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This Is Just A Tribute

PHIL ANSELMO Touching Tribute to DIMEBAG DARRELL: Says PANTERA Would've Eventually Reunited If Dime Lived

On the 10th anniversary of Dimebag's death, Phil Anselmo pens some touching words.

On the 10th anniversary of Dimebag's death, Phil Anselmo pens some touching words.

A few months ago, I had the chance to interview Phil Anselmo. It was something I was looking forward to for a long time. As I was preparing for the interview, it dawned on me that we were approaching the ten year anniversary of Dimebag's death, which is today. I wanted to ask Phil about it and so as we were approaching the end of our time, I started my question. The moment I blurted out the first word of the question, all the air seemed to leave the room and it ended up being a bit awkward for me, but Phil carried through. I asked Phil if there was any celebration planned, a poor choice of words, as Phil said he had no plans of celebrating. Here is exactly what he said:

Needless to say, revisiting his thoughts about Dimebag must not be easy for Phil. But on today's anniversary The Kid sucked it up and penned a beautiful tribute to his former bandmate for Rolling Stone. Here are some highlights:

On first meeting Dimebag:

The first time I ever laid eyes on Dimebag was in 1987 when I tried out for the band. I said, Jesus Christ, look at this skinny guy with this Afro playing guitar. His hair didn't quite reach his shoulders, because he had this real long-ass neck, and it had this bounce to it. Later, I told him, "Dude, you look like a ruffled-up, fucking old Q-tip." And he laughed.

When I joined the band, he was going by "Diamond Darrell." I was always in the process of morphing the band into what we eventually did become, by controlling the cassette deck and turning them guys onto early Mercyful Fate, Slayer and shit like that. After awhile, I was like, "This 'Diamond' shit ain't gonna cut it anymore. Brother, you ought to change that shit to 'Dimebag,'" and the look on his face was priceless, 'cause I could tell he loved it right off the bat. It just cracked his ass up and he went with it from there.

A great prank Dime pulled on Anselmo:

There was this cat who used to come out to shows in a certain town and he was a nice enough guy, but he wanted to hang out a little too much and kind of got on everybody's nerves. The day we got to the town was one of those days where I rolled over on the wrong side of the bunk thinking the worst. I head to my dressing room, and there's this huge, two-page letter from this guy that says, "For Phil." The guy's saying, "I hear you guys have some time off, so I'm planning on coming down to New Orleans and visiting your house. I've got your address, and I'm going to bring my wife with me and she'll give you special favors." And I'm going, "Motherfucker, man. This is a nightmare." I'm furious. I'm beside myself all day long. And about an hour before the show, as usual, Dimebag kicks the door open on my dressing room with a couple shots of whisky in his hand: "Time to get going, motherfucker. Let's go." And he goes, "By the way, that letter, that was total bullshit. I wrote the whole fucking thing." God damn it. I grabbed him and I said, "You motherfucker!" He had me wound up all fucking day long. It made the rest of the night a blast.

On recording with Dime:

I remember when we recorded "Cemetery Gates," at the end of the song where I'm hitting the wailing high notes and he's matching me with his whammy bar, that was competition – who can outdo who. And of course he'd hit this crazy high fucking note that there's no way I could. It made him feel awesome for that five or 10 minutes, but later it was always, "Fucking great job, man."

On reuniting Pantera if he was still around:

If he were still alive, I'd damn well know him, because of our love for each other. He was one of my best friends on this planet, and best friends – especially those with strong personalities and integrity – butt heads sometimes. But we always found a compromise. I know for a fact that we would've made more music together. There would've been more Pantera tours. There would've been more albums.

I highly recommend taking the time to read the entire piece.

Sadly, it seems like Dime's brother Vinnie Paul will never reconcile with Phil Anselmo even though he has said he feels there is no bad blood between the two.

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