Judas Priest Manager Says K.K. Downing Missed Chance to Reconnect
Downing acrimoniously quit in 2011, accusing Andrews of poor management practices, among more general criticisms of the band setup. He's since made other disparaging comments about his former colleagues.
Then everyone agreed to put their problems in the past for an expanded lineup performance that would also feature ex-drummer Les Binks. There was even talk of staging other reunions, if no issues arose. Andrews said things went smoothly with Binks, but Downing remained distant.
“Les, I’d never met him before. I never had any reason to have any dealings with him, but he seemed really nice – really friendly,” Andrews told host Geezer Butler’s wife and manager Gloria Butler in a new episode of Gabbing With Girlfriends (video below). “He came and introduced himself to me. We bumped into him at the airport; they were on the same flight as us. And [Downing] just kept himself to himself. Even when he got on stage with the band, he didn't really communicate much with anybody.”
Andrews argued that “if ever there was a time to try and build bridges, that was it. Any grievances or problems, we put them behind us … and it's just a shame that he didn't seem to look at it the same way.” She called it a sad moment, because “when he had the opportunity he didn’t take it. He could have stuck his head around the door, in the dressing room … and said, ‘Thank you for inviting me on stage with you.’”
Rock Hall organizers made it clear that Judas Priest could invite anyone to perform in Los Angeles, Andrews added. “I said to the guys … ‘It’s eight and a half minutes of your life. Be the bigger men. Invite them both on stage’ – which is what they did.”
Once they got back together, however, Downing “seemed a little bit nervous and almost out of his depth,” perhaps because “Priest have carried on touring all these years; he hasn’t. So he’s probably lost a bit of confidence, coming to a big event like that [and] having to confront all of us. He didn't know how we would be … We’ve got to see one person; he’s got to see six people, really.”
Still, Andrews said “it's just a shame that once he realized that there was no animosity from our side that he didn't just stick his head around the door and say, ‘Thank you,’ but there we go. He didn’t – so never mind.”
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