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Prostate Cancer Uncensored: Hosted by Jay Jay French | Feat. Judas Priest’s Rob Halford – PCAM Edition

 

 

 

 

Welcome to Prostate Cancer Uncensored, a podcast produced by ZERO – The End of Prostate Cancer. This episode is brought to you in partnership with Bayer. Today, our guest host is Twisted Sister’s Jay Jay French. He’s a rocker and author and a prostate cancer survivor.

Prostate Cancer: Uncensored podcast unfiltered discussions with researchers, caregivers, patients, and medical professionals about prostate cancer. Listen online, or subscribe and download on your favorite podcasting platform; episodes are available for listening on Apple PodcastsAnchor.fmStitcherGoogle PodcastsTuneInPlayerFMPocket CastsSpotifyPodBeanRadioPublic, and more.


Voice-Over:
Welcome to Prostate Cancer Uncensored, a podcast produced by ZERO – The End of Prostate Cancer. This episode is brought to you in partnership with Bayer. Today, our guest host is Twisted Sister’s Jay Jay French. He’s a rocker, and author, and a prostate cancer survivor.

Jay Jay French:
Hello, everyone. I’m Jay Jay French and it’s time for some straight talk about prostate cancer with my guest and fellow rocker and fellow prostate cancer survivor, the great metal God himself, Rob Halford from Judas Priest. Welcome, Rob.

Rob:
Hello, Jay Jay. Hi, everybody. Thanks for inviting me today.

Jay Jay:
Rob. I just want to start off by saying to you that when you were a guest on my podcast last year, that remains the highest-rated podcast I have done.

Rob:
Hey, thank you. That’s beautiful. Congratulations, Jay Jay.

Jay Jay:
My wife pointed that out to me yesterday. When she was looking at my numbers, she said, “Do you realize Rob Halford is still your number one?” I went, “Great. Well, that’s wonderful.” That’s actually great that you did. I also I want to mention that, when you played in New Jersey recently on March 31st, I was still in Mexico, I couldn’t make the show, but Mark Mendoza, my bass player came down, and saw the show and said it fabulous.

The fact that you’re out there, you’re doing it. I’m a little jealous that you guys are doing it, and he said you’re doing it at the same level you did back when we first played with you guys in ’79, which has to be extremely gratifying for you, I’m sure.

Rob:
It is. It’s a blessing. It’s a blessing, and involved in this great place at Judas Priest is currently celebrating our ongoing 50 years of heavy metal, is the condition of not only myself, but all of us in the band. The health side of life is so important, and after having done through what I did not too long ago.

I’m grateful and blessed to be able to do the work, and as a result of going through the recovery process, and the stars aligning and the calendar being in the right place, I was able to go out there and do my work now probably with even more intensity because, man, to come through the other side of that challenge was, without a doubt, a life changer. I’ve always lived life to the max every day of my life.

It’s so important for me to get even the smallest thing out of the day, whatever it might be. To be in this opportunity is just an extra boost, man. You feel that even more now when you go out on stage, and you’re so grateful to be able to continue doing the work that you love.

Jay Jay:
Isn’t it interesting that, at this point in our lives, we never probably could have envisioned the kind of impact we would have on people that would cover concerns about their health? You follow me? When I get emails from people telling me, “Jay Jay, thank you so much for talking about this, because it’s made my husband get checked,” or someone would write to me and say, “Because you decided to discuss your prostate cancer, I proceeded, and thank you so much.” I never expected that in my life. I could never have projected, that would be the most important thing I’ve ever done in a way in my life.

Rob:
Yes, this is just an incredible bonus amongst a lot of things. When, again, you’re blessed with success, our fans have given us such a great life, they gave Jay Jay a great life, the Twisted Sister. You literally do become a family. You may not meet your fans, but it’s like a family. We share our stories through music, the songs that you guys write, the songs that Priest write, people listen to that song and they go, “Yes, that song is talking to me. That message relates to me in my life.”

That starts to happen as you progress, and we talk about the heavy metal community, and that’s just what it is, in so much as we’re always looking out for each other, we’re always trying to do whatever we can to support each other, no matter what it might be, whether it’s just a simple text or a DM on social media, or anything of that nature, just keeps us close together, and as a result of that, all families go through certain things in their lives, and the similarities are just remarkable to us.

