Former JUDAS PRIEST guitarist K.K. Downing has posted the following year-end message on his official web site, Steel Mill:
"I am extremely pleased to announce the five-year anniversary of the Steel Mill!
"It brings me great pleasure to thank you all for your participation and your enthusiasm and, of course, for your dedication to what the Steel Mill is all about, great music and great bands, and not forgetting most important of all: great fans.
"Let's hope that the next five years will not only be just as great for Steel Mill but also see things get even better for all of the talented artists and bands that are trying so hard to get started.
"One thing is for sure: many new bands are getting a chance to be seen and heard this year at many of the great festivals that are again taking place, so be sure to check out as many as you can, even if it means missing breakfast!
"I could be wrong, but it seems like almost every band in the world will be out there somewhere this summer, so, to me, things couldn't be better.
"Anyway, for those that can't wait for the festivals to start, there are still plenty of good things going on, Michael Schenker's MSG, for example, in Wolverhampton on the 9th of May! Definitely a good one for me, a classic band not to be missed.
"It seems an eternity ago that UFO and PRIEST were at Morgan Studios together in London around 1975 when we were recording 'Sad Wings'! I believe the guys were making 'No Heavy Petting'! I remember having a beer and playing darts with the guys including, of course, the inimitable Michael Schenker. We were all young men, little did we know how many miles we would travel or how many gigs we would play. All we knew is that it was what we wanted, and what we had worked so hard at for so long.
"For sure, when UFO write their book, I will be the first to buy one, as there is no doubt that UFO could tell more good rock and roll stories than anyone I could ever think of.
"Today [March 18 at the time of Downing's writing] is Mother's Day in the U.K. so I am just off to see my dear mom! How she must have worried about me throughout the decades, all of that travelling and all of the possible dangers that could befall me. The life of being a parent to a rock musician must have been a difficult one, the times I heard, 'Why don't you get a proper job, son?' must have exceeded ten times my age. I remember getting very frustrated. It's only now I have become to realise that my mother just wanted me to be safe and see more of me. So all of you rockers and metallers out there; don't do what I did and leave it so late to appreciate the worry, concern and the love that your parents have for you whilst you're out there having a blast!
"And finally as always my sincere thanks to the Millworkers and to all of you lovers of great music across the world. Have a great metal year and be safe where ever you are and where ever you go."