Scott Rockenfield has shot down suggestions that he quit QUEENSRŸCHE or retired from playing music.
The drummer, who hasn't performed with QUEENSRŸCHE in four years, took to his Facebook page earlier today to write: "wanna hear a fun story? goes like this : 'Contrary to any statements or interviews coming from other parties, I most definitely 'did not' and 'have not' quit, walked away, retired or abandoned QUEENSRŸCHE??!! ….unfortunately, you have not been given the facts by any means…' a total cliffhanger right? … more soon".
Scott's comments mark the first time he has publicly addressed his status with QUEENSRŸCHE, which has used former KAMELOT drummer Casey Grillo for touring purposes since April 2017.
When Rockenfield's absence from QUEENSRŸCHE was first announced, it was reported that he was taking time off from the band's touring activities to spend time with his young son, who was born in early 2017.
The drum tracks on QUEENSRŸCHE's latest album, 2019's "The Verdict", were laid down by singer Todd La Torre.
In a February 2019 interview with SiriusXM's "Trunk Nation", Todd stated about QUEENSRŸCHE's decision to have him play drums on the LP: "[Scott] had a baby in 2017, and he took paternity leave, which we totally support — no issue with that. And then that just turned into six months, nine months, twelve months. 'Hey, when are you gonna come back?' And we just never got an answer. So that's why I played drums on the record — because I did all the demos with these guys. And it just made logical sense. I'm capable, and my skills are totally adequate to fulfill that role."
According to Todd, QUEENSRŸCHE waited until a month before entering the studio to make the decision about who was going to play the drums on the disc.
"We all wanted Scott to play on the record," the singer said. "And we anticipated that, even though he wasn't part of the writing process — for whatever reasons, he wasn't making himself available for that — at least when we would press 'record,' we thought, 'Well, surely he'll record.' And we really did have confidence that he would track the drums. So, out of respect for that position with Scott, we weren't gonna bring in Casey and say, 'Hey, go in and…' 'Cause we really did think Scott would drum on the album. And it was only three or four weeks before we were pressing 'record' that we really needed an answer. And the truth of the matter is we had pushed recording back two times. We had no commitment from him to continue with what we were doing. And he just said, 'Look, I wish you all the best with this recording.' And so he basically gave us the green light to keep doing it. And so that's what we did."
QUEENSRŸCHE guitarist Michael Wilton, who has known Rockenfield for four decades, remained philosophical about the drummer's decision to sit out the group's recent touring activities.
"After we've been in a band for as long as we have, people change and they wanna go down their own paths," the guitarist said. "And we totally respect that. If he wants to come back and tour — whatever — the door is always open."
Former QUEENSRŸCHE singer Geoff Tate discussed Rockenfield in a March 2020 interview with Metal Rules. Speaking about the possibility of a reunion of QUEENSRŸCHE's classic lineup, he said: "I don't know if that'll ever happen, honestly. I don't see it as likely happening. Again, never say never because things could really change. But I don't know if Scott will ever play drums again. He has a lot of medical problems and things like that now. So yeah, I don't know. And Chris [DeGarmo, original QUEENSRŸCHE guitarist] will never play again."
In July 2019, Tate told 88.1FM WESU's weekly syndicated radio show "Noize In The Attic" that he was "pretty sure" Scott "didn't leave" QUEENSRŸCHE of his own accord. "I can tell you that there's lawsuits involved; I know that," he said. "He's in kind of a really dark place, and I hope he gets some help, 'cause he's really unraveled, you know? In my opinion. It's too bad — he's an incredibly talented drummer, and unfortunately, he never was happy with that. It wasn't good enough for him."