Graham Bonnet

Graham Bonnet, the renowned rock singer celebrated for his contributions to bands like RAINBOW, MICHAEL SCHENKER GROUP, ALCATRAZZ, and his own Graham Bonnet Band. He recently shared insights from an interview about a significant moment in his career. He mentioned that Tony Iommi, a founding member of the legendary rock group BLACK SABBATH, had approached him. This was regarding the possibility of joining the band.

During the interview on the “Disturbing The Priest” podcast, Bonnet humorously recounted the phone call from Iommi. He also shared his initial doubts about the situation. He openly expressed, “Yeah, he called me one day, and I thought, ‘I don’t know about that.’ I couldn’t imagine myself fitting into a band like BLACK SABBATH with my appearance. [Laughs] I don’t have the classic BLACK SABBATH look. I’d need to grow long hair, dye it dark black, and perhaps even grow a beard.” His concerns about his appearance and aligning with the band’s image were evident.

However, it wasn’t just the visual aspect that gave him pause. Bonnet also questioned whether he could harmonize his musical preferences with BLACK SABBATH’s distinctive style. He elaborated, “I wasn’t sure about the music either because I wanted to do something that diverged from the BLACK SABBATH style. I was somewhat anti-heavy, considering my songwriting approach and that of my fellow guitar-playing friends. It didn’t align with the conventional heavy metal or heavy rock style.”

This wasn’t the first time Bonnet had reflected on his discussions with the BLACK SABBATH camp. In a 2018 interview with The Metal Voice, he recounted receiving a call from a BLACK SABBATH member. However, he couldn’t recall the exact identity of the person who contacted him. At the time, Bonnet was uncertain and contemplated whether to accept the offer. He admitted, “I wasn’t quite sure about the music. I wasn’t sure if I would really fit with my short hair and all the rest.” His desire to forge a distinct musical path and establish his own band, rather than becoming another singer in an established group’s revolving door, factored into his decision to decline the offer.

In a February 2023 interview with Classic Album Review, Bonnet emphasized his reasons for turning down the opportunity to join BLACK SABBATH. He expressed doubts about being the right fit for the band. He openly questioned, “Do I look like a BLACK SABBATH guy?” He also acknowledged that he didn’t particularly appreciate BLACK SABBATH’s music, stating, “I didn’t really like their music — I didn’t. It didn’t resonate with me. Not that they aren’t skilled in what they do. All these bands are immensely talented, but their music wasn’t my preference.”


It’s essential to note that Bonnet recognized the significant impact of Ronnie James Dio’s tenure with BLACK SABBATH. Dio’s presence brought about a positive transformation for the band during his time with them. Dio’s three albums with BLACK SABBATH marked a turning point and earned high esteem in the band’s history.

Graham Bonnet’s career boasts various highlights, from his early success with “Only One Woman” in 1968 with THE MARBLES to his involvement with iconic bands like RAINBOW and the MICHAEL SCHENKER GROUP. Despite the BLACK SABBATH opportunity he declined, Bonnet’s contributions to rock music have left a lasting imprint on the genre. His journey in the world of rock is a testament to the ever-evolving and diverse landscape of music.

As Graham Bonnet reflects on his illustrious career, it’s evident that Bonnet made choices that aligned with his artistic vision, even if they meant passing on significant opportunities. His unwavering commitment to his own musical path has undeniably contributed to his enduring legacy in the realm of rock.

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