You probably witnessed that on your travels around the world, Jay, that the world is such a small place, and we’re all people, it’s humanity, and so many of us, practically, all of us live the same kinds of lives in the essence of challenges, and especially, challenges in health. To be at this place now, where we can take this opportunity and bring awareness to prostate cancer, is just a really important thing to do.

Who knew? We take it, we grasp it. We take the gift of communication, and we spread the good word and the good news about, how all cancer treatments have incredibly improved through the decades since I was a kid, probably, the same for you, Jay Jay, and everybody listening in. Here we are now to talk about what we need to talk about, to keep spreading the news about getting the checks and so on and so forth.

Jay Jay:
Yes. It is so interesting. Social media is now the thing, and of course back when we were starting, social media really didn’t exist. In fact, if you had a bad night, no one knew about it for months and months and months, and now if you in any way, do something with any indiscretion, everyone knows about it in five seconds. There’s a good, and there’s a bad side to it.

You and I both, on top of having very long careers, 50 years in this business, we both had books out recently. In my book, I mentioned prostate cancer as like an afterthought to the very, very, very end of the book. Although, when I was diagnosed, I had started my book way before I was diagnosed. At what year actually were you diagnosed? Take me through the point that you found out about it, and then had to deal with it. What year was that, and how did that happen?

Rob:
My PSA levels were starting to get elevated many, many years before I finally had a checkup with my doctor, and he took the blood tests and he goes, “Man, these numbers are really high. I’m going to take you to my guy.” I want to say, it was close to 10 years when my PSA levels were starting to get elevated, I was living in San Diego at the time, and my doctor there, he as well said, “Rob, we need to keep an eye on this. I then have to look of these numbers. Can you come in and see me, and we’ll run some tests?”

This is on the eve of the big world tour. What do you do? Yes, I go, “I’ll just get this tour completed, and I’ll come and see you.” As you know, Jay, when we go on these world tours, they can take a year, two years, three years to complete. Through all that whole touring process, I never got the follow-ups that I needed to get done. Let me quickly say that it’s a guy thing. It’s a guy thing.

I’m a 70-year-old metal head. I come from a generation, where men, we didn’t talk about these kinds of things. We never really talked about our health. We always found it difficult to open up emotionally, let alone anything else. On top of all of the things that I was dealing with on the road, and having a great time, I knew this was lurking in the back of my mind.

Anyway. We’re talking what? About three years back now maybe? I see my new doctor in Phoenix, and he runs the test again, and he goes, “I’ve got to get you in to see my guy,” and that’s when this incredible journey started for me just to battle the prostate cancer.

Jay Jay:
Do you remember what your PSA number was at the point where he said, “This is something you can no longer ignore, you’ve got to now deal with it.” Do you remember what that was?

Rob:
I remember him sending me to my– This guy, he’s just one of the top people in the country, robotic surgery. One of the top people in this world of prostate cancer treatment. I’d been going back and forth to him prior to my treatment, and this is just remarkable. This all kicked in around the beginning of the pandemic. The world had come to a stop, in terms of what we do in rock and roll.

I just come back from England after [unintelligible] one writing session for this forthcoming Priest album. I was back in the States, and we started to do these tests and the numbers were coming back high. I think I was doing one of the Alice Copper Christmas Puddings. I was there with all of these great people. I was sitting in the room with one of my dear friends, who was still manager of the Priest for many years. We were– Old guys talk about the health.

We were talking about that, and he was saying, “Yes, you really to stay on top of this, and get the checks done.” I cut a long story short. We began the formal process of investigating what was going on inside of my body, so the first thing we did was the scans, where they inject you with IV and you lay in the machine, and the incredible advances of technology, they show up every single detail, so that was when we discovered something was happening.

Jay Jay:
At this point, for clarity, so I want to explain this to some listeners who may not be aware, because I have to assume sometimes men who are listening to this really have very little understanding. PSA, Prostate-Specific Antigen is the number that is generally used to determine if you may have prostate cancer, and we’re told that if your number’s over four, you have to start really watching it.

If it’s under four, you don’t have to, and by the way, it’s not doesn’t mean if it’s under four, you don’t have prostate cancer, and it doesn’t mean if you’re over four, you have prostate cancer. It’s just the warning sign that you should be looking at. For me, my father died of prostate cancer undiagnosed in 1984, in fact, on the day Stay Hungry went platinum. He died on that day.

