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September 1976 December 1976 March 1977

1977

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SIN AFTER SIN

     "Generally speaking, we don't care what we do to people, I mean, which motivations we release in them. We come on stage to play high-energy rock, and if people like it, then I don't give a shit what they do afterwards. Whether they go and buy guitars, or knock each other's heads in on the way home, or whatever it is that they do. We've done our music, with all the power and energy we have, and that's it! We also don't give a shit whether we become rich and famous through our music. Obviously, you need money in order to survive, but we'll never change our music only because we could earn this or that much more money. What we write, and what we play, is genuine and authentic, and it pleases us to play rock music."
- Rob Halford, Fachblatt Music Magazine, September 1976

 

BAND MEMBERS:


Judas Priest L-R:
Ian Hill: Bass Guitar
K.K. Downing: Guitars
Robert Halford: Vocals
Glenn Tipton: Guitars/Piano

With special thanks to Simon Phillips: Drums/Percussion

Management: Dave Hemmings, Arnakata Artistes Ltd., London

ALBUM:

RE-MASTERS Series Running Order
Sinner
Diamonds And Rust Starbreaker
Last Rose Of Summer Let Us Prey/Call For The Priest
Raw Deal Here Come The Tears Dissident Aggressor

RE-MASTERS Series Bonus tracks:
Race With The Devil • Jawbreaker (Live)

  • Released April 1977 by CBS Inc. (UK Cat. # 82008) and Columbia Records (US Cat. # 34587)
    Epic/Sony Music Group (Japan Cat. # 25.3P-46)
  • CD released July 31, 1990 by Columbia Records (UK Cat. # 474684 2 and US Cat. # CK 34787)
  • THE RE-MASTERS UK/European CD Released October 22, 2001 by Sony Music/Columbia Records (UK Cat. # 502127 2)
  • THE RE-MASTERS North American CD Released November 6, 2001 by Sony Music/Legacy Records (US Cat. # CK 86183)

Produced by Roger Glover and Judas Priest
Engineered by Mark Dodson
Recorded January 1977 at Ramport Studios, Battersea, London
Mixed at Wessex Studios, Highbury, London
Assisted by Judy Szekely, Neil Hornby and Dave Bellotti

Certification: RIAA Gold November 10, 1989
Chart position:
UK #23; Sweden #49

SINGLES:

  • Diamonds And Rust/Dissident Aggressor released in May 1977 by CBS Inc. (UK Cat. # 5222 Promo only)

ARTWORK:

Art Direction: Roslav Szaybo at CBS Records
Design and Photography: Bob Carlos-Clarke

   

CBS Record's in-house art director Roslav Szaybo was responsible for overseeing the sleeve designs of several Priest albums for the label. For SIN AFTER SIN, Roslav assigned Royal College of Art 1975 graduate Bob Carlos-Clarke to design the cover. As Bob's main field is photography, he has gone on to become one of the world's best known photographers of women and has published a book on the subject, titled SHOOTING SEX.

Bob Carlos-Clarke's design features a mausoleum, adorned with symbols of cobras, eagle wings, and a skull with glowing eyes. A woman sits out front while a creature approaches from the sea. Does she morn for the dead one buried within this structure? Is it his black soul that emerges from the sea? Does this represent her guilt or his unrest for each sin after sin...?

The John Pasche-designed logo from the previous label release was carried over for Judas Priest's major label debut, lending to the overall dramatic and gothic tone of the new album.

The title SIN AFTER SIN is taken from the lyrics in the SAD WINGS OF DESTINY released song "Genocide".

SEPTEMBER 1976: Priest change management

In 1976, the release of SAD WINGS OF DESTINY brought increased sales and widespread recognition for Priest, yet Gull Records refused to pay them even a pittance to get them by. With the band members forced to take on part-time jobs to survive, they faced the very possibility they might have to call it quits. In a desperate move, they broke from their former management agency and turned to a new manager, Dave Hemmings of Arnakata Management, in a final attempt to save the band.

Priest had also developed into a core writing unit desperate to escape the frustrations of their working class environment. growing up in the Midlands presented the members of Priest with a dark breeding ground and a gothic backdrop against which to unleash a potent mix of angst and riffs that came to be known as heavy metal:

     "The thump, thump, thump and thud, thud, thud of the stamping presses was obviously having a deep psychological affect on me that I wasn't aware of."
- Rob Halford, VH1 Behind The Music, 2001

     "Subconsciously, that's pounded into you. We really had no choice but to play heavy metal."
- Glenn Tipton, VH1 Behind The Music, 2001

     "Birmingham definitely was a very industrial place and wasn't the most pleasant place to grow up. Personally, I came from a real broken home situation so I guess you become a bit of a rebel...you either become a heavy metal guitar player or you end up in jail!
- K.K. Downing,
Hard Radio Shockwaves, 1998

