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K.K. Downing Retires From Judas Priest

K.K. Downing Retires From Judas Priest

Judas Priest have just announced that original guitarist K.K. Downing has made the decision to retire from the band ahead of what was to be their final tour.

The official statement from the band reads:

"It is with regret that Judas Priest announce that K.K. Downing has formally retired from the band and will therefore not be joining them on their forthcoming Epitaph Tour.

"The band respect his decision and naturally all wish him well."

The band have confirmed that they will continue with their touring plans, with British guitarist Richie Faulkner (Lauren Harris) stepping in to replace Downing in the touring lineup through 2012. Judas Priest were also writing new material for what was to be their final album, which also tentatively looks to still be in the works. Downing, 59, had been with Judas Priest since the band's inception more than 40 years ago. No official reason for Downing's sudden retirement has been given.

We here at Revolver wish K.K. all the best and thank him for many great years of music and memories. Tell us some of your favorite K.K./Priest stories in the comments!

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