Slipknot announce departure of Craig Jones, then delete announcement

Craig Jones with Slipknot
(Image credit: Getty)

[Update: Slipknot have deleted their posts on social media regarding Jones' departure. At the time of writing, a post on Knotfest's Instagram account remains online. A screengrab of the original social media message is posted below. The headline on this story has been updated to reflect developments].

Slipknot have announced that Craig Jones, the spikily-masked samplist and keyboard player who has been with the Iowans since 1996, has left the band.

Posting a simple message via their official social media channels, Slipknot state:

"To our fans, Slipknot is announcing that we have parted ways with Craig Jones. We wish Jones all the best for the future."

No reason for Jones' departure from the band has been given, and there is no confirmation if Jones will be replaced for Slipknot's current run of European live dates, which have kicked off tonight in Austria at Nova Rock Festival.

Jones joined the band following the completion of Slipknot's debut EP, 1996's Mate. Feed. Kill. Repeat. He has appeared on every Slipknot studio album since. The 51 year old is famously press-averse and has rarely done any kind of interviews during his 27 years with the band.

Screengrab of Slipknot message

(Image credit: Slipknot)

The news of Jones leaving the metal heavyweights comes on the same day that it was revealed Slipknot percussionist and co-founder Shawn 'Clown' Crahan would be sitting out upcoming dates to look after his wife, who is suffering from unnamed health issues.

In a statement released on social media earlier today, Crahan said: "Hello to all of our fans, it’s the clown. I would like to take a moment to tell everyone that I’m back home supporting my wife through some health issues, and I’ll be back on the road as soon as I can. We’ve been through this before and as always, we appreciate the love and support. See all of you very soon. Thank you. clown." 

Slipknot headline the Sunday night of this weekend's historic, four-day Download festival in the UK. Their full list of European tour dates for summer 2023 can be seen below.

Slipknot European tour dates 2023

June 07: Nickelsdorf Nova Rock Festival, Austria
June 08: Hradec Rock For People, Czechia
June 10: Interlaken Greenfield Festival, Switzerland
June 11: Donington Download Festival, UK
June 13: Amsterdam Ziggo Dome, Netherlands
June 14: Esch-Sur-Alzette Rockhal, Luxembourg
June 16: Copenhagen Copenhell Festival, Denmark
June 17: Dessel Graspop Metal Meeting, Belgium
June 20: Hamburg Barclays Arena, Germany
June 21: Berlin Mercedes Benz Arena, Germany
June 24: Munich Königsplatz, Germany
June 25: Bologna Knotfest Italy, Italy
June 27: Nimes Arena Of Nimes, France
June 29: Lisbon Evil Live Festival, Portugal
June 30: Viveiro Resurrection Fest, Spain

Tickets are on sale now.

Merlin Alderslade
Executive Editor, Louder

Merlin moved into his role as Executive Editor of Louder in early 2022, following over ten years working at Metal Hammer. While there, he served as Online Editor and Deputy Editor, before being promoted to Editor in 2016. Before joining Metal Hammer, Merlin worked as Associate Editor at Terrorizer Magazine and has previously written for the likes of Classic Rock, Rock Sound, eFestivals and others. Across his career he has interviewed legends including Ozzy Osbourne, Lemmy, Metallica, Iron Maiden (including getting a trip on Ed Force One courtesy of Bruce Dickinson), Guns N' Roses, KISS, Slipknot, System Of A Down and Meat Loaf. He has also presented and produced the Metal Hammer Podcast, presented the Metal Hammer Radio Show and is probably responsible for 90% of all nu metal-related content making it onto the site.