Rita Haney Breaks Silence On Vinnie Paul’s Death

Rita Haney, longtime girlfriend of the late Dimebag Darrell, has officially commented on Vinnie Paul’s (Pantera, HELLYEAH) death. You can read what she had to say in the below Instagram post. Vinnie Paul passed away on June 22 at the age of 54. An official cause of a death has yet to be revealed, but early reports have suggested his death was the result of a “major heart attack.”

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It has taken me a while to reach out and thank everyone for all of their love and support.. for just thinking of me.. means the world.. my apologies for being so tardy.. Thank you all❣️ I wish I could put into words what Dime and Vinnie mean to me.. but the emotions are so much more powerful than anything that I could ever say… I love you two so differently but yet both so dearly.. you both carried me through your lives and gave me your all.. I will always love you both and I will always fly your flag strong and proud.. Darrell has always been my heart through thick and thin even when I didn’t know, even when I made mistakes, he forgave me 100%.. Vinnie has always been my “big bro Riggs” for 43 yrs. through thick and thin even when I wasn’t sure.. and to know in the end here in this world, that Riggs still felt the same.. The last time we saw each other in Tampa, back in April, I told you that I knew you loved me because Darrell loved me, but that sometimes you just loved me” You gave me a big ol’ Vinnie Paul style hug and said “your right.. I do love you” We hugged again..❣️ I can never thank you two enough for the beautiful life you both have given me.. and still made sure to give me.. I miss you so.. My Abbott brothers.. Always Stronger Than All ♥️🌹

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Watch Bill Ward (Ex-Black Sabbath) Read Poem He Wrote For The Late Vinnie Paul (Pantera, HELLYEAH)

A public memorial was held for the late Vinnie Paul Abbott (Pantera, HELLYEAH) at The Bomb Factory in Dallas, TX on July 1 and during the event a number of friends and family paid their respects to the drummer in person and via video. One of the pre-recorded videos came from legendary Black Sabbath drummer Bill Ward, who read a poem he wrote for Abbott. You can watch that below. Abbott was laid to rest at Moore Memorial Gardens Cemetery in Arlington, TX, alongside his late brother and bandmate Dimebag Darrell Abbott, and their late mother. An official cause of a death has yet to be revealed, but early reports have suggested his death was the result of a “major heart attack.”

Filter’s Richard Patrick Says Phil Anselmo & Rex Brown Should Reunite Pantera With Friends Of Dimebag & Vinnie Paul

Filter’s Richard Patrick recently took to social media to express a desire to see surviving Pantera members Phil Anselmo and Rex Brown reunite with friends of the late Abbott brothers. Up until his death, Vinnie Paul never liked the idea of the band returning without Dimebag Darrell, so it probably wouldn’t be right to do it now. Regardless, you can read Patrick’s thoughts on the subject below.

Here’s Patrick’s statement (spelling mistakes included):

“Statement!! For some reason… I just feel the need to say this!! Phil Anselmo!! Is the greatest singer in metal. He’s the sweetest dude ever. I love that guy!! I really hope he knows how much we all love him. He’s been vilified! He’s been misunderstood!! But I absolutely just need and want to say this!!!

Coming from my punk Industrial past when I heard and saw Phil I was completely blown away. I was not into metal at the time but… when I saw a shaved headed punk fronting Pantera I thought to myself thats one of mine… a punk, mean as fuck, super voiced, crushing mother fucker who is speaking to me. Trent Reznor Played me A Vulgar Display of Power and I was awe struck. I was never the same!!!

HAVING SAID THAT… (I know I’m stepping in it and it’s none of my business no one put me up top this) IT WOULD BE A CRIME AGAINST MUSIC TO NOT PUT PANTERA BACK TOGTHER WITH TRUSTED FRIENDS OF VIENIE PAUL, DIME BAG!!! Off the top of my head.. I would think guys like Zack Wylde and Ray Luizer. PLEASE FOR THE LOVE OF MUSIC KNOW HOW MUCH I LOVED VINNIE AND DARREL!!


Rex Brown (Pantera) Shares Tribute To Vinnie Paul

Rex Brown has shared a lengthy tribute he wrote for his late Pantera bandmate Vinnie Paul. You can read that below, courtesy of Rolling Stone. Vinnie Paul passed away on June 22 at the age of 54. An official cause of a death has yet to be revealed, but early reports have suggested his death was the result of a “major heart attack.”

Brown said the following:

“I’ve been devastated, saddened, and shaken, almost beyond words, about the passing of my longtime brother in Pantera, Vincent Paul Abbott.

While I understand and appreciate the desire to hear from me, I have taken my time to collect my thoughts, to begin to process this terrible loss. I’ve chosen to decline the interview requests, because this is not about me. This moment belongs to Vinnie.

I’d like to send out my sincerest and heartfelt condolences to his relatives, to the Pantera family, to his newer family in Hellyeah, and to all of the fans that Vinnie Paul spent his life entertaining. My thoughts and prayers are with every one of you.

I’m especially heartbroken for Vinnie’s father, Jerry Abbott, who opened his studio and showed us the ropes in the early days. No man should have to bury his sons.

