Anthrax’s Frank Bello Pays Tribute to Dimebag Darrell
Thursday marks seven years since Pantera and Damageplan guitarist Dimebag Darrell was killed onstage. Over the next few days, we will be posting remembrances of him by his friends. Today, Anthrax bassist Frank Bello looks back fondly on his time with the axman, who contributed solos to Anthrax’s Stomp 442, Volume 8, and We’ve Come for You All albums. The thrash icons’ latest, Worship Music, contains the song “In the End,” which pays tribute to Dime and Ronnie James Dio. The new, 100th issue of Revolver, which is available here and on newsstands on December 13, features a free pull-out poster of Dimebag.
“We were so close to him. He was one of us. Dimebag was the sixth member of Anthrax, because he played on the last few records. I thought paying tribute to him in song was a great idea.
“I lost a brother 13 years ago. He was murdered. And then to have Dimebag go in such a bad, traumatic way—he’s one of our brothers. Dimebag was like a brother to me.
“We had a lot of good times. That Anthrax-Pantera tour [in 1997], that was a scary tour. The shows were great. But on that tour, I brought a parasite home with me from Mexico in my stomach. So I couldn’t hold anything in my stomach including liquor. Now imagine being on a Pantera tour without drinking liquor. At one point, it was so bad because everything I put in my body, it was like a funnel–it came right out of my body. So I would have to run from these guys and hide. Because Dime’s chasing me with this Black Tooth [Grin, Dime’s signature drink, which was a shot of Crown Royal or Seagrams 7 with a splash of Coke]. He’d be yelling, ‘Let’s go, let’s go, let’s go!’ So I’m shooting this thing with a beer right after it.
“Dude, I swear to God, as soon as it went in my system, I was right on the bowl. So I laugh at that now, because I remember Dime laughing at me. As soon as I shot the Black Tooth, he’d go, ‘You’ve gotta go now, right?’ And he’d laugh. It was a great time. Of course it was painful for me, but it was a great thing for Dimebag. Those are the things you remember. It’s a time in your life I’ll never forget. I love them and I miss them. Only the good die young.”
Dimebag photo by Lorinda Sullivan