Zakk Wylde Doesn’t Need Pantera’s Fame, Dimebag Darrell’s Guitar Tech Explains

Grady Champion, Pantera’s Dimebag Darrell’s guitar tech, was recently interviewed by Guitar World, where he shared his disappointment with the comments that Zakk Wylde’s playing for Pantera is not the same as Dimebag’s. The guitar tech said:

“I hate all those internet ‘experts’ expecting Zakk to clone Dime note for note, sound exactly like him, use his guitars, blah, blah, blah. So many people think that’s the way to go, but it’s not. That’s not what this celebration is all about. It’s having fun, playing Pantera’s music to a crowd, and doing it your way. People have to understand it’s a tribute, it’s a celebration, and he’s there for the brothers.”

He, claiming that Dimebag Darrell would have wanted Wylde to play his own way, too, added:

“Zakk’s got enough fame, and he’s also got a bunch of other irons in the fire. The fact he’s put it all on hold to do Pantera is an amazing tribute to Dime and Vinnie. He’s doing what he wants to do, and it’s totally genuine. There isn’t anyone Dime would rather have doing this, either. And he’d want Zakk to play like Zakk because of the mutual respect those two had for each other as players and as people.”

Wylde joined the new Pantera, who played their first show last December, and apparently, he has been feeling the presence of Dimebag ‘all the time’. In an early interview, he said the following:

“It’s so crazy because when we started talking about doing this thing, there would be constant reminders about it wherever I went. I told Barb [Wylde’s wife], ‘Dime is willing this thing to happen. He wants this to happen.’

I’d just get constant reminders of him all the time, whether it was a picture or something on my phone, or I’d be driving, and I’d see a Pantera license plate or a ‘333’ somewhere – that was Dime’s lucky number. I was literally going, ‘He’s watching, and he’s here with me.'”

After 20 years off of stages, the band’s surviving members Phil Anselmo and Rex Brown, have reunited with Charlie Benante of Anthrax and Wylde to honor their former bandmates. Pantera is currently on tour and is set to join Metallica for their North American tour at the end of this year and into next year. Check out the tour dates here.