Jim Root has revealed that he could have joined Slipknot before 1999 but he turned down the invitation twice.
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The guitarist joined the group after Josh “Gnar” Brainard left during sessions for their self-titled debut album.
In a new interview, Root explained that Slipknot’s original singer Anders Colsefni had approached him about replacing their original guitarist Donnie Steele back in 1996. “I said no at that time because I hadn’t been playing guitar and I knew that those guys were players,” he told WMMR.
“My chops were bad, I [hadn’t] even touched a guitar in years, so I was just kind of like, ‘Nah, I’m just going to be a regular dildo, work and do all that.’”
In 1996, Root joined Corey Taylor’s Stone Sour. When Taylor replaced Colsefni in Slipknot in 1997, the guitarist said he still wouldn’t join the masked band because he didn’t “want to feel like it’s handed to me”. He said: “I got to feel like I worked for it, like something I’ve achieved.”
A chat with a friend made him realise he was passing up a big opportunity. “[He] said, ‘What, are you stupid? Very few times in life do you get a chance to take a great step forward. Even if you fall flat on your face, you can always come back,’” Root explained. “So I called Clown and the rest is history.”
Last month, Slipknot released their sixth album in ‘We Are Not Your Kind’. In a five-star review, NME called it “an astonishing record: a roaring, horrifying delve into the guts of the band’s revulsion, a primal scream of endlessly inventive extreme metal and searing misanthropy”.
Root has also expressed his desire to play that record in full. “We have been talking about maybe trying to find some way to play the new album in its entirety, from top to bottom,” he said. “I would like to do that – I think that would be something really cool. And do it in a really toned down, stripped down, no big stage set, club atmosphere type of thing.”