Richie Faulkner says that the credibility of the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame should be questioned if JUDAS PRIEST doesn't eventually get the honor of being inducted.
Even though artists are eligible for the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame 25 years after the release of their first album or single, iconic hard rock and metal bands like IRON MAIDEN, JUDAS PRIEST and MOTÖRHEAD have yet to be recognized by the institution, which inducted GUNS N' ROSES in that group's first year of eligibility.
Having been eligible for induction since 1999, JUDAS PRIEST was on the ballot for this year's class of the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame, but ultimately didn't clinch the nomination.
Faulkner told The Vindicator that he would like to see PRIEST get its rightful place in the Hall — even if just for the sake of its fans.
"I don't speak for the rest of the band," the guitarist said. "This is my own opinion. But [induction into the Rock Hall] means a lot for some fans. Metal has always been the underdog. For a band like PRIEST to be nominated is great for metal and its fans, and it's great to see those fans being appreciated. On the other hand, I think after 50 years of creating new music and touring the world, with our fan base, that's more of an accolade than any award. Our fans are passionate.
"We could get in next year," Faulkner continued. "If PRIEST is not inducted, what is the credibility of it?"
In a separate interview with the Long Island Pulse, Faulkner admitted that he has "split views" on PRIEST's potential induction into the Rock Hall. "First of all, I am not eligible to be included in the Hall Of Fame; you have to have a 25-year history," he said. [Editor's note: Richie joined PRIEST in 2011]
"To be putting out music like this — after 50 years — to a fanbase that is so loyal is affirmation enough," he added. "I don't think a band like PRIEST needs any award or any ceremony. The proof is in the pudding; the proof is in the fans; the proof is in the music; and the proof is in the band forging forward after 50 years. That is the only accolade anyone can ever wish for."
Rock Hall rules state that artists become eligible a quarter century after their first records were released, but the Hall also claims that other "criteria include the influence and significance of the artists' contributions to the development and perpetuation of rock 'n' roll," which is, of course, open to interpretation.
Eligible for induction since 1999, KISS didn't get its first nomination until 2009, and was finally inducted in 2014.
DEEP PURPLE was eligible for the Rock Hall since 1993 but didn't get inducted until 2016.
PRIEST singer Rob Halford recently said that he "would love" to see his band inducted into the Rock Hall. "I think we deserve it," he said. "We've put our 10,000 hours in and more. And beyond that, we just feel that heavy metal music deserves more space on the shelf at the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame."
Adding that he and his bandmates "were thrilled and honored to be even nominated," Halford admitted that it's "kind of bittersweet" to find out that they wouldn't be inducted this year. "We got the nomination, which is something of a recognition for the work that you've done, but we didn't quite get in this time. But I'm hopeful that eventually we'll get some more metal [in there]."
JUDAS PRIEST's new album, "Firepower", was released yesterday (Friday, March 9) via Epic.
The North American leg of the "Firepower" tour will kick off on March 13 in Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania and will wrap on May 1 in San Antonio, Texas.