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13. Judas Priest

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When the NIHOF committee gathered to discuss our next entrant we did what we could to forget the terrible Mark Wahlberg movie (Rock Star) that was loosely based on them. Instead we chose to focus on how important Judas Priest was in Heavy Metal’s progression.

There are some fans of the genre who have debated that the work of Judas Priest in the 70’s was more important to Metal than anything current Hall members Black Sabbath ever did. That may be a very bold statement, but it can’t be overlooked is that those early albums laid the fabric for the Thrash sound that would occur years later. The 80’s saw Priest as one of the few Metal acts who were able to create radio friendly hooks while still keeping a Metal sound that did not alienate their core fans. From Rob Halford’s high pitched Heavy Metal wail to the guitar attacks of K.K. Downing and Glenn Tipton, they have earned nickname of “Metal Gods”. Of course, looking at the list of those enshrined, being a Metal God certainly does not ensure induction.


Judas Priest

The Bullet Points:


Previous Rank:

2010: #14 


Eligible Since:



Country of Origin:

United Kingdom (Birmingham, England)


Why They Will Get In:

They are a huge cog in Heavy Metal’s Evolution.


Why They Won’t Get In:

The same reason as above. Heavy Metal has not proven to be the Hall’s favorite genre.


Nominated In:



Essential Albums:

Sin After Sin (1977)

Killing Machine (1978)

British Steel (1980)

Screaming for Vengeance (1982)


Our Five Favorite Songs as Chosen by Each Member of the NIHOF Committee:

The Ripper (From Sad Wings of Destiny, 1976)

Sinner (From Sin After Sin, 1977)

Hell Bent for Leather (From Killing Machine, 1978)

Living After Midnight (From British Steel, 1980)

Electric Eye (From Screaming for Vengeance, 1982)




Should Judas Priest be in the Hall of Fame?

(You must be registered and logged in to vote!)
Definitely put them in! - 56.7%
Maybe, but others deserve it first. - 16.7%
Probably not, but it wouldn't be the end of the world. - 13.3%
No opinion. - 3.3%
No way! - 10%
Last modified on Friday, 16 January 2015 10:06
More in this category: « 12. Chicago 14. The Cure »


+4 #1 jimmy26 -0001-11-29 19:00
Never was a big JP fan growing up. Always knew they were huge but didn't really like their sound and the headbanging and leather thing. Of course I thought Def Lepp was pretty hard core at that time. Over the years i have come to appreciate how good of music these guys turned out and more improtantly how big of an impact they had on the perpetuation of heavy metal in the 80's. I would argue that noother group had as much with the continuatuion of that genre throughout the 80's as Judas priest. You mayy not like that fact but you cannot argue that heavy metal and especially their form of headbanging is rock music. We can't say that with everybody on this list now can we? It's kind of like Freedom of speech. Just because you don't like what they are saying or singing about doesn't mean you can argue they have a right to say or sing it or in this case argue that their music was the template of rock for the 80's.
+2 #2 Sean -0001-11-29 19:00
Yeah, they and Iron Maiden and Motorhead should be in from that era of British metal. I'd say Maiden and Motorhead were slightly more important. It's bizarre that Def Leppard came from that scene as well, but I'd also say yes to them as probably the most important hair-metal act after Van Halen and GNR (and I don't really think any of the others including Bon Jovi are deserving at all).NONE of these bands should be in before Deep Purple.
0 #3 biograph 2013-05-12 04:30
Not long ago, I would've laughed at the prospect of JP getting in, but now it makes more sense. As Wings would say, "Let 'Em In." (Y'know, between Moody Blues and Wings, Denny Laine ought to be in that Hall of Fame thing, too.)
+3 #4 Andy Yacos 2013-12-17 09:58
Beyond their popular and well-know hits; anyone needing a liitle insight should listen to the 'Painkiller' (1991) CD; end to end groundbreaking music. This is is the same band that gave us 'Sad Wings of Destiny' decades ago - absolutely stunning, and has re-invented itself and filled arenas for an equal period of time. It is laughable as not in yet, but does not decrease their luster.
+2 #5 Rabbott 2013-12-17 10:55
Hilarious that anyone would think they shouldn't get in. They were the first true "Metal" band. All other metal groups used blues influenced guitar work- Motörhead, Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath, etc. Judas Priest changed that- and it was that change that led to modern metal and thrash. Enough said! You know who was a JP cover band? Pantera, and they could easily enter the Hall of Fame.
+2 #6 Matt Kenney 2014-02-07 19:23
I think it is absurd that they aren't in yet. If you really think about it, they were the first metal band. That is, the first band that was PURELY metal. None of that blues influence of Sabbath (I won't even call Zeppelin metal, because they were in no way metal). Hell, most people don't know that they didn't write the songs they covered, i.e. the Green Manalishi and Diamonds and Rust.

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