Despite Panic At The Disco’s success with their new single, “Miss Jackson,” drummer Spencer Smith announced Wednesday (August 7) that he would not be joining the band on tour in order to work on his sobriety, leaving singer Brendon Urie as the band’s only remaining founding member.
Late last month Smith revealed his four-and-a-half year struggle with drug and alcohol addiction through a detailed letter posted on the band’s website.
Smith revealed the his first time he took a drink and smoked marijuana. “I smoked weed and had my first drink in the same night when I was 19. I loved it, and from that point on I made sure to make up for all those years I had spent abstaining.”
Smith went on to explain how prescription medications Xanax and Vicodin came to become part of his daily life, and how deeply he fell into addiction before he was able to finally enter treatment through the support of his band, family and friends.
Before starting the tour, Smith told MTV that though he was excited to hit the road he was concerned about the effect it could have on his sobriety.
“Coming into it I feel really positive about where I’m at, but I can’t know every situation I’m going to be in on tour. I’m going to be in hotel rooms where there’s alcohol readily available,” he said. “But I’m lucky to be in a band that isn’t Guns N’ Roses or something; it’s a great thing to not have to feel like I’m having to alter everybody else’s life so that I can fit in. That’s something I didn’t want to do.”
But after just a few shows, Smith pulled out of the current tour.
“Spencer and I have been through a lot of hurdles together, but witnessing one of my closest friends immersed in such a battle has been the most difficult,” Urie wrote on the band’s website Wednesday.
Adding, “It’s become evident Spencer still needs more time to take care of himself. I can’t expect him to be fighting addiction one minute and be fully immersed in a national tour the next. With all that said, the tour will continue without Spencer while he is away getting the help he needs.”
Urie ends his note with a special message to Spencer: “I love you. I believe in you. Just show up and don’t ever give up.”
No word from the band as of now on who will fill in for Smith on the current tour, which finishes up on August 24. The band will then join the upcoming Save Rock And Roll arena tour with Fall Out Boy and Twenty One Pilots on September 5 in Connecticut.
Panic At The Disco’s fourth and latest album, Too Weird to Live, Too Rare to Die, is due out October 8.