He had– It was rapidly– He died very quickly, it gotten to his bones. We figured he must have had it for three or four years to have gotten it to that level, so my brother, who’s 10 years older than I am. We looked at each other and went, “Wow, I wonder if it’s in our history.” Lo and behold, when my brother hit 66, I was 56, he got it. At that point, which is 14 years ago, I started thinking, “I got to pay attention to this.”

I had my PSA checked, and it was over four and it was like 4.3, and the urologist said, “We should do a biopsy.” We did one and it was negative, and that was 14 years ago. Then, we did another one as the number one up to 5.1, and so I had five biopsies over a 10-year period of time, watching it go. Every time the number was higher, I thought, for sure, I had prostate cancer, and it kept coming up negative, but, again, it’s elusive because if they stick a pin and they pull out tissue, and it’s not cancerous, doesn’t mean the cell next to it isn’t cancerous.

As you know, they make it in conjunction with MRIs and other scans to look and see if there’s something unusual going on, because a lot of time there’s no symptoms at all. You don’t know you have it. It’s not like other diseases, where you feel a pain, prostate cancer, you can have it, and you still don’t even know you have prostate cancer, which is why men have to really be aware of what’s going on, because by the time a symptom comes up, it could be too late.

In this particular case for you, whatever number it was, that signal that you should go really get this checked, you finally went and got it checked. Did they determine at that point that, yes, in fact, it had developed into prostate cancer?

Rob:
The alarming number that I had from our PSA was 12.

Jay Jay:
Yes, that’s about– I was 11.1. I was, it’s funny. I was 11.9, when they finally determined, and you were 12, so there we go. People, I think we should also tell men that it’s not so much of your numbers high, it’s how rapidly it climbs over a short period of time, because you could have a high number, and just be a person who has a high number. Correct?

Jay Jay:
It can just be high.

Rob:
Exactly.

Jay Jay:
If it starts to get high quickly, so all of a sudden you’re 12, do you remember what it was, the test prior to the 12? Was it like a 9?

Rob:
I think we may have been at a five or a six.

Jay Jay:
Wow.

Rob:
In that period of time from San Diego to when I was in Phoenix, it had incrementally grown, almost doubled in the time that I went between the tests. You are right, Jay. It is a guide, but it’s the best we’ve got. It’s the best we’ve got and it’s a good litmus test, and it just helps us proceed and make decisions and choices, both for ourselves, and more importantly, for the people that are treating us. I had the MRIs done.

Jay Jay:
I will say this to you, because I had been so neurotic about this, and because it wasn’t a matter of, if, but a matter of when. I had done so much research at the time, that by the time it was diagnosed and they said, ”It’s– You got it.” I knew exactly what I was going to do, who was going to do it, and where it was going to be, which is not the average process that most men do.

Most men put a cover over their head and go, “I don’t want to talk about it. I don’t want to know about it. I don’t want to talk to my friends about it. I barely want to talk to my wife about it, and I don’t want to read about it.” This is an issue. This is why having this conversation with someone like yourself, who has such a high profile is so damn important, because you know what it is? Your responsibility is to your loved ones more than anything else in the world, is to yourself and to your loved ones, and you need to do this.

You need to pay attention, is really what you need to do. In your particular case, they diagnosed it, and then at that point, did you know much about the options involved, or did they have to then school you on all the options involved?

Rob:
I’d tell you what’s maybe not unusual, but when I saw my doctor, he talked about the numbers, something inside me told me, “Just get ready, because there’s a good chance that you have something that it’s going to be really serious, and you need to take care of it.” We did the two front and backs on the same day, and he sent the biopsies to be examined and treated.

Then, I went back about a week later and I sat in the room, and I just knew inside when he came in to see me, I just knew he was going to say, “You’ve got prostate cancer.” This is what he did. He goes, “Hey, Rob, how you doing? You’ve got prostate cancer. I’m going to take you. You’d have to come with me.” This is what’s so beautiful about these incredibly talented people. For them, this is what they do.

For us, the room starts swirling. I’m like, “Oh, my God. I’ve got cancer, I’ve got cancer.” It’s all the self-pity and the wallowing, and all this starts to rush over you, which I talk about in the book later, I felt so ashamed that I was taking this in such a way, and not thinking about other people that are equally dealing with all kinds of cancers. That night when I got home, or that afternoon when I got home, on the night, I’m watching some TV, and the children hospital were running commercials.