     "It's a hard life, and it gives you that determination as a youngster to get out of there. And we are determined characters."
- Glenn Tipton

     "I never wanted to live in one place and work at the steel mill every day for the rest of my life. Music was an escape."
- Rob Halford, AnarchoCyberSludge, 1995

     "I think it's something in the canals, really, I do. We've got a massive canal system. In days gone by, goods that were manufactured in the Black Country were brought to Birmingham and, using the canals, shipped up to Liverpool or down to London. We'd swim in those canals all the time - those canals were our beaches and our seaside resorts. And now they glow a bright fluorescent green.
     "Birmingham was always very industrial - foundry after foundry after foundry. It's a very unhealthy place, and all of us can remember our grandfathers and so on catching these terrible diseases. I think the environment creates a kind of anger that you wind up expressing with a gun or a guitar, know what I mean?"

- K.K. Downing,
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, January 29, 2002

     "It was really wanting to get out of the environment I was in that gave me the determination to do something else in my life. I just happened to choose music. At the time in my life, I wasn’t a music fanatic. Some kids now will start playing the guitar at four or five, but I didn’t really start until I was eighteen or nineteen. I worked in a factory for five years, and boy, I wasn’t wanting that. Really, that was the order of events -- just trying to do something with my life. I just saw music as an option. My mother was a pianist and my brother played guitar, so that’s just the way it went."
- Glenn Tipton, KNAC, September 10, 2002

     "Whether we can succeed or not depends on so many factors which don't have anything to do with music at all. But we try, and if it works - good; if not, then at least I can say to myself that I've tried. But I'm confident that we'll make it! Why do I believe that we'll make it? It's very simple to explain. As long as there are cities like Birmingham, cities without room for an idyll, as long as the children of these cities have to grow up between those large buildings and dirty roads, without any place for real development, it also gives birth to frustrations, which rock - or, in former times, rock 'n' roll - lets out into the open, and represents their discharge. We grew up in Birmingham, and our childhood wasn't any different from that, same as any childhood in any other industrial city with an insane population density. And the music we make today is nothing but the expression of these feelings and frustrations. It's like that in any form of personal self-manifestation; whether you're a painter, a musician or a writer, your whole background obviously shines through. It's obvious that the imprinting you get from your family, your friends, your whole environment, gets a focus in your work. It's an interpretation of what you are; aggressive, gentle, sentimental or whatever.
     "I can explain very well who we are. Most importantly, we're not a band like Kiss. We put on a good show, but our music comes first. When we're on stage we physically express who we are. With bands such as Kiss the music is secondary, the show is more important for them; I don't want that, that would be bad. When we're on stage, everything we do is genuine; nothing is rehearsed, apart from the music. The physical tension which comes from standing up there, and doing something that the people want and feel, is so big that it makes everything else disappear... You're standing there upon the stage and the audience is staring at you; no matter if it's 50 or 10,000 people, the energy, the tension, which is released in us is just uncontrollable."
- Rob Halford, Fachblatt Music Magazine, September 1976

DECEMBER 1976: Priest change labels; Alan Moore leaves

The members of Priest were surer than ever about their direction, but they still had the financial struggles with their label to contend with. New manager Dave Hemmings insisted that Judas Priest needed to break away from Gull Records and pursue an international label if they wanted any chance of a better future, and by the end of the year, Priest would brake away from the fledgling Gull label to sign with CBS for a worldwide deal.

As fortune would have it, Paul Atkinson, A&R executive at CBS Records in the States, had a determined interest in the band. Atkinson was born in 1946 in Cuffley, England and began his music career with The Zombies, which had hits in the 1960s with "She's Not There", "Tell Her No" and "Time of the Season". Paul went on to head up A&R at RCA and MCA Records as well as CBS, where he signed Judas Priest at the end of '76. In the mid '80s, Atkinson moved to Los Angeles, where he would go on to receive the Recording Academy's President's Merit Award at a tribute and benefit concert held in his honor. Sadly, on April 1, 2004 at the age of 58, Paul Atkinson died peacefully in his sleep at the UCLA Santa Monica Medical Center after a long battle with liver and kidney disease. He is survived by his wife Helen, their two children James and Lucy, and son Matt by a previous marriage.

