Blink-182 fans have dealt with some pretty heavy news in the past few weeks. It started in late June when Mark Hoppus revealed that he’s battling cancer and is in the middle of chemotherapy. “It sucks and I’m scared,” he said in a statement, “and at the same time I’m blessed with incredible doctors and family and friends to get me through this.”
Days later, drummer Travis Barker told Rolling Stone that they’re back in contact with former singer-guitarist Tom DeLonge, and unwilling to rule out a reunion. “Never say never,” Barker said. “I talk to Tom all the time. We send funny texts and stuff. The times of bad blood and the misunderstandings between us are so over with. It’s all love. We all three talk, and we’re all friends. So, yeah, I will never say never. I think if the time was right and it just made sense …”
DeLonge hasn’t played with Blink-182 since 2014. He was replaced by Matt Skiba of Alkaline Trio in 2015, and the new lineup has recorded two albums and toured heavily. But a large swath of the fan base has a tight emotional attachment to DeLonge and yearns to see him back with his old bandmates. And DeLonge himself had done little to dissuade them.
“Everyone wants to know, ‘Are you guys gonna play again?’” DeLonge told Rolling Stone last year. “Yeah, of course we are. We just gotta figure out the timing, how it works for everybody.”
Here’s video of the classic lineup playing “Dammit” at the Shoreline Amphitheater on June 18th, 1999. This is just weeks after Enema of the State hit stores, but lead single “What’s My Age Again?” had been on MTV for months, and Blink-182 were rapidly becoming one of the most popular bands in the country.
They broke up after just two more albums (2001’s Take Off Your Pants and Jacket and 2003’s Blink-182), and it took the horrific tragedy of Barker’s 2008 plane crash for them to put their petty squabbles into perspective and get back together. Nobody knows what the future holds, but they’re facing another serious matter with Hoppus’ illness. The exact state of his health is unclear, but he recently posted a photo that revealed his hair is gone.
Let’s all hope he recovers soon and that this once again forces the band to realize that life is precious, the future is uncertain, and the time to reunite is now, not at some indeterminate future date when it fits in with the Angels and Airwaves tour schedule.