Slipknot went back to Iowa halfway through recording their now-legendary debut album to take a break, at which point guitarist Josh Brainard quit the band. Slipknot's founding percussionist M. Shawn "Clown" Crahan got on the phone with guitarist Jim Root, who show the proposal down to focus on his band Deadfront.
In an interview with Prism Supply, Root recalls a friend telling him that he'd be insane not to join Slipknot, and here we are today. Plus it's not like Root and the Slipknot guys were strangers to one another at the time either. Aside from all playing in local Des Moines bands, Root joined Stone Sour – fronted then by Slipknot's Corey Taylor as well – in 1995 and stuck with the group until they disbanded in 1997.
"After Corey had joined Slipknot, I was in a band called Deadfront, and in Des Moines we had a lot of success. And I had been called by Clown and Joey and Ross Robinson to join Slipknot. And I told guys in my band that I wouldn't do it, if they ever called me that I would say no. And I think I said that because I didn't think they would ever call me. But I also didn't wanna feel like anything was ever handed to me; I wanted to feel like I did it on my own, that I did the legwork. I was, like, 'Yeah, you know, they called me to ask me to join Slipknot.'
"My buddy Zack's funny — he was, like, 'What are you, fucking stupid? What'd say 'no' for? Dude, you've been working your ass off since you were 16 playing in bands in clubs and you played with these guys in bands in clubs.' He was, like, 'Very few times in life do you get a chance to take a huge leap forward. That doesn't come sometimes ever to anybody.' So I immediately got up from the table and got on an actual pay phone and called Clown collect. 'Did you guys find a guitar player yet?' He was, like, 'Nope.'
"And it was a Saturday night. I decided, 'Fuck it,' so I literally quit my job that Monday and then rehearsed with that band Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and then Sunday I got in a car with Mick and we drove to L.A. to work on the rest of the first self-titled release record."