TIM 'RIPPER' OWENS On His Time With JUDAS PRIEST: 'It's Shocking That My Era Has Just Been Swept Under The Rug'
September 22, 2022
In a new interview with the "White Line Fever" podcast, ex-JUDAS PRIEST singer Tim "Ripper" Owens addressed his recent headline-grabbing comment that he never got a call from his former bandmates about them finally getting inducted into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame. Asked if he ever thinks about what will make the headlines in the music media while he is doing promotion for a particular project, Tim said: "Well, I always get off thinking, 'Ugh, what's gonna be on Blabbermouth tomorrow?' Because you can do eight million words [in an interview] and then one word would come out and they would take it [and base an article around it]."
Tim added: "I knew [my comments about the Rock Hall] would be [turned into a headline], and I don't mind talking about it, because, listen, they should have been in the Hall Of Fame a long time ago. And then they asked about me going in, listen, I'm not going in, and that's cool… Like I said before, I feel like I'm going in anyways, 'cause I was in the band for about 10 years and [I did] two studio records and two live records and a DVD and a Grammy nomination. It's good to see Rob [Halford] and Glenn [Tipton] and Ken [Downing] and Scott [Travis] get in there, for sure."
Regarding the fact that he is not being inducted into the Rock Hall with PRIEST when certain former members of other acts who have only appeared on one album had made the cut in the past, Owens said: "It's strange. It's not that nobody would be surprised, like I've said before. And listen, I'm friends with the guys, and I don't ever talk bad about my time I was in the band. It's a business, so your feelings can get hurt for a second, but I still love the guys. But it's shocking that my era [with PRIEST] has just been swept under the rug.
"Like I've said in the Rolling Stone article, a phone call would have been nice just to say, 'Listen, you're not [getting inducted into the Rock Hall].' Like I said in the article, instead of getting e-mails threatening me for something that some promoter did in Australia," he added, referencing his upcoming "Metal Gods" tour of Australia, the name of which the PRIEST management apparently took issue with. "But just a nice message saying, 'Hey, they're going in. We wanna thank you…'
"The funny thing is, fans are, like, 'Man, get over it.' I don't bring this stuff up. We don't start our interview and I go, 'Guess what? They didn't let me in there.'
"It is what it is; I understand it," Tim added. "Again, it's a business. I've got a lot going on with myself. I make a living doing music. And it is what it is."
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 will receive the Musical Excellence Award at the fall 2022 Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame event, which will honor Eminem, Dolly Parton, DURAN DURAN, Lionel Richie, Pat Benatar, EURYTHMICS and Carly Simon in the Performers category.
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.
Back in 2010, when the Sidemen category was renamed the award for Musical Excellence, Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame Foundation president Joel Peresman told The Plain Dealer the category "gives us flexibility to dive into some things and recognize some people who might not ordinarily get recognized."
JUDAS PRIEST is the second band to receive the award for Musical Excellence; the E STREET BAND was the first. Last year, late OZZY OSBOURNE and QUIET RIOT guitarist Randy Rhoads was one of the recipients of the Musical Excellence Award.
The induction ceremony will be held on November 5, 2022 at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles. It will air at a later date on HBO and stream on HBO Max. There will also be a radio simulcast on SiriusXM's Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame Radio channel 310.
According to the Hall Of Fame, the JUDAS PRIEST members that will get inducted include current members Halford, Ian Hill (bass),Tipton and Travis, along with former members Downing, Les Binks (drums) and late drummer Dave Holland.
JUDAS PRIEST was previously on the ballot for Rock Hall induction in 2020, but failed to receive enough votes to make that year's class.
Having been eligible for induction since 1999, PRIEST was also on the ballot for the 2018 class of the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame, but was ultimately left out of the inductee list.
To be eligible for nomination, an individual artist or band must have released its first commercial recording at least 25 years prior to the year of nomination.
Even though artists are eligible for the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame 25 years after the release of their first album or single, iconic hard rock and metal bands like IRON MAIDEN and MOTÖRHEAD have yet to be recognized by the institution, which inducted GUNS N' ROSES in that group's first year of eligibility.
The Rock Hall didn't induct BLACK SABBATH until 2006, and METALLICA followed three years later.
Eligible for induction since 1999, KISS didn't get its first nomination until 2009, and was finally inducted in 2014.
DEEP PURPLE was eligible for the Rock Hall since 1993 but didn't get inducted until 2016.