The Press Release:
Explorer1 Music Group (E1) is proud to announce a global partnership with legendary guitarist K.K. Downing, founding member of GRAMMY® Award winning, multi-platinum selling metal icons Judas Priest, with veteran rock manager Andy Gould joining E1 as Principle Manager for Downing.
After what was meant to be a one-off live performance in November, K.K. Downing has been in the studio, working on the next chapter of his career. After receiving offers from multiple labels and management companies, Downing met with Paul Woolnough, CEO of Explorer1 Music Group and the creator of its innovative business model, and they agreed to partner and work together in all aspects of K.K.’s career.
“I am very much looking forward to my partnership and future with Explorer 1” said K.K. Downing. “The reason I chose Explorer1 to manage my future over many other bona fide companies is their extensive roster of so many familiar and qualified experts and veterans of the industry that is surely incomparable. Also, their exciting and innovative business model is something that I truly believe will become the future industry standard, making Explorer1 leaders not followers in the music and entertainment industry”.
Joining Explorer1 Music Group is management veteran Andy Gould who will take on the role as Principle Manager for K.K. Downing. Gould had successfully managed Rob Zombie during his solo career as well as his days in White Zombie with a track record that includes sales exceeding fifteen million worldwide and seven GRAMMY® nominations with Zombie including securing deals for Zombie to become one of only a handful of people to have unprecedented success for six feature films as the writer and director. Gould has also co-managed such acts as Linkin Park (with Rob McDermott), Pantera (with Walter O’Brien) and Guns N’ Roses (with Irving Azoff).
“Having been in the hard rock and metal music management business for over four decades, I jumped at the chance to join the Explorer1 team and its innovative artist partnership model” says Andy Gould. “I have been a huge admirer of K.K. Downing’s work throughout his career, from listening to those early ground-breaking albums to watching him every night when Judas Priest had Pantera open for them,” Gould continues, “and with this new partnership I look forward to representing the next chapter in the K.K. Downing legacy.”
“After first seeing Judas Priest at Birmingham Odeon as a teenage fan, I was always inspired by their innovative style, stage shows, and larger than life personas” said Paul Woolnough, Explorer1 Music Group’s CEO. “When we met I was impressed with his drive and vision to create this new chapter in his already incredible career, and I am so proud he chose Explorer1 to be his partner in what will be an amazing journey into the past and future of one of rock music’s true icons”.
K.K. Downing’s genre-defining guitar style helped establish Judas Priest‘s iconic sound and helped propelled them to one of the top Heavy Metal bands of all-time, earning numerous accolades including a GRAMMY® in 2010 for “Best Metal Performance,” a total of five GRAMMY® nominations and multi-platinum and gold releases.
ABOUT EXPLORER1 MUSIC:
Explorer1 Music Group (E1) (www.explorer1music.com) is a Los Angeles, California based global full-service music company owned and operated by career professionals from the music, movie, TV, radio and media industries. We are not just a record, management or services company, we are a dynamic organization of passionate and highly skilled individuals, that offers Artist’s, songwriters, producers and companies a completely new type of funding, infrastructure, platform and support for their music.
E1’s services include artist management, digital and physical distribution, record label services, music publisher, radio promotion, tour promoter, publicity, production, merchandising and career development.
Our completely unique business model provides financial support and stability, while delivering a completely unique one-of-a-kind turnkey support system for recording, mastering/remastering, catalog management, distribution, streaming, syndication, licensing, promotion, marketing, touring, merchandising and all other aspects of the industry that normally are managed by multiple entities or persons.
E1’s highly-regarded management and operational team includes senior executives who have worked for or with the major recording labels, promoters, talent booking agencies, management companies, music publishers, merchandise companies, and radio stations, including BMG, Warner Music, Interscope, Clear Channel Entertainment, Goldenvoice, AEG, Live Nation, Capitol Records, Universal, EMI, MGM, Paramount, United Artists, Sony Music, Sanctuary Music Group, Columbia Music, Portrait Records and Virgin Records, among others. These individuals have managed and provided booking, marketing, artistic and promotional services for numerous world-renowned artists, including, among many others, Madonna, U2, Lady Gaga, Eminem, Elton John, Beyoncé, Led Zeppelin, Linkin Park, Lionel Ritchie, Rob Zombie, The Who, Iron Maiden, Metallica, Hilary Duff, Snoop Dogg, Fleetwood Mac, Jewel, Guns ‘N Roses, Michael Bublé, Motorhead, Josh Groban, Hole, Judas Priest, Aerosmith, Journey, Foo Fighters, Morrissey, KISS, Nickelback, Alanis Morissette, Counting Crows, John Mayer, Jimmy Cliff, Poison, Van Halen, Sammy Hagar, and many more.
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I’ve embedded some “Official Channel” video from the appearance that K.K. made with Ross The Boss at last years Bloodstock Festival. Clearly he can still play well and that was never the issue in his departure.
PiercingMetal Thoughts: So what do you think readers? Personally speaking I’d like to wish Mr. Downing all the best. He is a stellar guitarist and while I was really sad when he chose to leave Judas Priest, he had his reasons and it was not going to stop me from listening to the band or supporting their shows. Those who know me well know that my top three bands include them so my giving up for any reason is not going to happen. There’s a fiver in it for anyone who knows who the other two bands might be in my top three (not a valid offer BTW).
Official Website: http://www.explorer1music.com