Dimebag Darrell Abbott live 1997[Photo Credit: Getty Images]
Pantera 1998[Photo Credit: Getty Images]
Pantera and Slayer 2001[Photo Credit: Getty Images]
Dimebag Darrell Abbott[Photo Credit: Getty Images]
Dimebag Darrell and Slash[Photo Credit: Getty Images]
Damageplan 2004[Photo Credit: Getty Images]
Darrell Abbott and Vinnie Abbott[Photo Credit: Getty Images]
Dimebag Darrell tribute guitar[Photo Credit: Getty Images]
RockWalk 2007[Photo Credit: Getty Images]
It’s been 10 years today since the tragic death of Darrell Lance Abbott, better known to metalheads far and wide as Dimebag Darrell of Pantera. His senseless murder, while performing on stage with the group Damageplan, left a giant hole that can never be filled in the world of heavy metal guitar playing, and of course in the hearts of his family and fans.
Inspired to pick up a guitar in emulation of his hero Ace Frehley of Kiss, Texas native Darrell Abbott formed Pantera in the early 1980s with drummer and brother Vinnie Paul, and bassist Rex Brown. With the addition of seething frontman Phil Anselmo and the move to a heavier sound, informed by thrash and underground metal influences, the band set the hard rock world ablaze on such releases as 1990’s Cowboys from Hell and Far Beyond Driven, which celebrated its 20th anniversary this year.
As a guitar player, Dimebag Darrell had it all; a knack for crafting ultra-heavy but also hooky riffs, lead chops to give idol Eddie Van Halen a run for his money, and stage presence out the ass. He is also known to have been one of the nicest guys to have ever played sick, violence-inducing metal, with Foo Fighter Dave Grohl recently citing him as a role model in Rolling Stone magazine. On this anniversary of his death, crank up your favorite Pantera song and raise a drink to the memory of one of the greatest heavy metal guitarists of all time.