NY Post: You’re not afraid to talk about your love for Michael Bublé.
Rob Halford: Even though I’m a metal singer, the fact that I’ve been able to appreciate other types of performers has probably paid dividends.
When I listen to Michael Bublé, it’s exciting, it’s inspiring. I feel the same way with Michael Feinstein or Ryan Adams. I’m drawn to singers who have something different to say vocally, and Adele would be in there. I saw [Barbra] Streisand in Phoenix and that was mind-blowing. Her voice is just so pure.
NY Post: You’re definitely thinking outside of the metal box.
Rob Halford: I’ve also always had a passion for some types of opera — I’ve got a massive Pavarotti collection. I sing Nessun Dorma when I warm up backstage.
NY Post: Is Priest ever going to put out the tracks you guys did in ’88 with producers Stock Aitken Waterman, of Kylie Minogue and Rick Astley fame?
Rob Halford: I personally would love to release them, but there’s a different consensus within the band. Our rendition of [the Stylistics’] You Are Everything is just beautiful — it’s an ’80s megarock ballad, with big drums, big vocals, sweeping strings.
People are a lot more open-minded now, whereas in those days it could have created a bit of push-back, maybe even some damage to our reputation.
NY Post: Yet from Day 1, you’ve pushed the boundaries in your stage visuals, with all that leather and chains.
Rob Halford: The outfit I used to wear for our first three or four songs was like carrying one of those huge military backpacks! I had to have an operation on my spine a year ago.
My new outfits are just as visually strong but they’re about a quarter of the weight — we’ve reduced the tonnage of the studs [chuckles]. I’ve been in London working on them with Ray Brown. I look a bit like the Tin Man from The Wizard of Oz on the new tour.
Read more at the New York Post.