Zakk Wylde Says Pantera Reunion Is A Celebration Of Dimebag Darrell And Vinnie Paul

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Black Label Society vocalist Zakk Wylde recently revealed on SiriusXM’s Trunk Nation With Eddie Trunk that the Pantera reunion would be an accolade of Dimebag Darell and Vinnie Paul.

Pantera broke up in 2003 because of the ongoing unresolved issues among the band members after releasing their last album ‘Reinventing The Steel,’ in 2000. Later, The Abbott Brothers, Dimebag Darrell and Vinnie Paul, formed the band Damageplan following the group’s breakup. A mentally unstable fan killed Darrell during their show in Ohio one year later. His brother Paul continued with Hellyeah but also passed away due to heart disease in 2018.

In the previous days, Pantera’s surviving members Phil Anselmo and Rex Brown announced that they would hit the road for a reunion tour starting in 2023. They also reported that Black Label Society’s Zakk Wylde would replace Darrell, while Anthrax’s Charlie Benante would be on drums replacing Paul on this significant tour, including North America and Europe.

The band’s announcement 22 years after their latest tour has received many positive reviews. On the other hand, some criticized them for making a reunion tour under the name of Pantera without having Dimebag Darrell and Vinnie Paul with them. For instance, The Darkness’ Justin Hawkins supported their idea of a reunion tour but advocated that they should have found another name for themselves.

Recently, Zakk Wylde, who would be on tour with the band, described this reunion as a ‘Pantera celebration.’ According to him, the tour aimed to honor the remaining and the passing members for the time they spent and created together. He resembled Pantera’s reunion with Ozzy Osbourne and Jimi Hendrix Experience, who commemorated and honored passing members in almost every show.

Zakk Wylde explained in his words:

“Whenever the idea of doing a tribute has come up, you’re celebrating the guys and all their achievements and greatness. And that’s what it is. ‘Cause everybody was like, ‘How can they call it a Pantera reunion?’ And I go, ‘Well, it’s Phil and Rex getting back together,’ because they haven’t played together for a while. I go, ‘It’s a Pantera celebration.’ That’s what it is.

It’s no different than Mitch Mitchell and Noel Redding from ‘Experience Hendrix’ asking Eric Clapton to come out and sing and play Jimi’s Hendrix stuff and honor him, and they’re going to go out and honor Jimi Hendrix. To me, it’s the same thing. With Ozzy, we honor Saint Rhoads every night. Every time we’re playing ‘I Don’t Know,’ ‘Mr. Crowley,’ and everything. You’re honoring Randy.

To me, it’s an extension of that. You’re honoring Dime, Vinnie, Phil, and Rex, all the guys, their achievements, what they achieved as Pantera, and all the mountains they conquered. That’s the way I look at it. That’s the way I’ve always looked at it.”

As Zakk Wylde expressed in the interview, he considers Pantera’s reunion a celebration of the entire band. According to him, throughout this tour, they will honor all passing and surviving members who contributed to the group’s success. The fans have been excitedly waiting for 2023 to see Pantera on stage after a long time with the attendance of Zakk Wylde and Charlie Benante.