Paramore Split Gets Nasty: Josh Farro Calls Former Band 'A Manufactured Product'
When [artist id="1968732"]Paramore[/artist] [article id="1654588"]announced this past weekend[/article] that they had parted ways with brothers Josh and Zac Farro, they did so by taking a not-so-subtle jab at their former bandmates, writing, "None of us were really shocked. For the past year, it hasn't seemed as if they wanted to be around anymore ... We want Josh and Zac to do something that makes them happy, and if that isn't here with us, then we support them in finding happiness elsewhere."
On Tuesday, Josh Farro fired back with a lengthy statement posted on his blog -- a statement verified as authentic by his wife, Jenna -- and he didn't pull any punches.
"Let me start by apologizing to you for the way everything went down on Saturday. I had a statement typed ready to post to you guys but Hayley released one without my permission," his statement begins.
"I wish it didn't have to happen that way, Zac and I wanted to be the ones you heard it from. I want to be honest with you guys about how this band formulated from day one. I did not think Hayley's version told the whole story, at least from our perspective and hopefully this will explain a bit about why we are leaving."
Farro then proceeds to take countless shots at the band, calling Paramore "a manufactured product of a major label," and accusing frontwoman Hayley Williams of not only being manipulated by her management, but also of treating the group as her solo project. He claims that Williams is the only member of the band signed to Atlantic Records, and that her bandmates were simply "riding on the coattails of 'Hayley's dream.' "
"Hayley's manager would tell the band to be in the lobby of the hotel at a certain time, but he and Hayley wouldn't show for hours. We found out that they had been meeting with record label executives all morning without us, which is totally weird given that this wasn't simply a solo artist, but we were a band," Farro writes.
"The band was in the dark the whole time. After many meetings between Hayley, her manager and the labels they decided to sign her to Atlantic Records. We didn't understand why Hayley was the only one signing the contract since we were told this was a 'band,' but we were too young to grasp all of this. ... Next thing we knew we were having a signing party for Hayley."
Farro also claims that, even from the early days of the band, Williams was a pawn of her management, who, along with her parents, "controlled her every move" and "didn't like the idea of Hayley being in a rock band, so they forced her to leave, wanting her to pursue a solo career."
He then writes how, after Williams attempted to launch a solo career, she came back to the band and asked the Farros to rejoin, as he puts it, "the band we started," on the advice of her management. Farro also claims that, despite the fact that he came up with the name Paramore, the project was always meant to showcase Williams, and that, at her insistence, they were meant to operate under the assumption that they were an actual band.
"The management then decided to build our band up the grass-roots route. They put Hayley on Fueled by Ramen not making it known she was signed to Atlantic as well," he writes. "All the while we still questioned whether or not we were an actual band, but Hayley continued to insist we were, despite our being ignored and pushed around by the label.
"Hayley's father ... would constantly threaten to 'pull the plug' on the whole band if we complained about anything, suggesting that we were hired guns and Hayley was the real artist, when in reality we were also part of the band. We've always been treated as less important than Hayley. It's been obvious how her family views things."
Farro also confirms longstanding rumors that he and Williams dated, and that after their breakup, "things started going downhill for the band."
He mentions that he and his brother first considered quitting Paramore after the band [article id="1583472"]canceled a week of European shows in 2008[/article], and shoots down Williams' claim that 2009's Brand New Eyes reunited and recharged the band.
"Hayley claimed that this record reunited us as band and made us grow closer together, when in reality we were all growing further apart," he writes. "Suddenly the band had spilt into two sides. Touring became more difficult since we couldn't agree on anything. The friendships our band once had were no longer existent."
He closes the statement by saying he didn't intend "to belittle or disgrace" his former bandmates and that he simply wanted "to clarify our decision for leaving and our desire to finally tell you guys the truth." He also adds that both he and his brother were trying to figure out "a friendly way to leave our part of Paramore intact."
He closes the letter by saying, "We want to thank you guys for all of your love and support over the past seven years. It's been an honor creating and playing music for you. If music is what God calls us to in the future, we hope that you all will be a part of it."
A spokesperson for Paramore's labels, Atlantic/Fueled By Ramen, could not be reached for comment on Farro's statement.
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