5 Classic Rock Band Members Kicked Out Before They Made It Big

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As the rock world is filled with drama, here are five memorable ejections of musicians before their bands make it big:

Syd Barrett – Pink Floyd

After his mental health conflicts were magnified by the constant use of acid and other drugs, the founding leader of Pink Floyd was ousted and replaced by David Gilmour in a very peculiar way. The story goes that in 1968 while the members of the band and David Gilmour were in a car heading to their next presentation, someone asked if they were to pick up Syd, to which another responded, ( it was probably Roger Waters): “oh no … let’s not bother him.”


Dave Mustaine – Metallica

The story of how the guitarist was kicked out of Metallica is perhaps one of the band’s best-known stories. In April 1983 after the group traveled to New York to record their debut album, Mustaine was notified of his discharge when he was transferred to a Los Angeles-bound bus in lieu of his next performance. The musician apparently had many problems with the group due to his alcoholism, drug abuse, and personality clashes with James Hetfield and Lars Ulrich.


Pete Best – The Beatles

Before Ringo, it was Pete Best, the original drummer for The Beatles. The musician was fired two years after the group’s formation, apparently for his lack of creativity. However, other sources point out that the rest of the members of the band (especially Paul McCartney) envied him for his popularity with the girls. True or not, the truth is that Best did not fit in with the rest of the Liverpool quartet.

Paul Di’Anno – Iron Maiden

British band Iron Maiden took over the world with their Heavy Metal when they consolidated their lineup with Bruce Dickinson on vocals. Before Bruce Dickinson, Iron Maiden had other vocalists, more precisely Paul Day, Dennis Wilcock, and Paul Di’Anno, with the latter recording the first two albums on the discography of the metal legends.


Glen Matlock – The Sex Pistols

He was a founding member of the Sex Pistols and allegedly expelled from the group for liking the Beatles. Later, along with Midge Ure, Rusty Egan (both later in Visage), and Steve New, a historical punk, starred in an interesting chapter of the new wave in front of the Rich Kids power powers.