Posts Tagged “Hard Earned Money”

Former JUDAS PRIEST guitarist Kenneth “K.K.” Downing spoke to Midland Rocks about his shocking April 2011 announcement that he was leaving the band prior to their “Epitaph” world tour.

Downing, who recently started a career as a rock promoter under the banner The Future Of Heavy Metal, says that, contrary to popular belief, he didn’t retire from the music business.

“I’ll never get away from this retirement thing, but what happened was that I quit,” Downing explains. “Retired implies that I am not physically able to do it. I am able to do it, but I didn’t want to do it; I just wasn’t enjoying it anymore

“A lot of things had changed. I think I counted about thirty reasons why I didn’t want to do it at the time, and that is an awful lot of reasons.

“In all honesty, I think that in so many respects it had run its course.

“If you’re part of a songwriting team, you get the recognition and reward for creating something, but for me, PRIEST became about going out and playing live and replicating exactly what people had enjoyed ten, twenty or thirty years ago. The fans would be just as happy if they could see us bin all of the modern guitars we now play and take them on a walk down memory lane, because I think that’s what people enjoy most. And I understand that, because if I could go out now and see Eric Clapton with CREAM, then I would be the happiest person in the world.”

He continues: “One of the beautiful things about being in the industry was the ability to continue to invent and create, constructing songs and making good records. You do feel the need to be creative, and that was taken away with the downloading thing, and as you get older, the balance of the scales starts to tip. So if you can’t be creative, why would you want to continue to dedicate the time into something?

“I suppose if the industry was still healthy and people still had to spend their hard-earned money buying a record, it would be different, but if you give something away, then it has no value.

“We used to buy an album and think, ‘Well, it’s not that good, but I’ll play it a million times [and] I’m sure I’ll get into it, and now it doesn’t really get a second chance.

“In the past, there was always the opportunity to create a record like ‘Dark Side Of The Moon’ [PINK FLOYD] or ‘British Steel’ [JUDAS PRIEST] or ‘Back In Black’ [AC/DC] that would be one of those albums that would be indelible and people will always come back to. And I think that opportunity has gone now, and I think it would take a miracle for one of those to happen again.

“If you consider an album like [JUDAS PRIEST‘s much-maligned conceptual effort] ‘Nostradamus’, then if that had been released in 1978, then it would have been another ‘Dark Side Of The Moon’, but it is all about the timing.

“When you think about it, in the early days, we had the opportunity to write great songs, play great solos and have great vocal performances, but people get used to it and it is hard now to get the reaction of, ‘Wow, have you heard the new PRIEST album?’

“The industry has changed so much… I see companies that are repackaging and rehashing, and that started happening to us, and that was not a pretty thing to be a part of. It’s kind of duping the fans a bit, because there are fans around the world that have got to have everything to complete their collection, so even if there are only a few thousand of them, if you put out a box collection, it might be $100, which is a lot of dollars, and so for me, that is something that I didn’t get into music for.”

Downing‘s place in JUDAS PRIEST was filled by new guitarist Richie Faulkner.

JUDAS PRIEST is currently writing and recording material for a new studio album, to be released sometime next year.

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KK: no regrets

Former Judas Priest guitarist and founding member KK Downing, who sensationally left the band back in 2011, has elaborated on his decision to leave the heavy metal legends, revealing that it wasn’t his own career that he felt was coming to a close…

“I’ll never get away from this ‘retirement’ thing. What happened was that I quit,” he tells The Midlands Rocks. “‘Retired’ implies that I am not physically able to do it. I am able to do it, but I didn’t want to do it; I just wasn’t enjoying it any more. A lot of things had changed. I think I counted about thirty reasons why I didn’t want to do it at the time, and that’s an awful lot of reasons.

“In all honesty I think that in so many respects it had run its course. If you’re part of a songwriting team you get the recognition and reward for creating something. But for me Priest became about going out and playing live and replicating exactly what people had enjoyed ten, twenty or thirty years ago.

KK with Judas Priest

“The fans would be just as happy if they could see us take them on a walk down memory lane – I think that’s what people enjoy most. And I understand that, because if I could go out now and see Eric Clapton with Cream then I would be the happiest person in the world.”

“If the industry was still healthy and people still had to spend their hard-earned money buying a record, it would be different.

“We used to buy an album and think, ‘Well it’s not that good, but I’ll play it a million times and I’m sure I’ll get into it.’ Now it doesn’t get a second chance.

“In the past there was always the opportunity to create a record like The Dark Side Of The Moon orBritish Steel or Back In Black that would be indelible, and people will always come back to. I think that opportunity has gone now – it would take a miracle for one of those to happen again.”

Meanwhile, Judas Priest look set to release a new album next year, despite many assuming they’d call it quits after their Epitaph “farewell”. tour

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We’ve been getting updates from the Metal Hammer Trespass America Festival thanks to the Five Finger Death Punch boys, and here’s blog number five from bassist Chris Kael…

Metal Hammer readers! Chris Kael, bassist from Five Finger Death Punch, here. We are now three weeks into Metal Hammer’s Trespass America Festival featuring Five Finger Death Punch, Killswitch Engage, Trivium, Pop Evil, Emmure, God Forbid and Battlecross. We know times are difficult financially these days and for all of you to spend your hard earned money on coming out to support all of these bands on this tour, it is truly humbling. So, I thought I’d do my part to give a little back to you, the people.

