Judas Priest have released the following statement:

Ten years ago Glenn was diagnosed to have the onset of the early stages of Parkinson’s – 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’ Glenn has requested 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.  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”

Rob, Richie, Ian and Scott have this to say:

“We have been privileged to witness Glenn’s determination and steadfast commitment over the years, 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!”

For anyone who doesn’t know already, Glenn Tipton was part of the Tipton/Downing partnership that set the standard for twin Heavy Metal guitar playing from the mid-70’s onwards, powering Judas Priest to the status of being the archetypal Heavy Metal band (especially once Rob Halford introduced them all to leather and studs!). Glenn‘s influence, along with his longtime axe-partner KK Downing, who retired a few years ago, cannot be underestimated.

Andy Sneap‘s career in music began in Sabbat, a band that could be considered to have been ahead of their time and who never reached the heights they should have. Following their dissolution, Sneap moved over into engineering and production, working with the likes of Arch Enemy, Megadeth, Accept and now Judas Priest. As a guitarist, he was instrumental in the resurrection of Hell, a band he loved and was inspired to form Sabbat by.

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