Former PANTERA frontman Philip Anselmo has denied being racist after a new video surfaced of him giving the right-arm salute and yelling a white-supremacist slogan at a California concert.
Anselmo took part in last Friday’s (January 22) Dimebash event at Lucky Strike Live in Hollywood and ended the show by giving what appeared to be a Nazi salute and screaming the words “white power” to the crowd.
A YouTube user by the name of Chris R posted a clip of Anselmo‘s end-of-concert gesture (see below) and added the following note below the video: “I originally cut this from my first post of ‘Walk’ but I feel people deserve to see this! A very sad moment and to me ruined the night! This is not what PANTERA is about!!! Absolutely uncalled for and I can see why Vinny Paul [sic] wants nothing to do with this man. Phil Anselmo you are a Racist prick!!”
After the clip started making the rounds earlier today, Anselmo himself responded to the controversy by adding the following comment below the video in question (posted from Anselmo‘s Housecore Records YouTube account): “Ok folks, I’ll own this one, but dammit, I was joking, and the ‘inside joke of the night’ was because we were drinking fucking white wine, hahaha… Of all fucking things.”
He added: “Some of y’all need to thicken up your skin. There’s plenty of fuckers to pick on with a more realistic agenda.
“I fucking love everyone, I fucking loathe everyone, and that’s that.
“No apologies from me.
This is not the first time Anselmo has made comments from the stage that have been perceived as racist. At a March 1995 PANTERA concert at Montreal’s Verdun Auditorium, Anselmo babbled forth in a stream-of-consciousness rant, uttering statements that included “rap music advocates the killing of white people.” The Montreal Gazette reported on the incident, causing an international flurry and resulting in Anselmo releasing an open apology, stating: “I must take responsibility for the harmful words that may have racially offended our audience. First, to the black girl who has seen PANTERA six times, thank you for telling me how upset you were at me; it made a difference and I was very sincere with my apology. Second, I’d once again like to apologize to the security guards at the show. They were classy and professional, and came to talk to me after the show when they really didn’t need to at all. They opened my eyes. And yes, they were black men. I have much respect for them. I extend my apologies and a thank you to them.”
In an August 2003 interview, Anselmo scoffed at the perception that he is racist. He said: “I’m anything fucking but. I know there’s shitty people and beautiful people on both sides of the spectrum — black and white. And I know for an absolute fucking fact there’s good Middle Eastern people who live here. And I know there’s good Oriental people. But if I’m writing a song and it has to touch on the negatives of certain issues, I’m not gonna beat around the fucking bush and fence-ride — especially with SUPERJOINT [Anselmo‘s then-main band]. Before, with PANTERA, I had to be slightly careful. Now I don’t. And I can see from the enthusiasm in the audiences that we’re on our way to something extremely relevant — something on top of anywhere anybody thinks we might go.”