Chuck Billy Says He Did Not Get Rob Dukes Fired From EXODUS
Late last year, former Exodus vocalist Rob Dukes accused Chuck Billy of pushing him out of the band. Billy was part of a new management team that Exodus took on before their album cycle and at the time, Dukes said Billy was the one pushing him out and that Billy is putting his interests (and that of his band, Testament) ahead of Exodus's.
As a refresher, here's what Rob Dukes said:
I think Chuck and their management, Metal Maria, I think they were looking at [Exodus's] record sales from the '80s and they were baiting them into, 'Look, if you do this, you're gonna get this.' I mean, I was there for it. I even spoke up. I even said it in front of Chuck to his face. I said, 'Gary, I think it's a conflict of interest having the singer of Testament be your fucking manager. Because, what makes you think that he's not gonna put his own band ahead of you every single fucking time? It's a conflict of interest, Gary. This is not a good thing to happen.' And they were, like, 'No, I don't think it's a bad thing at all. I think it's fine.' And I'm, like, 'Ah, okay.' And you know what? That's kind of what they did… Let me give you a scenario. Metallica calls [Exodus's] management, and they say, 'Hey, man, we want Exodus on this tour.' What's gonna keep Chuck Billy from going, 'Well, I don't know if Exodus will work out, but I know Testament can do it.' Do you know what I mean? Why wouldn't he do that? I'll tell you this: I would do it. I would fucking do it in a fucking second. 'Cause I'm fucking honest. But nobody there in that whole world is honest. It's all craziness
In a new interview with Chuck Billy by Sticks For Stones, Billy denies that he pushed out Dukes, but he did say that he recommended Exodus get back with their old singer. When asked if there is any truth to Rob Dukes' statement, Billy responded:
“No, there’s not at all. I know Rob knows the truth about that. The only thing I did was, working with the band at the time, I made a suggestion, ‘Either get somebody brand new or give Zet a shot.’ And so they gave Zet a shot. And no matter how bad three of the guys in the band didn’t want Zet back in, I think Zet proved himself by kicking ass on the demo. And I think Zet is a recognizable Exodus voice. So, you know, it made sense, but it wasn’t me pushing it. It was just me presenting it to the guys, and the guys made the decision.”
It seems as though the decision was ultimately up to the band, and likely, Gary Holt specifically, and they chose to go back with Zet. It will be interesting to see if Rob Dukes responds to this.