Startling news from the Slayer camp, as drummer Dave Lombardo has announced he’s been replaced for the band’s upcoming Australia tour. Lombardo has posted a lengthy explanation to his fans via Facebook, and it appears money played a large part in his dismissal from the band.
According to his statement, Lombardo learned last year the band was only receiving 10% of their touring income, with the rest being used for tour expenses and management fees. Further investigation revealed even more contractual issues, but attempts to renegotiate the situation were met with disagreement from bandmate Kerry King.
On Valentine’s Day, less than two weeks before Slayer was to kick off their Australian tour at the Soundwave Festival in Brisbane, Lombardo received notice he’d been replaced. Since then, it’s been announced drummer Jon Dette, who has played with Slayer many times before, will be taking over for Lombardo. This leaves Slayer with only two of its original members, as guitarist Jeff Hanneman continues to battle the flesh-eating disease necrotizing fasciitis, contracted from a spider bite in 2011.
King recently stated Slayer had written 11 songs for a new album, but whether or not Lombardo will be rejoining them to record, following the tour, is yet to be known.
Here’s a look at Lombardo’s post this week, in its entirety:
I want to personally apologize to all of our fans in Australia who have bought tickets for the tour expecting to see me in my usual place on the drums.
So that you all know the truth, as of the end of the business day on February 14th, I was notified that I would not be drumming for the tour in Australia. I’m saddened, and to be honest I am shocked by the situation.
Last year, I discovered 90% of Slayer’s tour income was being deducted as expenses including the professional fees paid to management, costing the band millions of dollars and leaving 10% or less to split amongst the four of us. In my opinion, this is not the way a band’s business should operate. I tried rectifying it by letting my band mates know, and Tom and I hired auditors to figure out what happened, but I was denied access to detailed information and the necessary back up documents.
I spent the Christmas and New Year holidays realizing I had toured all over the world in 2012, but yet, had not been paid (except a small advance) or provided a proper accounting for a full year’s sweat and blood. On top of this, I was told that I would not be paid until I signed a long form contract which gave me no written assurance of how much or on what basis management would deduct commissions, nor did it provide me access to the financial budgets or records for review. It also forbade me to do interviews or make statements having to do with the band, in effect a gagging order.
Last Monday, I sat down with Kerry and Tom to rehearse for Australia and to propose a new business model that I felt was the best way forward for Slayer to confidently protect itself so we could do what we do best . . . play for the fans. Kerry made it clear he wasn’t interested in making changes and said if I wanted to argue the point, he would find another drummer. On Thursday, I arrived at rehearsals at 1 pm as scheduled, but Kerry did not show. Rather, at 6:24 pm I received an email from the lawyers saying I was being replaced for the Australian dates.
I remain hopeful that we can resolve our issues. But once again, I sincerely apologize to all of our fans in Australia who spent their money expecting to see the 3 of us original Slayer members.
I look forward to seeing you in the future.