British metal legends Judas Priest have released a short statement in response to the news that Ozzy Osbourne has retired from touring. Priest were due to support Ozzy on the European stretch of his much anticipated final world tour, No More Tours 2. Sadly, due to a combination of the pandemic and ongoing health issues, The Prince Of Darkness finally cancelled those shows this week after years of postponements and delays, and with his statement confirming that the cancellations bring his life on the road to an end. It means Judas Priest will likely seek a way to go back on tour themselves.
"We send all our love and support for Ozzy and thank our fans in the UK and Ireland especially for your loyalty by standing with us," the band state on social media. "Right now we’re looking at feasible opportunities to see each other again soon and will post update’s accordingly."
Priest have yet to fully tour in support of critically acclaimed 2018 album Firepower, with work already nearing completion on that album's follow-up.
In a statement released on Wednesday, Ozzy confirmed that his career as a touring artist is over, noting: "This is probably one of the hardest things I've ever had to share with my loyal fans. As you may all know, four years ago, this month, I had a major accident, where I damaged my spine.
"My one and only purpose during this time has been to get back on stage. My singing voice is fine. However, after three operations, stem cell treatments, endless physical therapy sessions, and most recently groundbreaking Cybernics (HAL) Treatment, my body is still physically weak.
"I am honestly humbled by the way you've all patiently held onto your tickets for all this time, but in all good conscience, I have now come to the realisation that I'm not physically capable of doing my upcoming European/UK tour dates, as I know I couldn't deal with the travel required. Believe me when I say that the thought of disappointing my fans really FUCKS ME UP, more than you will ever know.
"Never would I have imagined that my touring days would have ended this way. My team is currently coming up with ideas for where I will be able to perform without having to travel from city to city and country to country.
"I want to thank my family my band my crew my longtime friends, Judas Priest, and of course, my fans for their endless dedication, loyalty, and support, and for giving me the life that I never ever dreamed I would have. I love you all."