Anthony Philip Harford, better known by his stage name Tony Martin, is a heavy metal vocalist best known for his work with Black Sabbath from 1987 to 1990 and again from 1993 to 1997. Martin was the band's second longest serving vocalist after Ozzy Osbourne. He has since been involved in many other projects (such as M3, Misha Calvin, The Cage, Giuntini Project, and Phenomena ("Psychofantasy" album)).
During the recording of the "Eternal Idol", Martin was brought in to re-record Ray Gillen's tracks, and former Electric Light Orchestra drummer Bev Bevan to complete a few percussion overdubs. He had been contacted by Black Sabbath to replace Glenn Hughes the year before and finally got into the band after a successful audition singing the track "The Shining". Before the release of the new album, Black Sabbath accepted an offer to play six shows at Sun City, South Africa during the apartheid era. During this period Geezer Butler was coerced into rejoining the band along with Bev Bevan (who previously was in Sabbath during 83/84 on the Born Again tour).
The Black Sabbath drew criticism from activists and artists involved with Artists United Against Apartheid, who had been boycotting South Africa since 1985. Eventually drummer Bev Bevan refused to play the shows, and was replaced by Terry Chimes, formerly of The Clash. After nearly a year in production, Martin's debut with Sabbath "The Eternal Idol" was released on 8 December 1987 and ignored by contemporary reviewers.
Black Sabbath released "Headless Cross" in April 1989, and this album was again ignored by contemporary reviewers. Eventually, Allmusic would give the album four stars, calling "Headless Cross" "the finest non-Ozzy or Dio Black Sabbath album". Tony Martin returned to the studio with Black Sabbath in February 1990 to record "Tyr", the follow-up to "Headless Cross". While not technically a concept album, some of the album's lyrical themes are loosely based on Norse mythology. "Tyr" was released on 6 August 1990, and reached number 24 on the UK albums chart, but was the first Black Sabbath release not to break the Billboard 200 in the US.
At the demo level for "Back Where I Belong", Tony Martin played all the instruments and the album itself featured former Black Sabbath members Neil Murray and Geoff Nicholls, as well as Brian May on guitar, among others. Cozy Powell also joined the band for the subsequent tour after leaving Black Sabbath himself. There were two singles released for the album.
Late in 2004, Tony let it be known that there would be a new solo album by him out in 2005. The album was recorded at Tony Martin’s house, which is in Headless Cross in Worcestershire England. The album featured again former Sabbath member Geoff Nicholls and some drum tracks from the late Cozy Powell.
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