Reed Mullin Dead: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know

Reed Mullin Dead

Facebook/Reed Mullin Reed Mullin pictured in April 2013.

Reed Mullin, the drummer of Corrosion of Conformity, has died at the age of 53.

A statement on the band’s Twitter page broke the sad news on January 27. The tweet read, “t’s with heavy hearts that we say goodbye to a friend, a brother and pioneer. Reed you are loved and always will be. Lets all take a moment…” Mullin’s date of death was January 21.

Mullin mentioned in a 2017 interview that he was divorced from his wife, Ashley. However in the same interview, Mullin compared being in a band to marriage saying, “Being in a band is like being married to three, four, five f***ing people — and y’know when you mix creativity and art and money together, things can get ugly.” Corrosion of Conformity is slated to begin touring in February 2020 with shows in New Zealand.

1. Mullin Was a Co-Founder of Corrosion of Conformity in Raleigh, North Carolina, in 1982

Green’s first appearance with the band was as an opening act to Judas Priest.

The group was founded in Raleigh, North Carolina, in alongside singer Mike Dean and guitarist Woody Weatherman in 1982. Mullin told Toilet ov Hell in a 2018 interview that he, Dean and Weatherman, “We were obsessed with like Black Flag and the Bad Brains they didn’t have the financial success Blink 182 and Green Day had, these bands that came later. There was a base of folks that liked that kind of music though. We did it purely for the love of the music we were playing. That’s what we were inspired by, it wasn’t a financial thing, it wasn’t possible, it hadn’t happened yet.”

During the same interview, Mullin said that in his youth, he was a punk rock promoter in Raleigh, booking luminaries such as Suicidal Tendencies and Dead Kennedy’s to perform in the area. Other bands that Mullin namechecked as beginning his love affair with music were The Stooges, MC5, The Sex Pistols and Crass.

2. Dave Grohl Called Mullin His ‘Favorite Drummer’ in 2015

Mullin remained full-time with the band until 2001. He would rejoin again as a full-time member in 2010. In 2014, Dean and Mullin formed the supergroup, Teenage Time Killers. Among contributors to that project were Foo Fighters frontman Dave Grohl and Slipknot vocalist, Corey Taylor. Mullin described the group in a November 2014 interview as being “pretty star-studded.” Mullin also described the band’s sound as being “really organic.”

Grohl told Rolling Stone in a July 2015 interview that Mullin was his “favorite drummer.” Mullin is quoted in the same feature as saying, “It took Dave Grohl, like, two weeks to figure out all the shit I knew how to do on drums.” Grohl continued, “Reed was my drumming hero when I was 15 or 16 years old. Corrosion of Conformity had a record called Animosity, which was one of the defining albums of that hardcore-metal genre. It’s a classic. It’s the Odessey and Oracle of f***ing crossover hardcore metal albums. I’ve stolen so many of his f***ing riffs from that record over the years.”

3. Mullin Suffered an Alcohol-Related Seizure in 2016

In June 2016, it was reported that Mullin suffered an alcohol-related seizure prior to a show in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. As a result, Mullin was let go from the band for a time. During that time, he was replaced by Jean-Paul Gaster and Chris Adler of tourmates Clutch and Lamb Of God. However just a few days, later, Mullin rejoined the band for a gig in Winnipeg. A Facebook post from the band said that Mullin had performed “against advice.”

In August 2019, Dean was quoted by Blabbermouth as saying that Mullin needed “get his s*** together.” The website quoted Dean speaking on the “Talk Toomey” podcast as saying, “And if it doesn’t, well, that’s how it is. People need to wanna help themselves. You can’t just push them to get help — they’ve gotta wanna help themselves.”

4. Mullin Has Suffered From Health Issues Since Before His Alcohol Seizure

In January 2016, Weatherman said of Mullin’s health issues, “We’re wishing him well. He had some shoulder surgery, and he’s still having some complications from that. I’d like to see him get back as soon as he can, as soon as he’s healthy. But for now, we’ve got John Green from Manchester, England. He’s been out touring with us. He’s fantastic and does a great job filling in for Reed. So he’ll be back on this run, as well.”

In March 2018, Mullin underwent knee replacement surgery. Mullin wrote to his fans in a Facebook post that he had struggled with knee issues for two years. Mullin said the pain had been “bone on bone for some time now and has been hurting like hell.” In the post, Mullin mentioned that his surgeon, Dr. James Crowther, was a big Corrosion of Conformity fan. Mullin said that following the surgery, he would be rejoining the band in Brazil.

5. Mullin Was Close Friends With the Late Layne Staley

In 2015, Mullin told SideStage Magazine about his relationship with Alice in Chains singer Layne Staley. Staley died in April 2002 after overdosing on a mixture of heroin and cocaine.

Mullin told the magazine, “In Layne’s case when you knew it was going to happen. I didn’t know Scott that well at all I had met him several times but I didn’t really know him. I knew Layne very well. Like I said I didn’t know Scott but I share a lot of the difficulties that he had before he passed so I understand and I still struggle with some of that stuff.”

Mullin’s death comes two days after the death of death metal drummer Sean Reinert.

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COC’s most recent album appeared in 2018. It was titled, “No Cross No Crown.” The album featured Pepper Keenan on vocals. Reed told My Global Mind in January 2018 about working with Keenan again saying, “When COC started doing the three-piece, the reunion thing back in 2009-10. A lot of our old school hardcore fans, or even a lot of folks that weren’t around in those days, had been really wanting us to do it. Not for just nostalgia sake, just a lot of people never got to see that lineup. So Pepper was doing Down, and I, Woody and Mike Dean were like, what the fuck let’s try it out. Seems like people are interested. So we started doing that and did a couple records and stuff. But the whole time we were doing it, Pepper would be calling me every three weeks or a month or something. He’d be like “Mule”, he calls me mule, “man we got to get this shit back together, we gotta do the four-piece man”. I was like, fuck yeah, but right now I think you’re on tour with Down.”

In the same interview, Mullin discussed working with John Custer on the album, describing him as “sort of like our fifth member.” Mullin added, “John Custer is so great at getting great, energetic takes out of us. He knows every person and our personalities so well. So he’s looking for the energy, I could play a song perfect to the metronome, and he’d be like, let’s try it one more time. And he was always right.”

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