Amid sexual impropriety allegations, Megadeth (the band heavily regarded in music and in rock) has decided to part ways with bassist David Ellefson. In a recent statement posted to Megadeth’s Facebook account, frontman Dave Mustaine noted, “We are informing our fans that David Ellefson is no longer playing with Megadeth. We do not take this decision lightly.”
A sexually explicit video of the 56-year-old Ellefson appeared online earlier this month. In the video, viewers see Ellefson masturbating and exchanging flirtatious photos with a younger woman. During the time, there had been many online rumors flying around that he was in the process of grooming an underage fan.
He responded to the rumors, vehemently denying any accusations and posting a statement from the woman he had exchanges with who said that she was of age during their contact. Since then, both his and her statements have been taken down.
“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,” said Mustain. “We look forward to seeing our fans on the road this summer, and we cannot wait to share our brand-new music with the world. It is almost complete.”
Allegations Against Ellefson
Ellefson addressed allegations through an Instagram post on May 10th that has since been deleted.
“As you may or not know, some private and personal conversations and interactions have surfaced online, released with ill intention by a third party who was not authorized to have them or share them,” Dave Ellefson wrote at the time. “While certainly embarrassing, I want to address it as openly and honestly as possible. As much as it’s not something I’m proud of, these were private, adult interactions that were taken out of context and manipulated to inflict maximum damage to my reputation my career, and family.”
Also included in the statement were messages from the woman who he claimed to have spoken with online.
“I’m the girl people are talking about in the posts about David Ellefson right now and I just want to tell my side of the story because people are sharing misinformation and the situation is getting out of hand without the truth being out there,” she wrote. “Yes, those video calls did happen, but I was the one to initiate [sic] them, and never was I underage, I was always a consenting adult. Nothing inappropriate ever happened before that. It was all consensual, I’m not a victim and I have not been groomed in the slightest as I was the one to initiate it. I was just naive enough to record him and share it with a friend without his permission. In the end, it was all consensual and all online.”
As of now, Megadeth is on schedule to head out on the Metal Tour of the Year this year with Lamb Of God. The tour will kick off on August 20th in Austin. As of now, the band has yet to announce a replacement bassist for Ellefson.