SLIPKNOT members Shawn “Clown” Crahan (percussion) and Joey Jordison (drums) have released separate statements commemorating what would have been the 39th birthday of the band’s late bassist, Paul Gray.
Shaw “Clown” Crahan: “Hey everybody, it’s Clown, I wanted to say that today is a very special and beautiful day.
“I wanted everyone to know that I am the type of person that would not commemorate a day that someone close to me passed away, but I am the type of person that celebrates the day that they were born.
“Today is the day that Paul Dedrick Gray was born which makes it a very, very, very special day for me and all of us who miss and love him and think about him every day.
“Paul, I love you and I miss you.
“Your friend and brother forever, Clown.”
Joey Jordison: “Today is a day that will have a special place in my heart forever. It’s a special day for all, for not only me and the guys in our band and families, but for everyone to put smiles across their faces and to celebrate the emotion and beauty of one of the greatest souls to ever grace music and humanity.
“I spent all of last night watching our videos since our days as little kids who had a dream, and fuck, Paul, we did make that dream come true. I fell asleep last night only to wake up minutes ago with a smile on my face as my slumbers were filled with memories I’d long forgot.
“Even as I write this, my eyes are getting a little watery. He loves all of you who embraced his music.
“God bless to Brenna, October and all his friends and family as well.
“I wish that all of you that couldn’t share time with Paul will by playing his records ’til your ceilings crack and your ears bleed and by celebrating his memory in the glory that it is.
“I love you, Paul, and I’ll see you again soon, but not yet… not yet.
“Hail Paul, hail SLIPKNOT.
“Your friend, Joey.”
Paul Gray was found dead in a hotel room in a Des Moines, Iowa suburb last May at the age of 38 from an overdose of morphine.
For SLIPKNOT‘s upcoming shows in 2011, the band has asked Donnie Steele to fill in for Gray on bass.
Donnie was the original guitar player in SLIPKNOT and had actually reconnected with Paul in recent years.
Commented the band: “Donnie was in the band at the very beginning, and rather than get an outsider, we thought it would be a fitting tribute to Paul to play with someone from within the family. Donnie was great friends with Paul and we can’t think of a better way to celebrate his memory than with someone who was there with us at the very beginning. The eight of us are looking forward to being onstage again and honoring Paul‘s legacy with our families in Europe and Brazil this summer.”