Today’s been quite an emotional roller coaster for Blink 182 fans. It all started when word got out that guitarist/vocalist and founding member Tom DeLonge had parted ways with the band, and Alkaline Trio frontman Matt Skiba would be filling his shoes for the foreseeable future. Shortly after the news broke, DeLonge released a statement of his own, saying he “never quit the band,” and that he “was on a phone call about a Blink 182 event for New York City at the time all these weird press releases started coming in.”
Now, bassist/vocalist/co-founder Mark Hoppus and longtime drummer Travis Barker have come forth with their own side of the story, announcing that DeLonge is, in fact, no longer a member of the band. Hoppus stated the following regarding Tom’s departure:
“For the past two years, we’ve been working with a bunch of different labels to try and get a record deal because the three of us collectively decided that we wanted to make a record with a partner. A few months ago, Travis has this festival that he is co-owner of and presenting and he asked Tom and I if we would play and we said, “No problem.” At the end of December, we were finalizing our record deal and on Christmas Eve, all three of us signed the deal. We had been talking about where we wanted to record, what producers we want to use, what day we want to start. This is all through e-mail. I don’t think either of us have spoken to Tom in person in months, but everything’s been moving positively.
We booked January 5th to go into the studio. On December 30th, we get an e-mail from Tom’s manager saying that he has no interest in recording and that he wants to do his other, non-musical stuff and that he’s out indefinitely. There’s a flurry of e-mails going back and forth for clarification about the recording and the show and his manager sends [an e-mail] back saying, “Tom. Is. Out.” Direct quote. This is the exact same e-mail we got back in 2004 when Tom went on indefinite hiatus before.”
And Barker had this to say about Tom denying he and the band had split:
“I think he’s just bummed because Mark and I were finally honest. We always covered up for him before. It was always, “We’re going to record an album,” then “Tom refuses to get into the studio without a record deal.” So everyone does hella amounts of work to get a record deal and now Tom isn’t part of Blink-182. It’s hard to cover for someone who’s disrespectful and ungrateful. You don’t even have the balls to call your bandmates and tell them you’re not going to record or do anything Blink-related. You have your manager do it. Everyone should know what the story is with him and it’s been years with it. When we did get back together after my plane crash, we only got back together, I don’t know, maybe because I almost died. But he didn’t even listen to mixes or masterings from that record. He didn’t even care about it. Why Blink even got back together in the first place is questionable.”
Right now, it looks like DeLonge is gone for good, considering Hoppus himself described Tom saying he was quitting the band as “a gigantic relief because at least he finally said it.” But anything’s possible, so we’ll be sure to keep you posted on any future developments surrounding this crazy story.