Judas Priest will finally get the opportunity to celebrate their 50th anniversary this year with the launch of a North American tour this fall. The 50 Heavy Metal Years tour will also feature Sabaton as openers and is being fueled by the highest-charting album of Priest’s career, Firepower, which peaked at No. 5 on the Billboard 200 chart.

Produced by Live Nation, the North American tour — which will run throughout September, October and early November — will feature a variety of special effects, which will undoubtedly enhance the might of Priest’s metal.

Tickets for the newly announced dates will go on sale beginning this Friday, June 11th at 10 a.m. local time at Ticketmaster. Tickets for the previously announced tour dates are available now.

Said singer Rob Halford, “Defending the heavy metal faith for fifty years, the Priest is back.”

Added guitarist Glenn Tipton, “Time to don the leather and studs and roll out the Priest machine — celebrating our 50 Heavy Metal Years.”

Said bassist Ian Hill, “After the horrific year of restrictions we’ve all had to endure, what better place to break free than the land of the free — the USA.”

Judas Priest 2021 tour dates:

Sep. 8 – Reading, PA – Santander Arena* 
Sep. 9 – Virginia Beach, VA – Veterans United Home Loans Amphitheater*+ 
Sep. 11 – Orlando, FL – Central Florida Fairgrounds^# 
Sep. 13 – Charlotte, NC – PNC Music Pavilion 
Sep. 14 – Raleigh, NC – Red Hat Amphitheater* 
Sep. 16 – Grand Rapids, MI – Van Andel Arena* 
Sep. 17 – Youngstown, OH – Covelli Centre^ 
Sep. 19 – Detroit, MI – Fox Theatre* 
Sep. 20 – Rosemont, IL – Rosemont Theatre* 
Sep. 22 – Milwaukee, WI – Miller High Life Theatre^ 
Sep. 23 – Minneapolis, MN – The Armory* 
Sep. 25 – Maryland Heights, MO – Saint Louis Music Park 
Sep. 26 – Louisville, KY – Louder Than Life Festival^# 
Sep. 29 – Denver, CO – The Mission Ballroom^ 
Sep. 30 – West Valley City, UT – Maverik Center* 
Oct. 2 – Everett, WA – Angel Of The Winds Arena* 
Oct. 3 – Portland, OR – Moda Center* 
Oct. 5 – Oakland, CA – Fox Theater^ 
Oct. 6 – Los Angeles, CA – Microsoft Theater^ 
Oct. 8 – Las Vegas, NV – Zappos Theater at Planet Hollywood 
Oct. 9 – Phoenix, AZ – Arizona Federal Theatre 
Oct. 12 – San Antonio, TX – Freeman Coliseum^ 
Oct. 13 – Cedar Park, TX – HEB Center Cedar Park^ 
Oct. 15 – Irving, TX – The Pavilion at Toyota Music Factory 
Oct. 16 – Oklahoma City, OK – The Zoo Amphitheatre^ 
Oct. 19 – Independence, MO – Cable Dahmer Arena* 
Oct. 21 – Nashville, TN – Nashville Municipal Auditorium* 
Oct. 22 – Alpharetta, GA – Ameris Bank Amphitheatre* 
Oct. 24 – Charleston, WV – Charleston Civic Center Coliseum* 
Oct. 25 – Philadelphia, PA – The Met* 
Oct. 27 – Newark, NJ – Prudential Center* 
Oct. 28 – Oxon Hill, MD – The Theater at MGM National Harbor 
Oct. 30 – Mashantucket, CT – Foxwoods Resort Casino – Grand Theater^ 
Oct. 31 – Lowell, MA – Tsongas Center At UMass Lowell* 
Nov. 2 – Halifax, NS – Scotiabank Centre* 
Nov. 4 – Laval, QC – Place Bell* 
Nov. 5 – Hamilton, ONT – First Ontario Centre*

* new show 
^ not a Live Nation event 
# festival date 
SABATON not support on this date; support is to be determined

Judas Priest originally formed in 1970 in Birmingham, England (an area that many feel birthed heavy metal). The original nucleus of musicians would go on to change the face of heavy metal. Throughout the 70’s Priest were responsible for helping trail blaze metal with such classic offerings as Sad Wings of Destiny (1976) Sin After Sin (1977) and Hell Bent for Leather (1978) as well as one of the genre’s top live recordings Unleashed in the East (1979) among others.

It was during the 80’s that Priest conquered the world, becoming a global arena headliner on the strength of such all-time classics as British Steel (1980) and Screaming for Vengeance (1982), as well as being one of the first metal bands to be embraced by the then-burgeoning MTV, plus performing at some of the decades biggest concerts (1980’s Monsters of Rock, 1983’s US Festival, and 1985’s Live Aid) and being the first to exclusively wear leather and studs – a look that began during this era and would eventually be embraced by metal heads throughout the world. Priest’s success continued throughout the 90’s and beyond with the addition of drummer Scott Travis, as evidenced by such additional stellar offerings as Painkiller (1990) Angel of Retribution (2005) and A Touch of Evil: Live (2009) the latter of which saw Priest win a Grammy Award for a killer rendition of the classic Dissident Aggressor.

In 2011 new guitarist Richie Faulkner came in to replace the previous guitarist who had left in 2010 – the move seemed to have reinvigorated the band, as evidenced by a show-stealing performance on the American Idol TV program that also served as Faulkner’s debut performance with the band (also in 2011 was the release of a new compilation The Chosen Few which included Priest classics selected by some of metal’s biggest names) and the Epitaph concert DVD in 2013. 

Priest’s next studio effort would arrive in 2014 Redeemer of Souls which was supported by another strong tour. In 2017 (and again in 2019) Judas Priest received a nomination for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and got ready to unleash their latest studio album Firepower (produced by Andy Sneap and Tom Allom) which received global success and critical acclaim. In 2020, a fully official and authorized photographic book, Judas Priest: 50 Heavy Metal Years, was issued. 

Few rock or metal acts remain as much of a must-see live attraction as Judas Priest. Having been forced off the road for over a year, Priest will soon make a most-welcomed return to metalheads coast to coast, with the 50 Heavy Metal Years Tour. 

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  • robert davenport on

    As far as priest and drummers , I think they have had more than a few , original guy john Hinch I think first 2 albums , simon Phillips sin after sin awesome drummer – then les blinks and dave holland , then scott travis – holland played on their biggest albums and biggest hits , scott has been with them the longest I believe – he is also a great drummer- their true sound was glen Tipton and kk downing together with halfords vocals – it doesnt really work for me anymore , halford just isn’t enough at least for me ~

  • D.J.H on

    “In 2011 new guitarist Richie Faulkner came in to replace the previous guitarist who had left in 2010”.

    How disrespectful!!!!!

    The ‘previous guitarist’ (Who has a name by the way – it’s KK Downing) was, if you listen to his new band; the one that really gave JP that aggressive edge to their sound and helped to build them up to what they have become.

    As Medved commented earlier their time is up; and that is coming from a Priest fan. I couldn’t stand Redeemer of Souls when I first heard it so never bought it and Firepower did nothing for me either. I personally would like Rob to get back with ‘Metal Mike’ and make a Halford album on the scale of Resurrection – which I can’t believe is 21-years-old this year!!!

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