Smashing Pumpkins Bassist D’arcy Holds Nothing Back In First Interview In 20 Years

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Last week, Alternative Nation published an article titled: ‘How D’arcy Could Still Join Smashing Pumpkins Reunion.’ News had broke a week or two prior that D’arcy, The Smashing Pumpkins’ original bassist, would not be part of the reunited lineup with Billy Corgan, James Iha, Jimmy Chamberlin, and Jeff Schroeder. Alternative Nation posed the idea of D’arcy performing as a special guest on the tour, like Steven Adler on Guns N’ Roses’ 2016 tour. A mysterious commenter named Fey Wutt left some comments on the article that appeared to have firsthand knowledge about D’arcy’s reunion negotiations. I did some research, and managed to email ‘Fey Wutt,’ and Sunday D’arcy emailed me and confirmed it was her.

On Monday night, just hours following The Smashing Pumpkins releasing their official statement in response to D’arcy’s posts on Facebook and Blast Echo, she called me and agreed to do her first in-depth interview in 20 years. I don’t do many interviews on Alternative Nation anymore, as the PR and ‘business’ side of the industry has burned me out, but getting the chance to tell D’arcy’s story was a thrill. We did the interview, and in total ended up talking for four hours. She’s the most engaging interview subject I’ve ever had on Alternative Nation, and one of the most fascinating people I’ve ever spoken to. In addition to the interview, she also shared new text conversations she had with Corgan. Note that this interview was edited for continuity and clarity.

As we started our conversation, D’arcy gave her take on the Pumpkins’ statement about her reunion exclusion.

“[Billy] has been telling people, ‘Well [The Smashing Pumpkins] haven’t played with [D’arcy] at all in 18 years.’ Right dumbass, because then it wouldn’t be a reunion! He says that he’s invited me to come out and play for all of these things, which is a complete lie. He’s never invited me to anything. In fact, my feelings were a little bit hurt because he did the solo album tour, and he didn’t tell me when it started. I was texting him saying, ‘Where the fuck are you dumbass?’ He’s like, ‘Oh, I’m in New York. The tour started.’ Then I’m like, ‘Where are you?’ ‘Oh, the tour ended, you missed it.’ He thinks it’s a privilege for anyone to be in his presence, so therefore he shouldn’t have to tell me, and I shouldn’t have to be invited.”

To tell the whole story of D’arcy’s exclusion from the 2018 Smashing Pumpkins reunion, we started the interview by going back to her 1999 Smashing Pumpkins departure.

I wanted to start in 1999, because that’s when you left. What’s the story behind you leaving in the middle of the recording of MACHINA/The Machines of God, right after The Arising! tour

That was more towards the end of the recording actually. We probably did most of it before the tour, and I was told by both James and Billy that they were going to change my basslines and re-record them, but for the most part they didn’t. It was mostly my stuff, and they actually sent me some of the Gold records from it. Now Billy is saying that’s not true. You must have seen his lovely Instagram post, he’s saying now that he isn’t throwing shade, but with the hashtag #becarefulwhatyouwishfor. No, that was directed totally at me, the whole thing.

He’s so full of it man. The whole post talks about the past, and then he talks about how we should all live in the present, and how he’s been doing that, and he’s so spiritual now and everything. But they’re going to redo the video for Today? He won’t deal with anybody else’s problems with the past with him; he’s the only one who is allowed to talk about that stuff. Billy demands 150% loyalty from everyone, but gives none.

But the thing with that was I was going through a really bad time, I didn’t know what was happening, I was having a nervous breakdown. I had 30 plus panic attacks a day, I didn’t know what it was, it was terrible. The day after the tour, I had tried to quit two or three times, but it’s difficult to do when you have everybody, my husband, my family, telling me, ‘No, no, just wait until the next record. All of these people are depending on you, all of these people who work for you guys, don’t just think of yourself.’ I just should have left a couple of years earlier.

