BILLY SHEEHAN won't replace DAVID ELLEFSON after sex video scandal as bassist in MEGADETH
Legendary bassist Billy Sheehan says that he has no interest in joining MEGADETH as the replacement for the recently departed David Ellefson.
Ellefson was dismissed from MEGADETH late last month, just days after sexually tinged messages and explicit video footage involving the bassist were posted on Twitter.
Asked in a new interview with Rocking With Jam Man if he would consider stepping into the bassist slot in MEGADETH, Sheehan responded : “No, not really. It’s not necessarily my thing. But I wish all of them well. Dave Ellefson is a very good friend of mine, and I hope he’s doing okay. I know it’s a difficult, embarrassing and terrible situation. So, I wish him the best, and I wish the band the best.”
Pressed about what he would say if MEGADETH leader Dave Mustaine approached him to play with the band, Sheehan said: “Well, there are a lot of guys I would recommend to him, but it’s not necessarily my thing. But I think they’re a great band, and I wish them well, for sure.”
Billy also discussed the fact that Ellefson was fired from MEGADETH despite the fact that he denied all social media chatter that he “groomed” an underage fan.
“There may have been more at play within the band,” Sheehan reasoned. “There might have been some tension already. Who knows? I know Dave very well, and he’s a wonderful guy. Everybody has their moment where they do something they regret. We all do at some point in our lives. Unfortunately, now there’s the Internet, and you can do something stupid and the whole world knows about it. So I feel for the guy, and I understand the situation. But I certainly wish him well. I hope he and his family reconcile and everything is okay with them. That’s the most important thing.”
Ellefson recently filed a report with the police department in Scottsdale, Arizona alleging unlawful distribution of sexually explicit images of him by unknown offenders. In the report, Ellefson admitted that he had been exchanging sexual text messages with a Dutch teenager, who captured a video of several of their virtual “masturbating encounters” without his consent and shared them with friends. (According to Ellefson, the woman was 19 at the time of their first virtual sexual encounter.) The 56-year-old Ellefson, who lives in Scottsdale, first became aware of the video on May 9, when the claim “David Ellefson of MEGADETH is a pedophile” appeared on Instagram. Ellefson told police he was notified on May 14 by MEGADETH that the band would be parting ways with him. Three days later, he was fired.
On May 24, Mustaine — who formed MEGADETH with Ellefson in 1983 — announced the bassist’s departure from the band, saying, “We do not take this decision lightly. 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,” Mustaine wrote. Two days later, Ellefson released a follow-up statement in which he vowed to file a “defamation lawsuit” against the person who “illegally posted a very private video” of the bassist and made “false allegations” against him. He also said he was working with the police in Scottsdale “in their investigation into charges regarding revenge pornography to be filed against the person who posted the video. This person will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law,” Ellefson wrote. He went on to say that he was “taking this time to be with my family” and wished his “bandmates” the best with their upcoming tour.
MEGADETH is currently scheduled to take part in “The Metal Tour Of The Year” with LAMB OF GOD, beginning on August 20 in Austin. MEGADETH is also slated to appear at the SLIPKNOT-curated Knotfest in September in Iowa.
Ellefson was in MEGADETH from the band’s inception in 1983 to 2002, and again from 2010 until his latest departure.
David, who studied for a year at Concordia Lutheran Seminary in St. Louis nearly a decade ago, and his wife Julie Ellefson have been married for 27 years. They have two children.