Dave Lombardo kicked off Slayers Aus Tour and ripped off by band mates/management?



"Statement From Dave Lombardo Regarding Slayer Australian Tour 2013

I want to personally apologize to all of our fans in Australia who have bought tickets for the tour expecting to see me in my usual place on the drums.

So that you all know the truth, as of the end of the business day on February 14th, I was notified that I would not be drumming for the tour in Australia. I’m saddened, and to be honest I am shocked by the situation.

Last year, I discovered 90% of Slayer’s tour income was being deducted as expenses including the professional fees paid to management, costing the band millions of dollars and leaving 10% or less to split amongst the four of us. In my opinion, this is not the way a band’s business should operate. I tried rectifying it by letting my band mates know, and Tom and I hired auditors to figure out what happened, but I was denied access to detailed information and the necessary back up documents.

I spent the Christmas and New Year holidays realizing I had toured all over the world in 2012, but yet, had not been paid (except a small advance) or provided a proper accounting for a full year's sweat and blood. On top of this, I was told that I would not be paid until I signed a long form contract which gave me no written assurance of how much or on what basis management would deduct commissions, nor did it provide me access to the financial budgets or records for review. It also forbade me to do interviews or make statements having to do with the band, in effect a gagging order.

Last Monday, I sat down with Kerry and Tom to rehearse for Australia and to propose a new business model that I felt was the best way forward for Slayer to confidently protect itself so we could do what we do best . . . play for the fans. Kerry made it clear he wasn’t interested in making changes and said if I wanted to argue the point, he would find another drummer. On Thursday, I arrived at rehearsals at 1 pm as scheduled, but Kerry did not show. Rather, at 6:24 pm I received an email from the lawyers saying I was being replaced for the Australian dates.

I remain hopeful that we can resolve our issues. But once again, I sincerely apologize to all of our fans in Australia who spent their money expecting to see the 3 of us original Slayer members.
I look forward to seeing you in the future.

Dave Lombardo"

keep it simple

Platinum Member
Wow! he's clearly better off out of that situation. There's no way I could put my all into performances & touring if I knew there were "suits" taking the piss. Being denied access to accounts & issued with gagging orders just screams criminality to me, or at best, exploitation.

Dave, if you're reading this - good onya!


Senior Member
I wouldn't say he kicked off per say, Im pretty sure if your employer ripped you off by 90% of your wage you'd be annoyed and want it sorted. It seems to me that Lombardo did the right thing and raised the issue with the rest of the band but Kerry King didn't care and insted reacted by replacing him for the AU tour.

Edit: Keep-it-Simples pretty muched nailed it with the exploitation remark, you would of thought after around 30 years as a professional drummer he wouldn't have to deal with crap like that.


Platinum Member
Wow, the Aussie Soundwave Festival is obviously not the place to be a drummer. Alternates all round it would seem.

Cancellations by Travis Barker due to his fear of flying. Charlie Benante pulled out, dealing with "personal issues." Josh Freese also a no show and now Dave booted from Slayer. All they need now is Lars to pull the pin and all the drawcard acts will be without regular sticksmen.

The Slayer situation just seems bizzarre though. I wonder if all that ink on Kerry King's head has affected his brain??


Platinum Member
Seems like a pretty horrible situation for Dave. Keep in mind that we're only hearing his side of the story though... I'm not trying to insinuate that he's lying, but there might very well be more to the story that we don't know about.

But yeah, in the end it simply sucks, especially for the audiences that were hoping to see him play.


Just seems so dodgy... the secrecy about the accounts, the gagging orders and being shut down/out when he starts questioning things. Sounds like rip-offs and lies. I can imagine he would be feeling absolutely sick to the stomach over this.

Really interested to hear Kerry's/Tom's version of the story, assuming they will release one.

Jeff Almeyda

Senior Consultant
He obviously does not own a piece of the action. Otherwise, no one could simply remove him from a tour.

It's a shame but if you don't own a piece of the band or write the songs, you're just an employee. Being the legendary metal double bass innovator means little in the "real" world.



