In a new interview with Robert Cavuoto of MyGlobalMind, ex-JUDAS PRIEST single Tim “Ripper” Owens was asked if there was ever any consideration to have him come up on stage and perform with his former bandmates during their induction into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame last November. He responded (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): “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 continued: “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.”
Tim added: “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.”
Owens joined PRIEST in 1996 after being discovered when the band’s drummer was given a videotape of him performing with the PRIEST cover band BRITISH STEEL. JUDAS PRIEST at the time was seeking a replacement for Halford, who has since rejoined the band.
Owens recorded two studio albums with JUDAS PRIEST — 1997’s “Jugulator” and 2001’s “Demolition” — before Halford‘s return to the group.
PRIEST received the Musical Excellence Award at the 2022 Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame event, which honored Eminem, Dolly Parton, DURAN DURAN, Lionel Richie, Pat Benatar, EURYTHMICS and Carly Simon in the Performers category.
The JUDAS PRIEST members that got inducted include current members Halford, Hill, Tipton and Travis, along with former members Downing, Les Binks (drums) and late drummer Dave Holland.
At the Rock Hall induction, Halford, Hill, Tipton and Travis were joined by Binks, Downing and current guitarist Richie Faulkner for a three-song medley performance consisting of “You’ve Got Another Thing Comin'”, “Breaking The Law” and “Living After Midnight”.
The award for Musical Excellence — which was originally titled the “Sidemen” category when it debuted — is given to artists, musicians, songwriters and producers whose originality and influence creating music have had a dramatic impact on music.
Owens previously discussed his exclusion from PRIEST‘s Hall Of Fame induction in a July 2022 interview as part of Rolling Stone‘s “King For A Day” series. He said: “It’s a shame that [the Hall Of Fame] can’t bring in members that were in the band almost 10 years and had a Grammy nomination, two studio records, two live records, a DVD. It’s a shame that they can’t do it. What gets me more than anything is that I haven’t even gotten a call from JUDAS PRIEST on it. I did get a call that an Australian agent was using the name ‘Metal Gods’ [for my tour with ex-AC/DC and DIO drummer Simon Wright]. [They told me,] ‘We’ll let it slip this time, but in the future you can’t let them use it.’
“That’s your phone call? How about the guys in the band getting into the Hall Of Fame that deserve it?” Owens continued. “There’s never been a call saying, ‘You were a big part of this. Here’s the reasons you’re not being inducted, but you were a big part of us and you’re a big part of the family.’ There wasn’t even a phone call. Not getting in, whatever.
“Here’s how I look at it: I’m in the Hall Of Fame. I was in the band for almost 10 years. When someone says that JUDAS PRIEST is in the Hall Of Fame, I sang for JUDAS PRIEST, so I’m basically in the Hall Of Fame.
“It just would have been nice to get an e-mail or a call,” Owens added. “The only e-mails I ever get are threats. It’s a shame because we’re friends. It’s a shame that’s all management is worried about, instead of, ‘We should probably send a letter to Tim or a bottle of champagne to thank him for his years in the band.'”
Owens and Downing are currently members of KK’S PRIEST, in which they are joined by guitarist A.J. Mills (HOSTILE),bassist Tony Newton (VOODOO SIX) and drummer Sean Elg (DEATHRIDERS, CAGE).
KK’S PRIEST‘s second album, “The Sinner Rides Again”, will be released on September 29 via the Austrian rock and metal empire Napalm Records. The nine-song effort was produced and written by Downing and mixed/mastered by Jacob Hansen.
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