Rob Halford Suggests KK Downing Wouldn't Rejoin Judas Priest if Invited

Judas Priest frontman Rob Halford has responded to former guitarist K.K. Downing's recent statement that he was "shocked" he wasn't asked to rejoin the legendary metal band he helped build following the departure of guitarist Glenn Tipton.

Tipton recently announced he would no longer tour with Judas Priest due to complications from Parkinson's disease, with which he was diagnosed over 10 years ago. 

Halford told The Freaks with Kenny and Crash that much of Downing's statement is "superfluous," presumably because Downing wouldn't rejoin Judas Priest even if he was invited.

Downing said in a statement posted to Facebook Tuesday that the band should have asked him to rejoin Judas Priest in Tipton's absence for its upcoming tour. Tipton also acknowledged he's not sure if he actually would have accepted such an offer.

"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," wrote the guitarist.

Halford also refuted Downing's suggestion that Tipton, because if of his condition, didn't play all of his parts on the band's forthcoming album, Firepower.

"But the one point that I would like to clarify and have on record is this insinuation that [guitarist/producer] Andy Sneap was covering Glenn's guitar parts on Firepower, and I can categorically state that that is a thousand percent false," Halford said, asserting that he was in the studio for all of Tipton's sessions.

"I've never seen anybody so brave in the fact that every song was a challenge for him to make it work, but he did consistently, day after day."

Downing left Judas Priest's lineup in 2011. Upon his departure he cited a number of reasons, including dissonance with his longtime bandmates and being unhappy with the quality of the band's live shows. 

"I sincerely hope, for the fans' sake, that the decision not to approach me was not a financial one," Downing wrote in his statement.

"All that's left is for you the fans to go out and enjoy the band as it is," Downing concluded, "in order to complete a part of music history in which every one of you has played such an important role."

Halford added in his response that one of the things Judas Priest has done so well in its career has been to keep disagreements in-house. 

"You know, we're all human, we've all got feelings, and we have a tendency to blurt out the first thing that is on our minds, and rightly or wrongly, things can kind of come back and chase you afterwards in a negative way," Halford said.

Photo: Getty Images

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