UPDATE #3 (1/27/15): The Blink-182 controversy continues. While guitarist Tom DeLonge claims to have never left the band, Rolling Stone hopped on the phone with the band's other two members, Mark Hoppus and Travis Barker, and things got icy. Hoppus and Barker both say DeLonge did quit, exiting the band "indefinitely."
The most heartbreaking comments came from Barker, who said:
"It's hard to cover for someone who's disrespectful and ungrateful. You don't even have the balls to call your bandmates and tell them you're not going to record or do anything Blink-related. You have your manager do it. Everyone should know what the story is with him and it's been years with it. When we did get back together after my plane crash, we only got back together, I don't know, maybe because I almost died. But he didn't even listen to mixes or masterings from that record. He didn't even care about it. Why Blink even got back together in the first place is questionable."
Oof. Hoppus added:
"I want to go out and play the songs that we've been spending the last 20 years of our lives writing. That's what Travis and I want to do. If Tom doesn't want to do that, which obviously he doesn't, that's OK. He doesn't have to be embarrassed or try to claim that he's secretly really working on Blink. People know what's up. C'mon, man... 'I didn't quit the band,' it's just not true. It's disingenuous. I just wish Tom does whatever makes him happy and stops holding Blink-182 back from what we all agree that we're going to do: play shows, record music, CONTINUE this legacy and have a good time doing it."
Bleak stuff. Read the full interview here.
UPDATE #2 (1/26/15): Fuse received word from a Tom DeLonge representative at B|W|R Public Relations saying that the guitarist/singer has not left Blink-182. DeLonge says in the statement: "I never quit the band. Actually, I was on the phone discussing a possible Blink-182 event in New York City when I heard the 'news.' The ONLY truth here is that I have commitments that limit my availability this year. I love Blink-182 and I'm not leaving."
Seems like the band might just have some scheduling issues to work through. Here's to hoping they figure it out and get back in the studio soon. Stay tuned for Fuse for the latest updates on this story.
UPDATE #1 (1/26/15): Good news, pop-punk fans! We think...Tom DeLonge says he is still a member of Blink-182. The guitarist/singer wrote on Facebook, "To all the fans, I never quit the band. I actually was on a phone call about a blink 182 event for New York City at the time all these weird press releases started coming in... Apparently those releases were 'sanctioned' from the band. Are we dysfunctional- yes. But, Christ..... #Awkward."
Dysfunctional, indeed. We're getting kind of confused with who's got the correct story here, though DeLonge does still refer to himself and the band as a "we," making us think all is good in Blink Land.
Original Story: After 23 years, Blink-182 guitarist and cofounder Tom DeLonge has reportedly left the band. The news arrived via a statement to Radio.com regarding the 2015 Musink Festival in Orange County, California where Blink is scheduled to perform. (The 8th annual fest is billed as a Travis Barker presentation.) Alkaline Trio's Matt Skiba will fill in for the longtime guitarist at Musink. Here's the scoop, with quotes, via Radio.com:
"We were all set to play this festival and record a new album and Tom kept putting it off without reason," they wrote. "A week before we were scheduled to go in to the studio we got an email from his manager explaining that he didn't want to participate in any Blink-182 projects indefinitely, but would rather work on his other non-musical endeavors."
There are "no hard feelings," they added, "but the show must go on for our fans."
DeLonge's Angels & Airwaves released its fifth studio album, The Dream Walker, in December 2014; just a few days ago, Tom teased a new A&A video on Twitter.
Blink-182 took an "indefinite hiatus" in 2005 before reuniting four years later, eventually releasing Neighborhoods, their most recent album, in 2011. While DeLonge's departure might not mark the end of Blink, it's certainly a blow to pop-punk fans everywhere. We still love ya, Tom!