In a new Modern Drummer Instagram Live chat hosted by ANTHRAX‘s Charlie Benante, Mike Portnoy discussed this week’s tragic passing of former SLIPKNOT drummer Joey Jordison. The ex-DREAM THEATER drummer told Benante: “I actually heard the news from you. You hit me up on a thread that me, you and Chris Jericho have. And I couldn’t believe it. I was actually getting in my car to go pick up a pizza, I had to get out of the car and run back in the house to tell [my son] Max, ’cause Joey was — is — Max‘s biggest drum hero. I mean, I was devastated and shocked, but I know especially for Max it’s hard. It’s really the first time he’s lost a drum hero. But for me, it’s shocking as well.
“Joey was an incredible drummer, an incredible musician,” Mike continued. “Like you, he wrote a lot of the songs for his band, and he played guitar and was a multi-instrumentalist. But he was also a great guy. I’m sure we both have stories. I posted a little bit today, just a couple of quick stories. One was how once he heard that Max was such a big fan, he sent this big box of swag over, filled with masks, SLIPKNOT shirts and hoodies and all this stuff. And every time SLIPKNOT came through town, he was always so hospitable to Max and always invited him backstage and hung out with him. What else? I also mentioned about when I filled in for STONE SOUR, we went to Brazil together, ’cause STONE SOUR was playing one night and SLIPKNOT was playing the other night. So the whole SLIPKNOT camp traveled together, and he really made me feel at home during that trip; he made me feel part of the whole SLIPKNOT family for that weekend. I also remember calling him when I got offered to do the AVENGED SEVENFOLD tour. I had never gone on a tour with another band before, and he had been doing that. In the early 2000s, he was playing with everybody — he did a whole tour with KORN; did a tour with ROB ZOMBIE, he did a tour with MINISTRY. It wasn’t just like he played only with SLIPKNOT. So when I got offered that AVENGED gig, I called him up and we chatted on the phone for, like, an hour. I was just getting advice from him on what to expect as being kind of like a hired gun for a major band like that. He had some great advice.”
The founding SLIPKNOT drummer’s family confirmed that Jordinson passed away “peacefully in his sleep” on Monday (July 26) of an unspecified cause. He was 46 year old.
According to TMZ, Joey‘s family said they will hold a private funeral service for him, but it’s unclear when that will happen.
SLIPKNOT announced its split with Jordison in December 2013 but did not disclose the reasons for his exit. The drummer subsequently issued a statement saying that he did not quit the group.
Several years ago, Jordison overcame the neurological condition acute transverse myelitis, an inflammation of the spinal cord which damages nerve fibers, which ultimately led to the drummer temporarily losing the use of his legs.
Back in 2014, SLIPKNOT singer Corey Taylor told Metal Hammer that firing Jordison after 18 years was “one of the hardest decisions” the group ever made, adding that Joey is “in a place in his life” which is “not where we are.”