The Ripper

Album: Sad Wings Of Destiny (1976)
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Songfacts®:

  • An early Judas Priest track from their second album, "The Ripper" is a brief recounting of the crimes of Jack the Ripper, from the perspective of the killer. Jack the Ripper, who did his dirty work in the 1800s, was never caught and built a legend that made him an archetype of sorts, which is why he shows up in songs like this one.
  • This was written by Judas Priest guitarist Glenn Tipton, who did a lot of songwriting in the band and teamed with KK Downing to give them a potent twin-lead-guitar sound. What the band didn't have at this point was a signature look - they didn't get leathered up until a year later.
  • This was parodied in the movie This Is Spinal Tap in a scene where they mention a Spinal Tap project called "Saucy Jack." >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Jeff - Haltom City, TX
  • Judas Priest left their label, Gull Records, after the Sad Wings Of Destiny album was released. Their new label, Columbia, was never able to buy the first two Judas Priest albums from Gull, so original versions of "The Ripper" and other songs on those albums won't show up on greatest hits compilations.

Comments: 10

  • Cyberpope from Richmond, CanadaTo Alex in Cypress, I'd more say that if you have the ability to recognize & appreciate quality & a style that resonates with you, it will become PART of you! When I was a teen stoner(a 1/4oz of high grade buds a day, every day) it was ONLY about rocking out & doing so loudly, because I seriously did not one f--k give, but now I'm all growed up & mature 'n s--t, but I still appreciate good music(form & style) wherever I find it (some classical, some jazz, mostly hasrd rock+metal from '68 to '82 or so; & I'm slowly giving a relisten to the stuff I loved as a teen stoner & Im discovering that I subconsciously recognized & appreciated true quality! (most of my fave metalhead group members were all classically trained, & just happened to find metal & the musical aptitudes they had worked together to express what was inside -- music done for the sake of it, not for the money. . .
  • Genghis from Yuba City, CaRob Halford's Resurrection album (2000) has the "duet" with Bruce Dickinson. The song is titled "One you Love to Hate" and it really rocks.
  • Alex from Paphos, Cyprusand i agree with Luke from manchester It is impossible to be reformed. Metal stays with you untill you rot
  • Alex from Paphos, CyprusIve got no problem with Blaze bayley he was not as good as Dickenson though
  • Luke from Manchester, England1. You cannot be a reformed metalhead, metal never leave you, if it does then you were never into metal in the first place... 2. Blayze was in Maiden for TWO albums, not 1...
  • Ringgo from Montclair, CaAwesome song, and Owens is not that bad of a singer...come on, the rest of Priest picked him for a good reason to replace a legend, just like how Steve Harris had enough faith to pick Bayley Cook (Blaze Bayley) to replace his band's legendary vocalist. BTW, has anyone here heard of the one song Dickinson and Halford did together? i wonder what that sounded like.
  • Will from York, EnglandIf you're referring to maiden's replacement singer Blaze bailey, he wasn't bad actually.
  • Anthony from Parsippany, NjPlease with Ripper Owens...the guy SUCKED. The album he was on was UN-LISTENABLE...just like Maidens replacement for that one album, YIKES!
  • Todd from Denver, CoA sidenote: Steven Tyler supposedly said that "This Is Spinal Tap" hit a little too close to home. Imagine any number of party bands from the early seventies through the release of the movie who can relate. Then the "hair bands" of the eighties continued the tradition. As a reformed metalhead (I still have to admit to occasionally listening to my old CDs-my turntable's been broken for years) I still love the movie.
  • Matt from Charleston, ScWhen Rob Halford left JP, the remaining band members looked for a replacement in the 90's. They found a young halford sound-alike in an American Priest cover band, and promptly renamed him "Ripper" Owens, inspired by his dead-on take on this song. If the story sounds vaguely familiar, its the plot behind the Marky Mark movie "Rock Star" which Priest wouldnt touch with a 99-foot pole.
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