Amid the glitz and shine of the 1999 MTV Video Music Awards pre-show festivities, a bit of genuine music news came as the Smashing Pumpkins announced that bassist D'arcy Wretzky had departed the band.In a statement released by Virgin Records to MTV News, the band announced that D'arcy had left the group she has been a part of since its formation in 1989. "D'arcy has left the Smashing Pumpkins," read the statement that MTV News' Serena Altschul relayed during the VMA pre-show. "The band's new album is finished and will be released on February 15, 2000 by Virgin Records. The Smashing Pumpkins will continue as a band and will tour in support of the new record." The personnel change comes shortly after the Pumpkins welcomed drummer Jimmy Chamberlin back to the fold after two and half years away. While the band was not actually present for the announcement, the move echoed a similar one in 1997 when the Foo Fighters announced the departure of guitarist Pat Smear during
the pre-show of the 1997 VMAs.
-- Robert Mancini