Judas Priest's Rob Halford in remission after private pandemic prostate cancer battle

'It’s been a draining year, I can’t deny it'
Rob Halford of Judas Priest
Photo credit Getty Images
By , Audacy

Heavy metal icon Rob Halford had kept his prostate cancer diagnosis and extensive treatment a private matter after first beginning care in the spring of 2020, but has revealed the amazing news that his condition has improved remarkably in an update to his 2020 memoir.

"I had my little cancer battle a year ago, which I got through and that’s in remission now, thank God,” the Judas Priest singer confirmed in a new interview.

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In a newly released paperback edition chapter to his book Confess, Halford also discusses his prostatectomy surgery and radiation treatments, adding a bit of humility at times. At one point he says, “I felt a combination of shock, horror, and oddly, relief — at least now I know!…’ Am I going to die?’ It was all I could think of. I know blokes who’ve died of prostate cancer.” But luckily, his doctor calmed those fears, telling him, “‘No, you’re not going to die, Rob.’”

Ultimately, it was a “reality check” after seeing a commercial for Phoenix Children’s hospital which completely changed Halford's "mental attitude" toward his own struggle. “It showed kids with cancer. Some only babies. They were lying there, with tubes coming out of them, fighting for their lives. They didn’t know what was going on," he says. "It made me feel totally ashamed of myself; Rob, how dare you be so selfish?”

“It’s been a draining year, I can’t deny it, but I’m delighted to have come through it,” he admits.

Halford explained to Consequence that he believes “things happen for a reason as far as time sequence of events,” as everything he had gone through happened during the height of the coronavirus lockdown, adding, “I have nothing but gratitude to be at this point in my life, still doing what I love the most.”

After Priest's 50th-anniversary tour plans were previously struck with cancelations and postponements due to COVID, the band's latest hurdle came when guitarist Richie Faulkner had quite a scare of his own recently, undergoing ten hours of heart surgery after suffering a ruptured aorta on stage. He is now at home in recovery.