Geoff Nicholls

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Geoff Nicholls
Birth name Geoffrey James Nicholls
Born (1948-02-28)28 February 1948
Birmingham, England, UK
Died 28 January 2017(2017-01-28) (aged 68)
Instruments Keyboards, bass, guitar, vocals
Associated acts Black Sabbath, Quartz, Tony Martin, Johnny Neal and the Starliners, World of Oz,

Geoffrey James "Geoff" Nicholls (28 February 1948 – 28 January 2017)[1] was a British musician and keyboardist, and longtime member of the heavy metal band Black Sabbath, until 2004. Nicholls also played in the NWOBHM band Quartz, before joining Black Sabbath. In the 1960s/early 1970s, Geoff played lead guitar for the Birmingham bands The Boll Weevils, The Seed, Johnny Neal and the Starliners and keyboards for World Of Oz.

Nicholls was originally brought in as a second guitarist when Black Sabbath doubted whether they would even continue under that name. Nicholls then switched to bass when Geezer Butler left briefly, and then became the band's keyboardist upon Butler's return and the decision to keep the Sabbath name. Nicholls' first appearance on a Black Sabbath album was on Heaven and Hell (1980), and he was credited as keyboardist on every Sabbath release from that time until 13 (2013), although he was not an official member until 1986. He remained an official member until 1991, then regained member status from 1993 to 1996. He was an unofficial member once again since the reunion with Ozzy Osbourne in 1997. Although his main role with Sabbath was on the keyboard, Nicholls also played some rhythm guitar on the reunion tours, e.g., during Iommi's solo in "Snowblind" and a few tracks during the Headless Cross (1989) and Forbidden (1995) tours.[2]

Nicholls' involvement with the band ended when Adam Wakeman (a member of Ozzy Osbourne's solo band) was chosen to play keyboards during Sabbath's 2004 and 2005 tours as part of Ozzfest, and Scott Warren (Dio) handled keyboard duties on the 2007 Heaven & Hell tour.

Until his death, Nicholls played keyboards with former Black Sabbath singer Tony Martin, in his band Tony Martin's Headless Cross.[3] Nicholls had previously performed on both of Martin's solo albums and their support tours.

Death[edit]

Nicholls died from lung cancer on 28 January 2017, aged 68, surrounded by his family.[4][5][6][7] "Geoff was a real true friend and supported me all the way for nearly forty years," said Tony Iommi. "I will miss him dearly and he will live in my heart until we meet again."[8]

Albums[edit]

Studio albums with Black Sabbath[edit]

Year Album details Peak chart positions Certifications
UK
[9]
AUT
[10]
DEN
[11]
FIN
[12]
GER
[13]
NLD
[14]
NOR
[15]
NZ
[16]
SWE
[17]
SWI
[18]
US
[19]
1980 Heaven and Hell
  • Released: 25 April 1980
  • Label: Vertigo, Warner Bros.
  • Format: CD, CS, LP
9 37 22 44 25 28
  • UK: Gold
  • US: Platinum[20]
  • CAN: Gold[21]
1981 Mob Rules
  • Released: 4 November 1981
  • Label: Vertigo, Warner Bros.
  • Format: CD, CS, LP
12 47 45 30 29
1983 Born Again
  • Released: 7 August 1983
  • Label: Vertigo, Warner Bros.
  • Format: CD, CS, LP
4 37 14 44 7 39
  • UK: Platinum
1986 Seventh Star
  • Released: 28 January 1986
  • Label: Vertigo, Warner Bros.
  • Format: CD, CS, LP
27 51 17 11 78
1987 The Eternal Idol
  • Released: 1 November 1987
  • Label: Vertigo, Warner Bros.
  • Format: CD, CS, LP
66 168
1989 Headless Cross
  • Released: 1 April 1989
  • Label: I.R.S.
  • Format: CD, CS, LP
31 18 71 22 23 115
  • UK: Gold
1990 Tyr
  • Released: 20 August 1990
  • Label: I.R.S.
  • Format: CD, CS, LP
24 24 12 77 24 24
1992 Dehumanizer
  • Released: 22 June 1992
  • Label: I.R.S.
  • Format: CD, CS, LP
28 7 31 14 63 12 13 44
  • UK: Platinum
1994 Cross Purposes
  • Released: 31 January 1994
  • Label: I.R.S.
  • Format: CD, CS, LP
41 23 32 85 9 41 122
1995 Forbidden
  • Released: 8 June 1995
  • Label: I.R.S.
  • Format: CD, CS, LP
71 40 35 86 19 48
"—" denotes albums that did not chart.

