Pantera: Drummer Vinnie Paul Dies @ 54 – Slash, KISS, Anthrax, Hagar, Zakk, King Diamond, Halford, Lars…Pay Tribute

Vinnie Paul
(March 11, 1964 – June 22, 2018)

According to a post on the official Pantera Facebook page, drummer Vinnie Paul has died.  No further details have been provided at this time.  Vinnie was 54 years old.

Official Statement:

“Vincent Paul Abbott aka Vinnie Paul has passed away. Paul is best known for his work as the drummer in the bands Pantera and Hellyeah. No further details are available at this time. The family requests you please respect their privacy during this time.”


Housecore Records: “Rest in Peace Vinnie. This one hurts.”

Marc Ferrari: “Far Beyond Belief! I have been trying to process this news since hearing about it last night and wanted to take some time to collect my thoughts. Many of you know my history with Pantera, which dates back to 1985, meeting them on Keel’s first swing thru Texas. From the first few seconds of hearing the cassette (yes, cassette!) of Projects in the Jungle, I knew I was hearing a band of extraordinary talent and musicianship. From that moment on, I waved the Pantera flag as best as I could, and feel honored to be a small part of their story. Vinnie was the brains (and brawn) behind the band. Even though I am listed as the ‘producer’ on “Proud to be Loud” (from their Power Metal release), it was Vinnie driving the monster truck that was the the band called Pantera. He lived life as large as the Texas heart that beat thru his body. But though he could be heavy on the gas pedal, he also had his foot ready to hit the brake. He always saw the big picture. Many of you also know of his extreme warmth and generosity, traits shared by both he and Dime. The world will never know again the likes of these brothers, once joined at the hip in life and now joined in eternal brotherhood. Heaven’s House Band has gained another power drummer and will be rockin’ harder than ever. With much love, respect and gratitude and in your own words, “We’ll Meet Again”…”

Sammy Hagar: “Vinnie has been at nearly every birthday bash in Cabo from the beginning. I was at the cantina in Cabo late last night when I got the news. It sure is hard to believe. Great drummer, great guy and a great friend. Very sad.”

King Diamond: “So sad, what a loss. Another true metalhead has left us way too soon. Vinnie and Pantera were some of the first people to welcome me with open arms when I first moved to Dallas in 1992. Had so many great times together. Here’s a photo of Vinnie dressed as me during a Hellyeah halloween show. To me, that was the coolest. I will miss you, friend. Rest In Peace. I know Dime is waiting for you.”

Slash: “Tragic news about Vinnie Paul today. He was one of the warmest people I knew. A truly good & fun friend. We’re going to miss you more than you could possibly have known. RIP buddy.”

Duff McKagan: “RIP Vinnie Paul. Friend. Humorist. Badass drummer. All-around good man. Condolences to the family. You will be missed bro…”

Ace Frehley: “Vinnie Paul was a dear friend and since Dimebag’s passing we’ve hung out together no less than a dozen times…. he was a great drummer, a buddy of mine that will very sadly be missed!…God Bless!”

Paul Stanley: “So sad to hear of the death of Vinnie Paul. Loved when Pantera did shows with us and in later years Vinnie was always front and center at all KISS shows. RIP and condolences to his family.”

Gene Simmons: “Rest in peace, Vinnie. Our prayers and good wishes go to his family, friends and fans.”

Foo Fighters: “Vinnie… the man with the slickest kicks and the best vibe ALWAYS. You inspired us all, not only with your music, but with your love and hospitality. You were one in a million, and will be missed…”

Alice Cooper: “Terribly saddened by the news of Vinnie Paul’s passing. Vinnie was a beloved fixture in the rock and metal communities and we will miss seeing him out on the road. His impact on heavy music is immeasurable. Rest In Peace Vinnie, condolences to your family, friends and fans.”

Carmine Appice: “I cannot believe it !! My good friend Vinny Paul is dead. So sad. He was such a good guy. A great drummer! I am bummed. RIP my friend. My prayers go out to his family. ???”

Brian Tichy: “A huge inspiration, a friend for decades…I don’t know what to say…?? He will be missed by so many…”

Lars Ulrich: “Thank you for all the good times, Vinnie…your incredible hospitality and warm vibe was infectious and inspiring. Here’s to another shot of Crown Royal and a next level game of air hockey down the road! RIP, brother. Much love.”

