Billy Corgan paid ransom to hacker who threatened to leak new Smashing Pumpkins songs

A picture of Billy Corgan
(Image credit: Photo by Medios y Media/Getty Images)

Smashing Pumpkins frontman Billy Corgan has revealed he had to pay a hacker's ransom to prevent them leaking songs from the band's new three-part rock opera Atum.

Corgan says a hacker somehow got their hands on material from the new release, the third part of which was made available today (May 5).

And rather than see the band's hard work be spoiled by a leak, Corgan gave in and paid the ransom.

Corgan tells the Klein Ally Show the hacker had possession of some of the most important songs from Atum.

He adds: "They were all probably the most catchy, single-y type songs. So not only is it six months too early, you’re pretty much giving away the album before you even have a chance to set your feet into the ground.

"Somehow, some hacker was offering the files for money, and we were able to trace it and pay off and keep it from leaking. The FBI got involved. I don’t know how they got what they got.

"It was a mercenary person who had hacked somebody, I don’t want to say who, and they had other stuff from other artists. It wasn’t like some Pumpkins fan who was hellbent on breaking it on Reddit. Somehow, they gave some information that allowed the FBI to track them."

Smashing Pumpkins kick off their The World Is A Vampire US tour in July.

The Smashing Pumpkins The World Is A Vampire US tour dates

Jul 28: Las Vegas The Chelsea at the Cosmopolitan, NV
Jul 30: Las Vegas The Chelsea at the Cosmopolitan, NV
Aug 01: Salt Lake City USANA Amphitheatre, UT
Aug 03: Mountain View Shoreline Amphitheatre, CA
Aug 05: Auburn White River Amphitheatre, WA
Aug 06: Bend Hayden Homes Amphitheater, OR
Aug 07: Wheatland Toyota Amphitheatre, CA
Aug 09: Irvine FivePoint Amphitheatre, CA
Aug 10: Chula Vista North Island Credit Union Amphitheatre, CA
Aug 11: Highland Yaamava’ Resort & Casino, CA
Aug 13: Albuquerque Isleta Amphitheater, NM
Aug 15: Dallas Dos Equis Pavillion, TX
Aug 16: Rogers Walmart AMP, AR
Aug 17: Huntsville The Orion Amphitheater, AL
Aug 19: West Palm Beach iTHINK Financial Amphitheatre, FL
Aug 20: Tampa MIDFLORIDA Credit Union Amphitheatre, FL
Aug 22: Charlotte PNC Music Pavilion, NC
Aug 24: Holmdel PNC Bank Arts Center, NJ
Aug 25: Gilford Bank of New Hampshire Pavilion, NH
Aug 30: Wantagh Northwell Health at Jones Beach Theater, NY
Aug 31: Bristow Jiffy Lube Live, VA
Sep 02: Toronto Budweiser Stage, ON
Sep 03: Ottawa Canadian Tire Centre, ON
Sep 06: Clarkston Pine Knob Music Theatre, MI
Sep 08: Franklin FirstBank Amphitheater, TN
Sep 09: Noblesville Ruoff Music Center, IN

Stef wrote close to 5,000 stories during his time as assistant online news editor and later as online news editor between 2014-2016. An accomplished reporter and journalist, Stef has written extensively for a number of UK newspapers and also played bass with UK rock favourites Logan. His favourite bands are Pixies and Clap Your Hands Say Yeah. Stef left the world of rock'n'roll news behind when he moved to his beloved Canada in 2016, but he started on his next 5000 stories in 2022.