Slipknot drummer Joey Jordison dies peacefully in his sleep at age 46. This was the sad news that shocked metal fans all over the world a week ago. This article is dedicated to Joey, his family, and to Slipknot; one of the greatest and most influential bands to ever have blessed the stage.
Slipknot drummer and founder, Joey Jordison, has died at the age of 46. This was reported by the family, who explained that he passed away in his sleep on Monday, without communicating the cause of death.
Born Nathan Jonas Jordison, the drummer started playing from childhood. He switched to drums when his parents gave him a set for his eighth birthday.
He founded Slipknot in the mid-90s and then left the band in 2013. At first, he declared that the choice was dictated by personal reasons. Then in an interview that appeared on Team Rock on June 21, 2016, he retracted, saying that he was removed from the band by the other members and without his knowledge. He specified that the reason for the separation was the consequence of his illness, acute transverse myelitis, which had affected his performance. The illness struck him in August 2012 and required months of hospitalization, therapies, and rehabilitation.
Who was Joey Jordison?
Ex Slipknot drummer Joey Jordison was born at Mercy Hospital in Des Moines (Iowa) on April 26, 1975. Jordison spent his childhood in a rural area near Waukee, where he used to play basketball on the street in front of his house. The first contact with music came at an early age, attributing this to the influence of his parents: “they used to make me sit in front of the radio instead of the TV.”
From that moment he began to play the guitar until he received a drum kit as a gift from his parents for his eighth birthday. Moreover, in those years, his parents divorced; he and his two younger sisters chose to stay with his mother, who later remarried. Jordison claimed he felt a sudden responsibility to be the man of the house, and that responsibility made him hateful. He would channel his anger and hate through playing drums. During his teen years, he performed live as a support member of local bands like Atomic Opera, and Heads on the Wall.
The First Jobs
After leaving school, Jordison was hired at a music store called Musicland. In March 1994, after a recommendation from a friend of his, he found a job at the Sinclair Oil Corporation of Urbandale, in which he worked only in the night shifts, as during the day he preferred to spend his time with his friends and to listen to music.
In early 1995, he joined The Rejects as a guitarist, playing only a couple of concerts. Jordison also joined a group consisting of Paul Gray and singer Don Decker called Anal Blast. During the early moments of Slipknot’s formation, Gray recruited Jordison into a punk group called Have Nots in the spring of 1996. Jordison later left the group the following year to focus on Slipknot but nevertheless reformed The Rejects until Slipknot began recording their self-titled debut album, which Gray also joined as soon as the Have Nots disbanded.
Joey Becomes Slpknot’s Drummer
On November 28, 1995, Mark Anthony Cadavos (at that time vocalist) approached Jordison while the latter was working, offering him a job in a new project which was to become Slipknot. Interested and at a time when he called himself “lost”, Jordison did some auditions in Anders Colsefini’s room and immediately afterward showed his interest in joining the group. Jordison later remembered; “I tried hard not to smile, so I didn’t show my desire to enter, I remained impassive, but I thought that in the end, they were the ones to decide”.
Slipknot would become the pioneers of nu-metal, although the members themselves do not like to be categorized as such. In their music, they incorporate various subgenres of classic metal such as thrash metal, death metal, and groove metal (their influences ranged from Iron Maiden, Metallica to Pantera).
In 2010 Jordison was voted the best drummer of the last 25 years by Rhythm readers, beating other drummers like Mike Portnoy, Neil Peart, Phil Collins, or Dave Grohl. When asked to comment, he admitted that he was “at a loss for words. This is beyond the unbelievable. Something similar reminds me every day because I keep doing this “.
On December 12, 2013, Slipknot announce through their official website that Jordison has decided to leave the group for personal reasons.
Joey’s sideprojects apart from Slipknot
While playing Ozzfest in 2001 to promote “Iowa” as the drummer of Slipknot, Jordison met then Static-X guitarist Tripp Eisen and the two discussed creating a side project.
In 2002, Jordison revived The Rejects, renaming the group Murderdolls. He became their guitarist and recruited on bass Wednesday 13 of Frankenstein Drag Queens from Planet 13. The latter later became the lead singer of the group, while drummer Ben Graves and bassist Eric Griffin completed the lineup. Also in 2002, Murderdolls signed to Roadrunner Records and released the EP Right to Remain Violent, followed in August of the same year by the first studio album Beyond the Valley of the Murderdolls. The group’s lyrics are based on horror films such as Friday the 13th and Night of the Living Dead.
Jordison and Wednesday 13 reformed the Murderdolls in 2010, releasing their second album Women and Children Last on August 31, 2010. In a March 2013 interview, Wednesday 13 confirmed that the group has been officially disbanded.
Scar the Martyr and Vimic
In April 2013 some rumors lingered on a project created by Jordison, Jed Simon, and Kris Norris. It was later confirmed that Jordison would play most of the instrumentation and that Chris Vrenna and Henry Derek would join the group as keyboardist and singer respectively. On June 21 came confirmation from Jordison that the group would be called Scar the Martyr.
On May 5, 2016, Jordison revealed the group’s name change to Vimic, which also includes vocalist Kalen Chase Musmecci and three members of Scar the Martyr, guitarist Jed Simon, bassist Kyle Konkiel and keyboardist Matthew Tarach. However, the group will only release a handful of singles under the new name between 2016 and 2017, then remain out of business until Jordison’s untimely death in 2021.
Jordison vocally contributed to Necrophagia’s song Stitch Her Further, featured in Harvest Ritual: Vol 1. The drummer also appeared in Marilyn Manson’s Tainted Love video clip and played drums on several tracks on Otep’s second album, House of Secrets. He contributed to the creation of some examples of sticks, including the Pro-Mark 515 (his custom model) and the Ahead Joey 1 (no longer on the market). He contributed to the first chopsticks in a very unique way: he had two test tubes of blood taken and then mixed the liquid with the mixture used to mark the chopsticks. He also designed a 13 “x6.5” steel snare drum for Pearl, the JJ-1365, with a black satin finish with engraved decorations.
He will Always be Remembered as Slipknot drummer Joey
Although he collaborated with many artists and had several side projects he would always be best remembered as Slipknot’s drummer Joey Jordison. His influence on drummers worldwide is undeniable as was his talent and love for music.
As drummer for Slipknot
- 1999 – Slipknot
- 2001 – Iowa
- 2004 – Vol. 3: (The Subliminal Verses)
- 2008 – All Hope Is Gone
With the Murderdolls
- 2002 – Beyond the Valley of the Murderdolls
- 2010 – Women and Children Last
- 2013 – Scar the Martyr