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Former Judas Priest guitarist Kenneth “K.K.” Downing wants to make sure metal fans pay for their heavy music. In a message on his official website, Downing poured out his heart about the state of the music industry, stating that many of his friends in the business are having a rough time making ends meet.

“I must urge everyone to try pay for their music because without your support our beloved metal will become an endangered species if it is not that way already,” he said. “I have many friends and associates that once had a good career and prospects; these include producers, record engineers, managers and of course many musicians. Now most of them are struggling to make ends meet and stay in the business…”

He added that while many bands are making albums by themselves in basements and garages, he thinks that approach is missing something. “Even as good as we thought we were back in the day we would never have made the records we did without the professionals that helped us to achieve our goals,” he said.

“It is essential to get things back on track, in order that the young musicians can afford the help of good experienced engineers and producers,” he added. “But that will never happen until record labels start signing again and give the financial support that is much needed for this to happen. To get this on track, all of us need to endeavor to pay for our music if we can in order to secure the future of metal which we all hold dear to our hearts.”

More on Judas Priest:

Judas Priest Guitarist: People ‘Underestimate the Popularity of Heavy Metal’

Ozzy’s Axeman Happy for Judas Priest Guitarist

Gibson.com’s Top 50 Metal Songs of All Time – #10-1

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