Scott Travis

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Scott Travis
Scott Travis2005.jpg
Scott Travis in Moscow in 2004
Background information
Birth nameMark Scott Travis
Born (1961-09-06) September 6, 1961 (age 57)
Norfolk, Virginia, United States[1][2]
GenresHeavy metal, speed metal, hard rock
InstrumentsDrums, percussion
Years active1981–present
Associated actsHawk, Racer X, The Scream, Judas Priest, Fight, Animetal USA, Thin Lizzy

Mark Scott Travis (born September 6, 1961)[1] is an American rock musician, best known as the drummer for the English heavy metal band Judas Priest, the Irish rock band Thin Lizzy, and the American heavy metal band Racer X.[3]


Born in Norfolk, Virginia, Scott was a well-known drummer in the local music scene of a region known as Hampton Roads during the early 1980s. Playing with bands in clubs throughout Norfolk, Virginia Beach, and Newport News. Travis moved to California in the early/mid 1980s and played in various local bands, such as Hawk, and later on moved to play for the critically acclaimed Racer X,[2] together with Paul Gilbert, and very briefly played in Saints Or Sinners, which later changed their name to The Scream, and also featured Travis's Racer X bandmates Bruce Bouillet and Juan Alderete. His big career move came about late in the decade after Judas Priest's longtime drummer, Dave Holland, exited the band, citing personal reasons.

Travis had always wanted to be the drummer of Judas Priest.[2] As a young teen, he had often thought about setting up his drumkit in the parking lot at the Hampton Coliseum in hopes that the band would notice him as they went past with their tour bus. He finally decided to wait at the back of the arena to hand the band a tape of his playing. Holland was still the band's drummer at the time, so nothing ever came out of the encounter. When Holland did leave Judas Priest in 1989, Jeff Martin heard about it through his friendship with Rob Halford. Martin called up Travis one day and said "Guess who needs a drummer?" Travis auditioned for the vacant position and in 1989 got the job, thus becoming the first non-Briton to play for the band.[2] Travis has been with the band ever since and he also handles drum duties for his earlier band Racer X. He played drums in Halford's band Fight from 1993 to 1995, but to date is best known for his work with Judas Priest, for which he has been widely acclaimed ever since his debut with Painkiller in 1990.[4] As of 2018, Travis is the longest-serving drummer of Judas Priest, surpassing Dave Holland, who was in the band for ten years.

Travis was also largely responsible for hiring Tim 'Ripper' Owens, as Halford's replacement in Judas Priest in 1996. Owens would remain in Judas Priest until the 2003 reunion with Halford.[2]

Earlier in 2016, Scott also joined the reformed lineup of Thin Lizzy for reunion shows and as of late has stayed on as an official member.

He is commonly mistaken to be left-handed. In reality, he is ambidextrous, and plays with an open style.

He stands at a towering height of 6’6.”


Scott always used Tama Drums until 2008. On the first leg of the Judas Priest "Nostradamus Tour" he played a Pearl kit and then switched to a DW kit for the second leg. He was also seen using a DW kit at the NAMM show with his band Racer X. His DW setup is: two 23"x24" bass drums, 14"x6.5" snare,8"x8" 10"x9" 12"x9" and 14"x10" rack toms and 16"x14" and 18"x16" floor toms. Scott has played Paiste cymbals since May 1987. Scott also plays Evans drum heads and uses Vater drumsticks.


Racer X[edit]

Judas Priest[edit]



  1. ^ a b Virginia, Birth Records, 1864-2014
  2. ^ a b c d e "Interview with Scott Travis from the DVD "Classic Albums – British Steel"". Retrieved 2010-03-10.
  3. ^ Huey, Steve. "Biography: Racer X". Allmusic. Retrieved June 12, 2010.
  4. ^ Erlewine, Stephen Thomas; Prato, Greg. "Biography: Judas Priest". Allmusic. Retrieved June 12, 2010.