Filter’s Richard Patrick says he quit Nine Inch Nails after Trent Reznor told him to deliver pizza

The musician left the band in 1993

Filter’s Richard Patrick has spoken about his decision to leave Nine Inch Nails more than 20 years ago, citing comments from Trent Reznor as the motivating factor.

The musician was a member of the band from 1989 until 1993 primarily as a part of the live line-up.

Patrick reflected on his final days in the band while appearing on the podcast Stop! Drop & Talk, which is co-hosted by Halestorm’s Arejay Hale. The Filter frontman recalled telling Reznor: “Wow, you’re going down to New Orleans to go live in this beautiful house that you’re getting, and I’m gonna go back to my mom and dad’s house.”


He said his former bandmate responded by telling him to go write a record. “I was like, ‘Wow! What do you say to that?’” Patrick said. “He goes, ‘You should have seen your face. ‘Cause you were kind of pissed at first, and then you were, like, ‘No. I should.’”

While Reznor worked on Nine Inch Nails’ ‘Broken’ EP, Patrick went home to live with his parents, during which time he said he “took [Reznor’s] words of advice” and began working on his own music.

Further down the line, he said one final talk with Reznor helped him make up his mind to quit. “The final straw was Trent goes, ‘Hey, listen, Rich, I know you need some extra cash. Listen. Down at the end of Cielo Drive, there’s a little pizzeria, and they need drivers. So maybe you can go make some extra cash over there,’” Patrick explained. “And I’m, like, ‘Wow!’”

At that point he had already written the band’s debut single ‘Hey Man, Nice Shot’ and had interest from several labels. “I was like, ‘Hey, dude, I hate to tell you this now, but I quit. And I’m so sorry, but I fucking quit. I’m not gonna sell pizzas and I’m not gonna drive for a [pizzeria],” he said.


He added that he and Reznor now have a friendly relationship. Watch Patrick appear on the Stop! Drop & Talk podcast above.

Meanwhile, Nine Inch Nails launched a new range of ‘Pandemic 2020’ merch earlier this week (September 23). The band updated their website’s merch store, which for “a very limited time” is selling five new T-shirt designs reflecting “our anxiety and anger during this unprecedented time”.

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