It's a shame but if you don't own a piece of the band or write the songs, you're just an employee.
Sounds like that's probably exactly their (Kerry, Tom) attitude and business practice, but instead of being straight up about it they just keep him out of the loop.


Senior Member
Kudos to him. Its good to see someone in 'the industry' who is standing up for what he believes in. Its a lesson to all of us, that even musicians (and other stars) at the top of their game can be taken advantage of and exploited just like an innocent newbie. It must remind us to be vigilant and keep an eye on the details.

Bo Eder

Platinum Member
Good for Dave! But I do agree with Jeff, if you didn't write anything, you are just an employee. I just finished reading Danny Seraphine's book about his years with Chicago and it surprises that what happened to him in the early days still happens today.

If we all have a steady gig doing any kind of drumming, we should count ourselves as lucky.
Way back when I was going to be a rockstar, [ didn't happen ] ; I had this notion that once you were 'there' ; every one around you was there to make it happen. And, they would have your best interests at heart.
That was the dream that leaves artists alone to be who they are, and financialy secure.
Dumb, da dumb dumb.
I guess you'd have to ask Leonard Cohen how he feels about his accountant/ financial advisor.
For heavens sake, do you need to employ an accountant to watch the accountant.
A contract lawyer to watch the contract lawyer.

Well apparently yes.

My dream exploded, again.

F it.

Jeff Almeyda

Senior Consultant
The crazy things is that amongst us metal drummers. Dave is viewed as being several clicks above Lars Ulrich.

But Lars owns part of Metallica and gets songwriting credit. So, he can spend weeks doing takes and getting terrible drum sounds and generally be awful while he counts his tens of millions.

It reminds me of a quick story: Here in NYC sports talk radio is big. One day callers were complaining about the Jets (football team). Some guys wanted to lose the QB, others the coach, etc. One guy called in a and said "We need to get rid of the owner". The host laughed and replied. "That's the one person we can't get rid of. Everyone else is "playing football" but, when it comes to the owner, IT'S HIS BALL."


This discussion starts me thinking about drum parts and writing credit.

This topic could be (and maybe already is?) a totally new thread:
When does/should a drummer (who only contributes his/her drum parts to the writing of the music) start being given at least partial credit as a song-writer?

I can think of a number of instances where I consider the drum parts as a crucial part of the song writing. An example of the top of my head that everyone will know... Black Sabbath - War Pigs.

There are a number of metal bands where I consider the drum parts a far more important contribution to a song than the vocals (e.g. stand alone vocalists in deathcore bands), but I suppose even in these instances the vocalist usually gets writing credit for the lyrics and the drummer gets no writing credits at all?


Platinum Member
This topic could be (and maybe already is?) a totally new thread:
When does/should a drummer (who only contributes his/her drum parts to the writing of the music) start being given at least partial credit as a song-writer?
Been covered at length. There's some really interesting reading if you can find a couple of the threads. In short if it isn't lyrics or melody, you haven't got a prayer.....no matter how many War Pigs you come up with. The trick is finding a band whose members value your input as much as you do and offer credit from the outset. It does happen, but seems to be the exception rather than the rule.


I'm truly shocked!
Yesterday I was jumping around in happiness when the news about Slayer's concert in Belgrade (scheduled for June) appeard in my inbox.
Today I'm very sad and truly dissapointed reading about what's behind the curtain.
If they don't find workable compromise for all band members,then I'm not going to spend a cent on them anymore!
Seems like it's going to be my ex-favorite metal band...


Silver Member
Surely he has been taken for a ride. If he is a full band member (what we all thought i guess) then he should get a certain percentage depending on his contribution to the band.
And have access to information.
If he is a hired hand then there should definitely be a fixed portion in his salary.

The band have been playing for donkey years and he should know which one it is.


"Uncle Larry"
Stuff like this sickens me. Greed, using and exploiting people sickens me. That's why I'm glad that I don't depend on my drumming for my money. Money taints music. The love of money is the root of all evil. The majority of musicians are easily taken advantage of because we're decent people. Decent people get used if they allow it. I hope the fans boycott this money grab situation.

The management doesn't care if Dave plays. The fans do. Hopefully the fans will send a message to the management by withholding their money. That sends a clear message. I won't hold my breath.