After a rollercoaster five years fronting Slaves and struggling with his own personal addiction, vocalist Jonny Craig has parted ways with the band he co-founded back in 2014.
Due to an alleged relapse just hours before flying to Europe for a tour with Escape The Fate, the remaining members Colin Vieira, Weston Richmond, Zachary Baker and Juan Sanchez decided it was time to move on from the embattled frontman.
“We were left at an airport with an hour before our [flight] to Europe for our tour. He chose to go home and use,” tweeted Vieira in a response to a fan questioning the band’s decision.
In a much more in-depth statement, the band collectively shared their side of things saying:
“To Whom It May Concern:
It’s with a heavy heart that we announce that Jonny Craig has been removed from the band Slaves.
We all have struggles in our daily life, but for some, those struggles are personally and physically dangerous. It is no secret that Jonny has battled with addiction in his personal life, sometimes those battles are won, and most recently lost. It’s also unfair for a band to rely on someone who just can’t rely on themselves. Addiction is a disease, and we hope Jonny gets the help that he needs. Unfortunately, Jonny chose his addiction over the band [and] left them high [and] dry while checking in for their international flight while he boarded a plane back home.
As a band, we’ve worked too hard to stop now. Fans that have been touched by our music, everyone that has enjoyed our songs, to anyone that has met us as a band we will continue on with Slaves.
Unfortunately, due to this, we are forced to cancel our Bristol, U.K. show tonight. Never fear, thankfully our good friend Matt McAndrew (who you’d recognize from The Voice) will be filling in on all remaining England [and] European dates to help us in this trying time. We also have some exciting news on the future of Slaves (we think you will be excited) coming soon.
To everyone, thank you for your continued support.”
As for the former Dance Gavin Dance frontman Craig, he released his own statement which reads:
“First before I [say] anything, I just want everyone to know how much I love and appreciate all the support I have had through these years of an amazing career. I am not here to make a statement addressing the drama or starting any. These last few months have been super overwhelming and unfortunately I have let myself break and get back to a dark place.
I wanted to wait for the band to release what they were going to say so that you guys had the info you needed to make sure you can still catch them on the ETF tour dates. Every single person in the band put in a lot of work to make that set and it should be seen.
I don’t want to make this long, so I’ll get right to it. I relapsed and used and it is the reason I am stepping down from Slaves at this time. For the first time in my career and my life I will be doing what’s best for me and my sobriety and health and I stayed home to focus on a program and medications that will help me get back to feeling like I honestly belong out here touring and making beautiful music for each and [every one] of you. That was the right choice and I’m sorry to the band for the tight position but they have been left in at such short notice.
Again, I love all of you and this isn’t me quitting music. This is simply me just putting everything on pause like I should have done in the past and take a real honest and aggressive approach to my disease. Thank you all for the support and love and please respect this silence that will follow this message. Yours truly, Jonny Craig.”