Tony Iommi b. February 19, 1948
Frank Anthony “Tony” Iommi is best known as the guitarist for the band, Black Sabbath. However, Iommi had a tough start when he lost the tips of his middle and ring fingers on his right hand, which he used to fret the strings of his guitar. Instead of giving up, he created extra-light strings and wore plastic covers on his fingers so he could continue to play. Eventually this accident also impacted the sound of Black Sabbath and heavy metal music all together. In effort to ease some tension on his hurt fingers, Tony detuned his guitar making Black Sabbath the first band to create what is now known as a normal, heavy metal sound.
Iommi’s life before Black Sabbath consisted of several blues and rock bands. His first band was The Rockin’ Chevrolets from 1964-1965. It was right before leaving for Germany with this band that Iommi had his finger accident. After he recovered, he went on to play with a band named The Rest, with which he played with drummer Bill Ward who also went on to join Black Sabbath. Between January and July of 1968 Iommi, along with Ward, went on to play in a band called Mythology. After Mythology broke up, Iommi and Ward teamed up with guitarist Terry “Geezer” Butler and vocalist John “Ozzy” Osbourne to form the band Earth that later became Black Sabbath.
In 1984, Iommi recorded his first solo album called Seventh Star, and because of pressure by his label, it was released as Black Sabbath featuring Tony Iommi. Iommi went on to release his own solo album, Iommi in 2000. He then released his second solo project, The 1996 DEP Sessions in 2004 and his third album, Eighth Star in 2005.
Iommi is most known for playing Gibson SG guitars. He also designed a guitar with interchangeable pickups for recording.