When I first heard this story, I was shocked and disappointed by this news, until I saw Tom’s post on Instagram about how he never quit. This was a huge relief for me, as Tom is a huge part of the band (as well as Mark and Travis of course), and I couldn’t imagine the band continuing without him. It just wouldn’t be the same.
However, during a Rolling Stone interview, Mark and Travis described him as “ungrateful” and “disingenous”, and that Matt Skiba (guitarist of Alkaline Trio) will be replacing him for their upcoming set at Musink Festival. They also talked about the frustrations they were having with Tom, particularly when they booked the studio for early January and received an email from Tom’s manager explaining how Tom didn’t have any interest in recording, and was more focused on his other stuff. Why he couldn’t talk to them himself is totally beyond me.
They say that it’s hard working with someone who is ungrateful and that they’ve done all they could for him, and it’s all been pushing the band back for years and that he’s acting disingenous when he said he didn’t quit the band.
Personally, as much as I love Tom, this makes a lot more sense on Travis and Mark’s side. Unlike Tom, they want to continue with Blink-182 like they have done for the past 20 years, but it looks like Tom just isn’t set for it anymore. His manager told them that he was out, but he still denied it.
Hearing all of this disappointed me greatly, as Tom has been part of the band since the very beginning, and as much as I don’t want Blink-182 to end from this, I couldn’t imagine them moving on without him.
But I’ve now come to a realisation that huge changes such as this one happen in life, whoever you are or what you do. Yes, many fans are disappointed by this, and like so many other bands, they always want to keep their fans happy, but I think in this situation, we need to think about the band themselves. As sad as it may be, we should think about what they want as a band. They are human, after all. If Tom isn’t keen on continuing with Blink-182 anymore, he doesn’t have to.
Change is a huge part of life. Sometimes, we like it and sometimes we don’t. But either way, we have to accept it. There are many points in life where we have to face big changes and turns, whether we want to or not.
Two big turns in my life was starting college and university. When I left school at 16 to join college, I felt that I wasn’t ready to take that turn. As much as I couldn’t wait to leave school, I was used to it there, and the nerves of starting somewhere new made me want to go back, until I shortly settled in. Unfortunately, it took a little longer for me to settle in to university after finishing my two years at college, and there were a few times where I’d be in doubt and just wanted to quit and go back to life at home, but eventually I did, and I reckon I’ll be feeling the exact same way when I finish next year.
Also, it may be hard to let go of how things used to be, and it’s sad when you look back at those memories and realise that things aren’t really going to be the same again, but instead of feeling sad about what you no longer have, it’s better to reminisce them as fond memories.
I say this because I miss being teenager a lot, most significantly when I was 14. At the time, apart from school, I didn’t have a worry in the world. I remember in the summer when I was being driven home from the seaside in the evening. I used to watch the sun go down by the sea whilst I listened to Blink-182 on my iPod. They were a huge part of my life back then, and still are now. I miss those days a lot, especially now that I have a lot more responsibilities. Sometimes, I do wish I could go back, even if it’s just for a day, but I know I can’t live in the past forever, because life is about moving forward, not back. And just because times have changed since I was 14 and I don’t live how I used to back then, that doesn’t mean I won’t have more memories like that.
So all I can say about Tom’s departure is that he will always be a part of Blink-182, even if he won’t be in the band anymore. Blink-182 will move on without him, and it may not be the same, but that doesn’t mean it will be entirely bad. Yes, we can always remember how it used to be, but we have to look at the positivies, because there could still be good times ahead.
People change. Memories don’t.