In an interview on The Jeremy White Show, Dave Mustaine, the frontman of Megadeth, took a stroll down memory lane, reflecting on the history of thrash metal and his role as a possible “godfather of metal.”
He seemed a bit modest when faced with such praise. The discussion arose when he was asked about his connection with Eddie Van Halen, both being associated with Kramer guitars.
Via Ultimate Guitar, Mustaine replied:
“Did I ever hang out with Eddie romantically? Nope. Did I know him? Yes, indeed. Did his playing influence mine? Quite possibly, even though I may not have realized it at the time. There are a few tricks that might have seeped in.”
Regarding the title of “godfather of metal,” Mustaine’s reaction was a mix of humility and acknowledgment of others’ contributions.
He admitted, “It’s a bit awkward for me to be hailed as the ‘godfather of metal.’ While I played a significant role, there were other contributors too. The Metallica crew and I weren’t the sole pioneers of those early days.”
He delved into the 1980s and highlighted a trio of bands he felt deserved more recognition than they received.
Bands like Lȧȧz Rockit, hidden gems in the shadows; Hirax, striving for success but not finding the right door; and Exodus, a great band that spawned a Metallica guitar legend but didn’t hit the big leagues themselves.
Reflecting further, he shared:
“Think of Testament, Overkill, and other contemporaries who followed slightly after me. Their impact on the thrash scene was notable. Amid the metal symphony, these voices deserve a spotlight, each adding a unique hue.”
Meanwhile, amidst these reflections, Mustaine also pondered a potential future scenario for Megadeth.
As a survivor of throat cancer, he contemplated a world where he might lose his vocal ability, a pivotal element of his stage and studio presence.
He acknowledged that while he feels positive about his health, the thought of being unable to sing would make continuing Megadeth a challenge:
“My health is promising, but the thought of not being able to sing is unsettling. Megadeth’s essence relies on my vocals. Even if I can still play the guitar, I question whether the music should go on without my voice.”
In this interview’s narrative, the evolution of thrash metal, camaraderie among musicians, and the fragility of destiny converge, showcasing Mustaine’s deep connection to his artistry, straddling the past and an uncertain future.