HALFORD IS 'UP FOR' SINGING OWENS-ERA SONGS Monday December 30 2019, 6:18 AM

Rob Halford says that he is "up for" performing songs written and recorded during the years when JUDAS PRIEST was fronted by his replacement, Tim "Ripper" Owens .

Owens created two studio albums with the British heavy metal legends — 1997's "Jugulator" and 2001's "Demolition" — before the band reunited with Halford .

Asked in the January 2020 issue of U.K.'s Metal Hammer magazine if PRIEST will ever play songs from the Owens era, Halford replied: "Why not? Those records, 'Jugulator' and 'Demolition' , are both part of the great history of JUDAS PRIEST . And Tim is a good friend of mine. I've never done any of the songs that he sang on, but I'd definitely have a crack at them. I'm up for that. When? It could happen at any time; it wouldn't need to be an anniversary. Before we go onstage, we have a jam, and that's time when ideas from leftfield are thrown around. That's probably how we'll do it. It'll just happen and it'll be brilliant."

Owens joined PRIEST in 1996 after being discovered when the group'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 .

Earlier this year, Owens told Ultimate Guitar that he believes his era of JUDAS PRIEST is largely overlooked.

"Yeah, I think it definitely deserves more [attention]," he said. "I mean, they don't do anything. [ Laughs ] It's kind of amazing that they just totally erased it that they won't play... I mean, 'Burn In Hell' [off 'Jugulator' ], the crowd would like to hear 'Burn In Hell' .

"They don't have to give me a tribute or anything, but it would be nice to play a song from... You know, that was a pretty big thing, I did two studio records, two live records, and a DVD, starting from '96 to 2004. So it's kind of crazy that it's just been erased and they won't even play a song from it live, because it is JUDAS PRIEST ."

This past October, JUDAS PRIEST guitarist Richie Faulkner said that "Hell Is Home" is one of his favorite songs from the Owens era.

The PRIEST guitarist, who joined the band in 2011 as the replacement for K.K. Downing , offered his opinion during a live video chat.

He said: "I was listening to the Ripper albums the other day, and 'Hell Is Home' is such a great track. It's really heavy and the vocal melody is really great. I think Ripper sings it really well. It's probably one of my favorite PRIEST songs of the Ripper era. 'Hell Is Home' — I really like that."

In 2020, PRIEST will celebrate its 50th anniversary by embarking on a special tour.

This past summer, PRIEST completed a North American trek with support from URIAH HEEP .

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