All I can do is focus on the great times and the brotherhood the four of us shared.

When I was in junior high, I’d heard of these boys, the Abbotts. I knew Vinnie Abbott was an outstanding drummer. We had met at a UIL contest for lab bands when I was 15. My high school had one of the best music programs in the country. I met Vinnie in tenth grade. I was playing bass and he was playing drums in one of the country’s most prestigious lab bands at the high school level. The lab band was always invited to Montreux Jazz Festival. The music directors were very cool, if you know what I mean.

Vinnie and I formed a really tight bond, as we would have to do sectionals. In these sectionals, they’d put Vinnie and I in a room, but rather than go over the stuff we were supposed to rehearse, we’d play Rush’s 2112 in its entirety instead.

The brothers and I went to every major concert together that came to town. We saw The Eagles, KISS, Pat Travers, Sammy Hagar, etc.

Vinnie’s little brother, Darrell, was by then learning a few chords from their father, who happened to be left-handed. When he was about 14, Darrell got in his room and studied all of the Randy Rhoads stuff on the first two Ozzy Osbourne albums. It changed his life completely. It was so surreal to watch somebody become such a protégé at such a young age. When Darrell emerged, by the age of 15, he’d won every major guitar contest in the Southwest region.

At some point they’d built a stage in their garage. Vinnie had a huge drum set. These guys had the only p.a. system in town, too, with microphones. What a blessing that was:: Around this time I was playing bass and singing in a three-piece band, Neck and the Brewheads. We’d play parties together, where we got paid in free beer and cheap acid. Dime would run sound for us and always arrived with a two-liter of Big Red soft drink and Slim Jim beef jerky, eating those things a half dozen at a time.

The brothers invited me to join their band, Pantera. We made our first album, Metal Magic, before I was 18…Playing Skating rinks to Prom’s to anywhere we could get a gig!! Aww..The exuberance of Youth.

Vinnie and I often went on fishing trips together back then. Even if we were hung over, we’d get up at six in the morning to go catch some fish. We usually went out on this big lake on the Texas/Louisiana border, Toledo Bend. Sometimes we’d go so far we’d get lost, or run out of gas in our little boat and have to paddle in. We even sunk a couple of those boats in our huge city lake and would have to swim to the shore.

I’d been around golf courses all of my life. I invited Vinnie out on the links once. After that, golf became our staple. I loved watching that guy hit a golf ball. He was so unorthodox! Sometimes he could just peel the shit off of a golf ball. We brought our clubs on the road with us every tour from about 1993 onward. We loved to play.

We became really tight over the course of those first three records, often playing six nights per week, five sets per night. When the old singer ran off, we got lucky enough to get Philip in the band. He brought something with him that was just incredible.

Everything changed, from musical styles to things we hadn’t heard before. Our playlists were completely different now. The four of us were always together, playing all over the state of Texas, Louisiana, and Oklahoma, at the same time selling boatloads of cassettes and vinyl out of the back of our car.

Dime and I always shared a hotel room and we were always up to no good, while Vinnie and Philip – two completely different cats – had to listen to our antics from the room next door.

We recorded a record with Philip called Power Metal and sold 40,000 copies out of said car. The major labels were now interested. We’d had 28 turndowns in the previous six years. Atco Records came to the rescue.

Once we got our foot in the door (meaning major label), we didn’t get off stage and start partying right away like most bands did. IT WAS ALL ABOUT THE JAM. We’d sit there and go through everything about the performance, every tempo, and every cue. Everything had to be spot on, for all of us, even when we were terribly hungover. We wanted to keep bettering ourselves. The times we just let it go and let the magic happen, the music pulled us all together to make what we did so special.

There were a lot of great metal drummers who Vinnie was influenced by, but once he got behind the kit, every single one of them had to take a look at what Vinnie Paul, the Brick Wall, was doing. He changed the game. He was the original for his generation, a generation that’s still going. Everybody wanted to play like him. People always thought those were sampled tracks – they were not. Period.

Vinnie was also a hell of an engineer. He knew the ins and outs of any board. He learned so young from his dad, who was an experienced engineer. He could get behind the board and do anything. He just had it.

In the ’90s, there wasn’t a tighter rhythm section than Vince, Darrell, and myself. Even on our worst night, we could dust you off the stage. Because the three of us had played so many clubs together, so many tunes, we always knew exactly where each other was going to go.

All of us were so uniquely different from each other, even the brothers. We all had unique personalities that all meshed together, because of our separate influences and personalities, that made the whole thing what it was. Unless you’ve been in a band, you can’t understand that the relationship between Dime and myself was one thing, between Philip and Vinnie was another, and on and on, in every combination.

When the four of us got in a room together, there was always a common goal.

To destroy.

I don’t think there’ll ever be chemistry like what the four of us shared again. I’ve been so blessed in so many ways by having them in my life. We were living and breathing each other’s everything for 20 odd years, which just like anything in life, has its difficulties, but nothing major. But even when there was little communication, we still shared tremendous respect.