     "Everyone was after Judas Priest when word got out they may be free from the Gull deal. Paul shared his determination with me to get the band signed to Columbia in the late '70s..."
- John Baxter, Rob Halford business manager, April 7, 2004

Though there were legal issues involved over Priest breaking their contract and parting ways with Gull Records (Priest lost all their rights to the first two albums and any other demo recordings made during those sessions), it was a move well worth it and a decision that elated the whole band:

     "It was an absolute blessing from the Lord!"
- Rob Halford, HEAVY DUTY official biography, 1984

    "It was like 'pinch-me' time; you know, 'Have we really made it?"
- Glenn Tipton, VH1 Behind The Music, 2001  

With a much brighter and promising future, Judas Priest were set to make their mark with a major label debut and CBS advanced them £60,000 to begin recording. Having gained valuable studio experience working on their last record, the guys were eager to take the controls and lay the tracks themselves the way they wanted, but CBS explained that a talented and trustworthy producer was necessary at this crucial point in their career. Deep Purple bassist and producer Roger Glover was offered by the label. Besides Deep Purple, Roger had also produced albums for Nazareth and Ronnie James Dio's ELF before being called to work with Judas Priest on their CBS debut, and has since produced great classics for Rainbow and The Michael Schenker Group, amongst others.


Roger Glover

     "CBS said, 'Well, OK. You're moving into a different league now. We want you with a producer of some esteem who we think is going to do a good job for the band'. And so on that basis we were happy to work with Roger and again, I just have great memories of being in the studio with him and him having a major, major input..."
- Rob Halford, METAL WORKS video, 1993

JANUARY 1977: Priest begin recording; Simon Phillips fills in

Roger Glover had the talent, credentials and proven track record to put Judas Priest in league with the best, but things did not get off to a smooth start. At the end of the year, Priest sat down with Glover to map out ideas for the album, but the guys in Priest were not too keen on the suggestions. It is not clear as to what happened with Alan Moore, but suggestions from Roger and critics imply that Moore was let go for lack of abilities as a drummer.
 
     "I kinda became aware that any suggestion I came up with was falling on deaf ears. I'd say, 'How about doing that riff twice?' And they'd go, 'Hmm'. 'Ok, well, um, let's move on to the next one...' At the end of the afternoon, I was sorta getting the cold shoulder, so I kinda figured they really don't want a producer.
     "About a couple of weeks later I got this phone call saying, 'Will you come down and help us out? We've been in the studio for a couple of weeks and it's not going very well'. And I guess they'd fired the drummer, so we did the album in six days with Simon Phillips, a session drummer at the time. And the strange part is, the album went on to become sort of a fair-sized hit, but I never got paid..."
- Roger Glover, METAL WORKS video, 1993

     “Well, Priest went through so many drummers. Simon came in after our original drummer, Alan Moore. Anyway, it came time to do the SIN AFTER SIN album, and here came Simon Phillips who had just turned 16 at the time; he was this wunderkind drummer from London...”
- Rob Halford, Edge Magazine, May 2003

     "SIN AFTER SIN is an album that was recorded over 20 years ago. It's really hard to remember how we even tracked those songs. I only remember playing the Priest songs how I felt they should go. We tracked them live with Glenn, Ian and Rob. K.K. was in the control room listening with Roger Glover..."
- Simon Phillips, Simon Phillips.com, June 21, 2003


Simon Phillips mid '70s

With Alan Moore having just left, Glover brought session drummer Simon Phillips in to fill the vacated drum throne. To prepare the new material, the band members, along with Simon and Roger, took up rehearsing at London's Pinewood Studios, famous for the James Bond and Superman movies. And the only accommodations nearby was a convent in which the nuns ran a bed and breakfast:

     "It was beautiful there, but I think the nuns only allowed us to book in because they thought we were some kind of clerical band! In fact at one point, the Mother Superior even asked us to play at a garden party and we had to politely refuse. We told them we thought Elton John might do it though!"
- Glenn Tipton, HEAVY DUTY official biography, 1984

With Roger back to produce and Simon Phillips providing the beat, for one week in January of 1977, Judas Priest enter London's Ramport Studios (owned by The Who) to record their first album for CBS Records. Assisting Roger on the boards were Judy Szekely, Neil Hornby and Dave Bellotti. Judy worked as an Engineering Assistant and Tape Operator for The Who, Mountain and Ringo Starr; Neil worked for Ramport Studios and has been an Assistant Engineer and an Associate Producer for Thin Lizzy and John Entwistle, while Dave has assisted with recordings by John Cougar Mellencamp and Huang Chung and had even been an Engineer for future Priest producer Tom Allom back in 1976.