Stephen Pearcy: “RIP Vinnie. Loss for words my friend. Still can’t register. ?”

Dee Snider: “So sorry to hear about passing of Vinnie Paul. Such an incredible force & influence in metal. I remember literally stopping song Becoming 1st time I played it on radio, opening the mic & freaking our over his drumming on air. How many drummers make somebody do that?”

Geezer Butler: “Shocked and saddened to hear of Vinnie Paul’s passing. A true original. Had some good laughs when we toured with Pantera. Gone too soon.”

Tony Iommi: “Sorry to hear about Vinny, way too young.”

Johnny Kelly (Type O Negative): “I’ve had a day to sit and think about what I was going to write about the passing of Vinnie Paul. It’s really hard to put into words what VP meant to me. The most important thing to me was that he was a great friend. He was always a class act and went out of his way to treat you the same way. There are so many memories going back over 20 years now. All of them are special in some way or another. A lot of miles. Some sad times. But, a lot of laughs! Thank you for all that did. I’d like to think that Dime had too many doubles poured out for him, needed backup and called on VP to help put em down! My condolences to his father, Chelsea, his bandmates and crew, Bridog and his extended family. Until we meet again. JK ?”

dUg Pinnick: “We hung out with Vinny at the last kings X show in Dallas. He was in such good spirits and very talkative. We talked about Dime and how great fans and friends we were of each other, and all the good times we had., I’m speechless and will miss him. Rest in peace my friend.”

Vince Neil: “Sad to hear about my friend Vinnie Paul’s passing. One of the true great ones. He’ll truly be missed. RIP Brother.”

Dave Mustaine: “I just woke up in Belgium to the news that my friend Vinnie Paul has passed away. Another metal hero taken too soon. Say hello to Darrell for me. Rest In Peace, my dear friend”

Dave Ellefson: “Very saddened to wake up in Belgium today to the news of Vinnie Paul’s passing. You were a good friend and left us an amazing legacy. Go home in peace…. ”

Alex Skolnick: “Super sad news. Great guy/Great drummer. No idea what happened. Like his bro, gifted & too young to go. May they jam in eternity”

Matt Sorum: “Vinnie Paul , A monster of a drummer and always the life of the party !! Thanks for all the good times and the hospitality at The Clubhouse in Dallas . A true Rock N Roll Spirit that will be truly missed.”

Marty Friedman: “Like his brother, he spent his energy sharing his talent with us and bringing heavy music to people all over the world. His unique presence will be sorely missed down here.”

Vinnie Moore: “Not the news any of us wanted to wake up to. condolences to Vinnie’s loved ones. awesome guy. influenced millions. so sad.”

Billy Idol: “Sad 2 hear of Vinnie Paul of #Pantera passing…great guy…RIP”

Brian Slagel: “This is insanely sad! I just saw him at Vegas Golden Knights game a couple of weeks ago. RIP”

Mark McGrath: “Sad news about Vinnie Paul, our first trip to Dallas at Trees, he and Dime (RIP) came out. We were on same label (Atlantic), but I heard they did that with all new bands, bein’ the cool guys they were. Made the mistake of drinkin with ‘em all nite…pee, meet pants in the am! RIP”

Tony Franklin: “Rest peacefully Vinnie Paul! Another one gone too soon.”

Pearl Drums: “Pearl Corporation sends their condolences to the friends, family, and bandmates of the legendary Vinnie Paul. ”

Tommy Shaw: “So sad to hear about the passing of Vinnie Paul. We met when JY and I joined him on Eddie Trunk’s “That Metal Show” on March 17, 2012. We were immediately taken by his good nature, humility and sense of humor. There are few stories in Rock that can rival what Vinnie Paul experienced. From mega success to tragedy, he was amazingly unaffected by it all.
I’m grateful to have had the opportunity to spend time with him that day and wish his friends and family comfort as they mourn his loss.
Rock on Vinnie Paul!”

John Corabi: “R.I.P. Vinnie Paul….Always had a great time with you buddy!! Now you can jam with Dime again….”

Deen Castronovo: “Just landed and saw this. Such a great player and person! You’ll be missed Sir. RIP.”

