Monday, February 12, 2018

Judas Priest: Glenn Tipton retires from touring following Parkinson’s diagnosis

Judas Priest have announced that guitarist Glenn Tipton will step aside from touring in support of the band’s March 9 set, “Firepower”, as they share news of his lengthy battle with Parkinson’s Disease.

“Ten years ago, Glenn was diagnosed to have the onset of the early stages of Parkinson’s,” says the group about the degenerative disorder of the central nervous system. “From then until recently Glenn has lived his life as the great heavy metal guitar player he has always been, maintaining by his own definition a standard of quality and performance that is incredibly important.

“Right now, Glenn is able to play and perform some of the Priest songs that are less challenging but due to the nature of Parkinson's progression he wants to let you all know that he won't be touring as such.

“True to the metal spirit of 'the show must go on'," they add, “Glenn has requested [guitarist and Firepower co-producer] Andy Sneap to fly the flag on stage for him.”

“I want everyone to know that it’s vital that the Judas Priest tour go ahead and that I am not leaving the band - it’s simply that my role has changed,” explains Tipton. “I don’t rule out the chance to go on stage as and when I feel able to blast out some Priest! So at some point in the not too distant future I’m really looking forward to seeing all of our wonderful metal maniacs once again.”

“We have been privileged to witness Glenn’s determination and steadfast commitment over the years,” says Tipton’s bandmates, “showing his passion and self belief through the writing, recording and performing sessions with Priest - he is a true metal hero!

“We are not surprised by Glenn’s insistence that we complete the Firepower tour and thank Andy for joining us to make Glenn’s wishes become real - as Glenn has said we also can’t wait to have him with us at any time any place on the road..... We love you Glenn!”

A veteran metal producer and guitarist, Sneap co-produced Judas Priest’s eighteenth studio album alongside Tom Allom.

Formed in Birmingham, UK in 1969, Tipton joined Judas Priest in time for the recording of their 1974 debut album, “Rocka Rolla”; his twin-lead guitar work with K.K. Downing provided a signature sound for the group through the years.

Judas Priest will launch a spring North American tour in support of “Firepower” in Wilkes Barre, PA on March 13.

See also:

AUDIO: Judas Priest streams Firepower title track
Former Judas Priest guitarist KK Downing to publish memoir
Former Judas Priest drummer Dave Holland dead at 69
Judas Priest preview Firepower track Spectre
Search Judas Priest at hennemusic