Smashing Pumpkins Claim D’arcy Has Asked To Return: ‘Can I Still Come Back?’


Update: D’arcy has denied Corgan’s claim: “I don’t want to be in his fucking clown car.”

Smashing Pumpkins members Billy Corgan, James Iha, and Jimmy Chamberlin were asked about D’arcy Wretzky’s absence from the reunion in a new Beats 1 interview with Zane Lowe. In the interview, Corgan claimed that D’arcy reached out through an intermediary sometime after she unloaded on Corgan earlier this year on Facebook, an in-depth interview on Alternative Nation, and in the Alternative Nation comments section. He called the fact that she would reach out after the ‘bridge was burned’ to try to mend fences part of ‘the level of craziness.’

Corgan, Iha, and Chamberlin did not accept D’arcy back into the band after the alleged request to complete the highly anticipated original lineup reunion that failed to come to fruition this year. D’arcy’s frustration stemmed from the fact that she was not offered a contract to return to the band as the full time bassist, and that Jack Bates had already been hired by the time Corgan offered her a guest role that he compared to Steven Adler’s guest performances on the Guns N’ Roses Not In This Lifetime tour. D’arcy shared her negotiation texts with Corgan on Alternative Nation in February.

In this new interview, Corgan claims that he was hoping D’arcy would respond to the limited role offer by offering to show up and prove him wrong that she couldn’t handle a full show/tour. According to what D’arcy sent us though earlier this year, D’arcy repeatedly asked if there was any chance or opportunity for her to be the full time bassist, and Corgan did not appear to offer her the opportunity to show up and prove herself to get the gig, as Jack Bates was already hired. Corgan though has not discussed any possible phone conversations where he made a direct offer for her to show up and prove herself to get the gig.

When the band were asked about D’arcy not being part of the reunion in the new Beats 1 interview, James Iha said with some regret, “It would have been different, but it just didn’t work out, to be simple about it.”

Alternative Nation also transcribed Billy Corgan’s comments.

“I was the point person on communicating with her. I spent literally two years rebuilding our relationship, albeit at a distance, I could never get her in a room. I felt very, very good, and I communicated that to James and Jimmy [Chamberlin], that I felt there was an opportunity there. I couldn’t say what that opportunity was, but the goal was to see the four of us on a stage. I was cool if it was going to be one song or a whole show, and the whole thing broke down when we had to start talking about time and reality and opportunity, and of course the business part of it all.

There was a wide, wide gap between what I thought was a reasonable expectation of ability given that she hadn’t been on stage in 19 years. But she suffered from incredible stage anxiety. I mean, we’re talking like a 10 out of 10. That was part of the equation always. When you saw her on a stage, she was inwardly going through a lot more than you would have thought because her stage demeanor was very icy. People used to call her Ice Queen, that a cool nickname fans gave her, the Ice Queen. But inside there was a lot of inner stuff going on, and I try not to say too much, because I’m not trying to make it about that. So when I started trying to have a real conversation: ‘Look, here’s the shows, here’s what we want to do, here’s the pressures involved. What would be a realistic expectation for you to enter in on?’ The difference between what I saw as a very sympathetic and empathetic opportunity was: ‘No, it has to be like this.’

Now we’re back to the person I dealt with back in the day. I’m not that person anymore, but now I’m dealing with the person I left off with in 1999. The answer was, ‘No, that’s just not going to happen.’ The reaction wasn’t, ‘Well, let’s get together in a room and play, and let me show you you’re wrong.’ It was, ‘No.’ Then the threats started, then the mendacity started. Then the last piece of information that is pertinent is that even after the bridge was blown up, and it was blown up for good, there was a backchannel communication through an intermediator: ‘Can I still come back?’ That just shows you the level of craziness.”

While D’arcy unloaded on Corgan earlier this year, Corgan trashed D’arcy several times after she left the band, calling her a ‘mean spirited drug addict’ on his blog in 2004. Corgan also called James Iha a ‘piece of shit’ and ‘the worst human being I’ve ever met’ as recently as 2012, and they managed to find peace. Why not be open to the possibility of burying the hatchet rather than taking a feud to the grave? It would be a great story, especially after how many 90’s legends we have lost.