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Judas Priest's Glenn Tipton Reveals Parkinson's Diagnosis, Will Retire From Touring

by VVN Music

Judas Priest guitarist Glenn Tipton has revealed that he has been suffering from Parkinson's disease for a decade and that it has now progressed to the point where he must retire from touring.

Tipton is the latest musician to develop the disease.  Both Linda Ronstadt and Neil Diamond are dealing with Parkinson's and Pat Torpey of Mr. Big died from complications of the disease last week.

A statement was released on Tipton's behalf:

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!”

Tipton, who is 70, joined Judas Priest in 1974 after their label, Gull Records, suggested a fifth member and second lead guitarist to fill out the band's sound for their debut, Rocka Rolla. He has appeared on all Priest albums.