Judas Priest's Rob Halford Battled Cancer Privately For Four Years

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Judas Priest frontman Rob Halford is urging people to not put off annual physical exams and cancer screenings after an exam he underwent in 2017 likely saved his life.

The Metal God first disclosed his prostate cancer diagnosis in his 2020 autobiography, Confess, and admitted he had experienced symptoms for at least a couple of years. Halford revealed in a new interview with Mariskal Rock that he's finally cancer-free, some four years after being checked.

He says he was able to keep working through the early stages of his treatment circa 2018's Firepower album. Then in July of last year, Halford had surgery to remove the cancerous tissues. He's lucky on multiple levels, he notes, because not only is he alive to talk about it today, but the disease also didn't interfere with Judas Priest.

"It's just a miracle what they can do with health care these days; it's absolutely remarkable," he explained. "So in my story, my main message is to guys everywhere around the world, when you get to a certain age, it's very important that you get your prostate checked, your bloodwork checked, get a colonoscopy. It's all these things that old blokes like me go, 'Wait, wait, wait.' That's the worst thing to do. So that was part of the reason I wanted to push the message out. And the fact that it's been out for a while anyway — it's been out since last September in the final edition of the Confess paperback — so it was gonna surface anyway."

That makes two members of Judas Priest who are alive today because of modern medicine — the other being guitarist Richie Faulkner, whose is recovering after a freak cardiac incident during a Judas Priest show last month, despite having no personal or family history of heart problems.

Judas Priest's U.S. tour is on hold as Faulkner recovers. Despite their challenges, Halford says everyone is optimistic about the future.

"I feel positive," he said. "Richie feels good. he feels positive. I spoke with him just a couple of days ago. He sounded great on the phone. We had a long chat about the tour and all the things we've gotta do still with Priest. The journey never ends."

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