Newt’s Rock Hall inducts Rainbow, BTO, Steve Earle, Judas Priest, Little Feat, Todd Rundgren, and Mahogany Rush

By Steve Newton As you may aware, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame crapped the bed again yesterday, inducting the likes of Whitney Houston and Depeche Mode over nominees like Thin Lizzy, Soundgarden, Judas Priest, and the MC5. So today Newt’s Rock Hall is gonna match their six additions, and add a seventh to … Continue reading Newt’s Rock Hall inducts Rainbow, BTO, Steve Earle, Judas Priest, Little Feat, Todd Rundgren, and Mahogany Rush

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That time I told Rob Halford that “Freewheel Burning” was my fave tune on Judas Priest’s new album

By Steve Newton I’ve interviewed Rob Halford five times over the years, the first being way the funk back in 1984, when Judas Priest was headed to Vancouver on the Defenders of the Faith tour. At one point in the conversation I asked Rob which tune on the new album was his personal favourite, and … Continue reading That time I told Rob Halford that “Freewheel Burning” was my fave tune on Judas Priest’s new album

Album review: Judas Priest, Ram It Down (1988)

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, AUG. 5, 1988 By Steve Newton Those of you who thought the Priest may have been mellowing out a little on its last record, Turbo–forget it. With the latest, the band’s back to the freewheelin’ raunch that made Defenders of the Faith such a dangerous chunk of vinyl. From … Continue reading Album review: Judas Priest, Ram It Down (1988)

Rock producer Chris Tsangarides, known for his work with Thin Lizzy, Judas Priest, and the Tragically Hip, dead at 61

By Steve Newton Sad news to report today. Chris Tsangarides–who produced such albums as Thin Lizzy’s Thunder and Lightning, Gary Moore’s Back on the Streets, and the Tragically Hip’s Fully Completely–died of heart failure today after battling pneumonia. He was only 61. Tsangarides, who specialized in hard rock, had also worked on albums by Black … Continue reading Rock producer Chris Tsangarides, known for his work with Thin Lizzy, Judas Priest, and the Tragically Hip, dead at 61

How the hell did Judas Priest get nominated to the Rock Hall before Iron Maiden?

By Steve Newton Earlier today I posted a blog about how incredibly lame the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame is for not yet inducting Johnny Winter and Rory Gallagher. But now that I’ve had a few more hours to seriously consider how bogus the Rock Hall is, I’ve got another bone to pick with … Continue reading How the hell did Judas Priest get nominated to the Rock Hall before Iron Maiden?

Judas Priest’s setlist bodes well for British Steel (and Birmingham metal) in Vancouver

By Steve Newton Tonight’s the night for Lower Mainland metalheads! Well, tomorrow’s the night too, I suppose. Tonight and tomorrow (October 27 and 28) legendary heavy-metal act Judas Priest plays Hard Rock Casino Vancouver for what will be its first-ever non-arena Vancouver shows with singer Rob Halford at the fore. So only about a thousand folks each … Continue reading Judas Priest’s setlist bodes well for British Steel (and Birmingham metal) in Vancouver

Judas Priest mixes it up on tour, Rob Halford says Richie Faulkner “saved” the band

By Steve Newton Judas Priest has been headlining arena concerts in Vancouver since the Screaming for Vengeance Tour back in 1982, but this time around things are different. Local headbangers will be able to see the British metal legends in the comparatively cozy confines of the Hard Rock Casino Vancouver for two shows next week. “We’ve been … Continue reading Judas Priest mixes it up on tour, Rob Halford says Richie Faulkner “saved” the band

Rob Halford is “content” with Judas Priest’s two-guitar lineup–but he loves what Iron Maiden does with three

By Steve Newton I interviewed Rob Halford a couple of weeks ago in advance of Judas Priest’s upcoming shows at Hard Rock Casino Vancouver, and we had a pretty nice chat. We go way back, to that time he called me up to promote the Defenders of the Faith tour in ’84. At one point we … Continue reading Rob Halford is “content” with Judas Priest’s two-guitar lineup–but he loves what Iron Maiden does with three

My first-ever Judas Priest interview: Screaming for Vengeance Tour, 1982

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, NOV. 5, 1982 By Steve Newton If there ever was a music devised to torture grandmothers, it would probably sound a lot like Judas Priest, a band that fuses the meanest of lyrics and nastiest of guitar sounds to create what can only be described as raunch. Though more … Continue reading My first-ever Judas Priest interview: Screaming for Vengeance Tour, 1982

