In a recent interview with Chuck Shute, ex-Poison member Richie Kotzen talked about the time he was talking with Ozzy Osbourne to become a part of their band.
Richie Kotzen has been in the industry since the early ’90s. He was a part of Poison from 1991 to 1993 and Mr.Big from 1999 to 2002. The Winery Dogs is his current band, of which Kotzen has been the frontman since 2012. In between bands and even before that, he released solo albums. Over the years, the solo projects he put out amounted to more than 20 albums in his discography.
After his Poison days, there were rumors he was joining Ozzy Osbourne’s band following Zakk Wylde’s departure. Everything seemed to be on track when Kotzen mentioned the news to someone. The information was shared in a chat room, and people didn’t like the idea of an ex-Poison member being involved with Ozzy Osbourne.
Richie Kotzen stated that Ozzy and Sharon Osbourne considered him to join the band. He had met Ozzy, and they even watched a movie together while Osbourne told Koztzen stories. They negotiated a deal, and everything was in progress until the news broke out. Once the information received backlash, he never heard from them again.
Richie Kotzen’s words about negotiations with Ozzy Osbourne:
“Yeah, that is true. I must have mentioned that somewhere in the past, but in 1995, I just put out my record on Geffen, and my manager had it all set up. The deal was negotiated, and everything was in play.
I went to New York and watched a movie with Ozzie in his hotel room. He was telling me stories, and I had a meeting at breakfast with Sharon the following day. She was, you know, saying how great it would be. I was sending riffs to them for him to write to.”
He continued by saying:
“I had mentioned to somebody in the business to keep it quiet that you know I was in New York. The friend in the business went into a chat room; back then, it was AOL. He leaked that the ex-Poison guitarist Richie Kotzen would be the new guitar player in Ozzy Osbourne.
I swear to God, many people were getting pissed off the minute that came up because they thought they didn’t know who I was. They saw the word Poison, and then Poison didn’t command this kind of respect musically that Ozzy did. So the way I saw it is that that camp just totally turned on the situation, and I never heard from them again.”
You can watch the interview below.