It's been three years, and I miss him just as much.
On December 8, 2004, arguably one of the greatest guitar players ever to walk the face of the earth was murdered. He had no equal, man. He was a god among men. He was murdered infront of hundreds of people at a nightclub in Columbus, Ohio. He was ripped from our arms by a mentally challenged piece of human shit who blamed him for "stealing" his material/breaking up the band/whatever unacceptable reason he gave. The person whose life he had stolen was "Dimebag" Darrell Lance Abbott.
Like myself, the fans of rock n' roll placed Dime on a pedastal, citing him as our influence. He was one of my influences to play guitar. The first Pantera song I ever heard was one that was one of their songs that the band will probably be most remembered/praised for was "Walk." Back when ECW was around, Rob Van Dam used it as his theme song. I wanted to learn more about the song, where it came from, what band, what album. It wasn't until my best friend got me into some other songs. I was pulled into a world of sonic fury. With songs like "Mouth For War", "This Love," Fuckin' Hostile,""Cemetary Gates,""Domination," just to name a few. The songs grew on me, and I started listening to other songs they had done, like "Medicine Man" and "Regular People (Conceit)." I bought the albums and listened to the haunting voice of Phil Anselmo. The chugging-like shredding of Dimebag. The blood-curdling bass of Rex Brown and machine gun drumming of Vinnie Paul. While most of the faggots at my high were getting into PUSSY ASS SHIT like Fall Out Boy and New Found Glory or Simple Plan, I like others and the ones before me gave them a big fat FUCK YOU by supporting what I call the Greatest Band of All Time, PANTERA. It's what seperated us from them. Hell, I even managed to make a few fans.
I remember where I was when I found out. I was checking my e-mail in my science class. My mom sent me an e-mail about it. I thought it was a bad joke. Then, to be sure, I went to the Damageplan website, which welcomed me (or lack thereof) with a headshot of Dime with the words "DIMEBAG DARRELL 1966-2004." I couldn't believe it. My jaw dropped like they used the jaws of life on it. I went home from school that day and I realized that one of my music heroes had died. I'm still not over it. The fans still aren't over it. His Damageplan/Pantera bandmates are far from "not over it." Over the next few days I came across a video of Phil Anselmo venting about Dimebag about how he loved him. That's funny, I have that magazine of Metal Hammer magazine where it says otherwise. Vinnie claims to have tapes of the interview, while Phil claims his words were taken out of context. Two sides for every story, I know.
After his death, I found a karaoke bar in my mom's town that had 1,000's of songs. They had Cowboys From Hell. I figured, what the hell. I did my best impression of Phil Anselmo, and that ENTIRE bar ate it up. The bartender pulled me aside after I was finished and told me and I'm not bullshitting, that people have tried to sing that song many a time, and that I was the only person who did the song justice. Me. A then 16-year old punk ass kid from Northen New Jersey made a Texan Karaoke bar go wild. Knowing that I could do this, I wanted to do it on a bigger scale.
Juinor year of high school, I tried out for the Talent Show. but I was cut from the final line up. All because some prissy fucking CUNT CHEERLEADER basically thought I wasn't fit. I was totally bummed out. I saw this as my one chance to pay my respects, and I was denied. My friend Paula (who is just as big of a metalhead, maybe bigger) and I tried to get myself in as a special contestant, but it was too late. I had that gulp of sour milk called failure stuck in my throat.
Senior year of high school. My last chance to publicly pay homage to my fallen hero.
My senior year I seen as my last attempt. If I was going to do the Talent Show, I had to do it the only way I knew how. Furious, I signed up once again. I know a lot of you are thinking "It's only a talent show." Fuck you. It meant the world to me. With the never ending support I got, I went to the audition. I did Cemetary Gates. However, I felt like a got a mixed reaction from the teachers and students. I felt like I botched my chances. I felt as if not only did I fail myself, I failed Dime and the good name of Pantera. The next morning they posted those who made it. Me and my friend Cecily went to go check it out. To my surprise, I made the lineup. I gave her one of the longest hugs I ever gave anyone in my life. Tears almost became me. I told everyone I knew to come to the show that night, and bring people.
Showtime. I stood there in my black cowboy hat, my trenchcoat, my Tripp pants, my police shades, and a white button up shirt. Then I heard my introduction. Our senior class president came out.
Class Prez: He's singing a mysterious song...
Don't know why I told him to say that...
Class Prez: Some of you know him as SuperBeast, let's hear it for the singing of Mike (I refuse to type my last name)!
The next thing I heard was thunderous cheering. I came out there to a PACKED room. I couldn't believe it. I told that audience, the song I was gonna sing is dedicated to the person who gave me a reason to be on this stage.
The opening plays and as I sang the opening lyrics, I was shaking uncontrollably. Not from stage fright, but from all the energy. The bridge plays, and Dime holds down that one note. During this time I took my hat off and threw it, my shades were thrown, and my trench was also thrown to the side of the stage. I took that shirt and ripped it open, exposing my Dimebag Darrell t-shirt. I did my song and it ended with one more loud cheer and applause, as I screamed into the microphone...
"NO! MORE! HEAD! TRIPS!"
When the show was over, I was welcomed with hugs, kisses, handshakes and ultimate praise from everyone. I still regard that as one of the best moments of my life.
In conclusion, I was/still am influenced by Dimebag. He changed what music is today. There will most likely never be another like him ever again. I am very thankful that I had to the opportunity to hear his music, and to say that he is one of the members of the greatest band of all time. He was taken before his time. I have nothing but love for him. I was inspired by him. Heaven has a Cowboy From Hell in their town, and he's taking over.
Rest in Peace, Brother Dime. We'll never forget, and always love.
Now, for some Pantera/Dimebag related videos. LET ME KNOW WHAT YOU THINK.
Phil Anselmo goes nuts on coward:
Phil shaves Motley Crue's Tommy Lee's head:
Pantera-Domination infront of 500,000+ people in Moscow:
Pantera goofing off/misc footage:
Dimebag Darrell guitar lesson:
Pantera-Becoming/Phil's ranting and raving:
Pantera-Primal Concrete Sledge:
I'll end it with...
Pantera-REVOLUTION IS MY NAME: