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WCSX Classic Cuts

Black Sabbath: “War Pigs”

The Hook: The riffs to the anti-war anthem were born during onstage jams during grueling European residencies in the band’s early days.

Album: Paranoid

Year: 1970

Writers: Tony Iommi, Ozzy Osbourne, Geezer Butler and Bill Ward

Stats: Never a single, but a metal and rock classic.

Background: Black Sabbath guitarist Tony Iommi tells us that “War Pigs” came together in an unusual place — on stage. He explains how it happened.

Black Sabbath guitarist Tony Iommi on how he developed the riffs that became “War Pigs.” OC:…just jamming. :27

“We used to play a lot of places in Europe seven three-quarter hour spots a day, which was a lot of work every night of the week for however long you were there. And it was so boring, ’cause you’d have like two people in in the afternoon and you’d think, ‘Oh, God,’ and you’d got to go and play the set. So we just used to make things up and I used to make riffs up. And ‘War Pigs’ was one of the ones I made up. We basically put that song together while nobody was in the clubs. We were just jamming.”