Judas Priest’s Rob Halford calls “Black Sabbath” the most evil song that’s ever been written

By Steve Newton I was interviewing Rob Halford yesterday in advance of Judas Priest’s two shows at the Hard Rock Casino Vancouver this month and, as old-school rockheads will do, we got to talkin’ Sabbath. I’d known that Halford had sang with the metal legends three times–twice covering for Ronnie James Dio, and once for … Continue reading Judas Priest’s Rob Halford calls “Black Sabbath” the most evil song that’s ever been written

Metal gods Judas Priest to play first Vancouver shows with Rob Halford outside of a hockey rink

By Steve Newton I’ve been going to see Judas Priest play concerts at Vancouver hockey rinks since the 1982 Screaming for Vengeance tour hit the Pacific Coliseum, and, quite frankly, I’m sick of it. The acoustics are never any good, and you can never get close enough to see the sweat dripping off Glenn Tipton’s fretboard unless you … Continue reading Metal gods Judas Priest to play first Vancouver shows with Rob Halford outside of a hockey rink

“If you want Priest music,” says Two’s Rob Halford, “go and see Judas Priest.”

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, APRIL 30, 1998 By Steve Newton The last time I interviewed Rob Halford was in 1984, at the peak of Judas Priest’s arena-packing popularity. At the time, he was screaming his lungs out about how “Love Bites”, swaddling himself in black leather and chains, and riding a Harley onstage … Continue reading “If you want Priest music,” says Two’s Rob Halford, “go and see Judas Priest.”

Judas Priest rips off Iron Maiden on Redeemer of Souls (but just a little)

Judas Priest released its 17th studio album, Redeemer of Souls, today, and I’ve been giving it a listen. All in all, I’ve gotta say that the British metal legends deliver the goods on the 13-track CD–which includes an extra five tunes on a bonus disc if you’re lucky enough to get Sony Music to send you the … Continue reading Judas Priest rips off Iron Maiden on Redeemer of Souls (but just a little)

Judas Priest’s Rob Halford calls heavy-metal “a young musical force” in 1984

By Steve Newton On May 14, 1984, Judas Priest vocalist Rob Halford called me up from a gig in Portland, Oregon, to chat about his band’s new album, Defenders of the Faith. At the time Priest was riding high in the metal world, their last two albums–1981’s Point of Entry and ’82’s Screaming for Vengeance–having both … Continue reading Judas Priest’s Rob Halford calls heavy-metal “a young musical force” in 1984

Rob Halford forced to defend Judas Priest’s name against suicide lawsuit

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, OCT. 25, 1990 By Steve Newton You don’t have to be a riff-hungry young metal-head to know who Judas Priest is these days—all you’ve got to do is read the papers. The British band received world-wide publicity recently during its trial in Reno, Nevada, which questioned whether subliminal messages … Continue reading Rob Halford forced to defend Judas Priest’s name against suicide lawsuit

Judas Priest’s Metalogy box set comes wrapped in metal studs

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, DEC. 9, 2004 By Steve Newton Back in ’82 when I first started writing for the Straight, I instantly became the paper’s on-call heavy-metal dude. Nobody else seemed to want the job–certainly not Alexander Varty, the main music critic at the time. So I happily took on the role, because it meant … Continue reading Judas Priest’s Metalogy box set comes wrapped in metal studs

Judas Priest debuts new hit single “Respecting the Law” on The Simpsons

Okay, so I lied. Judas Priest did not debut its new hit single “Respecting the Law” on The Simpsons last night. But it did rock the World’s Best Animated Show with a 17-second parody of its 1980 hit single “Breaking the Law”. The episode was about Internet piracy, and Rob Halford and the boys set up on the deck … Continue reading Judas Priest debuts new hit single “Respecting the Law” on The Simpsons

Judas Priest in 2005 makes it seem like ’85 all over again

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, OCT. 23, 2005 Twenty years or so ago, I took a good old Chilliwack buddy to see Judas Priest at the Pacific Coliseum, so we thought it might be cool to relive the mid-’80s heyday of the NWBM (New Wave of British Metal) by checking out the band one more time. … Continue reading Judas Priest in 2005 makes it seem like ’85 all over again

Glenn Tipton says Judas Priest was shocked by K.K. Downing’s departure

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, OCT. 26, 2011 By Steve Newton When Judas Priest announced its final world tour last month headbangers far and wide, young and ancient, stained their black-leather pants with a torrent of tears. The British metal icons had been bringing the noise to its followers—off and (mostly) on—since 1969, traversing the globe … Continue reading Glenn Tipton says Judas Priest was shocked by K.K. Downing’s departure

