Judas Priest bassist Ian Hill dismissed the idea of original guitarist KK Downing reuniting with the band next year as they celebrate their 50th anniversary and the guitarist also said that the group turned down his request for a reunion.
Hill was asked about the suggestion that Downing could return to the band for the milestone in 2020 during a press conference at the Hell Festival , according to SleazeRoxx.
The bassist responded, “I didn’t know, really, where he was coming from with that comment. I think he just played a bit of mischief, to be honest. I mean, Ken’s place in the band has already been taken; he’s sitting right there you know [referring to Faulkner].
”It’s also two albums down the road since Nostradamus, which is the last one he played on, and is he gonna be prepared to play music from the new album you know, which he probably would not.
“And on top of that, he’s gonna have to learn Glenn’s parts too. So it’s all reasons why we didn’t [ask him to return]. Apart from that, he’s been retired for nearly eight years.
“He hasn’t since set foot on stage as far as I know, so you know he’s hardly at the peak of his game at the moment. So, yeah, I wasn’t quite sure where he was coming from with that, I really don’t. I think it might have been just a bit of mischief.”
K.K. Downing also revealed that he approached the band about a reunion for the 50th anniversary and says that they turned him down. He said, “First of all, I want to once again express my huge appreciation to all fans worldwide for the overwhelmingly positive response to my Bloodstock appearance in August and the Wolverhampton gig in early November. I am truly humbled and grateful.
I am also taken aback with the compelling fan outcry for me to participate in the Judas Priest 50th anniversary celebrations next year. Consequently, I felt the right thing to do was to reach out to my former band-mates to gather their thoughts on this, and their response is they are not receptive to my participation in the band and they do not intend to include me in the 50th anniversary celebrations.
However, the great news for the fans is that I will be continuing to forge ahead, I am looking very much forward to seeing you all on the road in 2020. Together we will take on the world”