When former Slipknot drummer Joey Jordison less than amicably parted ways with the band in December 2013, the circumstances that led to the split were unclear. Now he has offered some insight into the time surrounding his departure. While accepting a trophy at the Metal Hammer Golden Gods Awards in London on Monday, he revealed that he had become stricken with an illness.
“Towards the end of my career in Slipknot I got really, really sick with a horrible disease called transverse myelitis,” he told the audience, according to Metal Injection. “I lost my legs. I couldn’t play anymore. It was a form of multiple sclerosis, which I don’t wish on my worst enemy. I got myself back up, and I got myself in the gym, and I got myself back in fucking therapy to fucking beat this shit. … It’s the hardest thing I’ve ever done in my life, more than fucking anything.”
Myelitis.org describes Jordison’s disease as “a rare inflammatory disease causing injury to the spinal cord with varying degrees of weakness, sensory alterations and autonomic dysfunction (the part of the nervous system that controls involuntary activity, such as the heart, breathing, the digestive system, and reflexes).” The disease was first described in 1882; the first time the term “acute transverse myelitis” was used was in 1948.
Jordison, who recently launched a new band called Vimic, also addressed people who were suffering from the same condition as him. “To people with multiple sclerosis, transverse myelitis, or anything like that, I am living proof that you can fucking beat that shit,” he said. “And fucking metal and all of these fans will do it for you. This is the fucking world right here. You can beat this shit. No joke. Just the fact that metal lives in your heart, you can fucking accomplish anything.”
Jordison’s remarks can be viewed in the video below, beginning at around the 18:45 mark.
When Slipknot announced their split with Jordison, they said they parted ways with him “with great pain but quiet respect.” A few days later, the drummer released his own statement that made the separation appear to be acrimonious. “I want to make it very clear that I did not quit Slipknot,” he wrote on Facebook. “This band has been my life for the last 18 years, and I would never abandon it or my fans. This news has shocked and blindsided me as much as it has all of you. While there is much I would like to say, I must remain silent to further details at this time.”
The group’s percussionist, Shawn “Clown” Crahan was dismissive of the split when Rolling Stone asked about it in 2014. “Things happen, people need to go on,” he said. He added that he maintained “respect” for Jordison.