Judas Priest guitarist Glenn Tipton rejoined his heavy metal band mates onstage Wednesday night at the group’s Newark, New Jersey concert. It was the guitarist’s first live appearance since announcing that Parkinson’s disease would prevent him from touring with Judas Priest.
A week and five shows into Judas Priest’s Firepower Tour, Tipton returned to play guitar on the three-song encore consisting of “Metal Gods,” “Breaking the Law” and “Living After Midnight.” The crowd saluted Tipton with thunderous applause as Tipton made his first appearance since revealing his 10-year battle with Parkinson’s.
“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,” the band announced in February.
Tipton, who joined Judas Priest in 1974, insisted at the time that his absence wasn’t a retirement 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 onstage as and when I feel able to blast out some Priest,” Tipton added in February. “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.”
For the Firepower Tour, Judas Priest recruited guitarist Andy Sneap, who produced the heavy metal legends’ just-released LP Firepower.