Judas Priest to Replace Ozzy Osbourne at Power Trip Festival

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One day after Ozzy Osbourne announced that he was bowing out of the upcoming Power Trip festival, admitting that “my body is telling me that I’m just not ready yet,” the rock legend has been replaced by Judas Priest. The band confirmed it today (July 11, 2023) via their social media platforms. “Judas Priest are primed and proud to fly the flag for Heavy Metal at this prestigious festival,” they wrote. They’ll open for AC/DC on the Saturday, Oct. 7 show. Osbourne hasn’t performed on stage in nearly five years, and was a surprise choice to play the event, since he had announced in February of this year that he had retired from touring due to various medical issues.

Some of rock’s biggest names will be performing at the new festival that will take place over three days in October 2023, in Indio, Calif., that will mark the return to the stage of AC/DC. They’ll be joined by Guns N’ Roses, Metallica, Iron Maiden, Tool, and now Priest. Osbourne had said in his July 10 statement that his replacements are “personal friends of mine.” Power Trip will be held Oct. 6-8 at the Empire Polo Club, site of 2016’s elaborate Desert Trip festival. The event is from Goldenvoice, the Coachella organizers who also produced Desert Trip. The event was originally revealed on March 30 after teasers began to appear on the social media platforms of many of the acts involved.

When the reports began appearing on March 28 that some of rock’s biggest names would be performing at a new festival, Power Trip, in October, it seemed like it was an elaborate set-up for an epic April Fools Day prank. After all, the event’s two biggest names hadn’t been on a concert stage in years. AC/DC’s last concert took place on Sept. 20, 2016, the final show of their Rock or Bust World Tour, the same tour that saw the band essentially fire lead singer Brian Johnson due to lingering hearing issues that were affecting his vocals. Johnson was replaced by Axl Rose for the remainder of the tour. (Johnson subsequently returned to the band and sang lead on their 2020 album, Power Up.) When Osbourne announced that he had retired from touring, he noted that he was “not physically capable” of the rigors that touring requires following a spate of serious health issues, not the least of which is his battle with Parkinson’s Disease.

In his July 10 statement, Osbourne said, “As painful as this is, I’ve had to make the decision to bow out of performing on Power Trip in October. My original plan was to return to the stage in the summer of 2024, and when the offer to do this show came in, I optimistically moved forward.

“Unfortunately, my body is telling me that I’m just not ready yet and I am much too proud to have the first show that I do in nearly five years be half-assed.

“The band that will be replacing me on Power Trip will be announced shortly. They are personal friends of mine and I can promise that you will not be disappointed.

“Above all, I want to thank my fans, my band, and my crew for their unconditional loyalty and continual support. I love you all and I will see you soon.”

The lineups at Power Trip: Guns N’ Roses and Iron Maiden (Friday, Oct. 6), AC/DC and Judas Priest (Saturday, Oct. 7) and Metallica and Tool (Sunday, Oct. 8). Tickets are available here and here.

2016’s elaborate Desert Trip proved to be so popular that it spanned two glorious weekends that took place Oct. 7-9 and 14-16 in Indio, California—where the annual Coachella Music & Arts Festival was launched in 1999. That event was nicknamed “Oldchella” since it featured older legends Paul McCartney, the Rolling Stones, The Who, Bob Dylan, Neil Young and Roger Waters. Desert Trip’s second weekend was added on the first day that tickets went on sale for the first weekend.

On March 28, AC/DC, Ozzy, Metallica, and Iron Maiden shared a teaser clip for the festival—featuring the call-to-action “calling all headbangers”—on their social media platforms.

Camping options include Car and Tent Camping, ready-to-go 2 person Lodge/4 person tents, RV spots and more. Amenities and activities are available for all campers.

Accommodations include hotel packages: Bundle your Power Trip tickets with nearby hotel accommodations and “any line” shuttle passes. Available for groups of 2 or 4 people, exclusively through Valley Music Travel. Packages start at $3,199 + fees.

The same weekend, Oct. 6-8, another festival, Aftershock, targets a similar audience and even has Guns N’ Roses and Tool among its confirmed lineup in Sacramento, Calif.

Best Classic Bands Staff

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  1. KJo
    #1 KJo 11 July, 2023, 00:08

    Ozzy needs to call it a day, permanently. It’s okay Ozzy, thanks for everything. Well, except that bat thing.

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