Judas Priest goes out loud ‘n’ proud in Vancouver on final world tour

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, OCT. 31, 2011 By Steve Newton There were a lot of empty seats at Rogers Arena last night (October 30)–including the entire top level–but that didn’t stop British heavy-metal legends Judas Priest from playing like it was their last gig ever in Vancouver. And it just might be. As guitarist Glenn Tipton … Continue reading Judas Priest goes out loud ‘n’ proud in Vancouver on final world tour

That time Ronnie James Dio told me a fib about Priest and Maiden contributing songs to Hear ‘n Aid

By Steve Newton Tomorrow (May 21) the Ride For Ronnie motorcycle ride and concert takes place in L.A., raising money for the Ronnie James Dio Stand Up and Shout Cancer Fund. Coincidentally, exactly 31 years ago tomorrow the charity project Dio spearheaded, Hear ‘n Aid, finished recording its video/single “Stars” at A&M Studios in Tinseltown. … Continue reading That time Ronnie James Dio told me a fib about Priest and Maiden contributing songs to Hear ‘n Aid

33 years after the Screaming for Vengeance tour, Priest still sounds pretty rockin’ to the Newt

all crappy iPhone photos by the Newt By Steve Newton The first time I ever saw Judas Priest was at Vancouver’s Pacific Coliseum on the Screaming for Vengeance tour in 1982. I remember the show well because a week or two before it I did one of my earliest heavy-metal interviews, with bass player Ian Hill. … Continue reading 33 years after the Screaming for Vengeance tour, Priest still sounds pretty rockin’ to the Newt

Rob Halford says that Priest, Maiden, AC/DC, KISS, Metallica, and Slayer have all stood the test of time

By Steve Newton A couple of weeks ago I interviewed Rob Halford in advance of Judas Priest‘s doubleheader at the Hard Rock Casino Vancouver October 27 and 28. When I asked him if there were any newer metal bands that had blown him away lately the 64-year-old “metal god” went off on a bit of a … Continue reading Rob Halford says that Priest, Maiden, AC/DC, KISS, Metallica, and Slayer have all stood the test of time

Queensrÿche’s Geoff Tate give kudos to Maiden, Priest, and Sabbath (with Dio)

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, SEPT. 14, 2000 By Steve Newton At the big metal show slated for the Pacific Coliseum on Wednesday (September 20), Seattle hard-rockers Queensrÿche will perform between openers Halford—featuring former Judas Priest screamer Rob Halford—and headliners Iron Maiden. You could say that it’s a return to the band’s roots, somewhat, … Continue reading Queensrÿche’s Geoff Tate give kudos to Maiden, Priest, and Sabbath (with Dio)

That time Richie Sambora told me why Bon Jovi switched producers from Bruce Fairbairn to Bob Rock

By Steve Newton Bon Jovi may have been hugely popular back in the day, but I actually enjoyed guitarist Richie Sambora’s solo debut album, Stranger in This Town, more than any Bon Jovi band release. I even preferred Sambora’s lead vocals over Jon Bon Jovi’s, especially on solo tunes like “Ballad of Youth”. So it … Continue reading That time Richie Sambora told me why Bon Jovi switched producers from Bruce Fairbairn to Bob Rock

That time 18-year-old Kenny Wayne Shepherd told me about meeting his idol Stevie Ray Vaughan

By Steve Newton I’ve interviewed Kenny Wayne Shepherd four times, ’cause I’m a sucker for folks who can play the shit out of a Strat. The first time was back in December of 1995, when he was only 18 and touring behind his platinum-selling debut album, Ledbetter Heights. At one point in the conversation I … Continue reading That time 18-year-old Kenny Wayne Shepherd told me about meeting his idol Stevie Ray Vaughan

That time I asked Justin Hayward if he knew the Moody Blues’ “Nights in White Satin” was special as soon as it came to him

By Steve Newton As April Wine once said, “I Like to Rock”. I like to rock as well, but once in a while a beautiful, gentle ballad is, as Ted Nugent once said, “Just What the Doctor Ordered”. But enough about April Wine and Ted Nugent. This little blog’s about a softer-rockin’, more prog-oriented band … Continue reading That time I asked Justin Hayward if he knew the Moody Blues’ “Nights in White Satin” was special as soon as it came to him