Ellefson: “I Was Just Kicked to the Side of the Road” by Megadeth
After taking several months out of the limelight to collect himself, former Megadeth bassist David Ellefson has been in the press in recent weeks opening up about the sex scandal that saw him dismissed from the band earlier this year. Now, in a new interview, Ellefson said he was “just kicked to the side of the road” by Megadeth during a vulnerable moment in which he asked for help.
Speaking on The Jeremy White Podcast, Ellefson said that his intent was to immediately get out in front of the story and shoot down any inaccuracies — which he did — such as the accusations that he was grooming an underage fan (the woman, who remains anonymous, issued a statement saying she was not underage and the relationship was consensual):
“That’s why I addressed it the night it came out. Even though one side said not to, my legal said, ‘I think you should. I think you should just run toward the bullets, take the sword, deal with it, just address it,’ which I did. And it was done and it was over. And then the next day when the other side started putting their announcements out, that’s when it fanned the flames… The very thing they didn’t want to happen is exactly what happened. And then I paid the penalty. Now I’m not in the band. So, go figure.”
The announcement put out by “the other side” Ellefson mentions above is the band’s statement that read “there are clearly aspects of David’s private life that he has kept to himself.” After White agreed that Megadeth’s statement fanned the flames and eventually resulted in his firing, Ellefson continued:
“A hundred percent. It was all based on fear. It wasn’t based on reality. They said all sides would be heard, and, quite honestly, no sides were heard. Because within two weeks, I went through the process that I told them I was gonna go through, to just walk through it and say, ‘Hey, this is a bunch of bullshit,’ and I did — I did my part. And I confessed my… [Laughs] Look, I was caught on ‘Candid Camera’; there was no hiding from it. So you just address it. You take the sword. You deal with it. It was embarrassing. Sorry about that. Move on. And that’s it.
“I pushed back against [the accusations]. [I said] ‘This is bullshit.’ And that’s when I said [to the Megadeth camp], ‘Look, they threw a Molotov cocktail — proverbial — at my house and burned my house down. Would you please help me? Would you please support me? I could use some help right now.’ And quite honestly, I was just kicked to the side of the road to just deal with it on my own. So it’s, like, all right. Well, then now we know where the loyalties lie. And now we move on.”
Ellefson also recently revealed that he asked for his bass tracks on Megadeth’s new album to be kept on the final recordings, but the band had them re-recorded by a mystery bassist, believed to be Steve DiGiorgio (Death, Testament, Dethklok, etc.). He also recently spoke about both the difficulties in his family life and the support he received from friends in the wake of the scandal breaking.
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.
Megadeth’s next album, titled The Sick, the Dying, and the Dead, is expected to be released in 2022.
Ellefson, meanwhile, just put an album out with a new band called The Lucid, which also features vocalist Vinnie Dombroski (Sponge), guitarist Drew Fortier (Zen From Mars), and drummer Mike Heller (Fear Factory).