On April 27, 1979, Bill Ward was sent to fire Ozzy Osbourne from Black Sabbath. This action proved to be one of the most monumental events in metal's history, setting of a chain reaction that completely reshaped the genre's future as it entered the '80s and all for the better.

By the end of the decade, Sabbath were eight albums into their career and in a total tailspin. Drugs and drink were a major part of the problem, while financial catastrophes burdened the band's members on a more private note. With no sense of direction and an emerging crop of new and heavy bands, metal's godfathers were at a crossroads: continue to spiral with Ozzy or venture into the unknown.

It was a massive risk that paid off, especially for the singer, who resurrected his career as a solo artist and is now a household name around the world as metal's most notable ambassador.

Ozzy wasn't the only one to experience the benefit as Sabbath continued, recruiting Ronnie James Dio and over the next 40 years, a multitude of immensely talented artists emerged, all in debt to Osbourne for various reasons, which we explore in the video above.

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Photos: Ozzy Osbourne Through the Years