Original Judas Priest Guitarist Dies
(Classic Rock) Original Judas Priest singer Al Atkins has reported that co-founding guitarist Ernie Chataway has died. He was 62. The pair, along with bassist Bruno Stapenhill and drummer John Partridge, formed the band in 1969 - but the lineup only lasted for seven months. When Atkins fronted a new version of Priest in late 1970 none of his previous bandmates were there.
Chataway went on to play with bands including Earth and Bullion, and was reported to be performing in and around his Worcester home until recently. Atkins says via his Facebook page: "Just heard the very sad news that Ernie passed away last night. He was a lovely bloke and a great guitarist and will be sadly missed.
"I remember the first time we met at the auditions for a new guitarist for Judas Priest in 1969 - his looks reminded me of Marc Bolan. When he plugged in his guitar he totally blew us away, and made KK Downing look a complete amateur (who we'd auditioned earlier)."
Read more: Wednesday May 14