Live albums[edit]

Year Album details Peak chart positions Certifications
UK
[9]
FIN
[12]
FRA
[22]
GER
[13]
NLD
[14]
NZ
[16]
SWE
[17]
US
[19]
1982 Live Evil
  • Released: December 1982
  • Label: Vertigo, Warner Bros.
  • Format: CD, LP
13 37 34 34 15 37
1995 Cross Purposes Live
  • Released: 1995
  • Label: I.R.S.
  • Format: CD
1998 Reunion
  • Released: 20 October 1998
  • Label: Epic
  • Format: CD
41 29 65 40 11 11
"—" denotes albums that did not chart.

Compilation albums[edit]

1996 The Sabbath Stones
2007 Black Sabbath: The Dio Years 151
[23]
35 32 54
2008 The Rules of Hell
"—" denotes albums that did not chart.

Singles[edit]

1980 "Heaven and Hell" Heaven and Hell
"Neon Knights" 22 "Children of the Sea" (live)
"Die Young" 41 "Heaven and Hell" (live)
1981 "Children of the Sea"
"The Mob Rules" 46 Mob Rules "Die Young" (live)
1982 "Turn Up the Night" 37 24 "Lonely Is the Word"
"Voodoo" 46
1983 "Trashed" Born Again
1986 "No Stranger to Love" Seventh Star
1987 "The Shining" The Eternal Idol
1989 "Headless Cross" 62 Headless Cross "Cloak and Dagger"
"Devil and Daughter" 81[24]
1990 "Feels Good to Me" 79[25] Tyr "Paranoid" (live)
1992 "TV Crimes" 33 Dehumanizer "Letters from Earth" / "Time Machine"
1994 "The Hand That Rocks the Cradle" Cross Purposes
1998 "Psycho Man" 3 Reunion
1999 "Selling My Soul" 17
"—" denotes albums that did not chart.

Videos[edit]

