Josh Homme has revealed for the first time why he fired longtime friend Nick Oliveri from Queens Of The Stone Age in 2004. Speaking to Zane Lowe tonight (July 6) on BBC Radio 1, Homme said he ordered Oliveri to leave the band after he independently confirmed Oliveri had been physically abusive to his girlfriend.
“A couple years ago, I spoke to Nick about a rumor I heard,” Homme recalled. “I said, ‘If I ever find out that this is true, I can’t know you, man.’ Because music and my life are the same thing, there’s no rules until something massive happens. [Nick] was over here [in England] with [QOTSA vocalist Mark] Lanegan and something happened again, and he almost didn’t make it out of the country. That’s not music anymore.”
Oliveri could not be reached for comment at deadline.
Homme says he will reject pleas from QOTSA fans to give Oliveri a second chance. “They don’t understand what it’s like to just sit there and feel helpless,” he said. “When you have your chance to make your statement, which for me was firing Nick, that’s what I did.”
Homme and Oliveri have frequently exchanged words via the media in recent months; Homme was also involved in a brawl over Oliveri’s firing last November in Los Angeles with Dwarves singer Blag Dahlia, a close friend of the former QOTSA bassist.
“If you’re trying to be good about something and everybody else around you isn’t, what do you do?,” Homme said. “Do you fight fire with fire or sit there and burn?”
Queens Of The Stone Age is in the midst of international touring in support of its latest Interscope album, “Lullabies To Paralyze.” A fall North American tour with Nine Inch Nails begins Sept. 16 in San Diego.