K.K. Downing ‘Shocked’ He Wasn’t Invited to Rejoin Judas Priest
With the recent touring retirement of Glenn Tipton, Judas Priest shows have lost both halves of the twin guitar attack long mounted by Tipton and former bandmate K.K. Downing, who left the lineup in 2011.
Downing has spoken openly about not regretting his decision to quit, but in a new message to fans, he admits that at least part of him was expecting an invitation to reunite after Tipton's announcement.
Describing his "deep regret and sadness" upon hearing of Tipton's retirement from the road — and the Parkinson's disease diagnosis that prompted that decision — Downing told Facebook followers he had no choice but to accept the true end of an era. "The insatiable appetite that myself and Glenn had for creating inspired and unique music for the world to enjoy for many decades, is something that can never be erased," wrote Downing. "However, everyone who has witnessed the evolution of our beloved music must come to terms with the fact that things will inevitably change or just simply end."
Downing also admitted sadness in reaction to the absence of a reunion overture from his former bandmates. "I am shocked and stunned that I wasn’t approached to step into my original role as guitarist for Judas Priest," he continued. "Whether I could have stepped back into the band or not, the potential for this situation arising never entered my head when I departed – although I too am officially and legally still a member of Judas Priest."
While unequivocally praising the talents of Andy Sneap, the guitarist who'll step in for Tipton on the road, Downing neared the end of his note by alluding to what he views as continued bad blood between himself and his ex-Priest mates, reaffirming his belief in his decision to walk away.
"I know now more clearly than ever that I did the right thing by leaving the band when I did – as it seems that my time spent in the band, and my value in terms of crafting its huge legacy, was and is unappreciated by more than one member," wrote Downing. "I sincerely hope, for the fans’ sake, that the decision not to approach me was not a financial one."