Glenn Tipton, lead guitarist and longtime member of Judas Priest, has been diagnosed with the later stages of Parkinson's disease. The band made the announcement via a statement, saying that "right now Glenn is able to play and perform some of the Priest songs that are less challenging but due to the nature of Parkinson's progression he wants to let you all know that he won't be touring as such," referring to Priest's upcoming tour for their Firepower album. He will be replaced on those dates by Hell guitarist and past Priest touring member Andy Sneap.
The statement also says that Tipton was diagnosed with an early form of Parkinson's a decade ago. Tipton notes in the statement that he has not left the band and that he's not "[ruling] out the chance to go on stage when I feel able to blast out some Priest!"
The band as a whole had this to say about Tipton's bowing out from their tour.
“We have been privileged to witness Glenn’s determination and steadfast commitment over the years, showing his passion and self belief through the writing, recording and performing sessions with Priest—he is a true metal hero!
We are not surprised by Glenn’s insistence that we complete the 'Firepower tour' and thank Andy for joining us to make Glenn’s wishes become real—as Glenn has said we also can’t wait to have him with us at any time, any place, on the road.....
We love you Glenn!”
You can find more info here via the Guardian.
Phil is on Twitter.
This article originally appeared on Noisey CA.