Rob Halford Says Working with Family on ‘Celestial’ Was a ‘Very Special’ Experience

2019-11-06

Rob Halford – Story and photo by Anne Erickson

Rob Halford of Judas Priest recently released a new Christmas album, “Celestial,” featuring family and friends, and the singer says it was a “blast” making the tunes come together

Rob Halford just released his second album of Christmas songs, both traditional holiday tunes and originals, as well a new collection called “Celestial.” This album differs from his first Christmas set, “Winter Songs,” because this one features his friends and family appearing on all of the tracks.

So, what was it like having Halford’s loved ones involved with “Celestial.” According to the metal vocalist, it was a very new experience.

“It is a little bit different, isn’t it? To bring this kind of family side of what I’m about to my music into an album,” Halford told Consequence of Sound/Heavy Consequence in a new interview. “I’ve always wanting to do something with my brother Nigel and my nephew Alex, Ian Hill’s son, because they’re really talented musicians,” he added. “And it was in the back of my mind whether there’d be an opportunity to make any kind of music with them. But a couple years ago, we were at one of our respective homes in the UK at Christmastime and we were listening to the ‘Winter Songs’ album, the release I did 10 years ago. And I just said, ‘Wouldn’t it be great to just get together and maybe do a Christmas song or two?'”

He added, “We’d always wanted to do something I think, as a family, musically like this, so it was just the great that the stars were aligned, celestially. And that’s how we set the whole thing up, and it was a blast. It was really cool, and it’s very special.”

Switching gears to Judas Priest’s next studio album, which will mark the band’s follow-up to 2017’s “Firepower,” Halford told Consequence of Sound/Heavy Consequence that it’s in the works, but taking a while.

“[Guitarist] Glenn [Tipton] is always noodling away, even though he doesn’t tour that much now,” Halford said. “He’s always noodling away in the studio in the UK. He’s always putting riffs down. We have vaults of so many riffs. It’s just incredible. So it all starts with the riff, mostly, in what we do. We start with the riff and a melody, some hooks and we build it, as most bands do. Firepower is going to be quite difficult to top, but we’ll do everything we can to cut another great record and that’ll happen at some point.”

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