Remembering Dimebag Darrell Ten Years Later: Wovenwar’s Nick Hipa
On December 8, 2004, Dimebag Darrell Abbott was brutally murdered while playing live with Damageplan. The already-legendary Pantera guitarist was just thirty-eight years old. Today, the tenth anniversary of his death, heavy hitters from throughout the metal world will honor this fallen icon on MetalSucks by sharing their favorite Dime riffs, solos, and, in some cases, personal remembrances. Below, Nick Hipa, guitarist for Wovenwar, discusses his favorite Dime solo:
Communication is key.
The ability to share thoughts, feelings, and ideas with one another dictates the quality of our relationships. While written and spoken words are unparalleled in their practical application, the sound of music is the medium by which I am filled with endless wonder; it is limitless in its ability to say what words can not. It is almost a sort of magic the way a series of notes, tones, and rhythms, created by complete strangers, can resonate within us. If math is the language of the universe, I consider music the native tongue of our souls.
As guitar players go, Dimebag Darrell and Randy Rhoads exist together in the elite jam room of my heart. My personal criteria for shredoration is the possession of chops, ability to riff, songwriting aptitude, and unique sonic identity. Dimebag had all of these in spades, and I constantly draw from his bountiful well of music to quench my aural thirst for rad guitar playing.
After all these years, I’m still hard pressed to settle upon my favorite record of his, let alone riff or solo. If this were a question posed on Monty Python’s Bridge of Death, I would for sure be a goner; though for the sake of writing about one specific moment of his playing, I’ll go with the solo for “Where You Come From.” Within that solo is a specific bend that occurs exactly at 3:29 in the song. It gives me goosebumps virtually every time I hear it. Dime had a way of making his guitar truly SCREAM, with this selection being one of many that highlights the notion. This specific bend—along with the two ending notes ten second later—straight up wails. It’s a level of playing that demands a “guitar face” from even us listeners.
Dime’s legacy is a musical catalogue I revisit constantly. The more I listen to it, the more I am reminded of how there is no one even remotely like him. What he communicated through his playing is hard to plainly define, yet so many of us love and revere it. I imagine those that truly knew the man would only affirm who we heard was simply who he was. A concept easy to believe, as his music communicates more than words could ever, in the language of what is within us.
Darrell Abbott speaks to me, in a way I find profound, and am truly grateful for.