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        Darrell Abbott, better known as "Dimebag Darrell," was the lead guitarist for the metal band Pantera, and later Damageplan.

       Pantera's first album "Cowboys From Hell" defined Pantera as a newer style of metal, mostly thanks to Dime's guitar playing. Sometimes referred to as "groove metal," Pantera's style is extremely heavy but melodic at the same time. Many of the riffs and drum beats flow smoothly together, instead of the typical stop and start machine gun style (Pantera did that as well). Dimebag once commented on his writing style, "When I tried to play something and screwed up, I'd hear some other note that would come into play. Then I started trying different things to find the beauty in it." The way some describe groove metal is that close to every song and riff is super heavy, it has much thrash influence, but you can slowly bang your head to every song. Dime was a natural at writing riffs this way, a prime example of this is the song "5 Minutes Alone" from their third album "Far Beyond Driven."

Dimebag Darrell
RIP Dimebag

       The band's second album "Vulgar Display of Power" is known as one of the most heavy and brutal albums of all time. This album was Dimebag's best work. The lead singer Phil Anselmo said in an interview with Revolver magazine that Dime was crying while he listened to the finished album. When he asked what was wrong, Dimebag replied, "Its perfect." One of the great things about Darrell was his ability to play heavy grooves and melodies without always being complicated. In Pantera's most famous song "Walk" (which is on "Vulgar") the main riff is only two and a half notes, but its one of the heaviest songs of all time.

       Another great quality of Dimebag Darrell was how he used the guitar's harmonics in combination with the tremolo bar to make sounds and hit notes that are not typically heard. There are many examples of him playing like this on Youtube. Dime's guitar playing and writing just seemed to flow from every part of him, like his instrument was a part of his body.
 
       Unfortunately Dimebag Darrell Abbott was shot and killed by a fan named Nathan Gale on December 8 of 2004 while doing a show with his other band "Damageplan" in Ohio. The fan was said to be upset about Dime's original band Pantera breaking up because of disputes between members. He shot Dimebag five times, once in the head, killed three others, and wounded seven.

       Dave Mustaine said this on the night of his death, "...We must never forget his life, and his gifts, his genius, his terrific personality, and the legacy he left behind to remember him by. Darrell, I will see you in heaven and I, like so many more, love you brother. You will be missed."

   
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