     "Memories of this time include poisonous fish kept in an aquarium in the reception and getting smashed at the local pub with Python the studio manager on a drink of his own concoction called 'the Hosepipe' - so called because after drinking it you felt like you'd been coshed over the head with one!"
- Glenn Tipton, SIN AFTER SIN Re-Master liner note, 2001

Punk rock, contending against heavy metal, was taking over the British music scene at the time, yet the quicker tempo, cutting-edge songs on SIN AFTER SIN allowed this major label debut to break the UK Top 25; Priest were able to finally see a bit of success and some of the money they so desperately needed. In fact, K.K. was even able to finally purchase his own first car at the mere age of 26! He has since amassed a small collection over the years:

     "I've got a few cars: An Austin Healy 3000, a Austin Mini, a Jensen, a Ford XR2 and a Rolls Royce."
- K.K. Downing, Rockline magazine, 1984

And Rob was finally feeling comfortable with his voice:

     "When I was a kid I used to sing in the church and it felt really good. Singing is just one of those great human needs, be it under the shower, be it listening to music, or be it professionally for a living. I release emotions directly from my soul when I sing. As early as when I was 9 or 10 I realized I was very good at singing and when I became a teenager I grew completely obsessed with music. Rock came in when I was around 18 and started contacts with various local bands. It was then that I first started experimenting with my voice. You know, in those times there were these awesome singers like Robert Plant and Ian Gillian who made me realize that I want to do something different, something extraordinary. And if you listen to Rocka Rolla, you'll hear that this extraordinary thing just wasn't expressed there. I learned to express it better on Sad Wings Of Destiny and it finally peaked on Sin After Sin."
- Rob Halford, United Forces

     "I was inventing my vocal technique as it went along really. I didn't really have much in terms of people that sounded cool to look around and say I wanted to sound like this or emulate that.
     "I was blessed with extraordinary vocal chords that can do some bizarre things, and it was always a case of looking at new ways of doing things from song to song. It was all about experimentation more than anything else."
- Rob Halford, SOUND OF THE BEAST, 2003

MARCH 1977: Les Binks joins

As the band prepared for their first world tour, they felt Simon Phillip's drumming was a perfect match for their style, so they invited him to come along. Simon declined due to prior commitments, so the band searched for another drummer along the lines of Simon, eventually finding Les Binks:

     "I had fun recording Sin After Sin - great energy - and they were great to work with and hang with. The reason I declined was because I was in the Jack Bruce Band and we were just about to tour Europe and the US to promote an album which was to be released in early 1977. "
-
Simon Philips FAQ

     "Simon did the SIN AFTER SIN album but wanted to pursue a jazz career, so we were really looking for someone to kind of create Simon’s feel, you know - the technical kind of thing. We wanted to take that style and approach when he left, so Les was great for that..."
- Rob Halford,
Edge Magazine, May 2003

     "Les was a very technical drummer, just what we were looking for to fill the space left by session drummer Simon Phillips..."
- Rob Halford, 1980

     "We got Les to fill in for Simon because he also played a double-bass kit, like Simon. He was one of the few drummers we could find who could play some of the rhythms that Simon came up with on SIN AFTER SIN."
- Ian Hill, Bass Guitar, October/November 2004

Much of Les' prior drum work had been for Roger Glover's projects, which featured some of hard rock's greatest vocalists, such as David Coverdale, Glenn Hughes, and Ronnie James Dio. Through the Roger Glover connection, Judas Priest auditioned and hired Les Binks and began their world tour which eventually climaxed in their first trip to the United States that ended with the Oakland, California's Day On The Green festival, featuring fellow Birmingham mates Led Zeppelin headlining the bill!

For more on Les Binks, click his picture:

LYRICS AND LEAD BREAKS:

Sinner Diamonds And Rust Starbreaker Last Rose Of Summer Let Us Prey/Call For The Priest
Raw Deal Here Come The Tears Dissident Aggressor Race With The Devil

1. Sinner
Tipton/Halford
1st lead: Glenn; Middle lead: K.K.; Final lead: Glenn
Performed live in: 1979-1983, 1984, 1988
Available live versions: Unleashed In The East (1979), Judas Priest Live (Video 1983, DVD 2004),
Veterans Memorial Coliseum, New Haven, Connecticut (broadcast bootleg, 1988)

     "I do remember one occasion in Ramport Studios where K.K. was going to take a solo - and I'd never experienced this before: He went into the studio, put his guitar on, turned all the stuff up and got the sound, and said, 'OK, let's roll the tape and see what happens.' The tape started rolling and he immediately started going into all his stage movements - sorta 'throwing shapes' as they call it. I thought to myself, 'Why is he doing that? We're in the studio.' And I said to him, 'Why are you doing that? Why don't you just concentrate on your playing?' And he said, 'Well, that's part of the playing. The way I feel is the way I move and it influences the music.'
- Roger Glover, Metal Works video, 1993

     "That was just purely the energy you know. Whenever I'm plugged in, I was 'plugged in!' - It's as simple as that. I think it's even more reason to 'get your rocks off' and 'rock out' in the studio where you know if you bullocks a solo up, at least you can go back and do it again. It's even more reason to groove out and have a good time!"
- K.K. Downing, Metal Works video, 1993

