IAN HILL: It’s ‘Entirely’ Up To ANDY SNEAP If He Wants To Continue With JUDAS PRIEST Beyond ‘Firepower’ Tour

Ian Hill

In a brand new interview with “Talking Metal,” JUDAS PRIEST bassist Ian Hill was asked if Andy Sneap will stay on as a touring member of band even after the “Firepower” trek is finished.

Hill responded:

“It is something to be discussed, really. I mean, Andy is now, these days, first and foremost a producer. Whether he wants to go back and do that full time or not, it’ll be a mutual decision when the time comes. Andy will be more than welcome to stay.

He’s done a tremendous job over the last year or so, really. He’s done a great job stepping in for Glenn. It would have been very difficult if he hadn’t been there, on such short notice, because we didn’t realize that Glenn couldn’t handle the intensity of touring anymore until… We were only about three weeks away from starting the tour [laughs], and Andy stepped in and did a great job.

He pulled a real rabbit out of the hat in learning a complete setlist of songs in such a short period of time. He pulled it off anyway. And as time’s gone on, obviously, his stage presence, he got more comfortable with that, and he’s performing great now. So when the time comes… We’ll give it to the end of this run and then see what everybody wants to do. As I say, he’ll be more than welcome to carry on with us if that’s his plan.”

Pressed about whether the final decision will be left up to Andy, Hill responded:

“Yeah. Pretty much so. I mean, we’ll understand either way. He put some work aside to do this, and obviously, he’s anxious to get back and finish that off. He’s probably doing some of that now as we speak, in this short break that we’ve got. Like I say, if he wants to continue, that’s entirely up to him, really.”

When asked if PRIEST has anyone else in mind for the guitarist slot if Sneap ever decides to return to full-time producing, Hill replied:

“No, not at the time being. I mean, the plan at the moment is to go to the end of the year. The U.S. run, that’ll take us up to the end of June. And we were gonna do some rearranged Ozzy Osbourne dates; we were special guesting with him, but he, unfortunately, got rather sick and had to cancel.

And that’s now being pushed back to February, so we’ve pretty much got the rest of the year off to sit back and see where we go from here. The plan is to tour next year with 50-year celebrations.

And if Andy‘s with us, great. If he wants to carry on with producing, we’ll more than understand that. He’s done a tremendous job and he’ll go with everyone’s blessing. But, like I say, it will be time to consider that over the next few months or so.”