There was these little kids fighting cancer that barely two or three years of age. This is the thing about this terrible disease of all kinds of cancers. As we know, there have been incredible advances, but it can touch everybody at every moment in their life. Admittedly, for prostate cancer, we’re in a different ballpark, but this is the terrible thing. I tell you what I did, Joe.

When I said to my doctor, I said, ”What is this?” He goes, “It’s nature.” I’m a healthy guy. I quit drinking and drug 30-odd years ago, I stay fit. I watch what I eat, yada, yada, feeling good, feeling great. Then, this comes along. I go, “What is it, doc? What have I done something wrong?” He goes, “No, this is just nature.” We don’t know why these things happen, and that’s why it’s so tough for people to get their heads around it. Bad things happen to good people, if you want to put that kind of thing on it, that’s not probably the best way to express it, but this is it. Little kids get cancer, people get cancer.

Jay Jay:
That’s the numbers game, man. It’s like, that’s just the way it is. I said to my brother, I said, ”You realize if my father had it, and you had it,” I said, ”All the tofu and broccoli in the world is not going to stop me-”

Rob:
No.

Jay Jay:
-from getting it. I’m sure it’s in my genome and that’s going to be what it is.” You are a hundred percent right about finding the right doctor, who handles it the way a car wash, is like when someone says to you, “Rob, how do you play in front of 50,000 people?” You go, “Well, I that’s what I do. That’s what I do. I walk up on stage,” and, “Well, how do you do it, man? That’s so freaking crazy, like high.”

I go, “Well, that’s what I do.” In the same respect, you got to find doctors who basically do, “That’s what I do,” and turn it over to them. Did he present to you different approaches or did he say to you– I had the same thing you did, which is an RPT, a radical prostatectomy. I wanted it out of my body. I wanted it out of my body. Not every man goes that route. Some even have radiation and seeds, or ablations. How were you presented with the options to choose?

Rob:
Well, again, as we’ve just talked about these incredibly talented healthcare professionals, he said, “We got two choices.” His specialty is robotic surgery. I was knocked out for three and a half hours. In that time, he was able to remove the prostate, and do some more work, because we found out later the cancer had gone from my prostate, into the prostate bed. I had to have a month of radiation treatment, two months of radiation treatment afterwards.

Again, this is all in the pandemic, so the world is stuffed. Thank you Lord, because there’s nothing else going on. I’ve got this going on and I’ve got the book going on, so I’m occupied, so to speak. He took me to his office, and he pulls up these videos screens and, “This is my machine. This is where I cauterize.” He’s telling me all these things and my head’s spinning, “I got cancer. I got cancer. I got cancer.”

I drove myself home back to the house. Thomas wasn’t with me that day. I was driving alone and I just felt so– I didn’t know what I felt. I was shocked. I was doing this bit of self-pity wallowing. At the same time, this is what we do. I knew that there were these incredible people waiting to do the work that they needed to do to get the cancer out of my body. Just because of who I am in life, I’ve always been an optimistic person.

That’s what shook me up to take this negative thing, it only lasts for a couple of days. Then, I pulled through that, and I’m like, “Right, let’s get to work. Let’s get this done. What have we got to do?” The options were to have the prostate removed, or to have radiation treatment. At that time, I wasn’t aware that I was going to need further treatment. I was given the option like you, Jay, so the prostate out, or have the radiation.

Now, the thing about radiation, just correct me if I’m wrong, even if you have the complete radiation blast, there’s still a chance that there could be something there that they missed. [crosstalk] This is the elusiveness of cancer and the cancer cells. I said to my doc, “Just take it out. Is this the best option?” He goes, “In my opinion, yes. You take a second opinion.

Take as many opinions as you want.”

I decided that this is what I wanted to do. I wanted to get the work done, because I could see down the line in the calendar, there was need to get back on the road and make music and so on. I’m looking at the calendar and the clock, and I said, “Let’s just take it out. You do your work and get the job done.” That’s what we did.

