Panic! at the Disco is one of the most successful emo bands to come out over the past 15 years. But there have also been significant changes in its lineup since its inception. Specifically, fans often want to know why did Ryan and Jon leave Panic! at the Disco?
Here’s what I’ve learned:
Jon Walker and Ryan Ross left Panic! at the Disco in 2009 because of creative differences. Brendon Urie wanted to take the band in a more pop direction, and Ryan and Jon wanted to keep to the style of the band’s album Pretty. Odd. for which Ross was the primary songwriter.
The thing about Panic! at the Disco is that their music has always been consistent.
Because of this, there has never been outrage over the departure of bandmates. In fact, Brendon Urie has very rarely discussed the metamorphosis from group to now Panic! being a solo project.
In this article, we’ll get more into Ryan and Jon’s stories. But we’ll also look at the other members that have left. Finally, we’ll answer everyone’s question of whether Brendon Urie is hard to work with.
Let’s get going!
panic! at the disco -i stan ALL members- (since 2017) pic.twitter.com/4QnHK5ow3G
— andre 3 ⊬ (@funnelofthesea) November 10, 2020
Why did everyone leave Panic! at the Disco?
Ryan and Jon left Panic! at the Disco over creative differences with Brendon Urie. Dallon Weekes left stating that he was “not contributing creatively anymore”. Original bassist Brent Wilson was fired for being irresponsible, and drummer Spencer Smith left due to drug addiction.
There have been 5 official members of Panic! at the Disco who have left the band since its inception in 2004.
Ryan and Jon are 2 of the most beloved former Panic! members. The pair went on to form the band The Young Veins. They released one album in 2010 called Take a Vacation.
The Young Veins then went on hiatus the same year.
Drummer Spencer Smith, who recorded four albums with the group, announced his departure in 2015.
As I mentioned, the reason he left was due to seeking help for his then-drug problem. This was announced on Panic! at the Disco’s official website.
Dallon Weekes was also a part of Panic! at the Disco from 2009 until 2017.
He began as a touring bassist but then became a regular member in mid-2010. Weekes announced his departure in 2017 via his Instagram account again for the vague reason of “not contributing creatively anymore”.
However, Dallon’s wife Breezy also later brought sexual abuse claims against Brendon’s close friend and Panic! security manager Zack Hall.
If her allegations are true, it’s highly likely that the abuse, in conjunction with Urie’s reluctance to stop Hall, was the primary reason Dallon left.
Urie did eventually fire Hall, but not until 2020; almost 3 years AFTER Dallon quit the band.
Earlier this week Ryan Ross performed the Panic! At The Disco classic ‘Northern Downpour’ – the first time it had been performed live by a current or former member of the band since 2011 https://t.co/AePdskvezl pic.twitter.com/CWL4eSzxev
— Rock Sound (@rocksound) October 5, 2019
Does Ryan Ross regret leaving Panic! at the Disco?
Original Panic! at the Disco guitarist Ryan Ross does not regret leaving the band he helped create as it became obvious that Brendon Urie wanted more control and wanted to take the band in a different direction. He does regret that Urie was unwilling to take a more team-oriented approach to the band.
Ross wrote the majority of the songs on the band’s first 2 albums.
Ryan Ross publicly said that leaving Panic! at the Disco felt like a breakup. After all, the band was more his than Brendon’s on those first 2 albums.
But he also saw the writing on the wall since Urie was the voice of the band and has such a powerful and distinctive voice. This does not mean that he regrets the decision. It shows that Ryan made a difficult decision.
What many people do not realize is that Ryan was the founding member.
Brendon and the others joined later. However, as time went on, the direction of the group shifted. Ryan could have stayed in Panic! at the Disco and enjoyed the upcoming success they were to experience. However, he was passionate about the music he wanted to make.
The problem was that the other members did not have the same vision.
August 31, 2006- Throwback when Panic! At The Disco performed on the VMAs stage. They won the Video of the Year Award. It is also in the same event that guitarist Ryan Ross met his ex-fiancee, Keltie Colleen. pic.twitter.com/2UVidldby6
— Panic! At The Disco Philippines 🇵🇭 (@PATDPilipinas) August 10, 2020
What really happened between Brendon Urie and Ryan Ross?
Brendon Urie and Ryan Ross did not have a big blow-up. But Ross did feel that Urie was taking the band Ross started and moving it in a new direction without Ross’s consent or involvement.
Ryan recently did his first interview in quite some time.
In the interview, he mentioned how he does not often communicate with the other members of Panic! at the Disco. He said that was especially true of Brendon.
It seems that after Ryan left the group to move forward with other projects, he lost contact. There was never a big fight.
However, one could assume he may have some negative feelings.
Some fans have realized this, but Ryan had the band he started taken away from him. They essentially moved on to a different sound.
This change was mostly led by Brendon, so it makes sense why he does not speak to him.
— Taylor Spotify (@tayonspotify) November 13, 2020
Is Brendon Urie hard to work with?
Brendon Urie is not difficult to work with and has collaborated successfully with many other artists. He is, however, driven with a clear vision of what he wants from himself, his band, and those who participate in it.
And sometimes, being driven and clear is seen as being difficult.
After all, between touring members and full-fledged members, Panic! at the Disco has had 9 members come and go in addition to Urie and the 9 current official touring members.
That equals an average lifespan of a Panic! member being only 1.7 years.
So for sure, don’t join the band expecting it to last a lifetime!
Given the fact that Panic! at the Disco is now a solo project, many would assume Brendon is hard to work with. This is because a difficult lead singer would be a cause for band members to leave.
However, the reasons those group members left were due to creative differences. There has been nothing publicly said about anyone having a negative attitude.
To further prove this, Brendon has worked with many other singers. One example is Taylor Swift. She has spoken openly in interviews about how much she enjoyed the experience.
And their song and video for ME! is pretty amazing.
– Panic! at the disco members as Brendon Urie ; A Thread⚜ pic.twitter.com/5Kav2emhYl
— malep ⊬ (@jeonmanaos) April 28, 2020
How many former members does Panic! at the Disco have?
Panic! at the Disco has a total of 5 official former members and 4 former touring members. Brendon Urie has been the only member since 2015.
Just as with most bands, there have been a number of changes to the lineup of Panic! at the Disco over the years.
They started with Ryan Ross, Brendon Urie, Brent Wilson, and Spencer Smith. From here, the changes happened one by one.
As with most bands involving live instruments, there are also a number of touring members.
These members do not record music and only perform on the road. They would also not do interviews or other promotional aspects of being in a band.
Despite Panic! at the Disco now being a solo project, there are still 9 touring members.
Panic! at the Disco has been around for over a decade.
Fans have witnessed many changes in the band. Over time, they evolved from an emo rock band to a group with a polished pop sound.
Now, Panic! at the Disco is a solo project. As the direction of the music changed, some members wanted to seek other musical endeavors.
None of these had the same success as Panic! at the Disco.
Now, Panic! at the Disco has released multiple successful albums. Brendon was even featured on Taylor Swift’s lead single from her 2019 album.
Panic! at the Disco is solidified as a hit machine.
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