British heavy metal legends JUDAS PRIEST will finally get the opportunity to celebrate their 50th anniversary this year with the launch of a North American tour this fall. The "50 Heavy Metal Years" trek will also feature SABATON as openers and is being fueled by the highest-charting album of PRIEST's career, "Firepower", which peaked at No. 5 on the Billboard 200 chart.
Produced by Live Nation, the North American tour — which will run throughout September (kicking off on September 8 in Reading, Pennsylvania), October and early November (concluding on November 5 in Hamilton, Ontario) — will feature a variety of special effects, which will undoubtedly enhance the might of PRIEST's metal.
Tickets for the newly announced dates will go on sale beginning this Friday, June 11 at 10 a.m. local time at Ticketmaster. Tickets for the previously announced tour dates are available now.
Said singer Rob Halford: "Defending the heavy metal faith for fifty years, the PRIEST is back!"
Added guitarist Glenn Tipton: "Time to don the leather and studs and roll out the PRIEST machine — celebrating our 50 Heavy Metal Years!!"
Said bassist Ian Hill: "After the horrific year of restrictions we've all had to endure, what better place to break free than the land of the free — the USA!"
JUDAS PRIEST 2021 tour dates:
Sep. 08 - Reading, PA - Santander Arena*
Sep. 09 - Virginia Beach, VA - Veterans United Home Loans Amphitheater*+
Sep. 11 - Orlando, FL - Central Florida Fairgrounds^#
Sep. 13 - Charlotte, NC - PNC Music Pavilion
Sep. 14 - Raleigh, NC - Red Hat Amphitheater*
Sep. 16 - Grand Rapids, MI - Van Andel Arena*
Sep. 17 - Youngstown, OH - Covelli Centre^
Sep. 19 - Detroit, MI - Fox Theatre*
Sep. 20 - Rosemont, IL - Rosemont Theatre*
Sep. 22 - Milwaukee, WI - Miller High Life Theatre^
Sep. 23 - Minneapolis, MN - The Armory*
Sep. 25 - Maryland Heights, MO - Saint Louis Music Park
Sep. 26 - Louisville, KY - Louder Than Life Festival^#
Sep. 29 - Denver, CO - The Mission Ballroom^
Sep. 30 - West Valley City, UT - Maverik Center*
Oct. 02 - Everett, WA - Angel Of The Winds Arena*
Oct. 03 - Portland, OR - Moda Center*
Oct. 05 - Oakland, CA - Fox Theater^
Oct. 06 - Los Angeles, CA - Microsoft Theater^
Oct. 08 - Las Vegas, NV - Zappos Theater at Planet Hollywood
Oct. 09 - Phoenix, AZ - Arizona Federal Theatre
Oct. 12 - San Antonio, TX - Freeman Coliseum^
Oct. 13 - Cedar Park, TX - HEB Center Cedar Park^
Oct. 15 - Irving, TX - The Pavilion at Toyota Music Factory
Oct. 16 - Oklahoma City, OK - The Zoo Amphitheatre^
Oct. 19 - Independence, MO - Cable Dahmer Arena*
Oct. 21 - Nashville, TN - Nashville Municipal Auditorium*
Oct. 22 - Alpharetta, GA - Ameris Bank Amphitheatre*
Oct. 24 - Charleston, WV - Charleston Civic Center Coliseum*
Oct. 25 - Philadelphia, PA - The Met*
Oct. 27 - Newark, NJ - Prudential Center*
Oct. 28 - Oxon Hill, MD - The Theater at MGM National Harbor
Oct. 30 - Mashantucket, CT - Foxwoods Resort Casino - Grand Theater^
Oct. 31 - Lowell, MA - Tsongas Center At UMass Lowell*
Nov. 02 - Halifax, NS - Scotiabank Centre*
Nov. 04 - Laval, QC - Place Bell*
Nov. 05 - Hamilton, ONT - First Ontario Centre*
* new show
^ not a Live Nation event
# festival date
+ SABATON not support on this date; support is to be determined
In early April, JUDAS PRIEST's European tour, which was scheduled to kick off in late May, was once again postponed due to "ongoing COVID-19 vaccine issues." The trek will now run from May 27, 2022 in Moscow, Russia until July 31, 2022 in Oberhausen, Germany.
Last November, Halford addressed the COVID-19 crisis in an interview with Canada's iHeart Radio. He said: "We're gonna have to learn to live with this thing. It's like the flu. And this vaccine is just one tool in the way of recovery. But the facts are, believe the scientists, 'cause they are the experts. This is what they do. They are committed to making lives better for people. And the prognosis is that everything should be secure enough for us all to start going out again.
"Whoever made this choice or decision [to push back the PRIEST tour], I think they made the right move, because I think it's gonna be very tricky for bands to try and go out on January the 1st of 2021," he continued. "I think by the summer, everything will be settled, and hopefully the vaccine will have been administered to hundreds of millions of people. I think we'll still have to go through some protocol, which is a small price to pay — getting the temperature done and maybe wear a mask. It doesn't matter. We'll be back with each other again."
Last September, JUDAS PRIEST and Rufus Publications announced the publication of the first-ever official JUDAS PRIEST book documenting the band's extensive history over the last 50 years. Titled "Judas Priest - 50 Heavy Metal Years", the book has been put together by David Silver, Ross Halfin and Jayne Andrews.