Jay Jay:
In my particular case, I saw the oncologist. I was diagnosed as a Gleason 9 out of nowhere.” That’s really bad. Oh, my God, how do I go from 0 to Gleason 9 within two doctor visits. That was scary. I said, “Do you think you could deal with it?” He goes, “Yes, I know I can deal with it.” In other words, as a backstop to radical prostatectomy, which is having it removed, you can have radiation. That’s very, very problematic.

The truth, however, is though, and you made a good point, and everyone should understand it, cancer is an insidious disease. All it takes is one cell to get out somewhere, and get roaming around your body to find a home somewhere else. Which is why, once you have prostate cancer, once you have any cancer, I think you have to then say to yourself, “I got to be on top of this for the rest of my life. I have to make sure that whatever it is that they took care of, doesn’t show up someplace else.”

That’s another further example of the kind of approach one has to have mentally, when they’re dealing with this kind of thing. You were told essentially what I was told, and I felt confident in having mine removed. Now, in my particular case, they removed adjoining tissue, and there was nothing in the adjoining tissue. They said to me, “You come in every six months for blood test. As long as it stays below a 0.02 PSA, which is undetectable, we won’t need radiation. Should it appear at some point that you would, we could.”

In your particular case, it got out and showed some movement into the prostate bed, which is why you needed to have radiation. How many radiation treatments did you have? Do you remember?

Rob:
Five days a week.

Jay Jay:
39 treatments? Was that it?

Rob:
Yes, that’s about the figure, isn’t it?

Jay Jay:
Yes, it is.

Rob:
I got to say, again, you hear all of these different stories about what’s going to happen. You’ve really got to go through it yourself to make sense of– Information is very good when it comes to the procedure. They put you in this machine. You don’t feel a thing. There’s no burning sensations. There’s no marking. There’s nothing. I did that for those 30 odd treatments.

You work your day around going in, and sitting in the machine for a few minutes, and then getting back out into the world. They made that whole successive treatments, very, very comfortable for me. I didn’t really have any side effects. A little bit of fatigue. That was about it. Didn’t lose my appetite. Was able to just function in a normal way. That was something that the doctor prepared me for. He said, “I think I’ve got everything out.” He was funny because he goes, “I did an extra 45 minutes of work, but I won’t charge you for that.”

Jay Jay:
You say, “That’s okay. Next time I do a concert, I’ll play [crosstalk] I won’t charge you for that. [crosstalk]

Rob:
Yes, I’ll give you some [unintelligible] next time you come to a Priest show. That’s the other thing about these beautiful people. Their sense of humor is wicked. It’s natural to feel anxious and serious and everything. As you know, in the healthcare professionals world, it’s just full of positivity and joy and helping and lifting people up. That was just a beautiful thing for me to experience.

Then, when they welcome you in to go to the machine, or whatever kind of visit, it just puts your mind at rest, and you feel like you’re in the hands of all of these professionals that know exactly what they’re doing. That’s a great comfort, because you’re not only dealing with, as you said, Jay for yourself, my family was always, “Wow, what’s going on?” As you said earlier, Jay, when you’re dealing with this issue, it’s not just you.

You want to get well not only for yourself, but for your loved ones, for your family, for everybody that’s involved in your life. To be in those environments of such great feelings, and “Let’s get the job done. Let’s make this a success. It’s going to work. We’re going to make you healthy.” Man, that was just so uplifting, and helps you as a person go through what needs to be done, and see the light at the end of the tunnel.

Jay Jay:
Let me ask you this. For me, right after the surgery was done for the first six months, I didn’t want my wife to talk about it with anyone else but my family. I was very, very protective of this, which is weird. Thinking about how I deal with it now, which is, I’m screaming to the world, “You got to take care of yourself.” Back then, I didn’t want to talk about it for almost a year. I didn’t talk about it.

Did you go through a period of that, or did you say to yourself, “You know what? From the get go, I’m going to be out about it.” Tell me how you processed it, because I had a hard time for a short period of time in processing it.

Rob:
Well, [laughs] I’m a guy. [laughs] We guys, we throw it out. We throw it out. That might sound a little bit odd. Part of my personality, in my sexual identity, it has just given me this, I don’t hold anything that– Part of my sobriety is living your day in the most truthful, honest way that you see fit for yourself. Sure, if you don’t want to share some things, you don’t have to. I looked upon this whole experience as something that I really wanted to put out.

