Guitarist extraordinaire Randy Rhoads burst into mainstream rock and roll with the release of Ozzy Osbourne’s debut solo album, 1980’s Blizzard of Ozz. His timing was unassailable: This was the height of the “guitar hero” era, and Randy’s playing on “Crazy Train” and other songs brought him legions of followers. He delivered an even more magnificent performance on Ozzy Osbourne’s Diary of a Madman, with its enduring hard-rock classic, “Flying High Again.” Tragically, Randy perished in a March 1982 plane crash midway through the Diary of a Madman Tour.
To celebrate Randy’s life and accomplishments, I’ve posted my complete 1982 interviews with members of his family, Ozzy Osbourne and his band, Rudy Sarzo from Quiet Riot, engineer/producer Max Norman, and Grover Jackson, who built Randy’s distinctive guitar. Portions of these conversations appeared in my November 1982 Guitar Player cover story, Randy Rhoads Remembered, but they’ve never before been published in their entirety. Let’s begin at the beginning, with Randy’s mother, Delores Rhoads, who celebrated her 90th birthday earlier this year. Our conversation took place on August 5, 1982. Continue reading