Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Judas Priest: K.K. Downing retires

A shocker in the metal world today as Judas Priest have confirmed the retirement of guitarist K.K. Downing from the band.

The news comes just 6 weeks before the metal gods launch their farewell “Epitaph” world tour.

Downing and fellow guitarist Glenn Tipton built the band’s trademark dual lead sound, influential on its own and, later, used by many other acts.

In a published statement, Priest say the band respects Downing’s decision and, naturally, all wish him well. Having thought long and hard about how to proceed, singer Rob Halford, guitarist Tipton, bassist Ian Hill and drummer Scott Travis unanimously agreed that they should go ahead with the tour and not let fans around the world down.

K.K.’s replacement wil be 31 year-old British guitar player Richie Faulkner (Dirty Deeds, Voodood Six, Lauren Harris); who has reportedly blended seamlessly into the band.

Kicking off June 7 in Holland, the Epitaph Tour will include songs from every Priest studio album as well as tracks that they have never before performed on stage - plus all the classics.

Judas Priest Judas Priest

Judas Priest – The Ripper

Mid-South Coliseum - Memphis, TN – December 12, 1982


See also:

Metallica, Judas Priest still inspire author Stephen King
VIDEO: American Idol rocks with Judas Priest cover
Judas Priest announce UK tour dates with Queensryche
Judas Priest taking song requests for farewell tour
Judas Priest working on new material