Tony Iommi organises hospital charity guitar auction, talks Ozzy and lockdown

(Image credit: Future)

Tony Iommi is under strict quarantine during the Covid-19 lockdown after cancer treatment but it's give him time to come up with a plan to help a hospital charity with an eBay charity auction with some very special items, including a signature SG guitar from his home studio.

“I was spending self-isolation clearing the studio, and hit on the idea of an auction," Tony told the Birmingham Mail

Top of the lots is a signed Epiphone signature Iommi SG that he uses to write in his home studio in the Cotswolds.  And as Iommi's personal guitar it's left-handed but Tony says he also has a right-handed guitar if needed…

“’l'll sign it, too," says Iommi. "But I also have a spare right-handed guitar I keep handy for when friends drop in and want to jam. If Brian May calls round, I keep it handy so we can play together. I’ll put that one up if it’s more to the winning bidder’s taste.”

The auction is now live on eBay here and the SG has already gone beyond its £3,000 estimate and there's rare Sabbath boxsets up for grabs too, with proceeds going to Birmingham's Queen Elizabeth Hospital charity.

And if you've ever wondered how a guitar legend passes the time in housebound isolation, Tony was happy to reveal what he's been up to. 

“I’ve washed the car, cleaned the garage out, done all those little jobs that you realise needed doing, just like everyone else.

"Neighbours have dropped a note through the door, asking if I want any shopping"

“Maria [Sjöholm, Tony's wife] and I have been binge-watching TV, too – we’ve been doing Ozark and Boardwalk Empire – and I’ve been playing guitar. It’s a bit like being on tour, without getting out to play. You’re stuck in the room each night.

“Neighbours have dropped a note through the door, asking if I want any shopping. They’re looking out for the poor old sod!"

And the rifflord also revealed he's been in regular contact with his old Sabbath bandmate.

“I think this has brought us all closer. I’m even in touch with Ozzy every day as he gets over his own health problems in LA.”

The auction is now live on 

Rob Laing
Guitars Editor, MusicRadar

I'm the Guitars Editor for MusicRadar, handling news, reviews, features, tuition, advice for the strings side of the site and everything in between. Before MusicRadar I worked on guitar magazines for 15 years, including Editor of Total Guitar in the UK. When I'm not rejigging pedalboards I'm usually thinking about rejigging pedalboards.