Joey Jordison, Former Slipknot Drummer, Dead at 46 | Revolver

Joey Jordison, Former Slipknot Drummer, Dead at 46

Iconic metal musician "passed away peacefully in his sleep" on July 26th
joey-jordison-by-getty-jesse-wild.jpg, Jesse Wild / Rhythm Magazine / Getty
photograph by Jesse Wild / Rhythm Magazine / Getty

Joey Jordison, the former drummer and founding member of Slipknot, has died. He was 46.

The news of his tragic death was shared by his family today (July 27th), who said in a statement that he "passed away peacefully in his sleep" on July 26th. Jordison had been suffering from acute transverse myelitis — a rare neurological condition in which the spinal cord is inflamed — with symptoms starting in 2010.

The statement from his family reads as follows: "We are heartbroken to share the news that Joey Jordison, prolific drummer, musician and artist passed away peacefully in his sleep on July 26th, 2021. He was 46," the statement reads. "Joey's death has left us with empty hearts and feelings of indescribable sorrow."

"To those that knew Joey, understood his quick wit, his gentle personality, giant heart and his love for all things family and music," it continued. "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 will hold a private funeral service and asks the media and public to respect their wishes," it concludes.

Jordison departed from Slipknot in 2013 and subsequently founded the band Scar the Martyr, who broke up three years later. At the time of his death, he was the full-time drummer of the French blackened death-metal band Sinsaenum.

Jordison was born in Des Moines, Iowa, on April 26th, 1975. He took to music at an early age and would eventually play in numerous local bands throughout his teenage years that helped him hone is chops as a preternaturally fast and uncompromising drummer. In 1995, he was asked to join a new project called the Pale Ones that would eventually become Slipknot.

Technically the third member to join the band, Jordison was considered a founding member of the soon-to-be nu-metal titans, earning the "#1" designation once every member of the band was assigned a number between one and nine.

Jordison played in Slipknot from 1995 to 2013. In addition to being a beastly force behind the kit that helped give the band their signature percussive force, he was a major songwriter on the four studio LPs he appeared on during his time in the band.

In December 2013, Slipknot released a statement proclaiming that Jordison had left the group due to personal reasons, which the drummer countered by saying that he was in fact fired. Jordison eventually revealed in 2016 that he had been suffering from a condition called transverse myelitis since 2010, which impacted his ability to play drums toward the end of his time in the Iowa titans.

Although he's best known for his tenure in Slipknot, Jordison was a prolific musician who played in a bevy of other projects throughout his fruitful career. In 2001, he co-founded the horror-punk band the Murderdolls, which was technically a revival of a local band he played in years before dubbed The Rejects.

Jordison put down his sticks to play guitar in Murderdolls, and he recruited fellow horror-punk figure Wednesday 13 to be the band's lead singer. They were only active for a sporadic handful of years due to Jordison's priorities in Slipknot, but they released an album called Beyond the Valley of the Murderdolls in 2002 and a follow-up called Women and Children Last in 2010 that earned their own cult following.

In addition to Murderdolls and his aforementioned post-Slipknot acts, Jordison was a busy session musician and touring drummer. He filled in for Metallica during an emergency Download Festival appearance in 2004 when Lars Ulrich was suddenly hospitalized, and he played a handful of dates with Norwegian black-metal stalwarts Satyricon that same year when drummer Frost wasn't able to enter the country.

In 2006, Jordison played 60 North American dates with Ministry, and in 2007 he filled in for a Korn tour in the aftermath of drummer David Silveria's departure from the nu-metal heavy hitters. Lastly, he briefly joined Rob Zombie's band as a touring drummer in 2010, and actually ended up recording three songs with the band that eventually appeared on the deluxe reissue of Zombie's 2010 opus, Hellbilly Deluxe 2.

Jordison was also an occasional producer who was tapped as one of the four "Team Captains" (alongside Machine Head's Robb Flynn, Fear Factory's Dino Cazares and Trivium's Matt Heafy) for a project called Roadrunner United that celebrated 25 years of Roadrunner Records. In 2007, he produced the third LP by Canadian NWOBHM torchbearers 3 Inches of Blood.

Jordison was undoubtedly one of the most important and objectively talented metal drummers of the 21st century, and many metalheads would likely argue one of the most essential metal drummers of all time. His contributions to the continued heaviness of popular heavy music will live on forever. Rest in Power.