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Deftones Bassist Chi Cheng Passes Away

Deftones bassist Chi Cheng has passed away at the age of 42. The ailing bassist had been left in a semi-concious coma since being involved in a November 04th, 2008 car accident. His family and friends posted the following message regarding his passing via today, April 13th.

“Our dearest Family,

This is the hardest thing to write to you. Your love and heart and devotion to Chi was unconditional and amazing. I know that you will always remember him as a giant of a man on stage with a heart for every one of you. He was taken to the emegency room and at 3 am today his heart just suddenly stopped. He left this world with me singing songs he liked in his ear.

He fought the good fight.You stood by him sending love daily. He knew that he was very loved and never alone. I will write more later. I will be going through the oneloveforchi and any other information may not be reliable. If you have any stories or messages to share please send them to the onelove site. Please hold Mae and Ming and the siblings and especially Chi’s son, Gabriel in your prayers. It is so hard to let go.

With great love and “Much Respect!” Mom J (and Chi)”


  • fortybelownj


  • Lifeseclipse

    When I heard, it felt like my heart was crushed under a mountain. Nothing I can say…

  • TheMediaProphet

    God damnit. I haven’t been this bummed since Dimebag. You’ll always be remembered, Chi. There is a huge community that will always love you.

    • Lifeseclipse

      The community of Earth?

      • Lifeseclipse

        I was suggesting that the large community prophet was talking about was earth. As in “the world will always love him” How was that misconstrued?


        He meant the community of Deftones fans and other like-minded music lovers. Reading comprehension: how does it work?

  • TheMediaProphet

    I guess he can play bass for Dime and Layne Staley.

    • fortybelownj

      with bonzo and keith moon dueling on the drums

  • jampola

    I lost my uncle last night and now this. I’m shattered. Remember to treat every day as if it’s your last.

    • LunyAlex

      Sorry about your uncle, man.

    • MarsupialRebellion

      Very sorry to hear that bro, I feel your pain as I’ve had a surprising number of deaths in my family as of late as well, including my great uncle. He and my great grandmother passed away on the same day on April 1st. And my grandmother died in January, after many long health problems. My ex guitarist lost his sister three weeks ago as well, who was 17. It’s been a long fucked up year so far. RIP Cheng, love you buddy.

  • Alkeyhalikk

    Fuck… RIP Chi, you were an awesome dude.

  • Jenkem Dealer

    This sucks. Was hoping for the best over the years. At least he’s at rest now. One love for Chi, RIP!

  • Borc

    I remember the few times I saw him live, just something about the way he played. All of them just had such an energy about what they were doing, but you could always really see it with him and his dreads whipping around. Definitely a sad day for music.

  • Dudebrodie

    So sad and such a bummer he wasn’t able to recover from his accident. I was also lucky enough to see him live and will always remember those times. I’m grateful for what he brought to the world and will remember him for the rest of my days and every time i listen to the deftones. One Love For Chi!

  • Surly

    I felt that hollow feeling that no one wants to feel when I read this news. My thoughts are with his family.

  • goop

    It is a measure of a man whose spirit lives on and continues to inspire after he has left the earth. RIP Chi, see you on the other side.

  • ShizKiT

    Terrible news, RIP Chi…

  • Dixon Cider

    fucking lame…r.i.p.

  • ethos

    this is such a shame. RIP

  • Stereotypical Evil Archer

    Bamboo Parachute forever.

    I once had a long conversation with Chi in downtown Minneapolis; that has always been one of my favorite memories.

  • BlueBalls

    Fuck. This is heartbreaking news.

    RIP Chi. I feel incredibly grateful to have had the opportunity to see him play live so many times. The man’s onstage intensity was a sight to be seen. Chi and his maelstrom of dreadlocks will forever be ingrained in my mind. I never met the man but I can confidently say that I’m a better person for having experienced the music and energy he brought to the world.

    I hope his family can soon find peace.

  • Bob Ross

    Met him on the White Pony Tour. Great guy. Very funny and down to earth. Thanks for everything. RIP man


    Fuck, man. Just laying low tonight at the crib having a few rum ‘n cokes and I read this. Words can’t express my feelings right now, just saddening.

  • jayofdajungle

    smooth and serene transition brother…

  • scorpions

    RIP Chi! We love you!