After the KISS shows in LA, Billy and James came over to my apartment and told me they would give me three months off. That was in the spring. Even before that, I met some people who were [setting up] a movie with me and Jeordie [White] and Mickey Rourke. They actually wanted me to get in touch with Melissa auf der Maur too (chuckles). So I was going to continue with that, and when Billy found out I was working towards doing that, he was furious, and had someone call me. They said, ‘Billy thinks that if you’re well enough to do a movie, you should be well enough to be in the studio. So you have to come back.’ I said, ‘Tell Billy to call me himself then.’ Billy would never call me himself; he would always have somebody else call me.

Even when he took out those ads in the newspapers and stuff, it was like; call me yourself motherfucker, what’s wrong with you? Joe Shanahan from the Metro asked him what would make the last show with James from the MACHINA tour special, and Billy said, ‘It would be really nice if D’arcy would come back and play.’ So he had Joe call me, he still wouldn’t call me himself. I don’t respect that, it’s pathetic. He’s always been so insecure, and jealous. He’s too insecure to do his own solo thing, but wanting to take credit for everything.

I wanted to ask about your relationship with Billy, it had to start with a friendship, right?

No, no. We were never friends.

I know the story about you guys having an argument at that concert, and that’s how you joined the band. But how did it go from you guys cordially getting along in a band, to where you were at near the end?

Cordially? It was never cordial. He just would throw tantrums and I would laugh at him. James would say, ‘Don’t laugh at Billy!’ Why not? Who died and made him God? We would be writing a song, and he would say, ‘That’s not the right bassline!’ ‘Oh, you’re telling me it’s written already?’ Eric Remschneider, who played cello for us on I think Siamese Dream, we were in the recording studio with him, and Eric and I were really close, he’s hysterical and a brilliant guy. Billy kept saying, ‘That’s not what I want.’ Eric said, ‘You said you wanted a professional cellist, not a psychic cellist, and I’m not psychic.’

Anyhow though, when Billy fired me, James went along with him, because he said he thought that’s what I wanted. James just needs to grow a spine, Jesus.

Another thing Billy mentioned on his Instagram post was playing bass on “Today.” What did you play on, what were your contributions to the Pumpkins’ albums?

So many songs, I can hardly remember which. When a song comes on the radio of ours, I’ll be like, ‘That sounds pretty good, that sounds familiar! Oh, that’s us!’ I couldn’t listen to our music for many, many years, I was very ill. I was going through a divorce, and physically sick almost all the time, so much stress. I’ve always been a perfectionist and maybe more than slightly obsessive compulsive. I’m really hard on myself, and if somebody is harder than me than I am on myself, it’s ridiculous, I can’t, it’s too much. It was mostly that Billy would have a scapegoat for three months, and then somebody else. He doesn’t understand that other people don’t think like him, he always thinks that everybody is in the same mood as him. He would get really angry if he was depressed and you were happy.

My other question about the recording process was is was there an album that stands out to you, that you remember having a lot of input on?

Going in the studio with the band was always a fucking nightmare. I’ve been in the studio before with a different band I was in, and it was awesome and so much fun. I’ve toured with other bands, and it’s been fun. It was always just awful. When we were recording Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness in Atlanta (Editor’s note: She may actually be referring to Siamese Dream) I had a miscarriage because of the stress. Nobody knows that, except for my sister and Kerry Brown, my ex-husband. The band doesn’t know that, nobody knows that. The stress was so much that I had a miscarriage. It was very traumatic.

There’s so much ugliness. Billy loved to humiliate people and shame people in front of other people. It was incredibly abusive, and I was the only one who would fight back. I think he and Jimmy got in a couple fights, and he and James maybe five, but with he and I it was screaming matches all the time. I just got to the point where I couldn’t fight anymore, and I needed to leave.

Now you left in 1999, and I know it’s hard to summarize your entire life, but a lot of fans don’t know much at all about what you’ve been up to in the last 18 years. So what were you doing in the initial years after leaving the Pumpkins in 1999?

First I was in LA trying to do some movie stuff, but the Mickey Rourke movie never panned out. I tried to get a hold of Melissa for that, they wanted her, and I was like, ‘Okay, I’ll give her a call.’ She wouldn’t answer my call, and this was right after Billy and James had told me they were giving me three months off. Billy had already spoken to Melissa, because there was no reason she wouldn’t call me back.

