GRAMMY® Award-winning, multiplatinum-selling, multi-instrumentalist, songwriter, producer, and artist Joey Jordison still clings to the same passion that drove him to pick up the drums as a child in Des Moines, Iowa. With a lifelong music obsession, this pure love for the art form continues to define every step of his journey.
In 1995, he co-founded metal juggernaut Slipknot and anchored the band behind the kit as a primary songwriter at just 20-years-old. Following the release of their classic double-platinum, self-titled debut in 1999, the band would go on to sell 20 million albums worldwide, garner a 2005 GRAMMY® Award in the category of “Best Metal Performance” for “Before I Forget,” land a #1 debut on the Billboard Top 200 with 2008’s platinum-certified All Hope Is Gone, headline festivals globally from Download to Rock on the Range, and influence two generations of talent.
“Music has always meant so much to me,” he exclaims. “It is my gift. I’ve devoted my whole life to trying to repay everything its given me.”
Simultaneously, he co-founded Murderdolls who quickly became a cult favorite across the world, moved 100,000 copies of their 2002 debut Beyond The Valley of the Murderdolls, and achieved acclaim with 2010’s Women and Children Last. Along the way, some of history’s most influential bands would call on Jordison to play drums. In 2004, Metallica sat him on the throne during an unforgettable Download Festival headline set. In addition to playing with black metal icons Satyricon, he toured extensively with Ministry in 2006 and Korn in 2007—galvanizing both with a new energy. Rob Zombie tapped his talents in 2010 for a marathon of touring and an appearance on four songs from the Expanded Edition of Hellbilly Deluxe 2.
His drumming became the stuff of legend. Merging a flawless and fiery technicality evocative of underground metal, neck-snapping hard rock grooves, and an anthemic stadium-ready expansiveness, he crafted a signature style that’s as impactful as it is inspirational. Recognized by the industry, he personally graced the covers of Modern Drummer, Rhythm, Metal Hammer, Drummer, Drum!, Terrorizer, Kerrang!, and many more.
2013 saw him launch Scar The Martyr and release a critically celebrated album of the same name. It also proved to be the most trying, turbulent, and tough year of his life.
“One day, I got extremely sick,” he sighs. “I even needed help to walk, and my playing was suffering. My legs were trembling. It was unbearable.”
In the midst of a split from Slipknot, the rare disease Acute Transverse Myelitis had overtaken the musician. He spent three months in a hospital bed before a rigorous regiment of physical rehabilitation, therapy, and exercise followed over the next year. Drawing on support from his family and friends, he miraculously beat it.
“The positivity in my mind, the people who love me, and what I had in my heart to continue got me through it,” he says. “I’m very grateful I’m able to walk, play drums, and bring music back to the world. I’m here. I’m playing.”
That’s one thing he’ll never stop doing. 2016 represents a rebirth for Jordison. Celebrating this new beginning, Metal Hammer even awarded him the year’s coveted “Golden God” Award, recognizing his lifetime achievement. Maintaining an incredible momentum, he launched his band VIMIC with its forthcoming debut Open Your Omen and extreme metal outfit Sinsaenum with Echoes of the Tortured.
“I’m going to keep doing this forever until I’m not here anymore,” he continues. “This is my gift. This is what I was put on earth to do. I’m devoted to distortion, heavy music, creating new sounds, and pushing myself to levels that I never knew I was capable of reaching. I’m always striving to reach that next place.”
Jordison is ready for his biggest musical moment yet.
“I’m a firm believer in the other side and where the future takes us,” Jordison leaves off. “Sometimes, we hide things and bury them, but no matter what, there’s a destiny for all of us, and we don’t know what it is. With what I’ve been through and where I’m headed in life, this is my destiny.” — Rick Florino, September 2016