Having said that, we did keep the lid on it for the band, for the business side of things, until the appropriate moment came along for me to discuss it. You probably noticed, Jay, in recent years, that again, these issues of health, cancer, for example, musicians talk more openly about the health challenges that they’re going through. I was trying to make the timing work. I was trying to make it happen that was comfortable, and beneficial to everybody.

Initially, I was telling everybody, my immediate family, my immediate plus circle of friends just because, for me, that was that was therapy. I’ve always felt the communication, no matter what it is, it’s therapy.

Jay Jay:
I’m going to ask you, Rob, in writing the book Confess, which by the way, I urge people to read. It’s a great book. It’s a really, really great book. Did the process of coming out already then, in a way you’ve just inferred that, it set the stage for you to then be completely open about prostate cancer. Didn’t it? It wasn’t like you were trying to keep something down. You’ve already been out there.

You already kind of basically said, “This is who I am.” By the way, I also have prostate cancer, so you’re not going through like a– You’re not hiding that any further. Listen, I had two heart operations in 2003 and 2005, and I already dealt with my own mortality years ago, like, “Oh, am I going to die? Am I gonna die with this?” I came through that, and it took a while for me to talk about that.

I had to adjust, but I will say this, my attitude about my success, which is pushing and pushing and pushing, and the tenacity that I’ve had to push, really helped me get through this because I said, “Man, John, that’s what you do. That’s what you do. You just drive, you, push yourself, you drive, you, push yourself.” I took the approach, the same approach I had in trying to become successful in approaching prostate cancer, which is no-nonsense, no bullshit, let’s just get on with it.

Did you also feel that way as well, because you’re so successful in what you’ve become, did any of that process factor in whether you realized it or not, in terms of your own desire to deal with it, head on?

Rob:
Yes, I think the big deciding factor for me again, having gone through the extremity of alcohol and drug addiction, and to be living a sober life now for so many years, that certainly changed me. It certainly changed my openness as a guy to just speak whenever I felt like it. Let me just say, Jay, that I think we also accept and respect. However, you deal with this, you deal with it, how best you see fit for you.

If you don’t want to talk about it, you don’t talk about it. There isn’t a set of rules here. We’re in a position where we have to figure out what’s the best way to either deal with the circumstances of the health challenge, do we keep it private, or do we take people along with this on our journey? Some of my friends in music were doing that, you would get updates every few weeks.

It’d be very open on social media. I thought, “Oh, God, this is so cool,” because, again, you’re spreading the positivity of the message of recovery in your health. It is what it is. We’re all different, but we’re all the same. However, mentally you want to process this, you do it in the best way that you see fit that is good for you, because the mental struggle, again, it goes along with the procedures that you’re dealing with.

I’m looking at the days before I go into the hospital at 5:00 AM for a surgery that starts at 6:00. Then, I’m looking afterwards the follow-up tests, and then I have the radiation. I’m looking at all of these things, and your mind plays tricks with you. It always does. What if this, what if that? That’s not negativity, that’s just at all of our minds work.

That side also has to be addressed, not just your physical wellbeing, but your mental wellbeing. They say don’t [unintelligible] in cancer treatments of all kind, that a positive attitude plays real big dividends, feeling strong, feeling positive, having that determination, it does things to your body, chemically, in your brain, whatever it does. It helps you push, it helps you drive That’s another important part of what we need to address, as we go through this whole discussion of prostate cancer.

Jay Jay:
I know that you’ve agreed to do this interview with me in the middle of a tour, and I have to be very respectful for the time that you have given me. Also, for the amount of– Probably, the interviews that you do, which are ongoing. I really appreciate that, but because you’re in the middle of a tour, how do you feel today? Do you feel as strong today as you felt prior to the whole operation? How is your day-to-day health now?

Rob:
It’s good. It’s great. Actually, the doctor texted me two days ago, he goes, “It’s time for your PSA test.” My previous three PSA tests have been 0.1, and so he’s happy. I told him, I wouldn’t be back to Phoenix till the summer. He goes, “I’m looking at the figures here. I’m looking at everything. We’re good. When you come back, we’ll do some more blood and we’ll,” as you said, you keep an eye on this for the rest of your life, Jay, it’s important. Don’t let it go.

Jay Jay:
I do.

