Owens recorded two studio LPs with the British heavy metal legends — 1997’s Jugulator and 2001’s Demolition — before the group reunited with Rob Halford.
When asked if he always thought that Halford will eventually return to the band, Owens responded: “Well, yeah. I almost wanted it at the very end. At that time, Glenn [Tipton, JUDAS PRIEST guitarist] said to me, ‘I just want you to know, we’ve been offered millions of dollars to get Rob and do a tour.’ I think he was mad at me for something. He said, ‘If you don’t want to wear that jacket, someone else might.’
“But I knew it. After we toured, I was like, ‘I know the writing is on the wall, but I’ll never quit.’ I knew I had to do something else financially. At the end, I couldn’t live off what I was getting paid. I’m not saying it was bad, but I wanted to do other things. I wanted to write.
“This is when ICED EARTH called, and this is when I knew the writing was on the wall,” he continued. “They called me up and said, “Do you want to sing on this record The Glorious Burden?” Matt [Barlow] had left the band. I was like, ‘Let me call management for JUDAS PRIEST.’ They were like, [cheerfully] “Yeah, go ahead!” I was like, ‘Uh-oh.’ I knew.
On how did he hear about Halford‘s return, Owens said: I think I got a fax. I can’t remember. I don’t think it was an e-mail. It was 2003 or 2004. I got a fax that just said, ‘You’re out of the band.'”
Asked how did he feel, Tim said: |I felt all right. I just recorded The Glorious Burden. It’s funny. I knew it was coming. They had to get Rob back. I think Rob needed JUDAS PRIEST and JUDAS PRIEST needed Rob. I was in ICED EARTH. At to be honest, at the time, ICED EARTH was as big as JUDAS PRIEST. We were headlining festivals. We were playing to the same venues. I think it was pretty cool.”