It’s just like this thing now, when we were talking about the splits, he had told me it would be 25/25/25/25. I asked him about it, and we discussed it. We talked about doing this for two years, ever since we started talking again. I have these texts, I was like, ‘I’m not going to go back as a hired gun.’ He said it wouldn’t be like that. Now he doesn’t remember, and the best thing he could come up with was 22/22/22. When I told him what happened, that he said we’d do equal splits, he’s like, ‘Well, I don’t remember that, so I can’t say I changed my mind, but business is such…’ Then he goes into this whole kind of Billy Gobbledygook thing, nothing really but talking an awful lot, and making up words. That’s one of the things I always loved about him. He always sounds like he’s running for office.

You should have heard him the day he validated Mozart’s music (laughs). James and I wanted to strangle him. We were on a plane on tour with all of these studio musicians who were just so even keeled, and the only way they could stay in the business at that level is to be level headed, and just let things go. These are classically trained people, and I’m classically trained as well. He’s sitting there literally validating Mozart like, ‘Hey, it’s okay to like Mozart, because I just realized that he was a genius.’ It’s like oh my god, I can’t listen to him talk any more! (Groans) What was the question?

(Laughs) I was asking you what you were up to the few years after 1999.

I did a lot, I was either doing a shitload of stuff, or I was sick. I would just work myself to death. I almost died one time, I had a very large equestrian center with a show barn and there were over 90 stalls. It snowballed and did very well, but it’s just extremely difficult to find people to work around here, and I was working 20 hours a day living on coffee, cigarettes, and donuts. I had bronchitis and pneumonia, and I ended up with a kidney infection, I was minutes from death.

So that was one thing that I did. Then I lived in Texas, I went there for four days on vacation and stayed for like five years. Austin is awesome.

I know, I went there a couple times last year. My friend lives there, and it’s beautiful.

Yeah, I went to a lot of shows when I was in Austin. If anybody knew who I was, they didn’t say anything, they didn’t care. It was really nice; I enjoyed living there for the most part.

You know how they’re always telling you in school drugs will do this to you; they’ll do that to you, drinking kills your brain cells? At the time I was like good, maybe I can kill off all these horrible memories, because I have night terrors, panic disorder, you name it. I was like; I’m going to see if I can’t kill those brain cells off! I wouldn’t recommend it, it didn’t work. I count myself lucky to be alive.

I wanted to ask about that, how did you overcome that?

Well I’m just incredibly lucky; I don’t have a genetic predisposition for addiction to anything but television, that’s pretty much it. My metabolism just changes so quickly that I can’t do very many different kinds of drugs. I was self-medicating, or as I said in Texas, trying to kill my brain. I even tried to OD, and it didn’t work. I could do copious amounts of things, but the stuff stops working, and if you’re ever doing it for fun, it doesn’t work, and then you couldn’t get real drugs.

I got to the point where I found the right medication for me, and didn’t need them anymore. I’ve never been addicted to anything, I could smoke socially. I was in rehab, and many doctors didn’t believe that I could just smoke socially. Lots of people smoke socially, if I could buy a pack of cigarettes, it could last three months. I’m just extremely lucky. I’ve hung out with a lot of people who are addicts, and they would just do anything. I would spend a bunch of money on this stuff and be like: ‘This is crap. Take it, I don’t want it.’ Also like that meme says, I’m ADHD and I’m obsessive compulsive, so everything has to be perfect, but only for a little while.

That’s great to hear that you’re okay, because we’ve lost a lot of people in alternative rock the last few years.

I know, I know!

It breaks my heart to write about it. Scott Weiland, Dolores O’Riordan, Chris Cornell obviously for different reasons.

Dolores and Chris and- oh my god.

You’re a survivor. That’s why even when people talk about you, even though you haven’t been active in music for the last 18 years, you’re a survivor and that’s awesome, even if you’re not playing music.

The thing is I never let it become my identity. I didn’t identify myself as being a rock star, I’ve always been a musician. I come from two families of musicians, and people who did the arts on both sides going way back. I never thought of myself as an entertainer, that was my biggest fault. What really knocked me down was I didn’t take fame seriously enough. I didn’t take it seriously at all, and I have a very dry sense of humor, so I would say things sarcastically.

