By Jon Wiederhorn
One of the co-founders of 3 Doors Down, guitarist Matt Roberts, 38, died early Saturday morning in a hotel near Milwaukee.
Roberts played with the band from their formation in 1996 until 2012, when he quit due to health reasons. He was rehearsing for a Wisconsin fundraiser for veterans before he and his father returned to the hotel, reports Rolling Stone. Later, someone called police to investigate a man who was “either asleep or passed out in the hallway of his hotel.”
Robert’s dad Darrell Roberts told CNN that he woke up at 8:50 a.m. to the sound of detectives banging on his door. When he opened the door, the officers delivered the bad news. An autopsy will be conducted to determine the cause of death.
“Some of my fondest touring memories are with Matt Roberts and the @3doorsdown guys,” posted Shinedown guitarist Jasin Todd on social media. “They believed in us when no one else did. RIP Matty. Love you my man. Have a good journey and we’ll float those battleships again one day brother. Condolences to the entire 3 Doors Down family.”
Roberts co-formed 3 Doors Down in 1996 in Escatawpa, Mississippi with singer Brad Arnold and bassist Todd Harrell. The band’s big break came four years later when “Kryptonite” rocketed to Number Three on the Billboard Hot 100. Other songs Roberts co-wrote, such as “Be Like That,” “Here Without You” and “When I’m Gone” were also hit singles.” The band’s first two albums, 2000’s A Better Life and 2002’s Away From the Sun, were both multi-platinum.
Roberts left 3 Doors Down in May 2012 because touring so much “exacerbated health and circulation issues,” he suffered, reports Rolling Stone. “3 Doors Down will always have a special place in my heart and it saddens me to take this time off. But my health has to be my first priority,” Roberts said after leaving the band.