Judas Priest guitarist Glenn Tipton has posted the following message at the band’s official website:

“By now many of you will know I won’t be doing the forthcoming Judas Priest tour because of health issues—I’m so sorry but four years ago I was diagnosed with Parkinson’s and was told by my specialist that I had already had it for over ten years – I knew something was wrong with my co-ordination and fluency regarding my playing but I worked around it and battled on – I have good days and bad days but the disease is degenerative and I would never want to compromise the greatest metal band in the world—it was therefore during the last rehearsals I decided to step down and have Andy Sneap fill in—he’s a great guy and I’m sure he’ll do a great job – I’m sure the band will be as strong than ever

I have been overwhelmed by the massive support and love I’ve had from other artists and from fans all over the world and from many friends and metal maniacs out there – it’s not the end for me – I’ll still be able to write and record and on good days even join the band on stage for a few songs – with new medication and advances being made who knows what the future holds – but one thing’s for sure – it will certainly involve Priest!

Finally the biggest thanks goes to Rob, Richie, Ian and Scott who have stood by me and supported me through everything – GLENN”

Judas Priest released their latest album, Firepower on March 9th and launched their North American tour last night (March 13th) in Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania.

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  • Doug R. on

    All the best, Glenn! Hopefully they’ll invent a new “Painkiller” that actually works, and it’ll be a good day when and if JP comes my way! It’d be great to see you on stage again one more time, even if it’s just for a few songs. Cheers!

  • Rattlehead on

    God bless you, Glenn. While you will surely be missed by your fans on this tour, save for those days you feel well enough to join the band onstage, it’s great that the music you created is still being performed for fans that want to hear it.

    I admire Glenn’s passion for his band and how he still wants to be a part of it. Hopefully, advancements can be made that will make it possible for Glenn to resume he rightful role as a full time guitarist for Judas Priest.

  • shannon mehaffey on

    From watching the youtube footage, Rob is killing it this tour, his performance on Firepower is no stunt, he’s sounding stronger than he has in over 15 years. For that reason alone, Priest should tour. The leads are demarcated much differently; Richie is really shouldering the bulk of the lead guitar work; he takes many of Glenn’s leads. It’s funny to watch though, Priest has been hit hard with some bad breaks and there Rob is, out of the rubble, just commanding…the whole world. Take on the World was written for precisely this tour. Also, there is no doubt that Andy didn’t play Glenn’s parts in the studio, in case you were wondering.

    I have tried to come up with my list of best Priest songs and I find myself looking at their work and seeing songs, abstract art pieces, and operas; three distinct categories where I am reluctant to mingle them together.

    For songs-

    Fire Down Below
    You’ve Got Another Thing Comin’
    Heading out to the Highway
    Don’t Go
    Desert Plains
    Beyond the Realms of Death
    Saints In Hell
    Hell Bent for Leather

    Abstract Art-
    The Hellion/Electric Eye
    Rapid Fire

    The Sentinel
    Victim of Changes

  • T on

    I recently saw a great “Making of British Steel” doc on cable. It’s a great look into the making of that album.

  • Keith G on

    Glen is such a trooper! At his age, and with his health issues, it would be easy and understandable if would just bow out of Judas Priest. He has nothing to prove! He is one of the founders of arguably the most influential heavy metal band in the world! His music will live on forever, he’s toured the world countless times, and played for millions of people. But he soldiers on, hoping to feel good enough to play a few songs during the tour each night, writing music with his bandmates, and working around his disabilities to play all of his parts on the FIREPOWER album. As a fan, I am so proud of how Glen has handled this issue. I pray to God to bless Glen and his family, and to inspire the medical community to come up with treatments that will allow this man to live without the disabling effects of this disease.

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