Shawn ‘Clown’ Crahan Sets Record Straight Over Who Started Slipknot

Recently, Shawn ‘Clown’ Crahan took some time to set the record straight about the origins of Slipknot. In an interview, he shared who the original members were that started the band, a topic that has had its share of confusion due to the band’s evolving lineup over the years.

Talking to ‘The Break Down With Nath & Johnny,’ Crahan clarified:

“There’s all these real misunderstandings about who started the band or whatever, and the bottom line is it was Andy Rouw, the original singer, myself, and Paul [Gray].”

These founding members, alongside Joey Jordison, Donnie Steele, and Josh Brainard, were part of Slipknot’s early journey, contributing to their 1996 independent album, ‘Mate. Feed. Kill. Repeat.’ While Gray was with the band until he passed away in 2010, Rouw, also known to fans as Anders Colsefni, left the group in 1997.

Regarding Rouw’s departure, the percussionist said:

“Andy ended up leaving really early in the game, and so once we were signed, it was just basically Paul and I.”

The Sacrifices Clown Made For The Band

Crahan brought up the topic of the band’s original members while talking about the personal and family sacrifices he’s made for his music career. Reflecting on those early days, he shared:

“I’m here to tell you my friend Paul Gray was at my wedding three years prior [to] he and I and Andy starting the band. And that’s that. And so I had family. Then we start the band, and then a year or so after starting the band, we get pregnant and have our third child, and we have that child before we’re signed.”

The percussionist added:

“So, we have three children and lots of work raising children. And I’ve been married now five, six, seven years — three years before we even started the band, so everybody needs to kind of figure it out about reality of what sacrifice really is.”

A particularly tough moment in Clown’s life was the death of his daughter, Gabrielle, in 2019, which he described as something ‘horrendous and unexplainable.’ Referring to his loss, he commented on his past choices:

“It’s not too hard to realize the ones that were bad decisions real quick when you don’t get to say goodbye to someone or hello to someone again.”

His full interview is in the video below.