According to a posting on former MANOWAR guitarist Ross "The Boss" Friedman's Facebook page, ex-MANOWAR drummer Scott Columbus died earlier today (Monday, April 4) at the age of 54. This information was corroborated by Scott's girlfriend of almost four years, Nancy, who wrote on the drummer's Facebook page, "For all you to know, this is Scott Columbus's girlfriend of over 3 1/3 years... and I cannot get the words out, but he died today... Please send your thoughts and prayers. I can't believe he is gone. He was the absolute love of my life."
In a May 2010 interview with Classic Rock magazine, Columbus revealed that his departure from MANOWAR occurred around April 2008 when he and the band's bassist/leader, Joey DeMaio, "agreed to disagree on a few points of interest." He added, "I had a long and wonderful career with MANOWAR; I have no regrets, it's just life moves on."
When asked for a comment on MANOWAR's claim that Columbus was still a member of the band but that he was taking time off for "personal tragedies," Scott replied, "I'm in the best shape of my life. I mean I'm 112 years old (laughs) but I'm in the best shape of my entire life."
On the topic of whether he had had any contact with any of the MANOWAR members since his departure in April of 2008, Scott said, "Yes, I speak quite often with the singer [Eric Adams] who is a dear, dear friend of mine. He and I hung out on the road all the time for many years, so I speak to Eric all the time. Joey and I speak to periodically. Some of the ancillary people I speak with because we've always had a great relationship, so why let something professional interrupt something personal?! I tend to make friends for life. Once people get to know me they realize I wear my heart on my sleeve, there's no bullshit about me. I can do a lot of things very well but one thing I really suck at is lying."
During the Classic Rock chat, Columbus revealed that he had been working on a solo project called INSTRUMETAL, who he promised would "be released to the world very soon." He added, "It doesn't have vocals on it and I'd like to keep it that way. I could possibly see a bonus track or two with vocals. Right now I've got 13 tracks and it's nearly complete. Soon I plan on releasing one song for the world to hear and get an idea what I've been up to for the past several years. The song is called 'Lightning In A Bottle'; it's a little ditty between myself and the guitar player I wrote the album with, Patrick Macdougall. It's very heavy, very rhythmically driven. I call it heavy metal elevator music; you pop the CD in your car and before you know it, you're driving 125 miles an hour! I'm really excited about it. I produced and engineered the whole thing myself. So if it sucks, I suck and if it's good, well… yeah! [laughs]"
Photo credit: Guido Karp Photography