     "I place a lot of importance on the visual aspects of playing. When I'm in the house practicing solos, I stand up and play in front of a mirror. I suppose it's trying to see yourself from the audience's point of view. I like to watch my hand going up and down the neck."
- K.K. Downing, Rockline magazine, 1984

     " 'Sinner' - What an epic! Weird timing... It was Ken's party piece for a while..."
- Ian Hill,
Metal Works liner note, 1993

     "Yeah, I kinda extended it. I'd do all my theatrics, the Jimi Hendrix bit, under the strobes! When it was good, it was good, and when it was bad, it was awful and none of the rest of the band knew when to come back in!"
- K.K. Downing,
Metal Works liner note, 1993

Sinner rider, rides in with the storm
The devil rides beside him
The devil is his god, God help you mourn
Do you, do you hear it, do you hear the thunder
Deafen every living thing about
Can you, can you see it, can you
See the mountains darken yonder
Black sun rising, time is running out

Sacrifice to vice or die by the hand of the
Sinner!
Sinner!
(Is this obligation?)
Sinner!
Sinner!

His steed of fury,
Eyes of fire and mane ablaze
Demonic vultures stalking
Drawn by the smell of war and pain
He roams the starways
Searching for the carcasses of war
But if it's hungry then its very presence
Disrupts the calm into the storm

Curse and damn you all you'll fall by the hand of the
Sinner!
Sinner!
(Dessecranation)
Sinner!
Sinner!

God of the Devils, God of the Devils
Won't you help them pray
God of the Devils, God of the Devils
Is there no other way

Can't you hear their souls calling out in their plight
Can't you see their blood is boiling setting them alight

Thirty years now sleeping, so sound
War raises its head, and looks slowly around
The Sinner is near, sensing the fear
And the beast will start movin' around

Sacrifice to vice or die by the hand of the
Curse and damn you all you fall by the hand of the
Sinner!

2. Diamonds And Rust
Joan Baez (original recorded by Joan Baez)
Licks: Glenn
Performed live in: 1977 - 1979, 1981-1983, 1998, 2001-2002, 2004-2005
Available live versions: Unleashed In The East (1979), Judas Priest Live (Video 1983, DVD 2004), '98 Live Meltdown (1998), Live In London (Video 2002, audio 2003), New York City Palladium (bootleg, 1977), US Festival (1983)

This would be the start of CBS Records' requests for a cover song to push as a single. The next two albums that followed would each feature a cover song, while future albums would feature a song contributed by an outside writer.

As it so happened, Priest had already recorded "Diamonds And Rust" for Gull Records as a request from label president David Howells. Now it was CBS Records requesting a cover, so Priest re-recorded the Joan Baez cover, which was thought to be about Joan's previous relationship with Bob Dylan, though it was actually for her husband David Harris, as she explained to Bob Dylan during a rehearsal:

"You gonna sing that song about robin's eggs and diamonds?" Bob had asked me on the first day of rehearsals.
"Which one?"
"You know, that one about blue eyes and diamonds..."
"Oh", I said, "you must mean 'Diamonds And Rust', the song I wrote for my husband, David. I wrote it while he was in prison."
"For your husband?" Bob said.
"Yeah. Who did you think it was about?" I stonewalled.
"Oh, hey, what the fuck do I know?"
"Never mind. Yeah, I'll sing it, if you like."
- Joan Baez, AND A VOICE TO SING WITH, 1987

Judas Priest showed the world just what a heavy metal band could do to a folk classic. The result was a resounding success, especially on the live circuit, and the number remains a concert favorite to this day!


Joan Baez

This CBS Records version is more polished and complete when compared to the rawer Gull Records version, which may be only a demo, as Rob Halford indicates, they never officially recorded the song for Gull Records:

     "It was Gull Records President David Howells who gave the band 'Diamonds & Rust' as a cover. Apparently they didn't want to do it and David was most surprised to see it re-recorded for Sin After Sin the following year."
- Garry Sharpe-Young, 2002

     "Well, originally, it was presented to us as an idea to experiment with; when we were making the Sad Wings Of Destiny album, the song was put towards us and we listened to her version and were quite amused with the possibilities - the prospects of completely demolishing it with a heavy metal format. So although we didn't actually record it at the time, the next time we went in we'd rehearsed with it and put it together and it came out like it did and we were very happy with the way it turned out and I'm sure Joan's very happy with the royalty checks she gets every six months or so.
     "It is a good song and as a result of that, you could do I don't know how many different interpretations musically with it and it would still work. That just goes to prove, with all kidding aside, she's a very talented lady you know, who writes incredibly good songs."
- Rob Halford, 1980

I'll be damned, here comes your ghost again
But that's not unusual
It's just that the moon is full
And you decided to call

And here I sit, hand on the telephone
Hearing the voice I'd known
A couple of light years ago
Headed straight for a fall

But we both know what memories can bring
They bring diamonds and rust
Yes we both know what memories can bring
They bring diamonds and rust

This CBS Records version differs slightly on the bridge lyrics compared to the original Gull Records version.

