The metal world has dealt with another loss yet again this year, with the death of drummer Vinnie Paul Abbot. Brother of deceased guitarist "Dimebag" Darrel Abbot, he is known for playing drums for Pantera, but also being involved in other bands such as Damageplan and Hellyeah.
Vinnie was born March 11, 1964 in Albilene, Texas. His father was a country musician, songwriter, and producer. This had become influential to young Vinnie to become a fellow musician. He also looked up to different drummers like Peter Chriss, Bill Ward, Alex Van Halen, and more.
As years passed, in 1984 he and Dimebag (at the time nicknamed "Diamond") created the heavy metal band Pantera. However, this is the Pantera that some people can't stand. They used to be part of the glam scene.
They recruited Terry Glaze on guitars, bassist Tommy D. Bradford, and vocalist Donnie Hart. Tommy left in 1982, and Rex "Rocker" Brown joined the band. Terry had taken over vocals for awhile but then 18 year old Phil Anselmo later replaced him.
1987 rolled by, and the band began to get more influenced by thrash metal. This is when the album Cowboys From Hell was released, showing how much they changed themselves musically and visually. They tossed away their glammy side, Diamond Darrel changed his name to Dimebag, and the guys incorporated a mix of a groove metal and thrashy sound.
After this, came other great albums such as Vulgar Display of Power, Far Beyond Driven, and The Great Southern Trendkill.
After Pantera's 2003 split-up, Vinnie and Dimebag teamed up again to create Damageplan. They brought on tattoo artist Bob Zilla on bass and Halford guitarist Pat Lachman on vocals. Really this band didn't last very long, as they only made one album, called New Found Power. It was released February 10th, 2004. Sadly, on December 8, 2004 Vinnie witnessed his brother get shot onstage while they performed during a tour supporting this album...
Though he went through his time of grief over the loss of his brother and fellow bandmate, Vinnie continued on. 2 years later he created Big Vin Records and he did a collaboration album called Rebel Meets Rebel, which is a country metal album that included past stuff from the Pantera guys. For years he (and Dimebag when he was alive) was friends with guitarist Zakk Wylde, and in 2013 Vinnie played guitar in a music video for the cover they did together of "Ain't No Sunshine", the collaboration of Vinnie Paul and Zakk's band Black Label Society.
Back after his brother died, Vinnie went on to join the supergroup Hellyeah.
In this band he rocked with vocalist Chad Gray, guitarist Greg Tribbett (originally from Mudvayne), bassist Bob Zilla (from Damageplan), and guitarist Tom Maxwell (from Nothingface). From the time of their formation to 2016, they released a total of 5 albums into the music world. June 17, 2018 he played his final show at The Vinyl an The Hard Rock Hotel and Resort in Las Vegas.
But then, on June 22, Vinnie passed away at the age of 54. He suffered a massive heart attack while in his sleep. It took 2 days for the actual cause to be mentioned on the media.
At the time of his death many other bands poured out their sorrow in social media, bands such as Metallica, Megadeth, Lamb of God, In Flames, The Acacia Strain, etc. At my end, the first I ever heard of this guy was when I was literally a baby, from my parents owning a few copies of Pantera albums. I was too young to remember that now, but for many years they didn't have the CDs anymore till 2010, and the CDs then were Cowboys From Hell, Vulgar Display of Power, and Far Beyond Driven. My mother always had me pick the albums to play on the car radio and a lot of times it ended up being from that little bunch. I thought from the start that it was just so bad ass. And this day I still think it. In recent time I have been checking out music from Vinnie's other bands too, and its impressive as well, but Pantera will always be my main fav out of the rest. Below are some of the songs that I love.
Though this metal god has left our world, he has left a major influence among many.
Rock In Peace Vinnie Paul Abbot \m/