Former Judas Priest drummer Dave Holland, who played on all of their crucial 1980s albums has passed away at age 69. No cause of death has been revealed. Dave was the drummer in Priest from 1979 until 1989 when he exited the band and was replaced by current drummer Scott Travis. Holland is the second longest standing drummer of the band, besides Travis. Holland had a storied career in rock and heavy metal until a conviction in 2006 for attempted rape, indecent assault, and child endangerment led to his imprisonment until 2012. Holland maintained his innocence in the matter until his death.
Best remembered for his work in Judas Priest on albums such as British Steel (1980), Point of Entry (1981), Screaming for Vengeance (1982), Defenders of the Faith (1984), Turbo (1986), and Ram It Down (1988) all for Columbia Records. Holland was a key part of the sound of the band with his driving rhythms and solid NWOBHM-era stick work. He played in many British rock bands in 1960s, but his claim to fame before Priest came from classic rock legends Trapeze with Glen Hughes. Holland was a leader of Trapeze until the band disbanded and he joined Judas Priest in 1979. Holland also worked with original Priest singer Al Atkins, Tony Iommi, Hughes and Justin Hayward of The Moody Blues, who was an early mentor to him. He was said to be writing a book at the time of his death, dealing with his life in music and his imprisonment, including proof of his innocence.