When I look back, no matter what, I can honestly say that there were far more ups than downs with Pantera. It was uncanny the way we played together. Once we got into that state, with that black look in our eyes, we were fucking dangerous, man.

Those boys grew up wanting to be great like Alex and Eddie Van Halen. And you know what? They did it. When Pantera supported KISS on their reunion tour, all four of the original members came back to our row on a long flight to sing “Happy Birthday” to Vinnie. It was about the coolest thing that could have happened to him and us.

I’m so grateful to have been around the Abbott brothers, to play some part in their legacy, to share more than half of my life on the road and in the studio with them. And I’m so thankful that Vinnie found a home for his unmistakable groove, some peace and happiness, and a new family with Hellyeah, after the unthinkable tragedy in 2004.

I never thought of myself as anything more than part of the team. That’s the way we all were. It was all about that jam. How many people get to experience something like what we experienced together? Very few.

At the end of the day, all you can hope is that you gave it your all, ya’ know? Vinnie did. He gave everything he possibly could, as we all did.

The best way to honor Vinnie is to celebrate his life. He approached drumming, and friendship, with his own brand of perfection. We must remember the great times we shared with him. Rest in peace, Vinnie, and give Dime a big ole’ fashioned Texas style hug from all of us. You made an incredible mark on the world and you were taken from us way too soon.

Much love and respect,


Limited Edition Pantera Mini Guitars To Be Made Available At San Diego Comic-Con

Axe Heaven have crafted some limited edition Pantera mini guitars in conjunction with War Machine Marketing. The guitars, which will each feature album artwork from various releases, will be available at San Diego Comic-Con (July 19-22). There will be five options with the main three, “Vulgar Display Of Power,” “Far Beyond Driven,” and “Great Southern Trendkill,” being limited to 333. The other two, which feature “Far Beyond Bootleg” and an alternate cover of “Great Southern Trendkill,” will be limited to 150 and will only be available with the complete set. There will be 30 sets with all five guitars and 36 each of the three main guitars available each day. A raffle will be held each day to determine the order in which people can purchase them. It is also worth noting that another limited edition tribute item is being created for the fans that purchase the full set.

War Machine Marketing CEO, Ro Kohli commented:

“I’ve been a huge Pantera fan since 1991. Their records hold such a unique place in my heart and were there to help me through the ups and downs of life. I not only wanted to make a tribute to this band I love so much but to also honor Dimebag Darrell and his legacy in music. However, now with the passing of his brother, Vinnie Paul, we feel that this tribute is even more important than for fans. It has made what was going to be a celebration of the band and their meaning to everyone into a bittersweet tribute to the Abbott brothers.”

“We had been working on these guitars for the last 3 months and are so happy with how amazing they look. My goal has been to make an exclusive item that no one’s ever made before to tie us all back together to THE MUSIC. No matter what your political affiliation, your ethnicity, your background…Pantera’s music ties us ALL together and looks beyond all the trivialities of our differences. We feel that this is now the ultimate tribute to the band, to the brothers, and to the world they opened up for their fans. REST IN PEACE VINNIE PAUL & DIMEBAG DARRELL…Gone but never forgotten.”

Phil Anselmo To The Late Vinnie Paul: I Will “Always Have Love In My Heart For You”

A public memorial was held for the late Vinnie Paul Abbott (Pantera, HELLYEAH) at The Bomb Factory in Dallas, TX today (July 1). During the event, a number of friends and family paid their respects to the legendary drummer in person and via video. The whole thing was streamed on the Pantera Facebook page and can be seen below. Notably, one of the pre-recorded videos came from Vinnie Paul’s former Pantera bandmate Phil Anselmo, who had the following to say: “Vince, always have love in my heart for you, man. Rest in peace.” Abbott had a bitter estranged relationship with Anselmo over the years and remained on non-speaking terms with the him until his death. Abbott was laid to rest at Moore Memorial Gardens Cemetery in Arlington, TX, alongside his late brother and bandmate Dimebag Darrell Abbott, and their late mother. An official cause of a death has yet to be revealed, but early reports have suggested his death was the result of a “major heart attack.”

Vinnie Paul Laid To Rest At Private Funeral

The late Vinnie Paul Abbott (Pantera, HELLYEAH) was officially laid to rest following a private funeral yesterday (June 30). The drummer was buried at Moore Memorial Gardens Cemetery in Arlington, TX, near his late brother and bandmate Dimebag Darrell Abbott, and their late mother. Like Dimebag, he was buried in a KISS coffin. Jose Mangin (SiriusXM‘s Liquid Metal) and Nick Bowcott (ex-Grim Reaper) were among those who spoke at the service. Other attendees included: Ace Frehley (ex-KISS), David Draiman (Disturbed), Chris Jericho (Fozzy), Chad Kroeger (Nickelback), Charlie Benante (Anthrax), Paul Shortino (Rough Cutt) and more. Vinnie Paul passed away on June 22 at the age of 54. An official cause of a death has yet to be revealed, but early reports have suggested his death was the result of a “major heart attack.” A public memorial is being held for him at The Bomb Factory in Dallas, TX today (July 1)