Friday, December 14, 2018

Retired Judas Priest rocker K.K. Downing sells classic guitar at auction

A guitar used on classic Judas Priest albums of the 1970s and early 1980s by retired member K.K. Downing has sold for almost ten times its estimated value at an auction in London.

According to UK auction house Bonhams, the 1967 Gibson Flying V – which was originally estimated to fetch between £15,000-18,000 (US $19,000-$23,000) – sold for £150,000 (approximately $189,000).

Downing used the guitar as his main axe for all Judas Priest albums up to 1981’s “Point Of Entry” after buying it from Musical Exchanges in Broad Street, Birmingham in the mid-1970s.

In the early 2000s, Gibson guitars took detailed measurements of Downing’s Flying V for use in the production of a series of reissue models.

The 1967 instrument was one of 11 Downing pieces sold by Bonhams at the December 11 event; others included his 1971 Gibson Flying V Medallion guitar, Marshall amp heads, guitar FX and a pair of leather jackets from the "Turbo" and "Screaming For Vengeance" tours.

Formed in Birmingham in 1969, Downing joined an early version of the group in 1970 fronted by original vocalist Al Atkins; it was the arrival of singer Rob Halford in 1973 and their debut album, “Rocka Rolla”, a year later that launched Judas Priest on an international basis.

Downing – who recently published his memoir, “Heavy Duty: Days And Nights In Judas Priest” – retired from the veteran metal band in 2011, and was replaced by Richie Faulkner, who made his recording debut with the group on 2014’s “Redeemer Of Souls.”

Judas Priest will resume their current world tour in support of 2018’s “Firepower” with a series of European dates that begin in late January; they’ll return to North America for a recently-announced two-month spring run in May with guests Uriah Heep.

See also:

Judas Priest announce 2019 Firepower North American tour
VIDEO: Judas Priest perform 1978 rarity in Montreal
Judas Priest planning 50th anniversary celebrations
VIDEO: Judas Priest inducted into The Hall Of Heavy Metal History
Search Judas Priest at hennemusic