Former vocalist of Judas Priest, Al Atkins, spoke in a recent interview with Crystal Logic and revealed the meaning of the name of the band.

In the conversation, Al Atkins mentioned the first days of the band and explained how unlucky they were by saying that they lost the record contract with Immediate Records and lost two members during this time.

Furthermore, Al Atkins stated that the former bass guitarist of the band, Bruno Stapenhill, is the one who came up with the Judas Priest name. According to his statement, this name is taken from one of the Bob Dylan songs.

Al referred to the song that released with the 1967’s ‘John Wesley Harding’ album, named ‘The Ballad of Frankie Lee and Judas Priest,’ and revealed the real source of where Judas Priest name came from.

Interviewer asked:

“What’s the origin of the ‘Judas Priest’ name?”

Here is what Al Atkins said:

“Bruno, the bass player came up with it. He took it from a song called ‘The Ballad of Frankie Lee and Judas Priest’ from the album ‘John Wesley Harding’ by Bob Dylan.”

Interviewer asked:

“What’s your personal view in the formation of Judas Priest?”

Al Atkins replied:

“Well I was in the 1969-70 and 1970-73 line-ups… and we got through four drummers in four years, so I think the link is there with me and they were both my bands. I was the main spokesman, singer, and songwriter after all.

The name Judas Priest is the main thing no matter who comes and goes along the way but in my opinion, I think now, after 50 years together, it has nearly run its course and if Rob left again that would be the end of the story.

The band first started in 1969 but with lots of bad luck like losing our record contract with Immediate Records and firing the drummer, our bass player Bruno Stapenhill decided to leave us for another band and to tour around Denmark… So that was that.”

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