Ellefson Talks Support From Family and Friends in Wake of Sex Scandal
After remaining silent for several months, former Megadeth bassist David Ellefson has begun wading into the press again following a sex scandal that resulted in his dismissal from the band.
While Ellefson’s primary objective is to promote his new band, The Lucid — which he did in his first interview since being fired from Megadeth earlier this week — he has now begun to comment on the scandal in a new chat with SiriusXM radio personality Eddie Trunk.
Trunk asked if Ellefson’s family members were “supportive” and “understanding” throughout the ordeal, and Ellefson answered by saying that they both were and weren’t before pivoting to their support throughout his entire career given the stereotypical rockstar lifestyle. To that extent, the direct portion of his answer is short, but that brevity is also telling… it couldn’t have been easy on the home front earlier this year.
“Look, [they were] supportive, understanding… Not so supportive, not so understanding. I mean, dad’s in a rock band, and not just any band — Megadeth. Let’s face it: we’ve been a band with a history. And this isn’t to discolor or paint anything on the current Megadeth at all, because, obviously, 2021 is not the way it was in 1986. But there’s a reason we had a ‘Behind The Music’ [episode on VH1].
“Look, I’ve tried to be very transparent, and I think we kind of did in that band over the years. We were very transparent in things — when things happened in our personal lives and things happened in the group, we were always pretty open about it. And I’ve talked openly about getting clean from drugs and booze years ago and all of these things.
“On the home life, again, look — I was in Megadeth to start, and then the families come after. And again, I think there is a reconciling of the lifestyles, that it’s, like, ‘Okay, dad’s off at the circus being the rock and roll guy and all that comes with that,’ including a very comfortable life that affords you opportunities you would not get in any other life. At the same time, it certainly doesn’t give license to go out and misbehave. So I think there is that. And again, that’s probably you and me just talking as husbands and fathers and all that we are in a show biz lifestyle. And again, that’s just the reality of that. And we’ve seen a lot of our friends be successful with it, struggle with it, et cetera, et cetera.
“I remember Ace Frehley years ago, and this isn’t to discount it at all, but I remember there was a quote from Ace, he said, ‘Drugs and girls are an occupational hazard.’ And I remember reading that when I was a kid. And I didn’t understand it at that time. And then later in life, I would understand, that’s it’s, like, hazard pay, if you will. And in every life, there is that, and that happens to be one in our way of life over here in the creative world, especially touring rock and rollers.”
Ellefson also said that he had a ton of support from his friends in the music community, explaining:
“I was flying pretty high pretty fast at a high altitude and hit some turbulence, no doubt. And people reminded me, ‘Listen, we’re all human. We all make mistakes, man.’ And even more so in rock and roll.
“A lot of other musicians, industry people, rock stars — from the smallest to the absolute biggest — reached out to me. Everybody was, like, ‘Hey, brother, are you okay? Anything you need, let me know.’ And it was very supportive from everybody. Which was great because everyone is on your side when you’re picking up your Grammy and you’re on the red carpet and everything is going great, but the greater judge of character is who are you, who am I when we’re kind of at our bottom, when we’ve shown some real humanness. And this was a moment where, I’m happy to say, people really rallied around me.
“I’ve gone through a few dark seasons in my life over the years, as we all do — drugs and alcohol, in and out of Megadeth 20 years ago. Things happen, things go down. This was a dark one, I’m not gonna lie.”
Several weeks before Megadeth sacked him, an Instagram user, identified only as ‘woahworst,’ started sharing accusations that Ellefson had groomed an underage girl. As proof, they offered extremely explicit video of Ellefson masturbating during a video chat, as well as screen caps of text exchanges between Ellefson and the young woman in question. The woman provided a statement indicating that while the relationship did take place, she was not underage at the time and it was consensual.
In a statement announcing Ellefson’s dismissal, Megadeth said that “While we do not know every detail of what occurred, with an already strained relationship, what has already been revealed now is enough to make working together impossible moving forward.”
Ellefson subsequently released his own statement, in which he indicated that he would be seeking legal action against the person who leaked the videos.
Megadeth replaced Ellefson for their recent tour with James LoMenzo (White Lion, Black Label Society, Firstborne, etc.), who was previously in the band from 2006 until 2010.
Additionally, Ellefson’s parts for the new Megadeth album, The Sick, The Dying, and The Dead, have been re-recorded, although whether that was by LoMenzo or someone else is unclear.
The Lucid’s self-titled debut is out now on SpoilerHead Records. In addition to Ellefson, the band includes vocalist Vinnie Dombroski (Sponge), guitarist Drew Fortier (Zen From Mars), and drummer Mike Heller (Fear Factory).