DIMEBAG’s Longtime Girlfriend Says He Was ‘Totally About The Word ‘Unity”

In a recent interview with Backstage Axxess, Rita Haney, the girlfriend of deceased PANTERA and DAMAGEPLAN guitarist “Dimebag” Darrell Abbott, discussed how the legendary musician would have reacted knowing various charity events were held in his honor. “Dimebash” 2020 — an all-star tribute to Abbott — was held earlier this month at The Observatory OC in Santa Ana, California, and featured members of FOO FIGHTERS, ANTHRAX, LAMB OF GOD, SEPULTURA, KING DIAMOND and SEBASTIAN BACH.

“He would have such a blast,” Rita said (hear audio below). “We used to have this club for a little while in Texas, I was always putting together little jam things there. He would come in, sometimes during the week, if I had a band cancel, he would put together with a couple of friends and they’d do a set of cover songs and stuff. It was all for fun. He was always all about that. That was the one thing PANTERA was known for was sharing their stage. They always brought someone out, whoever could fill in from the side of the stage and do backups on ‘Walk’ or ‘This Love’. They were always all about that, not so much about ‘It’s our show. You’ve gotta do it perfect.’ That show was having all the weird little unexpected jams from whoever popped up on the side of the stage. He was totally about the word ‘unity’, bringing everybody together and making sure it was a damn good time always.”

Haney then delved into the making of “Dimevision Vol. 2: Roll With It Or Get Rolled Over”, the second home video that features footage of the late guitarist captured between the mid-’80s and his later years.

“Honestly, it’s just sitting around, taking some time and watching the videotapes,” she said. “Between me and [PANTERA videographer] Bobby Tongs, it’s time-consuming and of course, you sit, you watch everything, you laugh, you have drinks, you have to remember so much stuff, but you just pull clips as you’re going through and you slowly catalog through the years. There’s tons of footage that hadn’t been watched, still, still cataloging, there’s still a ‘Pantera 4’ [home video] that’s cataloged that we need to get to. That was planned last year, but with Vinnie [Paul Abbott, brother of Dimebag] passing unexpectedly, that got put on hold. Everybody’s trying to come out of the fog with that and get back to their normal day-to-day, but we’ll get to it. We’ve already pulled footage and cataloged for the next ‘Dimevision’as well. It’s just sitting around and watching videotapes, pulling it as you see stuff.”

“Dimevision Vol. 2: Roll With It Or Get Rolled Over”was released in November 2017 via Metal Blade Records. The DVD/CD set — which includes more raw footage, true gems and classic Dimebag moments — also contains five previously unreleased demos, picked from a vast catalog Dimebag accrued since Haney gave him his first four-track in 1984.

Dimebag was shot and killed by a crazed gunman while performing with DAMAGEPLAN at a Columbus, Ohio rock club in December 2004.

Dimebag‘s brother Vinnie Paul Abbott, who played drums in PANTERA, died in June 2018.

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