These horrible people were spreading around rumors that I was a cokehead before I’d ever even seen cocaine. I never saw real cocaine in my entire life until I was 27. We were in Texas playing with The Rolling Stones, and Marilyn Manson came in with a group of people knocking on my door and said, ‘You mind if we come in here and do this, you want some?’ It was my dressing room, and I was like, ‘No, cool, you guys can come in. You know, I’ve never actually seen cocaine in real life.’ He’s like, ‘Wow, you’re a freak.’ Marilyn, Brian, calling me a freak, I love that guy, and Courtney Love called me neurotic, and Dennis Rodman called me crazy, or did he call me a freak? I don’t remember.

(Laughs) He is the freak, how can he call you a freak?

(Laughs) I guess it takes one to know one.

So going back to 2005, Billy announced that he wanted his band back, and that The Smashing Pumpkins were coming back, but then it just ended up being him and Jimmy. At the time, was there any communication with you and James to come back for the Zeitgeist era?

I can’t remember if I actually saw that, or if somebody brought me the newspaper. I was sitting up in my room and I heard about it, and I think I did actually see it. I was like, well then he should fucking call us, but he never would. From what I’ve been told he went into the studio and the record company was under the impression that it was a Smashing Pumpkins reunion of the original band members, for the recording as well as a tour. It sounds familiar doesn’t it?

I was told by people who work for me and James that the day came when the album was finished, and they were in the conference room with all of the Presidents and VP’s of the record company, and they were like: ‘Where are James and D’arcy?’ (Laughs) Then he got whatever Asian guy to play guitar [Jeff Schroeder], and some girl [Ginger Pooley] to play bass, using my guitar. That really pissed me off. My guitars are very personal to me. I don’t have very many, I’m very picky about what I have, how it sounds, and how it feels.

That really fucking pissed me off a lot, and I didn’t find out about that until recently. He tried to sell my guitar and a bunch of my equipment; he’s got a lot of fucking nerve to do that. I just saw last night that he was selling a lot of vintage Pumpkins stuff. He was supposed to send me all of my stuff, and he didn’t, and I didn’t know that [because of where I lived].

Now let’s fast forward to March 2016, I was there at this Pumpkins show, and James Iha walks out, and he played with Billy, then it was them with Jimmy and Jeff. They hugged, and that’s where talk of a reunion started. James played a few shows, and then Billy said he was back in touch with you a few months later. That’s when the first Blast Echo article came out. What was your reaction to James coming back on stage, and then how did the lines of communication open up with Billy?

My reaction to James being there was I was kind of proud of him in a way. I was kind of curious, I’ve been out of the business for so long I wouldn’t even know how to go about showing up at a show, and I would never feel comfortable doing it because I wouldn’t know if I was welcome or not. I was in a really, really good place at that point. There were a couple of fans, somebody told Billy that I wanted to talk to him, and gave him my phone number. He called me and left me a message. It was kind of like a Parent Trap, we got Parent Trapped. He called me, and I was thinking he wanted to talk to me, and he was thought I wanted to talk to him. It was kind of funny.

Everyone said he changed since he had a kid, and he can be very charming, and fun. He’s fun to talk to; I enjoy mental sparring with him. I just was so out of that world for the longest time, I wasn’t aware of a lot of the crazy stuff, like he supports Trump. What? The shapeshifting thing, I honestly think he may have a brain tumor. He’s always been insufferable.

But you said you enjoyed the mental sparring there for a little while?

Oh yeah, I really enjoyed our friendship. I really, really did, so much, but he’s just the same. If you say one tiny thing from the past. you have to see the texts to understand, but when it comes to money, he’s just disgusting. We almost immediately started talking about a reunion, because he said to me: ‘Well, maybe you know, and maybe you don’t, but with this wrestling thing I kind of got myself a bit into a bit of a hole.’ That was one of the first things he said to me, it was like the second conversation we had, but we didn’t want to do the ‘reunion.’ We both wanted to do the band again, be a band again, not just do a reunion. Billy always said, ‘Oh, I’ll never do just a reunion and play the oldies just for money.’ That’s exactly what it is now.

