A new video message from former JUDAS PRIEST guitarist Kenneth "K.K." Downing can be seen below.
Downing, who is a founding member of the British heavy metal legends and was part of the group since 1969, announced his retirement from PRIEST in April 2011. He has since been replaced by Richie Faulkner, most recently guitarist in the backing band for Lauren Harris (daughter of IRON MAIDEN bassist Steve Harris).
Downing, who recently started a career as a rock promoter under the banner The Future Of Heavy Metal, told Midland Rocks in a recent interview that, contrary to popular belief, he didn't retire from the music business.
"I'll never get away from this retirement thing, but what happened was that I quit," Downing explained "Retired implies that I am not physically able to do it. I am able to do it, but I didn't want to do it; I just wasn't enjoying it anymore
"A lot of things had changed. I think I counted about thirty reasons why I didn't want to do it at the time, and that is an awful lot of reasons.
"In all honesty, I think that in so many respects it had run its course.
"If you're part of a songwriting team, you get the recognition and reward for creating something, but for me, PRIEST became about going out and playing live and replicating exactly what people had enjoyed ten, twenty or thirty years ago. The fans would be just as happy if they could see us bin all of the modern guitars we now play and take them on a walk down memory lane, because I think that's what people enjoy most."