In a recent interview with VW Music, the current bassist of Megadeth, James LoMenzo, shared his thoughts about joining the band after David Ellefson‘s scandal blew up.

David Ellefson made headlines after the bassist’s masturbation video, and screenshots of his explicit conversations with an underage girl spread across the internet.

Following the incident, the musician received much criticism, especially after rumors that the woman he was talking to was actually an underage girl. From that point on, Ellefson faced accusations of pedophilia and child grooming. Even though it was later discovered that the woman wasn’t underage, the scandal had already caused a big uproar.

The scandal broke while Megadeth was recording their latest album, ‘The Sick, the Dying… and the Dead!.’ They had to re-record the studio album with Steve Di Giorgio of Testament to release the album without Ellefson’s contribution.

James LoMenzo stated that the possibility of him joining Megadeth shocked him because he didn’t expect something like this to happen. When he saw the scandal news on the internet, LoMenzo thought it would die down, and they would resolve the situation without any repercussions. However, the scandal became more prominent than expected, and LoMenzo was approached left and right to join Megadeth on their upcoming summer tour.

James LoMenzo’s thoughts about his initial reaction to the scandal and the possibility of replacing David Ellefson:

Well, you know, here’s the thing; It’s funny because the other day I was backstage, and I go, “You know, I’m goin’ on two years here.” I didn’t see that comin’ again. It was a total – not a complete surprise – but a surprise. When I saw the stuff going on with Megadeth, it was all over the internet – we’re all connected – I looked at it, and I thought to myself, “Hmm. I wonder if I’ll get a phone call.” But at that time, I thought, “You know what? They’re going to resolve this, or whatever is going on will fix itself.” So, I kind of went that way. Anyway, it did not fix itself, and so suddenly, Megadeth needed a bass player, and my phone blew up. I mean, everybody I knew would go, “Well, did you get the call? Do you know anything yet?”

James LoMenzo has a long history with Megadeth. He first joined the band in 2006 as a touring bassist. He also contributed to ‘United Abominations’ in 2007 and the 2009 album ‘Endgame.’ After the scandal erupted, LoMenzo became the band’s touring bassist again in 2021, following Ellefson’s departure. Dave Mustaine revealed this past summer that they enjoyed having him as the bassist and made his role in the band permanent.