Now getting back to the 2016, were you talking to Jimmy and James prior to that?

There were no talks, nobody ever approached me. As far as I know, nobody every approached James either, or me. One thing that did happen was I think this was in [the late 2000’s/early 2010’s], I’m not sure which tour it was, Billy was playing in Europe, and he had his people contact ‘our people.’ James and I have the same business manager, that’s the extent of ‘our people,’ at least mine anyways, I can’t speak for James anymore. He won’t return my phone calls or read my texts. I have no idea what Billy has been saying to him.

But anyways, Billy came and asked us if we would mind him using our faces on t-shirts because he wanted to sell more t-shirts because the tour wasn’t doing well. We said, ‘Sure.’ Then he came back to us with, ‘Well, would you mind putting in some money to help make them?’ We were like, ‘No!’ This was all done through his lawyer and our business manager.

He said that to me this time, he texted me like: ‘Well you at least deserve to have your face on a t-shirt.’ He was furious that I told people I wasn’t going to be on the tour, he was absolutely furious. He’s telling me that I’m making a fool of myself telling people that I hadn’t been part of recording, and wasn’t going to be part of a tour that hasn’t been announced. He always threatened to walk away; I’m the only one who ever did.

I forced him to fire me, I didn’t want James to fire me, I didn’t want the situation of they had hired Melissa already just in case. They hired Jack Bates for this tour. I made Billy spell it out, because he was doing his nonsense double talk crap bullshit. Everyone was telling me: ‘Well that doesn’t sound like he doesn’t want you on the tour.’ Nobody could see it, so I finally made him spell it out for me.

What I wanted to ask was you mentioned in the Blast Echo piece that you had contracts and it sounded like you were all going to be members of the band, so what was the impression at that point? Was there ever a meeting between the four of you?

It’s just what I said, I sent Billy a text saying I hope he and his family had great holidays, tell Chloe [Mendel] I said hi, his baby mama. Then it jumps to the day after he released the picture of he, Jimmy, and James. It was like oops, I maybe should have told D’arcy, she’s going to be pissed off.

I put up the Alternative Nation article you commented on posing the idea of having you as a guest on the tour. This was after it came out that you were not going to be on the tour, but I said maybe she could be a guest, because I was trying to think of a way because I didn’t know the circumstances at that point. I was thinking how can we still get the four of them on stage at this point, was Billy trying to propose that as an idea?

That was apparently the plan all along. He had Jack Bates already, it was just unbelievable, really just disgusting. The fucking nerve, and then for him to come back and say, ‘Well, we haven’t seen you in this long, and you haven’t done this, and you couldn’t even make it to this. Everyone has shown up, and you didn’t?’ How could I, I didn’t even know you were there?

Do you think he thought because of your rotator cuff injury you couldn’t be there?

He was hoping.

But is that just your perception that he was hoping, or do you think he actually thought that?

No, I know that. He didn’t know anything about it.

Until after the fact, before they went in there to the studio, he didn’t have any clue about your injury?

Right.

So he didn’t find out until you were talking to him, and they were there without you?

You can see, that’s why he’s like: ‘As far as you not being involved in the recording’ is what he means. ‘There was never any decision to shut you out or make you not welcome.’ He just didn’t bother to tell me about it, because he didn’t want me there.

Why didn’t you guys meet and play together before figuring out a tour or an album? That would make the most sense.

Everybody was doing completely different stuff. James was doing different stuff, Jimmy was doing different stuff. Jimmy didn’t even say yes until not that long ago, Billy was having a lot of trouble getting Jimmy to agree to do it from what I’m told, I never spoke with Jimmy and I never spoke with James. I tried to speak with James one time after Billy called me moping. The whole conversation was him saying, ‘The fans just want you [D’arcy], they don’t want me [Billy]. They don’t want the whole band, it’s just about you [D’arcy].’

He had not planned to do a solo album. He did that crazy tour where he said he was going to do every era of the band, I was like here we go again, Billy going out and trying to get validation from everyone that it’s all about him, because we talked for an hour about how people want the whole band back, it’s not about me, and me trying to build his stupid ego back up again. Then I called James and I said, ‘We have a problem.’

