During a brand new interview with Artisan News, Zakk Wylde (BLACK LABEL SOCIETY, OZZY OSBOURNE) was asked about the possibility of a hypothetical PANTERA reunion with him filling in for the late “Dimebag” Darrell Abbott on guitar. “It’d be up to [former PANTERA members] Vinnie [Paul Abbott, drums], Phil [Anselmo, vocals] and Rex [Brown, bass] — they’re the guys that make everything happen,” he said (see video below). “So if they were all gonna do it and honor Dimebag and [if they said to me], ‘Zakk, would you wanna honor Dime and do Dime‘s parts?’ Of course, I was a pallbearer for him — I laid him to rest — so, of course, I’d say, it would be a beautiful way to honor him and stuff like that. And to celebrate all things PANTERA and what they achieved. ‘Cause they changed the game, as far as extreme metal goes. I mean, they’re the kings of it. But it’s up to the fellows. Then it would just be me woodsheddin’ 25-8, learning all of Dime‘s parts, you know what I mean?! Yeah, but like I said, as far as I’m concerned, it would just be honoring Dime. Like with the Yankees, you honor… everybody’s wearing Thurman Munson‘s ’15’ for that day, just because we’re honoring Thurman’s greatness. So it’s the same thing, man.”
Dimebag‘s longtime girlfriend Rita Haney in 2011 called on Vinnie and Anselmo to settle their differences in honor of Dimebag, who was shot and killed by a crazed gunman while performing with DAMAGEPLAN at a Columbus, Ohio rock club in December 2004.
Vinnie, who is Dimebag‘s brother, and Anselmo have not spoken since PANTERA split in 2003. But the relationship got even more acrimonious when Vinnie indirectly blamed Philip for Dimebag‘s death, suggesting that some remarks the vocalist had made about Dimebag in print just weeks earlier might have incited Dimebag‘s killer.
Speaking to Fuse News, Anselmo said about the possibility of a PANTERA reunion with Wylde filling in for Dimebag: “For me, really, I think it would mean a lot for [ex-PANTERA bassist] Rex [Brown] and [ex-PANTERA drummer] Vince [Paul Abbott] and myself to sit down and, I guess, bury the hatchet where we can be on more friendly terms. And, you know, I think it would mean a lot to the fans.”
He added: “Without Vince, there’s not any PANTERA reunion at all; it’s useless. But he damn well knows my door’s wide open. He needs to bust out the keys and unlock his, man. I’m waiting, but I’m not holding my breath.”