Now I see you standing all around with snow in your hair
Now we're smiling out the window of the crummy hotel over Washington Square
Our breath comes in white clouds, mingles and hangs in the air
Speaking strictly for me we both could've died then and there

Now you're telling me you're not nostalgic
Then give me another word for it
You were so good with words
And at keeping things vague

Cause I need some of that vagueness now
It's all come back too clearly, yes, I love you dearly
And if you're offering me diamonds and rust, I've already paid

3. Starbreaker
Halford/Tipton
Lead: K.K./Glenn/Glenn & K.K. together
Performed live in: 1977-1979
Available live versions: Unleashed In The East (1979), Live & Rare (1998), New York City Palladium (bootleg, 1977)

Look out, here's Starbreaker
Cruisin' into town
Set his mind to stealin'
Every little heart around
Step out on the sidewalks
If you're feeling game
He comes but once a lifetime
Never seen again

Starbreaker
Glides in from the sky
Starbreaker
Takes you up so high

Paradise is waiting
For the chosen few
Let's hope maybe this time
He picks me and you
Star voyage to a new world
Light-year miles away
Cross your fingers, here he is,
Take us now this day

Starbreaker, take my hand
Starbreaker, understand
Starbreaker, you're the one
Starbreaker, lead us on, and on

Look out, here's Starbreaker
Cruisin' into town
Set his mind to stealin'
Every little heart around
Step out on the sidewalks
If you're feeling game
He comes but once a lifetime
Never ever seen again

4. Last Rose Of Summer
Halford/Tipton
Lead: Glenn

Throughout the soft and timeless days of August
'Til now the shadows begin to grow much longer
The sunset's fire has deepened blood red
I give you this, the last rose of summer

A token of my unyielding love
So when the winter's mantle stills the earth
And all around seems dead and cold
This rose reminds you of a time when all was warm and living

Do not despair, mother nature simply rests
In sleep she has well earned
'Til one day not so very far from now
With the opening of the first rose buds I shall return

The last rose of summer
In your long shadows
The last rose of summer
In the sunset
The last rose of summer
Take this rose that I give you
The last rose of summer
Don't worry about the winter
The last rose of summer
I shall return
The last rose of summer

5. Let Us Prey / Call For The Priest
Halford/Downing/Tipton
Lead: K.K./Glenn/K.K./Glenn
"Let Us Prey" was a show opener in 1977 and never performed live by Judas Priest - a tape of the song was played over the PA while the band entered the stage
"Call For The Priest" performed live in: 1977-1978
Available live versions: New York Palladium (bootleg, 1977), Cambridge Corn Exchange (bootleg, 1978)

Many have wondered why track 5 was not titled "Call For The Priest/Let Us Prey", as the opening line would suggest, but a 1978 bootleg of the Cambridge Corn Exchange reveals the band skipping the instrumental intro and only playing the second part, which Rob introduces as "Call For The Priest".  "Let Us Prey" is an instrumental and the line, "Call for the priest, I'm dying..." is a lead-in to the second part of the song.

Instrumental

Call for the priest, I'm dying...

Well, the pressure's too much, you know I peaked last night
I gotta get some a quick release
City is standing on my shoulders
My body's going piece by piece
Yeah!

Yes I know what I want and I know where to get it
And I'm going there right away
This is one priest that I don't have to fall on
Down to my knees and pray
No!

When your back's to the wall come along one and all
We shall fight all the slander that's penned
It's us we shall choose let the bigoted lose
For our triumph's the means to their end

With you by my side I shall ride every storm

Let the cynics drop dead in their critical head
They're wrist merchants as we all can see
Bunch of deaf ears with their columnized fears
What a shame, what a shame, oh dear me!