Rob:
I’m working and that’s just another woo why the heavy metal band that horns up. Yes, man, gosh, I’ll be 71 this year. Who knew? I’m still schlepping around the world, loving what I do more than anything else. It’s a gift from God, and my spiritual wellbeing is as important to me, as everything else. Man, every day you wake up, thank you for letting me have another day, and do the work that I love to do.

Here we are, we’re still going up around the world, and we’re in Europe, and we’re banging out the shows and the festivals, and we’re coming back to the States again, at some point. I don’t want it to end. I never want it to end. What else am I going to do? For me, what else am I going to do? Yes, I feel good, man. Thanks for asking. I feel good.

Jay Jay:
My motto in life at this point is, sex, prescription drugs, and rock and roll.

That’s the new one. If you could give advice to pharmaceutical companies or researchers, is there anything you think you could tell them about your experience that they wouldn’t know, or be aware of, that if you could tell them. This is always interesting to me because I wonder if what I went through was so unique that it would shine a light on somebody about anything.

Do you have any words of wisdom to impart to any of the people who are doing these prostate cancer researches, and about anything that you’d like to see, or anything you experienced that you think that they should know about, that you don’t think they’ve heard before?

Rob:
Honestly, no, I think everything is being– There’s so much going on right now, as we talk around the world in terms of research, and all these incredible developments, sending in these killer bots that destroy cancer cells. It’s still reassuring to know that there’s still a tremendous amount of work to be done. At one point, I don’t know, please, not too long from now, please, God, wouldn’t it be wonderful if cancer could be eradicated? If it was part of like a vaccine that you have as a kid, I don’t know.

It’s just such a crazy, evil disease, and that we invent all of these incredible– The whole procedures. There was nothing that I never had a number. I spoke like I’m speaking now, and I speak to Ali or Jerry, I just talk about everything. I may be missing some points, but they know what they’re doing, man. They know exactly what they’re doing. Your life is literally in their hands, and you couldn’t be in a safer place. I thank you, the professionals that are putting this together. Thank you for giving us this opportunity to keep talking about prostate cancer [crosstalk] through to me.

Jay Jay:
What would you to tell your fans as last thing about this? What message do you want them to take away from all this?

Rob:
I’m already doing it now, every opportunity if it comes up in an interview, and it does. It’s beautiful that we talk to each other, and how’s your health, and you have the prostate cancer. The first thing I do is, guys, get the blood checked, just do it. Get some blood drawn, you’re in and out in like five minutes. That’s a life-saver, man. Take a little bit of blood, and then you let it go.

Then, you carry on with your life, but please be aware– It’s like driving a car and never changing the oil. Something’s going to break, man. I’ve always looked at the body as something like a vehicle, like a car, my old Cadillac. My old Cadillac needs a bit more oil than it used to, but I’m aware of that. If I don’t change the oil, something is going to give. Being aware of your own physical well-being, just do it, man.

Just do it at that point in your life. So many of our metal maniacs have been with us, and on the same journey. There’s a big generation here of guys. Let’s not forget the ladies as well, that deal with their own issues with different kinds of colorectal cancer and so forth. Just be aware, just be aware. You’ve only got one life, you’ve only got one life. Get your mind focused on getting the best that you can out of life, for yourself, and then you can spread that love to everybody else.

Jay Jay:
Rob Halford, just wise words from the Metal God himself. I hope you pay attention to this, not just the men, but the loved ones around them in dealing with this thing. I can’t thank you enough, Rob, for being a guest. I really, really appreciated it. I loved your perspective, I love what you brought to this. It’s important for people to hear it.

You have been listening to the Prostate Cancer Uncensored, the podcast produced by ZERO – The End of Prostate Cancer. This episode is brought to you in partnership with Bayer. To learn more about prostate cancer, and to download more episodes of Prostate Cancer Uncensored, go to zerocancer.org. Thank you, Rob.

Rob:
Thank you, Jay Jay. Thank you, everybody. Stay safe, stay hard, stay metal. Get that prostate checked, and do all the other good things. Okay, I love you guys. See you.

Voice-Over:
You’ve been listening to Prostate Cancer Uncensored, a podcast produced by ZERO – The End of Prostate Cancer. This episode is brought to you in partnership with Bayer. To learn more about prostate cancer, and to download more episodes of Prostate Cancer Uncensored, go to zerocancer.org.