Neurosis Singer Scott Kelly Admits to Abuse, Announces Retirement from Music

Kelly has admitted to engaging in "emotional, financial, verbal and physical abuse" of his wife and children

Scott Kelly of Neurosis

Warning: The following article contains potentially triggering material relating to domestic violence. If you are a victim or know someone who is, call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233.

Scott Kelly, co-founding member and singer of the California metal band Neurosis, has admitted to engaging in “emotional, financial, verbal and physical abuse” of his wife and children.

Following the admission, Kelly announced that he is “100% permanently retired from being a professional musician,” adding that, “My sole focus for the rest of my life is on taking care of my family, allowing them safe space to heal and rebuilding their trust.”

In a lengthy statement posted to Facebook, Kelly said he felt compelled to “set the record straight” after “the truth has started to leak out there have been people who have tried to blame my wife for my abuse to give me an out and [sic] people who have spread ridiculous and damaging rumors about her.”

“When I became paranoid that people were going to find out [about the abuse], I found ways to keep my wife and kids from work and school and created divisions with friends and family members,” Kelly wrote. “I became obsessed with control and used threats, manipulation, threats of self-harm and suicide, inflicted physical damage on people and their reputations all to keep that control.”

In explaining his decision to end his musical career, Kelly said:  “I know now that choosing to live a public life and be onstage was the worst decision that I could have made given the way that I am. I have hidden behind the attention and unfounded respect and adulation. I used my social position to directly and indirectly manipulate all of you and to hide the abuse of my family. I got satisfaction from my deception and perceived control of everyone involved. I am 100% permanently retired from being a professional musician. Some people can be in a scene like this where there is no accountability and maintain their integrity. I cannot.”

Update, August 29th: The other members of Neurosis have issued their own statement, expressing “disgust and disappointment” with Kelly, while revealing they actually parted ways with him in 2019. See their full statement.

Beyond his work fronting Neurosis for more than 35 years, Kelly was also a member of Shrinebuilder alongside Al Cisneros, Scott Weinrich, and Dale Crover, and appeared on six Mastodon albums.


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