6. Raw Deal
Halford/Tipton
Lead: Glenn

     "'Raw Deal' was a very open song for me. Yeah, that was like really a moment that I thought people might grasp onto, but it just went vvvrrrrrooomm right over the top of people's heads. But I mean I've never cheapened the music in so much as using it as a platform for my own personal gain. A lot of my lyrics are subjective. A lot of my lyrics don't have a gender placed on them. It's never 'he and she', because I've always felt that that way it just opens up the listener's possibility to accept it from whatever they want to take it from. But that's just a side issue of a lot of things of who I am and what I am as a person."
- Rob Halford, Nardwuar, September 20, 2000

I made a spike about nine o'clock on a Saturday
All eyes hit me as I walked into the door
And seeing other guys were fooling with the demin dudes
A couple cards played rough stuff, New York, fire island

I cased the joint, straining at the scenes
I moseyed up to the counter and the tender came a-grinnin'
I snapped the smile off his face and scowled "Give me a bourbon"
The mirror on the wall was collecting and reflecting
All the heavy bodies ducking, stealing eager for some action
The scene screwed me up, I saw some contact
Then the big boys, saw me and knew that

I'd had too much, floating around
Statues alive, seconds are hours

Sacks like a hurricane, wrapped in and shattered
I was barely holding on to this crying bawdy symphony
I guess I dream in pictures, not colours
The true free expression I demand is human rights - right

I gave my life, I am immortal

I'm going, no loss
I'm going, no loss
I'm going, no loss
I'm going, no loss

Nightmare, just a bunch of goddamn, rotten, steaming, Raw Deal

7. Here Comes The Tears
Halford/Tipton
Lead: Glenn

Once I dreamed that love would come and sweep me up away
Now it seems life's passed me by, I'm still alone today
Here come the tears

Looks like it'll always be the same
No one here to comfort me
Here come the tears

All alone, no one cares.
So much to give to you all out there

Take me now, in your arms
Let me rest, safe from harm

Ohhh I want to be loved
I need to be loved
Won't somebody love me

Here they come, here come the tears
Here they come, here come the tears... 

8. Dissident Aggressor
Halford/Downing/Tipton
Lead: K.K.

     "It's totally wild, so aggressive! The lead break is savage. If I had to pick one track it would be this one, incredible..."
- Ian Hill, Metal Works liner notes, 1993

Grand canyons of space and time universal
My mind is subjected to all

Stab! Bawl! Punch! Crawl!
Hooks to my brain are well in
Stab! Bawl! Punch! Crawl!
I know what I am, I'm Berlin

Through cracked, blackened memories of unit dispersal
I face the impregnable wall

Exploding, reloading, this quest never ending
Until I give out my last breath

I'm stabbing and bawling, I'm punching and crawling
Hooks to my brain are well in
I'm stabbing and bawling, I'm punching and crawling
I know what I am, I'm Berlin

9. Race With The Devil
RE-MASTERS Bonus Track
A. Gurvitz (original recorded by Gun)
All licks and solos - Glenn

You'd better run
You'd better run
You'd better run from the Devil's gun
The race is on
The race is on
Now you'd better run from the Devil's gun

Strange things happen
If you stay
The Devil will catch you anyway
He'll seek you here
He'll seek you there
The Devil will seek you everywhere

And when he finds you
You'll soon find out
The Devil's fire just won't go out
He burns you up
From head to toe
The Devil's grip just won't let go

All songs published by EMI Songs Ltd.
Lead breaks are taken from the 1982 World Vengeance tour program

TOUR DATES 1977:

Rob Halford - v, Glenn Tipton - g, K.K. Downing - g, Ian Hill - b, Les Binks - d)

SETLIST (Orange titles are from the current album)

From the July 16 New York Palladium broadcast:
Let Us Prey/Call For The Priest
Diamonds And Rust
Victim Of Changes
The Ripper
Genocide
Starbreaker
 

DATE VENUE CITY, STATE COUNTRY NOTES
March Kuusrock Festival Oulu Finland With Climax Blues Band


Photos from Finland © Pertti Tikkanen

British tour with some dates as support act to Status Quo
April 22 Corn Exchange Cambridge England  
April 23 Kursaal Ballroom Southend England  
April 24 Skindles Maidenhead England  
April 26 Top Rank Cardiff England  
April 27 Danebank College Crewe England  
April 29 Pavillion West Runton England  
April 30 Cricket Club Northampton England  
May 1 Greyhound Croydon England  
May 2 Top Rank Plymouth England  
May 3 Hampstead Hamel England  
May 5 Winter Gardens Cleethorpes England  
May 7 Empire Liverpool England  
May 8 Top Rank Sheffield England  
May 9 Town Hall Birmingham England  

Rob had quite a theatric flair for outfit changes throughout the set in the early days, such as was captured at this Birmingham show...

May 12 ABC Ardwick Apollo Manchester England  
May 13 Mayfair Newcastle England  
May 14 Coatham Bowl Redear England  
May 15 Imperial Blackpool England  
May 16 Ploytechnic Leeds England  
May 17 Drill Hall Lincoln England  
May 18 Civic Hall Guildford England  
May 19 Mayfair Ballroom Newcastle England  
May 20 Brunnell Rooms Swindon England  
May 21 Pier Pavillion Hastings England  
May 22 New Victoria Theatre London England Support act: The Statel

Fans trash the place after trouble flares between the audience and heavy-handed bouncers, leading to the venue's closure!


