WILTS & GLOUCESTERSHIRE STANDARD
7 January 2016 by Brendan McFadden
A moment of panic !
THE great and good of the music world are in Cirencester today to pay homage to a rock legend. Talented drummer Cozy Powell played in host of huge rock bands in the 80s including The Jeff Beck Group, Rainbow, Whitesnake and Black Sabbath and was regarded as one of the best drummers of his generation.
In 1998 the rock world was in mourning when Cozy who loved fast cars was killed in a car accident on the M4. But Cozy’s memory lives on and Cirencester Town Council decided to create the plaque to remember him, which was unveiled at the Corn Hall in the town today by Queen guitarist Brian May and Tony Iommi the lead guitarost of Black Sabbath who played with Cozy.
A number of Cozy’s rock star friends attended the event including American musician Suzi Quatro who is regarded as the first female bass player to become a major rock star and Bernie Marsden an iconic guitarist who has featured in Whitesnake.
Tony Iommi, Brian May and Suzi Quatro took to the stage outside the Corn Hall to pay tribute to Cozy in front of a huge crowd. The plaque was then officially unveiled by Brian and Tony but as the pair did there was a moment of panic. For a moment, it looked like the rail for the curtain that hid the plaque could have fallen down as one of its hinges broke off, causing it to swing. But there was no need to panic and the crowd still cheered as the rail held firm.
At the civic reception held inside the Corn Hall afterwards, Brian and Tony and many other rock legends told stories about him in front of a crowd made up of his friends and musicians.
Brian described Cozy as a pioneer of a new aggressive drumming style in the 70s and 80s. He said: “Cozy and his generation created a new way of drumming it was completely different. He hit it with every inch of his soul. He had that ebullient type of energy that you needed. Cozy was right up there, he was hero for many. He was a great human being, he was kind and compassionate to all humans and animals. He was born in Cirencester, he is a true son of this place and I think that it is wonderful that Cirencester is honouring him in this way.”
Tony Iommi described Cozy as one of the greatest drummers of all time. He said: “He was one of the greatest and there is very few left. He totally comes from a great league of great players. He was a great friend, it is a great thing to have a plaque outside and he well deserves it.”