Breaking: Former Big Name Drummer Suddenly Dies

Former Big Name Drummer Suddenly Dies

The founding drummer of an iconic band has died suddenly, leaving fans speechless over the loss of such a talented individual.

On July 26, a representative for the family of Joey Jordison revealed that the 46-year-old had died “peacefully in his sleep,” but did not specify the cause of death.

His Life

Joey Jordison was the founding drummer of the heavy metal band Slipknot, a group famous for their creepy masks, energetic and chaotic live shows, and aggressive style of music.

On stage, Jordison was talented and unique. In several shows, he even played the drums while upside down on a platform.

The iconic drummer was also a co-writer for several of Slipknot’s greatest hits, and was referred to by Rolling Stone as “the motor that kept Slipknot’s music running in their early days.”

Jordison was one of the fanbase’s favorite members, with his neck-rattling rhythms and death-metal blastbeats. His talent was celebrated by most fans of the heavy metal genre.

Watch this compilation of Jordison’s best drumming (Warning: Strong Language):

Jordison and the other original members of the band found each other while playing Des Moines’ club circuit. By 1996, they had begun their tradition of wearing masks, and had put out a demo album called Mate. Feed. Kill. Repeat. The founding members of the band were Jordison, percussionist Shawn Crahan, and bassist Paul Gray.

“The first mask I had was an original pale-white kabuki mask,” Jordison told Revolver. “One Halloween, when I was about eight years old, I came home from school and my mother popped around the corner with that mask on and a long robe and scared the living f*ck out of me. It’s always stuck with me. So I had to use that for my mask.”

Slipknot’s first real album came out in 1999, and was certified platinum within a year. According to Rolling Stone, the success of the album came from the band playing at Ozzfest, as well as the popular music videos for the singles “Wait and Bleed” and “Spit It Out”.

“I was a night manager at a Sinclair gas station from ’95 to ’97,” Jordison told Rolling Stone in 2001. “That’s where most of Slipknot was conceived. I’d get off band practice at about ten, and I’d bring a radio and TV and f*cking crank metal. Shawn [Crahan] would come down at about 11:30, and we’d start plotting things out. He’d split at about five in the morning, and we’d have all these ideas. That’s how we did it.”

Their second album, Iowa, came out in 2001, and was an even bigger success. It reached Number Three on the Billboard 200 at the same time that the band was moving from Ozzfest’s second stage to become main-stage headliners. Unfortunately, at this time there were problems behind the scenes.

“When we did Iowa, it was a very dark time for the band,” Jordison told Revolver. “Some of our strongest and most meaningful songs are on that record, but we were all on drugs and drunk and it sucked. It’s a time I don’t like to talk about much because I don’t like to condone any drug use, whatsoever.”

Jordison stayed with the band until 2013, when he left for what he described at the time as “personal reasons.”

Years later, the drummer revealed the true motivation behind his departure: a severe neurological disease.

“I got really, really sick with a horrible disease called transverse myelitis; I lost my legs. I couldn’t play anymore. It was a form of multiple sclerosis, which I wouldn’t wish on my worst enemy. I got myself back up, and I got myself in the gym and I got myself back in f*cking therapy to f*cking beat this sh*t,” he told the audience at the Metal Hammer Golden Gods Awards in 2016, noting that he was rededicating himself to music with a new band, Vimic.

Jordison didn’t just play for Slipknot. According to Rolling Stone:

“In addition to Slipknot and Vimic, the prolific musician played guitar in the glam-inspired horror-punk group the Murderdolls, drums with the alt-metal group Scar the Martyr and extreme-metal supergroup Sinsaenum, and pre-Slipknot resume stints in Modifidious and the Have Nots. He also made guest appearances on recordings by Otep, Necrophagia, and Rob Zombie. In 2005, he assembled several supergroups for the project Roadrunner United, which commemorated the 25th anniversary of Slipknot’s label, Roadrunner; on five tracks, he played with dream teams that featured members of Type O Negative, Deicide, Life of Agony, and King Diamond’s band.”

His Death

A rep for Jordison’s family informed the public that he had died “peacefully in his sleep.” A cause of death has not been reported as of yet.

“Joey’s death has left us with empty hearts and feelings of indescribable sorrow,” read a statement from Jordison’s family. “To those that knew Joey, understood his quick wit, his gentle personality, giant heart, and his love for all things family and music. The family of Joey have asked that friends, fans, and media understandably respect our need for privacy and peace at this incredibly difficult time.” The family intends to hold a private funeral service.

How Jordison Got Started

Born in Des Moines, Iowa on April 26th, 1975, as Nathan Jonas Jordison, the iconic drummer started his first band while in elementary school.

According to reporting from Rolling Stone, “Jordison played guitar with a friend who wasn’t very good at drums, prompting the musician to switch instruments. His parents surprised him with his own drum kit when he was in fifth grade and he continued to play with friends.”

Responses to His Death

After news of Jordison’s death broke, fans and other musicians took to Twitter to express their condolences.

“Deeply saddened to hear about the passing of @JoeyJordison. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family, friends and fans,” wrote Ozzy Osbourne.

“This is awful news. RIP,” wrote Phil Labonte, lead singer of the American metalcore band All That Remains.

“What an incredibly sad day. Joey Jordison, thanks for your incredible contribution to music. Rest In Peace,” wrote the official Twitter account for the Canadian metal band The Veer Union.

One fan shared a video of Jordison playing an amazing drum solo:

Another world-famous drummer, Mike Portnoy, shared his condolences on Twitter, along with a personal story of Jordison’s generosity.

“Absolutely shocked & gutted to hear of the passing of @joeyjordison. In addition to being an incredible drummer, he was always a classy guy. When he heard how much of a fan @MaxPortnoy_ was, he sent to the house a giant box filled with @slipknot swag: shirts, hoodies, backpacks,” wrote Portnoy, former drummer for the metal band Dream Theater, and current drummer for several bands, including Sons of Apollo, The Winery Dogs, Transatlantic, and Flying Colors.

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