Partial ad for the New Victoria Theatre show

First Tour of America as support to REO Speedwagon and Foreigner

     "I lost a lot of weight on that first US tour! I couldn't stand the food at all and really missed being able to get regular things like sausage and tomato sandwiches!"
- K.K. Downing, Heavy Duty official biography, 1984


"I can't stand the food!"


"Oh, you wanted a sausage and tomato sandwich?"

June 17 Civic Center Amarillo, TX USA Support to REO Speedwagon
June 19 Texas Hall Dallas, TX USA  
June 20 Music Hall Houston, TX USA  
June 21 Municipal Auditorium San Antonio, TX USA  
June 22 Memorial Coliseum Corpus Christi, TX USA  
June 28 Music Hall Oklahoma City, OK USA  
June 30 Coliseum Jackson, MS USA  
July 1 Civic Center Dothan, AL USA  
July 2 Fox Theatre Atlanta, GA USA  
July 5 Municipal Auditorium Charleston, SC USA  
July 6 Freedom Hall Johnson City, TN USA  
July 7 Rupp Arena Lexington, KY USA  
July 8 Haymaker's Club Wheeling, IL USA Support to REO Speedwagon

     "I was throwing my microphone stand around and the ceiling started to come down
. I think it was the first time they had a real heavy metal act in the place and the building obviously wasn't designed to carry the structural stress of Priest's music on stage!"
- Rob Halford, Heavy Duty official biography, 1984
July 9 Superjam '77
Busch Stadium
St. Luis, MO USA With REO Speedwagon, Ted Nugent, Head East, and Gypsy

July 16 Palladium Theatre New York, NY USA With REO Speedwagon and Starz; Audio bootleg exists
     "During one of New York's legendary Manhattan blackouts, I remember walking down 17 stories on the hotel fire escape with K.K. and we were clinging onto each with a book of matches giving us a bit of light. Finally, we staggered outside, where somebody had a bottle of whiskey, and sat on a truck until we heard all the cheers in Times Square when the lights started to come on. It was very bizarre."
- Rob Halford, Heavy Duty official biography, 1984
July 23
July 24
Day On The
Green Festival
Oakland Coliseum
Oakland, CA USA With Led Zeppelin

Photos ©
John Taylor
     "At the end of that tour, we were asked to fly to Oakland, California to play a couple shows with Led Zeppelin. That was terrific! We played in front of 65,000 people at Oakland Coliseum. America has always been very good to Judas Priest, it has always been our biggest market in the world."
- K.K. Downing,
Hard Radio Shockwaves, 1998

     "Judas Priest did two shows with Led Zeppelin; it was the Bill Graham event DAY ON THE GREEN at the Oakland Coliseum. The true essence of metal came out of those first two dates with Priest in the late '70s - coming out to America for the first time. It was Robert Plant who got us on that bill. He knew that Priest were in town, and he said, 'Get me that band from my home on the bill, I want Priest to open the show'. Those shows were responsible for breaking Priest on the west coast. All the press and international media were at those shows. That was a very pivotal moment for Priest and for metal music."
- Rob Halford, Hard Radio Shockwaves, 2000

     "At the end of the first tour, our people asked us, 'Can you go to Oakland and play a few shows with Led Zeppelin?' I mean, 60,000 people a day! It was just Rick Derringer, us and those guys. Zeppelin were going on around three; I think we went on about 11:30 in the morning!"
- K.K. Downing, Revolver, September 2003

     "That was totally humongous. In fact it's still one of the most vivid memories I've personally got of the band. To play in front of all those thousands of people was just incredible. Although we went on at something like eleven o' clock in the morning and had breakfast beforehand, it was great fun. It was particularly nice to have two Midlands bands playing on the same stage."
- Rob Halford, Heavy Duty official biography, 1984


     "Funny story about the Day On The Green show: A guy who was working for Y&T at the time was at the show with a couple of the guys from Y&T and he told me when Rob came out, he said to the audience, "How you doing SF?", and they were in Oakland and did not realize that they may of landed in the San Francisco airport, but went across the bay to Oakland for the show. He said they got booed during the show because of the rivalry between Oakland and San Francisco!"
- Eyewitness

August 29 Blue Lagoon Ballroom Cornwall   England  
October 6 Volkshaus Zurich Switzerland Support to AC/DC
October 7 Volkshaus Zurich Switzerland Support to AC/DC
Thanks go to Anthony Zolota for providing most of these tour dates from an old advertisement


© 2002-2003
Steel & Leather Productions, U.S.A.