Yesterday afternoon, thousands of Slayer fans packed the Hollywood Palladium to pay tribute to one of metal's greatest guitarists, Jeff Hanneman. Hanneman passed away on May 2nd due to liver failure. It was an uplifting affair.
Metal Injection sent west-coast correspondant Johnny Orlando, Jr. to the scene and he will be filing a video report early next week, but for now here are some notes from the show:
After making a giant stink about how they will protest the memorial, The Westboro Baptist Church did not even bother showing up. Who did show up were a ton of Slayer fans and friends. Photographer Stephanie Cabral captured some great photos including this amazing shot of fans outside that looks like it could've been taken in 1983:
Many Slayer friends were in attendance, including Gary Holt of Exodus, Chuck Billy and Gene Hoglan of Testament, Dave Navarro, Machine Head's Robb Flynn and members of Suicide Silence to name a few. Despite his financial troubles, drummer Dave Lombardo was in attendance to pay tribute to Hanneman, who Lombardo previously said was a huge influence on his drumming style.
Here is an incredible photo Stephanie took of Lombardo and Gary Holt embracing inside the ceremony:
Speakers during the memorial included Kerry King, Metal Blade founder Brian Slagel, Robert Trujillo of Metallica, System of a Down’s Shavo Odadjian, Grim Reaper's Nick Bowcott, Dino Paredes from Slayer's label American Recordings.
There are cell-phone videos of plenty of the speeches from the night at the bottom of this post but the line of the night had to have gone to Brian Slagel:
“Ronnie, Dime and Jeff must be having an amazing jam right now.”
The highlight of the night happened during the memorial video, as Slayer was blasting and photos of Hanneman's life were playing, the Slayer fans in attendance couldn't help themselves and broke out into a double…circle…pit! I'm sure wherever Jeff is, that had to bring a huge smile to his face. Take a look:
Here are cellphone videos of the speeches. Again, we will be doing a full video report on the memorial early next week.
"Jeff hated being famous, but he loved being onstage," – Kerry King.
[photos in header montage via Stephanie Cabral and Robb Flynn. Hat tip to ThePRP]