Last year, heavy metal legends Judas Priest entered the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in a very historic moment.
The inducted members comprised of the present ensemble: Rob Halford, Scott Travis, Ian Hill, and Glenn Tipton, coupled with past associates Les Binks, Dave Holland, and K.K. Downing. However, one noticeable absence was that of Tim “Ripper” Owens, a former frontman who held the fort for almost a decade.
In a candid interview with Robert Cavuoto of MyGlobalMind, Owens expressed his disappointment over not being acknowledged during the induction. His exact words were poignant (transcribed by Blabbermouth): “I don’t know. They never called me, thanked me. The only time Judas Priest calls me is to say they’re gonna sue me or something. But no one reached out. I’m glad Ken [original Priest guitarist K.K. Downing] went in. I’m happy for K.K. Yeah, I was just shocked that I didn’t even get a mention, a call from the band. [I was in the band for] almost 10 years and [we got] a Grammy nomination [during my time with the band] and all that. I would’ve liked to have heard a ‘thank you’ or maybe on stage a ‘thank you’, but it’s not shocking. And that’s what happens.”
Owens expanded, saying that although his contributions to Judas Priest have been largely “erased” from the band’s history, he still considers the band friends. He also noted how happy he was to see Downing onstage with the band, saying:
“They erased my part of the Judas Priest history, so it’s not shocking. It is really great for Ken, other than after it was all said and done, the management threw him under the bus and said bad things about him in the press. But Ken had nothing but great things to say about it. He said he had a blast, and it was great seeing the guys. And I like Ken’s perspective on it. When we talked about it, he said how great it was, and I’m just really happy for him. I’m happy for all the guys. I love ’em to death, and Glenn [Tipton] and Ian [Hill] and Scott [Travis] and Rob [Halford]. [It’s] well deserved.
“I love the fact that even though I’ve been erased, I still call ’em friends and family, including Rob. I love, whenever I see Rob somewhere and we talk, and I love watching him and I love that his voice is sounding so great again. It’s a shame that I’ve been erased, but it doesn’t change the fact that I love the guys and it was a great time.”
At the 2022 Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame event, Judas Priest was honored with the Musical Excellence Award, sharing the limelight with luminaries like Eminem, Dolly Parton, and Duran Duran. The occasion was an affirmation of the band’s indelible mark in the music world. However, it also underscored the complex dynamics and emotions that come with being part of a musical legacy.
See the full interview below.