Panic! at the Disco drummer Spencer Smith has left the band, according to a note Smith posted on the Panic! website Thursday. “After 10 years of being a part of this unbelievable journey,” he writes, “it saddens me to say that I will be leaving Panic.”
Along with Ryan Ross, who left Panic! in 2009, Smith was one of the founding members of the band. They debuted with A Fever You Can’t Sweat Out in 2005 and gained popularity thanks to their second single, “I Write Sins Not Tragedies.” The album went on to peak at No. 13 on the Billboard 200. They’ve made three other albums since.
Smith discusses his struggles with addiction in the letter, where he also thanks his bandmates for being there for him. “They helped me through those rough times, and now, on the other side, with two years sobriety from prescription medication, and working on a year sobriety from alcohol, I am nothing but grateful for all they have done,” he writes after vaguely explaining why he’s leaving. “I loved it all,” he says. “But, at a certain point, I realized that I wasn’t able to be there for the band the way I wanted to be, and more importantly, the way they needed me to be.”
Frontman Brendon Urie is now the only founding member still in the band. He tweeted out Smith’s announcement Thursday, writing, “Beautifully written. Only @TheSpencerSmith can make me laugh & cry so much at once. Love this dude.” Read Smith’s note here.