Changes (Black Sabbath song)

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Song by Black Sabbath from the album Vol. 4
Released September 1972
Recorded 1972
Genre Piano rock
Length 4:43
Label Warner Bros.
Writer(s) Ozzy Osbourne, Tony Iommi, Geezer Butler, Bill Ward
Producer(s) Patrick Meehan, Black Sabbath

"Changes" is a song by Black Sabbath. It first appeared on Vol. 4 which was released in 1972.


The song's piano melody was composed by guitarist Tony Iommi, who was experimenting with the instrument in the studio.[1] "Changes" is a ballad inspired mainly by Bill Ward's ongoing breakup with his first wife.[1] The lyrics were composed by bassist Geezer Butler,[1] and vocalist Ozzy Osbourne has referred to the song as "heartbreaking". The song was quite different from Black Sabbath's previous songs, given that this one was a "forlornly pretty" ballad, according to music critic Barney Hoskyns.[2]

The song was performed live in 1973[3] but very seldom in years following.

Personnel (original version)[edit]

Other versions[edit]

The song has been covered by numerous artists, including The Cardigans, Fudge Tunnel and Overkill. In 1993, Ozzy Osbourne (Black Sabbath's lead vocalist) re-recorded the song himself as a single (taken from the Live & Loud album). The single peaked at number 9 on Billboard's Mainstream Rock Tracks chart,[4] but failed to chart in the UK. The opening track from UNKLE's second album Never, Never, Land featured a prominent sample from the chorus and loops of the mellotron.

Eminem samples this song for his track "Going Through Changes" from his 2010 album Recovery.

Nashville garage rock band JEFF the Brotherhood covered "Changes" on their 2012 album Hypnotic Nights.

American soul singer Charles Bradley covered "Changes" on a 2013 single released on Daptone Records' Dunham label.[5] Bradley's version become the title track of his 2016 album Changes.

Single by Ozzy Osbourne and Kelly Osbourne
from the album Changes
Released 30 September 2003 (U.S.)
Format CD single
Recorded 2002
Length 4:07
Label Sanctuary Records
Writer(s) Ozzy Osbourne, Tony Iommi, Geezer Butler, Bill Ward
Kelly Osbourne singles chronology
"Come Dig Me Out"
"Changes" (re-release)

Ozzy and Kelly Osbourne version[edit]

Three decades later, Ozzy recorded yet another version of the song, this time with his daughter, Kelly Osbourne as a duet. The revised lyrics for this version, released in 2003, reflect the moments of their life together. The single reached No. 1 in the UK Singles Chart.[6] It also reached No. 1 on the Kerrang! UK Download Chart.

According to the Ozzy Osbourne official website, the single sold over one million copies.[7]

This version of the song, was named #27 of the "50 Worst Songs of the '00s" in a 2009 Village Voice article.[8]

"Changes (re-release)"
Single by Ozzy Osbourne and Kelly Osbourne
Released March 2004 (U.S.)
Format CD single
Recorded 2002
Label Sanctuary Records
Writer(s) Ozzy Osbourne, Tony Iommi, Geezer Butler, Bill Ward
Kelly Osbourne singles chronology
"Changes" (re-release)
"One Word"


  1. "Changes"
  2. "Changes" (Felix Da Housecat Remix)
  3. "Come Dig Me Out" (live)


Year Single Chart Peak position
2003 "Changes" (Felix Da Housecat Remix) U.S. Hot Dance Music/Club Play 43
"Changes" Irish Singles Chart 7
UK Singles Chart 1

Sales accomplishments[edit]

BPI certification[9] (United Kingdom)

Date Designation Total sales
23 January 2004 Silver 200,000
23 January 2004 Gold 400,000
Preceded by
"Leave Right Now" by Will Young
UK number-one single
14 December 2003 – 21 December 2003
Succeeded by
"Mad World" by Michael Andrews & Gary Jules


  1. ^ a b c Osbourne, Ozzy (2011). I Am Ozzy. Grand Central Publishing. ISBN 978-0446569903. 
  2. ^ Hoskyns, Barney (2009). Into The Void: Ozzy Osbourne And Black Sabbath. Omnibus Press. p. 104. ISBN 9780857121066. 
  3. ^ "Devil worship and four-letter words: Black Sabbath in Sydney, 1973". Retrieved 2017-03-10. 
  4. ^ "Billboard single chart history-Ozzy Osbourne". Retrieved February 16, 2009. 
  5. ^ Charles Bradley - "Changes" Archived March 26, 2016, at the Wayback Machine. DaptoneRecords (YouTube)
  6. ^ Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 693. ISBN 1-904994-10-5. 
  7. ^ "Ozzy Osbourne Official Website - Biography". Retrieved 2014-04-02. 
  8. ^ Johnston, Maura (2009-12-03). "The 50 Worst Songs of the '00s, F2K No. 27: Kelly Osbourne and Ozzy Osbourne, "Changes" | Village Voice". Retrieved 2016-10-06. 
  9. ^ "BPI certified awards". Retrieved February 16, 2009. [dead link]

External links[edit]