JUDAS PRIEST will be inducted into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame this year. PRIEST will receive the Musical Excellence Award at the event, which will honor Eminem, Dolly Parton, DURAN DURAN, Lionel Richie, Pat Benatar, EURYTHMICS and Carly Simon in the Performers category.
According to the Hall Of Fame, the JUDAS PRIEST members that will get inducted include current members Rob Halford (vocals),Ian Hill (bass),Glenn Tipton (guitar) and Scott Travis (drums),along with former members K.K. Downing (guitar),Les Binks (drums) and late drummer Dave Holland.
In a new interview with Billboard conducted after he received the news before the public announcement, Halford said that PRIEST’s former members are welcome to be part of the induction, and he feels any animosities can be set aside for the occasion.
“They have every right to be a part of the event,” he said. “I’m very pleased for everybody. There’s no bitterness. There’s no angst. There’s not that kind of stuff that’s lingering. If there is you have to push all that away. You have to push it to the side and just understand and accept and respect this wonderful opportunity and what it represents in terms of recognition and a celebration.”
Halford went on to say that Tipton — who’s battling Parkinson’s disease but was on the road playing during the encores of PRIEST’s latest North American tour — will likely attend the ceremony.
The 2022 Rock Hall induction ceremony will be held on November 5 at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles. It will air at a later date on HBO and stream on HBO Max. There will also be a radio simulcast on SiriusXM’s Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame Radio channel 310.
Downing left PRIEST in 2011 amid claims of band conflict, shoddy management and declining quality of performance.
In 2019, Downing said that he reached out to JUDAS PRIEST about taking part in the band’s 50th-anniversary tour but that their response was that they were not interested in including him in the celebrations.
In 2018, Downing revealed that he sent two resignation letters to his bandmates when he decided to quit JUDAS PRIEST. The first was described as “a graceful exit note, implying a smooth retirement from music,” while the second was “angrier, laying out all of his frustrations with specific parties.”
Downing later said that he believed the second letter was “a key reason” he wasn’t invited to rejoin PRIEST after Tipton’s decision to retire from touring.
In February, Hill and Halford told Billboard that they would be happy to stand alongside Downing at a Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame induction later this year. “It’s not a problem to us, no,” Hill said. “Ken was an integral part of this band for a very, very long time. He deserves to be there along with the rest of us.” Halford predicted that, “It won’t be as awkward as Ace [Frehley] and Peter [Criss with KISS’s Rock Hall induction]. I don’t think it’ll be awkward at all. I think you have to let all of that go because it’s the night that matters. It’s the moment that matters — but, again, the proverbial saying, we’ll cross that bridge when we get to it.”
In 2019, Halford was asked by Fox Sports 910’s “Freak Nation” if fans could expect to see any of the former PRIEST members joining the band on stage during a Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame induction. He responded: “With something like the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame, there’s a tinge of ‘what if’ [and] ‘whatever.’ It’s an open book.
“I know what you’re alluding to, and as I’ve had to [say] in the past, it’s just a case of ‘wait and see,'” he continued. “But it’s a celebration, and it’s 50 years of PRIEST, and, man, it’s gonna be great. Should we get in, it’s gonna be amazing.”
After host Kenny Sargent brought up the original KISS lineup’s controversial 2014 Rock Hall induction which was at least partly overshadowed by the musicians’ decision not to perform, Halford said: “[PRIEST is] not the first band that this has happened to, and on the day, some things turn out the way a lot of people want ’em.
“I was thinking about this the other day,” Halford added. “And this thing came into my head: ‘Jim, the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, or of the one.’ Spock [in] ‘Star Trek’. When he goes in the radiation room. Isn’t that great? … That’s a t-shirt, or an inspirational card.”
Downing previously told Rockin’ Metal Revival that there is a very good chance that he would perform with his former bandmates again if PRIEST gets the nod. “Oh, I think absolutely,” he said. “I mean, why wouldn’t you, really? It’s a special thing. We’re all of an age now. These opportunities only come once in a lifetime. And it seemingly takes a lifetime to get into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame. I’ve always said, there’s no such thing as a young legend, right? [Laughs] So, while we’re still here, it would be great to receive that accolade and put on a great performance and put that one to bed.”