The paperback edition of former JUDAS PRIEST guitarist K.K. Downing's autobiography, "Heavy Duty: Days And Nights In Judas Priest", will be made available on September 1 via Hachette Books. You can now pre-order a copy on Amazon.
"Heavy Duty: Days And Nights In Judas Priest" was released in September 2018 via Hachette Audio as a digital download, and in print and ebook from Da Capo Press. The book was co-written by the Scottish author and journalist Mark Eglinton, whose previous collaborations include "Official Truth, 101 Proof" with Rex Brown of PANTERA and "Confessions Of A Heretic" with BEHEMOTH's Adam "Nergal" Darski.
Asked by VintageRock.com if writing his autobiography provided him with a sense of closure concerning his time in JUDAS PRIEST, Downing replied: "Yeah, I think so. I guess it's the same with any long-term relationship — whether it's a husband or wife, or father or son or whatever — you spend enough time together, and idiosyncrasies show up. I guess there was no particular right or wrong — some people have more tolerance than others, and it takes a bloody miracle really to stay together for 40 years. Someone has to give. And it has to be give-and-take. But inevitably, it becomes a bit of an imbalance, and I like to think that democracy is always the best policy. And there wasn't enough of it there, I don't think. But it kind of happened — Rob [Halford, vocals] and Glenn [Tipton, guitar] went off and did their lengthy solo careers, and that became a bit disruptive. I didn't even mention that in the book. But Rob actually released two albums and did his own tour in the exact year before I left. And then when they said, 'K.K., we want you to start writing for a five-track EP,' I went, 'Fucking no way in hell! Rob has just released two albums in the last year, and we are only releasing an EP? Something is not right.' Enough was enough, really, and I bailed out there. And, like I said in the book, I tried to put it as diplomatically as I could. But, in a nutshell, enough was enough, really. And that was it."
K.K. announced his retirement from PRIEST in April 2011. He has since been replaced by Richie Faulkner, who was once the guitarist in the backing group for Lauren Harris, daughter of IRON MAIDEN bassist Steve Harris.
In 2018, Downing revealed that he sent two resignation letters to his bandmates when he decided to quit JUDAS PRIEST. The first was described as "a graceful exit note, implying a smooth retirement from music," while the second was "angrier, laying out all of his frustrations with specific parties."
Downing later said that he believed the second letter was "a key reason" he wasn't invited to rejoin PRIEST after Glenn Tipton's decision to retire from touring.