Somewhere, packed away in anticipation of the move, there is a box of photos. In the box of photos there are some pictures of him. Pictures of us. He was just an acquaintance—a friend of my friend R.
R was the most rabid music fan I have ever known. He was younger than me but had a musical knowledge leaps and bounds above me. We both had a penchant for the weird and obscure, so we traded tapes all the time and turned each other onto some great stuff. We also both loved heavy, fat bass chords and nasty metal guitar licks. Neither of us were “metal-heads” in the broad sense of the term, but we loved to crank up Soundgarden’s BadMotorFinger and Monster Magnet’s Spine of God.
R traded tapes with a lot of people. One of them was Phil Anselmo, who later became the frontman for Pantera. Through R, I got to meet and hang out with the band. There was always a standing invitation for free tickets and aftershow passes. One time I was invited to dinner with the band, and we took over Allyn’s Café and had a blast. They were a lot of fun and a great bunch of guys.
“Dimebag” Darrel Abbott, former lead guitarist with Pantera, current guitarist for Damageplan, was gunned down onstage last night at Alrosa Villa in Columbus. I didn’t know Dime that well, but from the times I hung out with him I thought he was a good, decent guy with a twisted, hilarious sense of humor. And he was a helluva guitarist.