Remembering Dimebag Darrell, 14 Years Later

Header image first appeared in a Kerrang! tribute to Dimebag on the first anniversary of his death.

Fourteen years ago today, former Pantera guitarist “Dimebag” Darrell Abbott was murdered by a crazed ex-fan while performing with his band Damageplan. He was 38 years old.

Dimebag’s influence on rock and roll can’t be overstated. His steely guitar sound and aggressive yet soulful riffs helped redefine heaviness in music, showing that sometimes a gravelly roar sounded louder than a piercing scream. Pantera became metal’s new standard in the Nineties, and so much of that was because of Darrell. Without his talent, hundreds of our favorite contemporary bands would never have formed.

More than that, though, Dime was one of us. At a time where guitar gods were revered as aloof wizards, Darrell was a sweaty everyday metalhead, the kind of guy who wanted to show you his Kiss vinyl and mix you a drink in his family’s basement den. He reminded the world that, with the right amount of hard work and dedication, even the misfit kid with nothing but a guitar and a little bit of weed can live their dream.

That this year also saw the death of Darrell’s brother and drummer Vinnie Paul makes today sting a little harder than usual, but we’d rather remember him sadly than not remember him at all. Everyone at Kerrang! sends our hearts out to Darrell’s friends and family on this difficult day.

Cheers, Dime — thank you for everything.

Posted on December 8th 2018, 7:00pm

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