It’s been more than 10 years since K.K. Downing left Judas Priest and, after some turmoil regarding the band’s lineup in recent years, Richie Faulkner wishes the two sides could put their differences aside and “have a beer and just be pals.”
Faulkner joined Priest in 2011 as Downing’s replacement and has played on their two most recent albums, “Redeemer of Souls” and “Firepower”. He was even tasked with being the group’s solo live guitarist in a short-lived decision earlier this year to cut down to a four-piece, but that move, which singer Rob Halford admitted was his idea, was quickly reversed.
So, for now, producer Andy Sneap will retain his live role in Judas Priest after the legendary Glenn Tipton relinquished his onstage duties due to complications from Parkinson’s Disease. Meanwhile, Downing, who had publicly slagged the band numerous times over the years, voiced his displeasure that he never received an invite to come back to the band and even formed his own group, KK’s Priest, who released their debut album last year.
Faulkner, who has been caught in the middle of the verbal crossfire, expressed his thoughts on this matter on the In the Trenches With Ryan Roxie video podcast and urged that they all put the music aside and strive for friendship above all other things.
The guitarist, who suffered a ruptured aorta onstage last year while playing “Painkiller” flawlessly through the end, also revealed that he has had “positive” communication with Downing and noted that any direct talk was “through Twitter or whatever.”
[Downing] said something about my payment structure, which was [laughs]… which was weird for someone to say. And it wasn’t true, which was a bit mindblowing,
That whole situation with him and the band over the last 10 years, to me, has been totally unnecessary; it’s been a bit of a shit show,” Faulkner confessed, “And I don’t know why that is. To me, music aside, they should maybe pick up the phone and just talk to each other as buddies and go and have a beer and just be pals. You know, fuck music for a minute; let’s just be pals. And then whatever happens, happens. They were pals for 40 years. They lived pretty much together for 40 years — four decades.”
I wish it was different. All that weirdness of the last 10 years didn’t need to happen. If they’d parted on good terms, maybe things would be different now. But, unfortunately, that didn’t happen.
Richie Faulkner (transcription via Blabbermouth).
Listen to the full podcast below:
In continued celebration of their 50 Heavy Metal Years tour, Judas Priest will hit the road in March with Queensrÿche and a list of upcoming stops can be seen here.