Doug Aldrich: “So bummed to hear about Vinnie:( Vegas and the world loved him and he was a great person! Condolences to his family friends and band…RIP”

Charlie Benante: “It’s nights like these that make you think of all your friends and loved ones but especially the ones you don’t see anymore. Vinny was the Glue In Pantera ( to me) , those motherfuckers retaught Me about Metal and most of you too! The numerous shots, the hugs, the finger snapping, the damn hotdog machine in his kitchen, All VINNY! God dammit I’m fucking upset ?I love you bro ”

Scott Ian: “Damn it. I love you brother. RIP Vinnie Paul.”

Frank Bello: “This is so sad-I’ll miss u Vinnie.. R.I.P. brother..”

Overkill: “Such devastating news. RIP Vinnie”

Stephen Perkins: “Love you Vinnie Paul-miss you already-I’m going to play drums all night-it will make me feel better & closer to VP”

Tracii Guns: “Vinnie was here the first time Phil (Lewis) and I stepped on stage together after 12 years . He loved and supported everyone he could . His phrase was “ Big Love “ and that’s how he lived his life .”

Bill Burr: “Devastated to hear the news of the passing of the great Vinnie Paul. Such an incredible musician and an even nicer guy. Rest In Peace Vinnie!”

Brian Posehn: “Miss you. Vinnie. A total monster behind the kit and a blast to hang with. Way too soon, but go be metal gods with your brother. We get it.”

Papa Roach: “Gutted to hear about the nicest guy in metal passing. Vinnie Paul showed us nothing but love. We’ll miss you Vinnie.”

Rikki Rockett: “So sorry to hear about Vinnie Paul. The man was a Class act and always treated everyone with respect. Here’s to one of metal’s best!”

Travis Barker: “Rest In Peace Vinnie Paul. Heaven has Dimebag and Vinnie now ??”

Jeremy Wagner: “I just saw Vinnie Paul at NIN in Vegas last week. He was in line while I was getting drinks at the Joint. Crazy…”

Chris Adler: “Vinnie… I told you 100 times I wouldn’t be doing what I’m doing had you not changed the world. I was fortunate enough to get to know you as a man and as a true friend. You made me feel good about me. You taught me how. You showed me kindness and allowed me in. I will never forget. Thank you. Safe travels, my friend. R.I.P.”

Enuff Z’ Nuff: “Our sincerest condolences go out to the family and friends of brother Vinnie Paul. Truly a wonderful person and musician. RIP. ?”

Devin Townsend: “R.i.p Vinnie Paul. 🙁 I found him soft spoken… peace brother.”

Jeff Scott Soto: “Another gone too soon, I have no words… RIP Vinnie, say hi to Darrell and don’t worry, you don’t need to audition for that all star band in the sky :(”

Darrell Dwarf Millar: “RIP Vinnie fellow ddrum pounder I have fond memories of our tour together in 1992 Killer Dwarfs Saddened by this sudden news”

Fred Coury: “I am so bummed to hear this news. RIP Vinnie Paul. An amazing talent and such an incredibly nice person.”

Don Dokken: “My friend Vinnie Paul passed away last night. I will always have fond memories of hanging with Vinnie and Dime at the Clubhouse talking about music and life. Vinnie is with his brother Darrell now. Give him a hug for me brother RIP. ”

Brian Head Welch: “My God, we have lost another friend. I don’t understand what is happening. The music world has been completely shaken by too many pre-mature deaths the last few years, its horrible. Vinnie Paul was definitely the kindest living legend I’ve ever met. He endured so much tragedy, yet still had so much more love and positivity. Truly a kind soul with such a giving heart. Just in the last couple years he surprised Korn with some cool gifts. Right after we walked off stage in Dallas we were shocked to find a brand new thundering loud stereo blaring music in our dressing room as we walked in – compliments of Vinnie Paul. And on our European tour with HELLYEAH Vinnie surprised Fieldy with a brand new bass… signed by Paul McCartney. That’s the type of person he was. Vinnie, you were one-of-a-kind and will be so missed by countless people. God, let your unconditional love and mercy bring Vinnie Paul back together with his brother, and be with his family through this devastating loss.”

Remembering our friend Vinnie Paul today. A good man gone way too soon.

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