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24 September 2020 16:32

The Cure Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Robert Smith

Rob Halford Says Judas Priest ‘Deserve’ to Be in the Rock Hall

In a new interview with Variety, legendary Judas Priest singer Rob Halford talks about his new autobiography Confess and whether fans would accept him coming out as a gay man. However, we were up against this wall of, "Look, at this particular time in metal, you're in a very alpha-dominated type of experience, and we feel that if you were to step forward and say, 'Hey, I'm a gay guy,' damage could be done." I mean, that's hard to take, isn't it? Rob Halford's warts and all autobiography, Confess, will be released on September 29 via Hachette Books. Rob Halford, front man of global iconic metal band Judas Priest, is a true 'Metal God'. Confess, his full autobiography, is an unforgettable rock 'n' roll story - a journey from a Walsall council estate to musical fame via alcoholism, addiction, police cells, ill-starred sexual trysts and bleak personal tragedy, through to rehab, coming out, redemption...

Told with Halford's trademark self-deprecating, deadpan Black Country humour, Confess is the story of an extraordinary five decades in the music industry. In his new autobiography, "Confess", JUDAS PRIEST singer Rob Halford opens up about an assault that happened early in his life at the hands of his father's friend. Asked in an interview with Variety how he has processed what happened to him and if writing the book helped, Rob said: "It's an important story. At the time, it was terribly confusing and couldn't have happened at a worse time, for me as a young guy that was already dealing with trying to figure things out. Talking about it now, I can feel the horror and being totally frightened and wanting to run away, but at the same time feeling, 'Now this is affection, in a very crude brutal manner.' It was incredibly, incredibly complex.

"Somebody asked me, 'Would you put that story in the book if your father was still alive?' and I hesitated. To be honest, I probably wouldn't have, because I would hate to have thought that my father felt that he was in some way complicit to that because he absolutely was not. When it comes to sexual abuse, people on the outside, they feel the guilt as well — 'Well, maybe I should have said something' or 'it's my fault for introducing this person to that person.' It has a domino effect. "As a young person, you're impressionable, and it manifests itself in a way that really stays with you for the rest of your life, and turns you into the sexually dysfunctional person that I am now. I've come to terms with that in my adult life, [but] had those incidents never happened as a teenager, would I have turned out differently in the way that I'm intimate with people?

"I think that most people know that I've been a gay man all of my life, and that it's only been in recent times that it's an issue that I feel comfortable to address, and an issue that has been with me ever since recognizing my own sexuality," Halford said at the time. Three years ago, Halford told Fox Sports 910 AM's "The Freaks With Kenny And Crash" radio show in Phoenix, Arizona that the response to his addressing his sexuality publicly for the first time was overwhelmingly positive. "[But] I'd never seen such an outpouring of love from people in all my life — the letters, the faxes, the phone calls from everybody in the metal community: 'Rob, we just don't care. And so I thought, 'Well, isn't this great?' This just goes to show you that we in the metal community, as we call ourselves — probably because of the pushback that we felt because of the music that we love — we are the most tolerant, if you wanna say, the most open-minded, the most loving, the most accepting of all the kinds of music that we know in rock and roll. On stage, Judas Priest frontman Rob Halford is the self-proclaimed "metal god" but off, he's a mere mortal, and ready to confess to all of his sins in a new autobiography.

29, the 69-year-old Halford dives into his humble beginnings growing up in a working class steel mill town in England's "Black Country"; his ascent into rock-and-roll stardom with Judas Priest; and his deeply personal struggles with addiction and his public coming out as a gay man in 1998. There were the obvious ones like, "The Life and Times of the Metal God," "My Life in Metal." There were a number of ways we could have gone, but my job is not only a singer but also a lyricist, and I love words. A lot of the book is about you grappling with your sexuality and also how that has impacted so much of your life. Talking about it now, I can feel the horror and being totally frightened and wanting to run away, but at the same time feeling, "Now this is affection, in a very crude brutal manner." It was incredibly, incredibly complex. To be honest, I probably wouldn't have because I would hate to have thought that my father felt that he was in some way complicit to that because he absolutely was not.

When it comes to sexual abuse, people on the outside, they feel the guilt as well — "Well, maybe I should have said something" or "it's my fault for introducing this person to that person." It has a domino effect. As a young person, you're impressionable, and it manifests itself in a way that really stays with you for the rest of your life, and turns you into the sexually dysfunctional person that I am now. I've come to terms with that in my adult life [but] had those incidents never happened as a teenager, would I have turned out differently in the way that I'm intimate with people? You expressed concern about whether Judas Priest fans would accept your coming out. Judas Priest again fell short of making the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame last year, despite being one of the top-voted artists by the fans. Unlike many British rockers, Judas Priest frontman Rob Halford admires the Rock Hall and has often lobbied on its behalf for inclusion. The Rock Hall has historically done its darnedest to ignore heavy metal — the institution didn't induct Black Sabbath until 2006. Judas Priest comes from the same English city as Black Sabbath and started just a few years afterwards. For Halford, there's no question Priest deserves to be included in the Hall of Fame alongside its legendary peers. "The Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame isn't any different from those other institutions they have in America, like the one for football, where you'll always get some people complaining one player deserves to be there over another," Halford told NME. The Metal God, who read his 2017 Rock Hall rejection letter live on the radio, admitted that he feels passionately about his band's place in music history. This year's Rock Hall inductees include Nine Inch Nails, T-Rex, Depeche Mode, Notorious B.I.G., Whitney Houston and The Doobie Brothers. Judas Priest frontman Rob Halford believes his band and other metal acts should be in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame isn't any different from those other institutions they have in America, like the one for football, where you'll always get some people complaining one player deserves to be there over another. "I think if any metal band deserves to be in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, it's Priest and beyond that, there needs to be more metal there because there's not enough." Judas Priest has been eligible since 1999 and been on the ballot several times, most recently this past winter, where they came in fifth in the fan vote. After the most recent snub, guitarist Richie Faulkner, who's been in Judas Priest since 2011, blasted the Rock Hall.