  • jayofdajungle

    I forget who first said that the Deftones are the official band of theprp. Couldn’t be more true. This one hurts, first thing I thought to do was come here. I’ll never forget his onstage intensity, those dreadlocks flying, fuck dude FUCK

    • WURST

      Remembering those earlier vids thats exactly what comes to mind, those flying dreads and that voice, specifically that record store video. He added an element that Vega just doesnt possess.

  • BlueMoonRising

    Wow. I was literally just talking about Chi with one of my best friends earlier today with positive vibes. This is crushing. I never really expected him to play bass again, but I always held out the hope that he would join the guys on stage again in whatever capacity he and his family could endure. RIP Chi! My thoughts are with his family and the Deftones guys. I can not even begin to understand what they are going through with all of this.

  • dmoe

    It’s terrible news. The guy was amazing musician and it’s even worse news that he left this place after battling the outcome of that accident. Condolences to his friends and his family.

  • Lifeseclipse

    Chi’s big acting debut…

  • LunyAlex

    He had been fighting for so long. Crushing news.
    RIP Chi
    Much Love!

    My thoughts are with him and his family.

  • FarBeyondDriven

    First time I saw them was before Adrenaline came out, like 1990 or so at this club… couldn’t find footage of that show, but this place is so small. Seeing them blew my fucking mind. Chi was definitely a driving force for the harder stuff they did, you could see how much he loved playing it. I love everything the tones do, but those early days will always be etched deeply into me. One of my favorite concert experiences for sure…

  • chtimixeur

    I’m sad today. Reading that one member of your all time favourite bands has died feels weird, especially when he’s only 42. Listening to the Deftones feels weird today. Hearing his one of a kind bass licks and knowing we’ll never him hear scream his lungs out on backing vocals again also feels very weird.
    But at the same time, I’m also kinda relieved for him. The last 4 and a half years must have been a nightmare for him, his family and also his bandmates. Seeing him on that hospital bed was tough for his fans, so I can’t imagine how that was for his family and friends.
    Chi Cheng was a good man. I don’t think I ever read aything negative about him EVER.
    As a fan, I know I’ll keep on enjoying the albums he played on probably for the rest of my life.
    May he rest in peace.

  • They Ate Their Macaroons in Silence

    He’ll be thought of often and for a long time, with positive impressions.
    I’m thankful for all he shared.

  • wearesorta138

    Pushing the good vibes to his family. The man was bitchin and the worlds out another awesome individual.

  • allichs


  • BecomesMyVeryShackles

    R.I.P. Chi

    It sure gives you a reason to listen to Korn’s “Chi” with a whole new perspective and respect.

  • Daniels0719

    Not much I can say that hasn’t been said or thought about this man. R.I.P. brother! Sad day in rock n roll. To the Cheng family, my condolences.

  • Buddy Baker

    I was fortunate enough to meet him on the back to school tour; he was every bit as kind as they say. This is tragic news, may he rest in peace.

  • Fred Fred Burger (Darkdevout)

    Immensely saddened by the news when it came out, Chi Cheng your music will always have a special place in my hear <3

  • brownbear33

    Very Sad to hear… RIP CHI!!

  • Sniki

    Saw a pic of him in a friend’s instagram account, and I just imagined what had happened… And confirmed it here. Really sad news, RIP Chi :(
    … and yeah, I guess Deftones will be my soundtrack for the day.

  • My Farts Linger

    So incredibly sad. My heart goes out to his family, friends and all of his band members. RIP, Chi…

  • NeurISIS

    Shitty way to start the day. Rocking the discography from start to finish (like I needed an excuse).


    Sad that he’s gone but glad that he’s finally at peace. Will be rocking some old school Deftones in his honor throughout the day.

  • UhMilhouse

    Everyone that knew of him was hoping he would recover. Very sad. RIP Chi.

    • WURST



        You could say “Obviously.” about every single statement in this thread. Don’t be a fag.

      • WURST

        No, just this one. It goes without saying that everyone was hoping he’d recover. Therefore, obviously. Still can’t believe he passed. It’s weird.

      • UhMilhouse

        Didn’t mean to break your condolence protocol. I was merely stating how unfortunate it is, granted not in the most insightful way.

