An exclusive interview with Rob Halford

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Metal God and … record executive?

While covering the annual meeting of The National Association of Recording Merchandisers (NARM) last week (we’ll have much more on NARM next week), I was listening to a well-versed, informed panel talk about methods of music distribution. Being a well-known ‘multi-tasker’, I was also looking at the convention schedule when something strange caught my eye. Just to make sure I had read it correctly, I gave it a closer look.

“Come meet ‘Metal God’ himself … meet and greet and 2 pm in the registration area”, it said. While, admittedly, I am not a hard-core “Priest” fan, I was very excited to meet (and greet) the spectacle that I had built up in my head, who was Rob Halford.

I hurried down halls of the San Diego Marriott Hotel to do just that. I arrived at the Metal God booth to find it vacant and decided to take advantage of a few free minutes. Walking down the hall, phone to ear, I hurried past a man. Average height, shaved head, wearing leisure shoes, a faded t-shirt, and wearing some kind of Umbro soccer/Capri pants. I turned around some 20 seconds later to find the Metal God booth occupied by the very same dismissible man in the Capri pants.

I’ll be honest; at first it was slightly disheartening. This seemingly inauspicious man was the “Metal God”?!?! Why wasn’t the “he arrayed head-to-toe in leather, entering the room screaming out the lyrics of “Breaking the Law” with fireworks and flashing lights?

True my duties, I walked over to the booth, to the front of the line and Halford greeted me by name. “Hello Paul,” reading from my badge. He spoke tenderly in a comforting English accent. It was amazing to believe that this was the same guy who, for thirty years, has been one of metal’s biggest influencers, was so fantastically down to earth. It was very inspiring in a way. After getting to, for lack of a better term, just kind of “shoot the shit” with Rob for a few minutes, I worked up the nerve to pull out a card and properly introduce myself.

Rob, being a resident of San Diego (among a few other places), remembered the Entertainer from its days in print and easily agreed to do an exclusive video interview with us. A few emails with his PR folks later, and we were waiting in the Presidential Suite of the beautiful Park Manor Suites Hotel in Hillcrest with none other than Metal God himself, Rob Halford.

Here’s our interview:


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