The weekend of January 24th marked the fifth annual Dimebash, a charity event and tribute show to former Pantera guitarist Dimebag Darrell. However, this Dimebash differed significantly from any of the prior ones: Phil Anselmo, former lead singer of Pantera, was openly racist at the close of the show.
As another member of the show was making a closing speech thanking the crowd for their support, Anselmo saluted the crowd in a Nazi fashion, then shouted, “White Power” to the audience. This act was caught on film, and later introduced to YouTube by user Chris R., who then removed the video, and later uploaded it a second time. The video can be viewed below.
Following its release, Anselmo commented on the video in the comments section, offering a petty excuse, but no apologies for his heinous behavior. Using the Housecore Records’ account, Anselmo stated, “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. 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.” Joke or not, his actions were inappropriate and unethical.
Racism was never a concept that Pantera, started by Dimebag and his brother Vinny Paul, wanted to forward onto their audience. In a similar manner, racism isn’t something that a majority of the metal community wants to embrace. In fact, Robb Flynn of Machine Head released his own video in response to Anselmo, directly addressing the metal community, stating his disapproval and outright disgust with not only Phil Anselmo, but with how such acts of discrimination are taken so lightly, especially in the metal community. In the 11-minute response video, Flynn, who also attended Dimebash 2016, confesses that white wine was nowhere to be found back stage, but that Anselmo was in fact drinking Beck’s, a German beer (not that this promotes racism in itself, but is a better connection to a Nazi-salute than white wine). Even so, Anselmo’s “joke” was uncalled for, and inexcusable.
Flynn goes on to state that his connection to the metal community has been weak at best for an extended period of time, and even states that if racism has a place in metal, to “count him out.” Watch the video in its entirety below (Warning: Racial slurs are used in an informative manner, and cussing is prevalent throughout the video):
On January 30th, Anselmo uploaded his own video to YouTube, formally apologizing for his actions at the tribute show. Coupled with his apology, he asks for a second chance from metal fans, stating, “…anyone who knows me and my true nature knows that I don’t believe in any of that,” and “Anyone who knows me knows that I love all of you.” His video can be viewed below: