more material for at least another three or four albums so, backed upthere's all this other stuff. Because of one song that I've got to get right on Beyond Aston, there's all this other stuff that's just backed up. I'm terrible. That's perfectionism (laughter). That's me with my ego again, you know. It's awful. But, you know what? I'm being very honest about it too. It's real. I'm not ashamed of it. There's nothing to be ashamed of.