Judas Priest’s Rob Halford has revealed that he has been treated for prostate cancer, and that he is now in remission.
The vocalist made the announcement rather candidly while in conversation with Heavy Consequence (opens in new tab), having never previously spoken about his battle before.
During the interview, he said his symptoms began back in 2017, and reassured fans that he is now – after receiving surgery last year and a stint of radiation therapy earlier this year – in remission.
“I had my little cancer battle a year ago, which I got through and that’s in remission now, thank God,” began Halford. “That happened while we were all locked down, so things happen for a reason as far as time sequence of events.
“I have nothing but gratitude to be at this point in my life, still doing what I love the most.”
The 70-year-singer delved deeper into his battle with cancer in a newly released chapter of his 2020 memoir, Confess, saying that he underwent extensive testing before receiving his diagnosis.
“I felt a combination of shock, horror, and oddly, relief – at least now I know!” he wrote. “‘Am I going to die?’ It was all I could think of. I know blokes who’ve died of prostate cancer. ‘No, you’re not going to die, Rob,’ said Dr. Ali.”
After his diagnosis, Halford underwent prostatectomy surgery in 2020, though was forced to follow it up with further radiation treatment in April and May this year after more cancer was discovered at the start of 2021. By June, the cancer was in remission.
“It’s been a draining year, I can’t deny it,” he continued, “but I’m delighted to have come through it. I feel like I’ve had the most thorough MOT that a Metal God can have.”
He also wrote that he "told hardly anyone I had cancer," apart from his partner and his close family, and reveals he had Judas Priest management break the news to his fellow bandmates.
Halford and Judas Priest were forced to postpone the remainder of their 50 Heavy Metal Years Tour last month after guitarist Richie Faulkner was hospitalized due to major heart condition issues.
In an update, Faulkner revealed he had suffered an aortic aneurysm onstage during the band’s set at Louder Than Life Festival in Kentucky on September 26, and that doctors had informed him that “people with this don’t usually make it to the hospital alive."