David Ellefson Reflects On Dave Mustaine Running The Show In Megadeth By Himself

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Former Megadeth member David Ellefson joined The Eddie Trunk Podcast for an interview during which he talked about the time when Dave Mustaine started controlling everything in Megadeth all by himself.

After David Ellefson’s scandalous sex video was leaked on the Internet and the musician was accused of pedophilia and child grooming, Megadeth decided to fire him. Although he showed remorse and the woman involved said she was an adult at that time, it damaged Ellefson’s reputation. Currently, the musician follows his own career path with his new project The Lucid.

In the announcement Megadeth issued at that time, Dave Mustaine said the band didn’t take this decision easily. He then stated that their relationship was already problematic before the scandalous incident, and it now became impossible to move forward and work together with David Ellefson.

During the interview on The Eddie Trunk Podcast, the host Eddie Trunk talked with David Ellefson about Megadeth’s statement and asked him if he was aware of these already existing tensions in the band. As a response, Ellefson stated he wasn’t,  and he believes these all started 20 years ago when Megadeth disbanded in 2002 and reunited in 2004.

Following that, Ellefson elaborated on what happened back then. He claimed that Dave Mustaine became the boss and run the show by himself after 2004. Moreover, the musician said the partnership in the 1990s was gone soon after that. According to Ellefson, this was the beginning of the problems between them.

Ellefson then said things were better for Megadeth with him and Dave together at that time. However, he claimed that they didn’t want that anymore when they fired him. The musician also talked about the time he was fired and said it was like they showed him the door.

During the interview on the podcast, the host Eddie Trunk asked David Ellefson,

“When Dave made the decision to let you go and put out that statement, you said that originally there was going to be a joint statement. But that’s not how it all went, and they just said they were cutting ties with you. But one of the things that really jumped out at me in their statement was something about the already existing tensions. Were you aware of that? Were there problems before this that you felt like the ice was getting ready to break again?”

Ellefson then responded:

“I wasn’t. This probably started 20 years ago. You know, when Megadeth was disbanded in 2002 and then put back together in 2004. It was very clear in 2004 that it was going to be reframed around Dave. Unilaterally, 100%, being the boss and running the show. You know, gone were the days of sort of the partnership in the 1990s, where it was being Nick, Marty, Dave, the four horsemen right again kind of mentality. Maybe that’s another right word to use than the four horsemen, but four seems to be right.

You know, that day was gone. It was not gonna be that anymore. That’s where we fell apart in 2004. I wasn’t with the group those years. Coming back to 2010, again, now we were a few years older, [we had] little more maturity on the situation realizing that we’re better together. Even though it was not a partnership on paper, there was a kind of a visual partnership. The optics of it were kind of like ‘Yeah, this looks better as Megadeth with me and Dave together.’

You know, we were one of those bands that, although Dave is the quarterback and quarterbacks the plays, the overall feeling, and likeability, and I think everything about it just feels better when it’s Dave and David because we’ve been together from the beginning for so many years. I think that worked very well for the last decade. At the same time, Dave and I are grown men. We have opinions, and it’s not the thing where it’s just Dave and three side guys when it’s me in the band. Apparently, they didn’t want that anymore. They wanted it to not be that.

And I can’t speak for them because I don’t know, and [I’m] not trying to put words in anybody’s mouth about that. But that just seemed like ‘There’s just too much history here,’ and ‘Let’s just part ways now, and let Megadeth move forward on a new day with a kind of a new marching order.’ So, again, rather than fight it, which is what happened 20 years ago because we were sort of dissolving a partnership at that point, we did not dissolve a partnership. It’s like ‘Hey, we don’t want you here. There’s the door, don’t come to work on Monday. So, it’s like ‘Okay, fine.’ That’s just how I viewed it and that’s how I view it today. I don’t have any sour grapes over it. I’m not bitter about it.”

David Ellefson thinks things began to change for Megadeth back in 2004 where Dave Mustaine decided to become the boss. However, it seems the musician’s sex scandal was the final straw.