The former Judas Priest drummer, John Hinch, has died at the age of 73. The news was confirmed by Judas Priest frontman Rob Halford via an Instagram post yesterday.
Speaking to Loudwire Halford led tributes to the late drummer, stating: “His style was strong, direct and unique. I’ll be blasting Rocka Rolla today!”
Rocka Rolla is, of course, the debut record on which Hinch’s powerful rhythmic drumming style came to the fore following his departure from Hiroshima to start Judas Priest in 1973.
His former Judas Priest bandmate, guitarist K.K. Downing, also joined the tributes, adding: “I am extremely saddened to hear that John has passed away as he played his part so well in the creation and the history of Judas Priest.”
“There are so many memories of crazy and fun times we all shared together. John was always so dependable and did everything to the best of his ability, including his drumming which looking back can only be described as faultless. The fact that he continued to play to his very last day is testimony to his ability and dedication to his love of the drums.”
“I wish to give my sincere condolences to John’s family and loved ones from myself and all of you forever. Rest in peace, John.”
Hinch departed the band shortly before their second record after the rock ‘n’ roll lifestyle put a strain upon the band and tensions sometimes flared. Thereafter he pursued a career in the management side of the industry and worked with artists such as Uli Jon Roth and Jameson Raid.
Hinch was taken ill on Wednesday, April 28, and passed away late afternoon on April 29.