Year Album details Peak chart positions Certifications
SWE
[26]
FIN
[27]
AUT
[28]
BEL
[29]
SWI
[30]
NLD
[31]
1980 Black and Blue
  • Released: 1980
  • Label: PolyGram
  • Format: VHS, LaserDisc
1991 The Black Sabbath Story, Vol. 1
  • Released: 1991
  • Label: Sanctuary
  • Format: VHS, LaserDisc, DVD
1
1992 The Black Sabbath Story, Vol. 2
  • Released: 1992
  • Label: Sanctuary
  • Format: VHS, LaserDisc, DVD
5
1995 Cross Purposes Live
  • Released: 1995
  • Label: Picture
  • Format: VHS
1999 The Last Supper
  • Released: 1999
  • Label: Sony
  • Format: VHS, DVD
11
  • UK: Gold
"—" denotes albums that did not chart.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Dave Lifton (January 28, 2017). "Black Sabbath keyboardist Geoff Nicholls dies". Ultimate Classic Rock. Retrieved December 7, 2017. 
  2. ^ Elder, Bruce. "Biography: Geoff Nicholls". Allmusic. Retrieved 10 March 2010. 
  3. ^ Warrell, Richard (July 23, 2012). "Tony Martin interview". Born Music Online. Retrieved August 9, 2012. [permanent dead link]
  4. ^ Iommi, Tony (28 January 2017). "Former BLACK SABBATH Keyboardist GEOFF NICHOLLS Dies After Battle With Lung Cancer". Blabbermouth. Retrieved 28 January 2017. 
  5. ^ Peters, Mitchell (January 28, 2017). "Geoff Nicholls, Black Sabbath Keyboardist, Dies at 68". Billboard. Retrieved December 7, 2017. 
  6. ^ Flanagan, Andrew (January 28, 2017). "Geoff Nicholls, Longtime Keyboardist For Black Sabbath, Dies Aged 68". npr. Retrieved December 7, 2017. 
  7. ^ McGeorge, Alistair (January 28, 2017). "Black Sabbath's Geoff Nicholls dies aged 68 as Ozzy Osbourne remembers 'great friend'". mirror.co.uk. Retrieved December 7, 2017. 
  8. ^ "RIP". Classic Rock #234. April 2017. p. 16. 
  9. ^ a b "Black Sabbath Discography". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 2013-05-01. 
  10. ^ "Discographie Black Sabbath" (in German). Ö3 Austria Top 40. Retrieved 2013-05-02. 
  11. ^ Steffen Hung. "Danish charts portal". danishcharts.com. Retrieved 2014-05-19. 
  12. ^ a b "Discography Black Sabbath". The Official Finnish Charts. Retrieved 2013-05-01. 
  13. ^ a b "Discographie Black Sabbath" (in German). Media Control. Retrieved 2013-05-01. 
  14. ^ a b "Discography Black Sabbath" (in Dutch). MegaCharts. Retrieved 2013-05-01. 
  15. ^ "Discography Black Sabbath" (in Norwegian). VG-lista. Retrieved 2013-05-02. 
  16. ^ a b "Discography Black Sabbath". Recording Industry Association of New Zealand. Retrieved 2013-05-01. 
  17. ^ a b "Discography Black Sabbath" (in Swedish). Sverigetopplistan. Retrieved 2013-05-02. 
  18. ^ "Discography Black Sabbath" (in German). Swiss Singles Top 100. Retrieved 2013-05-02. 
  19. ^ a b "Billboard charts". Billboard. Retrieved 2013-05-02. 
  20. ^ a b c d e "RIAA Gold and Platinum Search for albums by Black Sabbath". Riaa.com. Archived from the original on 2015-09-24. Retrieved 2010-11-13. 
  21. ^ a b c d "Music Canada: Black Sabbath". Music Canada. Retrieved 2008-01-03. 
  22. ^ "Discography Black Sabbath". Syndicat national de l'édition phonographique. Retrieved 2013-05-02. 
  23. ^ "Chart Log UK : New Entries Update : 21.04.2007". Zobbel.de. Retrieved 2014-05-19. 
  24. ^ "You searched Albums and Singles for 'Devil And Daughter'". Theofficialcharts.com. Retrieved 2014-05-19. 
  25. ^ "You searched Albums and Singles for 'Feels Good To Me'". Theofficialcharts.com. Retrieved 2014-05-19. 
  26. ^ "Veckolista DVD Album - Vecka 22, 2002". Sverigetopplistan.se. Archived from the original on 2015-12-26. Retrieved 2014-03-07. 
    "Veckolista DVD Album - Vecka 33, 15 augusti 2003". Sverigetopplistan.se. Archived from the original on 2015-12-26. Retrieved 2014-03-07. 
    "Veckolista DVD Album - Vecka 35, 29 augusti 2003". Sverigetopplistan.se. Archived from the original on 2015-12-26. Retrieved 2014-03-07. 
    "Veckolista DVD Album - Vecka 48, 29 november 2013". Sverigetopplistan.se. Archived from the original on 2015-12-26. Retrieved 2014-03-07. 
  27. ^ "Musiikkituottajat - Tilastot - Suomen virallinen lista - Musiikki DVD:t". Ifpi.fi. Retrieved 2017-06-30. 
  28. ^ Steffen Hung. "Austria Top 40 - Musik-DVD Top 10 06.12.2013". Austriancharts.at. Retrieved 2017-06-30. 
  29. ^ "Ultratop Belgian Charts". Ultratop.be. Retrieved 2017-06-30. 
  30. ^ Steffen Hung. "Schweizer Hitparade - Musik-DVD Top 10 08.12.2013". Hitparade.ch. Retrieved 2017-06-30. 
  31. ^ Steffen Hung (2013-11-30). "Dutch Charts". Dutchcharts.nl. Retrieved 2017-06-30. 
  32. ^ "ARIA". Australian Recording Industry Association. Retrieved 2008-01-03. 

External links[edit]

  • "Jneal02". Brumbeat.  Images of Geoff Nichols at the Jonny Neal and the Starliners reunion.
  • "Reflections on Geoff Nicholls". Black-Sabbath.com. January 2017.  Black Sabbath Online fan site tribute.