  • deftincu

    Still remember putting my friends headphones on, in my biology class, Sophomore year of high school, and hearing “Bored” for the very first first time. It was simply amazing.. It was the start of my love for heavy music. Chi’s bass riffs and intense scream solidified their powerful, and emotionally charged sound. I will never forget that moment. I am honored that I was able to see Chi perform live several times, and can honestly say that he was like no other. Those huge dreads whipping around helped to make their show more intense, and you could see his love for the music every time they performed. He was truly inspirational. RIP, Chi Cheng.. You will be missed.

  • Afghanistam

    Saw deftones and incubus white pony/make yourself tour in 2000 at mercer arena in seattle when I was like 16. Still, to this day, remains the best fucking show I’ve ever been to. Favorite deftones bass riff; 7 words.

  • schuler

    He held out so long. On one hand, it’s so sad to think of all that time spent only to die now. On the other, I know he was a tougher motherfucker than me or anyone I’ve ever met. His music changed my life when I was a kid, changed my life as an adult, and continues to influence me to this day. Rest in peace, condolences to the family and to Deftones.

  • llyod christmas

    Terrible news. Chi was always the warmest and chillest member of Deftones in my experiences. Really miss his stage presence and banter Chino and him use to have. I credit him for keeping these guys together through Chino’s dark days.

    I hope Eros gets released in the near future as some sort of tribute to Chi’s and his final work as a musician.

    • schuler

      I hope they release it and there’s a fucking hundred-dollar limited edition I can buy so that money can go towards paying his bills. For real.

  • SpinSwimScream

    Wow, this band started the year I was born. They have been one of my favorites and biggest influences since I was old enough to appreciate it. Chi’s playing taught me how to be a much better bass player. Nowadays, most bassists just follow the root notes of the guitar, but Chi definitely knew what he was doing. Hearing this news really upsets me. In his honor, I’ve been listening to Deftones all day. This might go all week. Rest in peace, Chi. You’ll never be forgotten.

  • HonkeyKong

    The just lost the most peaceful, open minded, down to earth people i have ever had the honor of talking to!! Nothing but Deftones in my ears for the rest of the week! Via con Dios brother.

  • picobo

    It’s very comforting to read all these nice and loving comments in regards to such sad news. I feel the same way, sad that he’s gone but happy that he is no more in pain. Chi, you and Deftones changed my life and I thank you for that! R.I.P.!!!

  • BloodyBoneKummer

    Just going to leave a simple Deftones quote for this
    “We’re alive somewhere else
    Still asleep someplace new
    We’re ahead of our time
    Floating through… ”

    R.I.P. brotha.

  • Surly

    It’s great to see so many respectful tributes being paid by various online music news sources. As we all know, he played a massive part in defining ‘music that moves’ so many fans, musicians and his peers. I had the chance to chat with him a few times over the years and he was always a gentleman and a scholar.

  • G Scotty

    There will be no more pain now. At least he has found peace, and hopefully his family can as well. Guy was a legend, he’ll be remembered fondly in the years to come.

  • emvath

    I was pretty bummed when I heard this yesterday. I don’t play bass and really have no musical talent, but Chi was still an inspiration to me. Seeing him on stage, you could tell that he was doing what he loved and putting his heart and soul into it. I want to thank Chi and his family for allowing him to spend time away from them so that he could inspire so many of us. He will not be forgotten.

  • about_blank

    Listening to ‘Head Up’ right now. Fuck this dude will be missed.

  • KhanTROLL

    the next album the tones put out is going to be absolutely insane…

  • massdeath

    I know I’m late to the party here but let me just say “oneloveforchi”. RIP brother. Thanks for all the memories. You will be missed. It’s also nice to see this getting national attention it was up among the top headlines at CNN (up until the marathon bombings). Deftones por vida!

  • pigtails and jagerbombs

    They should release Eros as his swan song …..a last tribute to the warrior he was …..and give all proceeds to the family…rip brother

    • massdeath

      I disagree. If the Deftones thought the music wasn’t worth releasing, then it shouldn’t be released.

  • massdeath

    Wow even with the bombing it’s still on the frontpage of CNN:
    That’s good to see.


    Who’s the queer bait bastard who ran through here giving comments a thumbs down?

    • kturl69

      Fuck off WURST, I was in a bad mood so I thumbs downed all your bitch asses. haha


      Must be Otep on the rag again. Not a Deftones fan apparently,