As a concert goer, your vantage point rarely goes beyond what is seen on the stage. I want to take you behind the scenes for a backstage sneak peek experience into what exactly it is we do all day in preparation for bringing metal to the masses each night.

Five Finger Death Punch, Killswitch Engage, Trivium and more at the press conference earlier this year

Generally speaking, my day usually begins right around noon. Tis not because I’m lazy and like to sleep all day; rather, I’ve found that it’s easier to sleep on a bus that isn’t moving instead of one barreling down the highway at 75 miles an hour. So, it makes more sense to stay up as late as possible so that I’m able to get a more restful sleep by waiting until the bus has nearly arrived at the day’s venue.

First thing, I usually do is hit the ol’ Facebook and Twitter pages with an update for the day. Upon joining Death Punch just over a year ago, I was very cognizant of the power of social networking. Were I to have had a chance to speak directly to the musicians I was into growing up via these platforms, I would’ve been all over it. So, I make a concerted effort each day to respond to comments, emails and Tweets via the various social networking sites. Tis definitely a nice way for me to stay directly in touch with those who listen to and support Five Finger Death Punch.

Once the social networking pages are updated, I then find a spot in the venue to knock out a quick workout. At home, I focus on Muay Thai workouts. On the road, P90X and Insanity DVD’s have been a great tool to keep me from wasting away out here.

After a post workout meal in catering, it’s then usually right about time to hit the floor to catch Battlecross who’s opening up this year’s Metal Hammer’s Trespass America Festival. These guys KILL it every night and I’ve been lucky enough to catch their blistering set every night of this tour.
I catch a bit of God Forbid and then off to shake babies and kiss hands at our nightly VIP Meet and Greet with the fans. Aside from the show, this time is hands down my favorite part of the day meeting the people who make all of this possible. We are all truly appreciative of each and every one of you.

Five Finger Death Punch: Trespassing America in 2012

Throughout the night, I catch songs from each of the Trespass bands from the side of the stage or quietly sneaking out towards the back of the floor to catch the full effect. At around eight o’clock, though, it’s time to head back to the bus to get ready for the show. This time is usually spent singing along to Alice In Chains harmonies and tightening up the dreads in the beard. Gotta maintain the face dreads to give the kids their money’s worth!

About nine o’clock I head back into see the end of Killswitch Engage’s set. This not only gives me a chance to see Jesse out there killing it again; but, it also is a time for me to pull from the vibe the of the crowd before I head to the dressing room for the warmup with Jeremy which usually consists of songs from Avatar, Ghost, and Whitechapel at an elevated volume!

Da conference!

Our assistant tour manager, Rockshow Bobby Watson, walks us out to the stage nightly at around 9:45. Ivan makes his way to each of us with a hug and that look that only Ivan Moody can give to let you know it’s time for the rock show. The lights fade to black and the intro rumbles. Those of you who’ve already made it out to Metal Hammer’s Trespass America already know how the rest of the night turns out (including Jason Hook’s Incredible Mid-Show Tweets!). We look forward to finishing the story with the rest of you as this amazing tour progresses!

The remmaining Metal Hammer Trespass America Festival dates are as follows:

14 Pittsburgh, PA – Stage AE
15 Hartford, CT – Comcast Theatre
17 Worchester, MA – DCU Center
18 Newark, NJ – Prudential Center
19 Philadelphia, PA – Penn’s Landing – Festival Pier
22 Knoxville, TN – Knoxville Civic Coliseum
25 Rio Rancho, NM – Santa Ana Star Center
26 Phoenix, AZ – Comercia Theatre
28 Los Angeles, CA – Hollywood Palladium

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After Demonical announced it will not be playing Rites of Darkness, Disma, Evoken, and Funebrarum have all checked with the following joint statement about canceling their appearances at the festival:

“We have all decided to cancel our appearances at ‘The Rites of Darkness Festival’ in San Antonio, Texas on December 10-11th due to the fact that the promoter has still not followed through with his promises and obligations to us (tickets, transportation, hotels etc). We apologize to our fans who have already purchased tickets but the situation is beyond our control. We have reached the end of our patience with Daniel Serna and foresee only more problems. Again we are sorry to have to make this decision but this treatment and unprofessional behavior is unacceptable!!”

Evoken also added:

“Apologies for those looking forward to seeing Evoken as well as our brothers Disma and Funebrarum. We promise to make it up to those who paid their hard earned money to see us. This wasn’t a decision taken light.

“We’re not here to slam anyone, but being one of the first bands announced for the festival, it should not take up until one week before a performance to receive any information. We will not re-consider, we will not compromise.”

Further details on the Rites of Darkness festival and updates from the festival organizers can be found at this location.

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WANTED

Manowar – Hell On Earth V DVD (2009)
I may have been very critical with Manowar’s last studio album, GODS OF WAR (2007), but I can honestly say that they make some of the best DVDs your hard-earned money can buy. Say what you want about the band’s image and “Death to False Metal!” battle cry, […]

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