Glenn Tipton, longtime guitarist for the ‘80s metal legends Judas Priest, is stepping back from touring after a ten-year battle with Parkinson’s disease, the band confirmed.
The released statement, available on the band’s Facebook page, reads, “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.”
This announcement comes less than a month before Judas Priest is set to embark on its Firepower Tour. The statement confirms that Andy Sneap, who has previously performed with the band, along with other acts like Megadeth and Opeth, will fill in for Tipton.
Tipton expressed in a personal section of the statement that he hopes to return to the stage in the future. “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,” he said. “I don’t rule out the chance to go on stage as and when I feel able to blast out some Priest!”
“Firepower,” the band’s 18th record, is set for release on March 9.