All of us wanted to do the tour, Billy and I wanted to do the band again. James and Jimmy were like, ‘Let’s see what happens, but we don’t want to record a whole album beforehand.’ James didn’t, he was only involved in the one Rick Rubin song. Billy’s got a lot of nerve going out there saying Rick recorded the whole album. He only had a week to record one song.

Technically Billy hasn’t said that Rick is the producer for the whole album, he just mentioned the session, so he hasn’t actually said that. The media is jumping on it though.

He’s doing it the way he normally does, leading people around the nose, knowing that they want to believe what they want to believe. That absolutely didn’t happen. People don’t even believe me, like, if there ever really was an offer?

So you had an offer that at least looked on paper like you’d be a full member of the band?

No, none of us would be a full member. The only thing his manager could get him to agree to was 22% for all of us. I think he was trying to diminish our roles, but still at least the merchandise was going to be 25% for everybody.

What I meant by full member was the primary bass player, with no Jack Bates.

For so many years I had a reoccurring nightmare that I was back with the band and I was going to play bass. We were on tour, and I’m waiting in the wings with my guitar, and all of a sudden the band rest of the band are on, and I’m like wait, what? Nobody told me we were going on yet. All of a sudden I look in my spot and there’s some other person playing bass, and I’m like, what the fuck?

Was it Peter Hook’s son?

No, it was always a girl. (Laughs) I didn’t know anything about who he was, not a lot of people do, and that’s the way Billy likes it. I just read last night about Nicole Fiorentino.

I met her and interviewed her, really nice girl.

Yeah, she said that she was booted by the Pumpkins or whatever, and she started saying she didn’t understand why, because Billy told her the reason was that he didn’t feel like her heart was in it. According to him she was too distracted by her other project, and then she said, ‘I don’t understand, the band was my life. Even when I was doing that, I had the biggest online presence of any member of the band. I connected with the fans really well.’ I’m thinking to myself, I’m going to have to talk to that girl; she just answered her own question. Listen sister, you can’t upstage Billy, he will not have it.

The communication thing is what keeps getting to me, that all of this was being done via text. Like were there conference calls with the four of you?

I tried to reach James.

But I’m talking months back, before January. So you tried to reach James and Jimmy?

This was months back. I don’t have Jimmy’s number, and Jimmy and I have never really been hangout buddies.

I still don’t understand, why didn’t Billy, you, or somebody say if we’re going to do this reunion, say maybe we should all four talk together? Talk on the phone at least, or meet together, why was that idea never posed? It seems that having text message conversations about this muddied up a lot of water.

Well no, it really didn’t. I would have really loved to. At one point Billy said that Jimmy was going to come over to his house and write some stuff. I always said, ‘I’d really love to do that too.’ He would never invite me, but he told me that it didn’t happen. He said that I was invited to do all of this stuff, and that I said later, later, later. There was only one thing that was later, later, later, that I had invited him to come out to my farm. He never invited me to his house ever to meet his girlfriend or his son, nothing.

You mentioned that Jimmy and James didn’t seem too into doing an album, then why do you think Jimmy was there the whole month of January in LA?

Like I told [Blast Echo], you need to put that I didn’t say that, that’s just what I was told. I don’t know what he told them. I texted James and told him that Billy said that you guys said all this stuff, you guys have all these opinions, you guys made all these decisions together. He’s always done that.

So it progressed to the point where there were contracts, so did Billy offer you to be a guest at that point?

I made him spell it out, because he didn’t want to. I was like, ‘Sorry I’m not going to be involved in the tour. I’m not interested in hanging from the ceiling in a carrot suit.’ He said, ‘Oh, that sounds pretty funny and cool!’ Yeah, no, I don’t think so.

So he offered you to be a guest with Jack Bates as the primary bassist?

He even used the same example you used [in your article].

Steven Adler?

Exactly.

I brought that up because at that point after it came out you were out, it seemed like the only option. But do you think that was his plan all along, or he got cold feet?

