Zakk Wylde (Black Label Society, Ozzy Osbourne) offered the following statement regarding the passing of his much beloved friend and legendary drummer of Pantera, Hellyeah and Damageplan, Vinnie Paul, who passed away on Friday at the age of 54.[metalwani_content_ad]
“God bless Vinnie Paul – 1964-2018. Father Vinnie, your compassion for others and your love of seeing everyone around you happy I will never forget. Your heart of gold made the world a better place. Go be with your beloved brother as I’m sure he’s holding the door open to greet you at god’s tavern. I love you, my brother.”
When potential Pantera reunions were on the card, the Abbott family consistently cited Zakk as the most natural fill in for guitarist Dimebag Darrell, who was tragically shot on stage and passed away at the young age of 38. Zakk had his own take on the idea of a Pantera reunion with him wielding the axe.
“People, when they talk about it being a Pantera ‘reunion,” He began, “it would be areunion in sorts of that Vinnie and Phil [Anselmo, Pantera singer] and Rex [Brown, Pantera bassist] are all buds and hanging out and everything’s good… in the ‘reunion’ regard. But, I mean, obviously, Dime… there’s only one guy that can do [what he does], and that’s Dime.”
He continued: “To me, I’d look at it as it’s a Pantera ‘celebration,’ is what it is, and all the mountains they conquered and all the greatness they achieved. And it would be me, if I’m playing guitar, honoring Dime‘s greatness, ’cause I love him. To me, that’s what it is.[metalwani_content_ad]
“To me, the way I look at it is, if Mitch Mitchell and Noel Redding asked Eric Clapton if he would play and sing Jimi‘s stuff, and Eric and Jimi were buddies, so, of course, Eric would do it. You know what I mean? ‘Cause what you’re doing is celebrating Jimi‘s life and Jimi‘s greatness. To me, it’s a Pantera celebration and Saint Dime celebration of his awesomeness. I mean, that’s the way I always look at it. I mean, I do it every night when I’m… When I was touring with the Boss [Ozzy Osbourne], we celebrate Saint Rhoads every night. You know what I mean? We celebrate Randy‘s greatness and what he created. So that’s the way I look at it.”