Rob Halford recalled the only time he ever met Bob Dylan, and the unexpected question the American icon asked him.

The moment took place in New York in the mid ‘90s, during the period when Halford had left Priest and was fronting Fight. The band were there to perform a semi-acoustic show at Sony Studios, and they’d just completed a rehearsal.

“[W]e’re just hanging out, and one of the label people says, ‘Bob Dylan is around the corner,’” Halford told Metal Edge in a new interview. “Because he was on the same label… And who wouldn't want to meet Bob Dylan? ‘Yeah, let's meet.’ So he takes me through a couple of corridors and we go into the room, like a green room. And Bob Dylan is in the room with a lot of women! A lot of women and a lot of fruit.”

He continued: “So there’s the women, there’s the fruit, and there’s Bob Dylan. And we walk in, and the label guy says, ‘Hey Bob, this is a guy from a band that’s on the same label; his band’s called Fight. This is Rob Halford. And Bob goes, ‘Hey man, what’s goin’ on?’ I go, ‘Hey Bob, it’s a real pleasure to meet you.’ ‘Where you from?’ ‘Oh, I’m from a place called Birmingham, in the Midlands.’ And Bob Dylan looks at me and he goes, ‘Yeah, yeah… how’s Ozzy doin’?’ And that was my one-and-only-time meeting Bob Dylan!”

It’s well-known that Dylan was aware of Birmingham native Osbourne – candid documentary footage from 1986 shows him hanging out in a car park asking two kids about heavy metal and whether they like Ozzy or Ratt:

Elsewhere in the new interview, Halford admitted he’d been “an alcoholic from day one” when he started drinking at the age of 16. “I used to get out of my skull,” he said. “I couldn’t just drink to enjoy the pleasure of it, like, ‘This is a fine wine, sir. Would you like to try this one? It's a nice Chablis.’ It was none of that. It was, ‘Give me the fucking bottle, dude.’ And I just knocked it back. So yeah, I was out of my tree a lot.” He added: “It's unbelievable the drugs we used to do in plain view. I think people still do that now, although that’s not my world anymore… doing a line of coke behind the stacks or in the middle of a tune.”

Top 25 New Wave of British Heavy Metal Albums

It’s no exaggeration to say that the New Wave of British Heavy Metal saved metal from itself.

More From Classic Rock Q107