I know he got cold feet, he got really cold feet. He got insecure. Everyone was told it was going to be something, and everybody was pushing for the same thing, including his manager, and nobody believed me when I said there’s not an offer. Everybody kept telling me just go out to the studio, and I said I’m not wanted in the studio.

This whole thing bums me out. I know there’s all these crazy headlines, but I really wanted to see you guys all together, or at least on good terms. It was nice even the years where the reunion hadn’t happened yet; to hear you guys were all getting along.

It has been awesome, and it would have been awesome. Almost nobody ever has that, if you’ve seen The Princess Bride where they talk about one couple in ten lifetimes doesn’t get the shot at true love. Almost nobody ever finds people, that when we would jam, and we would click, it was just magic. The feeling was just amazing, that’s a better drug than anything. Music has always been a drug for me. I’ve done a lot in my life, and beyond excelled at everything I’ve ever done, and I’m like, I’m done with it when it comes to a lot of things. But music is the only thing that I’ve ever stuck with. Billy just killed it for me for such a long time, I couldn’t listen to the radio, watch TV, go to movies. I was so burned out and traumatized, and I hated myself for giving into him. I know now that I really did the best that I could, and better than anybody else could do.

Like I said as a fan, we still want to see you guys work this out.

I would love to, but Billy will never do it. Not in this lifetime.

You can’t say not in this lifetime! Guns N’ Roses, that was the name of their tour.

Yeah, but it really wasn’t, was it?

Yeah, no Izzy and Steven.

There you go. He’s not going to forgive me. He wanted me to do what he wanted me to do, and he’s furious at me for telling the truth. He calls it ‘your’ truth: ‘You should have told people within the context of the band.’ What the fuck does that mean? I know what it means, toe the party line. ‘We have to be on the same page.’ Just fucking come out and say it, you don’t want me to tell people that I’m not going to be the bass player.

It still boggles my mind, trying to understand different perspectives, if Billy had doubts, why not play together first and then see? Like why have an expectation on your ability to play bass without playing with you first? If you have reservations, get in a room.

I’m in better shape than any of them. My Mom was a health nut, and she taught us about eating healthy. I eat totally clean, I live and work on a farm. I had messed my shoulder up, because I pushed myself too hard. I’m maybe a hair shorter than James, and I’ve done just about every sport. We’re all very athletic in my family, I’m Russian and Danish. I was gymnist, and I still like to work out. I like to do martial arts, I like to train horses, I like to build fences, I like to build stuff. I’m a very active person, I’ve also been really strong. I was a grotesquely skinny little kid, but super strong, weirdly. But I’m way healthier than any of them.

How much have you been playing bass in all of these years, and do you have any plans to release music in the future?

Whenever I think about releasing music, I just feel like, what’s the point?

I know a lot of fans would care, just to see one song, a lot of fans would love to hear it and see you again.

For a long time I didn’t do it because I knew Billy would take credit for it. If it’s good, he’ll take credit for it, and if it’s not he’ll be like, ‘That’s why we fired her from the band, she sucks.’

It took me a long time to not care, and not hate him. Now I don’t hate him, I’m back to where I was at the beginning. I laugh at his antics, and I’m going to go about my own life, but I don’t feel sorry for him. I do think he needs to get an MRI though.

It bums me out that you guys can’t get on good terms, even if you’re not playing together all the time, but there’s only so many bands left from your generation where all of the members are still alive. Chris Cornell is gone, Soundgarden doesn’t exist anymore, Scott Weiland is gone, the original STP doesn’t exist anymore. I hope it’s not too late.

With every argument, Billy would answer me, but I felt like he wasn’t bothering to read my texts. There’s nothing that you could say that I didn’t try, because I really, really, really care, and I really wanted to do this way more than they did. I really wanted to do it, and I thought we could do it right this time, but Billy just can’t do it,

I thought he wasn’t reading my texts, then he said, ‘Blah blah blah, I wish you well.’ I was like, ‘You don’t wish me well, you don’t love me, you don’t love anybody, you don’t care about anybody.’ Then he’s like, ‘Fuck you! Fuck you! Fuck you!’ I’m like there he is! There is the real Billy Corgan, I finally got through to you! He’s a like a dog with a bone, you just can’t get through to him.