Violent Femmes drummer Victor DeLorenzo announced his departure from the Violent Femmes early yesterday morning, followed quickly by news of his replacement: Brian Vigilone, percussion master and one half of rock’n’roll cabaret duo Dresden Dolls.
The Femmes reunited earlier this year for Coachella, ending the hiatus they’ve been on since 2009. Even with more tour dates in the works, drummer DeLorenzo, who left the band once before to pursue a solo career, has decided to throw in the towel for good. Unfortunately his leaving seems to be on a negative note:
It’s always hard to write a eulogy for a lost loved one. In this case, I sadly lament the loss of a dream and an ideal that was once Violent Femmes.
When I first heard the news about the possibility of the original Violent Femmes reuniting, I was excited that once again our group might be able to play music for the fans that love us and for the new fans that have never had the chance to see us create the music live. The only conditions that I had were that the three of us move forward to repair our relationships within the band, and that we would strive to attain a fair business agreement that would reflect a new way of handling the business that wouldn’t be ‘business as usual.’ Sadly, my open-hearted approach to finding a way to move forward wasn’t shared by Violent Femmes. What was finally being offered to me was, ‘business as usual,’ with a great deal of disrespect, dishonesty and greed.
After having found out that the promoters of our recent concerts weren’t interested in booking our group unless it was, ‘the reunion of the original band,’ I spoke to two of the biggest concert promoters in the world that handled two of our shows, and they told me directly that this was true. So it confuses me that fans and the promoters see the value in presenting the original band, but not the band itself. I realize that I’m no longer part of the copyright after having given up my business interest in Violent Femmes years ago, but I will always be part of the birthright of Violent Femmes, for which I will always be very proud! I’m sorry and I apologize that the fans, promoters and agents won’t get to see the Violent Femmes show that was being offered and that people bought tickets to see.
As John Lennon once said, ‘the dream is over.’ In regards to my history with Violent Femmes, the dream never quite got there.
So on the evening of June 26th, 2013, on the stage of the Marcus Amphitheater at Summerfest, I gave to the world my last performance with Violent Femmes. Milwaukee, we were yours for the night, and now forever!
Sincerely and with warm regards,
DeLorenzo’s melancholy exit was followed up by some joyful news from Vigilone, who drew the Femme’s attention when Dresden Dolls performed their entire 1983 self-titled album in 2012. He joyfully broke the news on Facebook:
Hey Dolls Fans! IT’S OFFICIAL- I HAVE JOINED THE VIOLENT FEMMES!
Good morning! It’s with inexpressible joy that I announce this news today. Amanda and I have always loved and been inspired by this band, and been fortunate enough to share the stage with them several times in the past. But to now be their new drummer is a dream come true and hope to see some of you out there on tour!
The new Violent Femmes play next in Central Park on September 12th.