Megadeth – 20 Impressive Facts You Didn’t Know!
Megadeth were formed in Los Angeles, California, USA in 1983 by Dave Mustaine (vocals, guitar) and David Ellefson (bass). They are one of the “big four” American thrash metal bands along with Metallica, Anthrax and Slayer. Their songs contain lyrics about war, death, politics, personal relationships and religion.
But enough of the facts you already know, let’s look at 20 impressive facts you didn’t know about Megadeth.
Their Song “Blackmail The Universe” (2004) Was Inspired By A Book From A Children’s Book Author
Dave Mustaine says he loves to read, and he read a book by C.S. Lewis (the author who wrote “The Chronicles of Narnia”) called “The Screwtape Letters”. By the time he finished the book, he’d also finished the song.
Slayer’s Kerry King Was Once Guitarist For Megadeth
Slayer guitarist Kerry King played guitar for Megadeth’s live shows in their early days and was officially their guitarist for around a week before leaving to concentrate on his own band, Slayer.
When Kerry King Left It Started A Long Feud Between Megadeth And Slayer
Kerry King has said in a recent interview that he doesn’t “know how anyone can be in Megadeth for more than a couple of hours ‘cause that guy’s crazy”. After leaving the band there has been bad feeling ever since to say the least.
Dave Mustaine Nearly Never Played Guitar Again After A Bizarre Accident In 2002
Whilst heavily medicated, Dave Mustaine fell asleep with his left arm draped over the back of a chair. This led to him suffering compression of the radial nerve. Which meant he couldn’t make a fist and he lost almost all feeling in his left arm. It took him weeks of dedicated physical therapy and arduous practice to learn how to play guitar again.
The Deftones 2006 Album Was Named After The Condition Of Dave’s Arm
The Deftones 2006 album “Saturday Night Wrist” was named after the condition Dave suffered which is commonly called Saturday Night Palsy and actually called radial neuropathy by the medical profession.
Their 2002 Album “Still Alive…And Well” Was Recorded Before Dave Mustaine Damaged His Arm
They released “Still Alive…And Well” to fulfil contractual obligations. It consists of live tracks recorded at the Web Theatre in Phoenix and studio recordings from “The World Needs A Hero”.
Dave Mustaine Is A Black Belt Martial Artist
In fact Dave holds 2 black belts, one for Taekwondo WTF and one for Ukidokan Karate. In 2007 the World Taekwondo Federation appointed him Goodwill Ambassador of the World.
Megadeth’s First Album Was Self-Produced
Combat Records gave the band $8,000 to record their debut album, the money never went far as they spent $4,000 of it on alcohol, drugs and food. With no money left, the band were forced to fire their producer and produce the album themselves.
Dimebag Darrell Almost Joined Megadeth
During one of the times when band members either left or were fired by Mustaine, Dimebag Darrell was offered the job of guitarist and he was all set to join. But only on the condition that the band also hired his brother and Pantera band mate Vinnie Paul (drums). Mustaine refused as he had just hired Nick Menza as drummer.
The Title For The Album “Rust In Peace” Was Taken From A Car Bumper Sticker
Dave Mustaine saw a car bumper sticker which read “May all your warheads rust in peace”. He used the last part of this phrase as the title of their 1990 album.
Dave Mustaine Caused A Sectarian Riot In Northern Ireland
Without knowing anything about the Northern Irish “Troubles”, Dave Mustaine went on stage in Antrim, Northern Ireland and shouted “This one’s for the cause” before playing a cover of the Sex Pistols “Anarchy in the UK”. The concert degenerated into a catholic/protestant riot and the band had to leave town on a bulletproof bus.
The Band’s Name Came From A Political Pamphlet
While riding on the bus back to Los Angeles after being fired by Metallica, Dave read a pamphlet by Californian Senator Alan Cranston. One phrase from the pamphlet stuck in Dave’s mind, it read “The arsenal of megadeath can’t be rid no matter what the peace treaties come to”. He later wrote a song using the word but spelling it slightly differently “Megadeth”.
The New Band Got A Name Change
Originally called “Fallen Angels”, the new band that Dave formed eventually became “Megadeth”.
The Malaysian Government Cancelled Megadeth’s Concert
In 2001 the Malaysian government cancelled Megadeth’s concert because they had a negative view of the band’s image and music.
The Opening Riff From “Peace Sells” Was Used By MTV News
MTV news used the opening riff from “Peace Sells” as their intro tune for around 10 years. Making it probably the best known riff of that era. Thus promoting the music of Megadeth for free.
According To Mustaine, Metallica’s “The Four Horsemen” Is A Slowed Down Version Of “Mechanix”
Dave Mustaine has been quoted as saying that although Metallica copied his music, “Mechanix by Megadeth I think was infinitely faster and heavier than The Four Horsemen by Metallica”.
They Won A Grammy For “Dystopia”
Megadeth won a Grammy Award for the title track of their 2016 album, “Dystopia”. It won the Grammy Award for Best Metal Performance at the 2017 Grammy Awards.
Dave Mustaine Is Knowledgeable About Music Trivia
In the late 90s, Dave Mustaine appeared on an episode of “Rock ‘N’ Roll Jeopardy ” on the VH1 Network. He played against Moon Zappa and George Clinton and beat them by so many points it was embarrassing to watch.
“Sweating Bullets” Was Partially Inspired By Comedian George Carlin
The Megadeth song “Sweating Bullets” is often thought to have been written by Dave Mustaine about himself. But he has said it was written after he listened to comedian George Carlin and was also influenced by his wife’s friend Laurie who suffers from panic attacks.
The Title Track “Killing Is My Business” Was Based On A Marvel Character
Dave has said he used to really enjoy reading Marvel comics with characters like Captain America, Iron Man and the Punisher. He says “Killing is my Business…And Business is Good” was based on a character he made up as the anti-hero to the Punisher.
Frequently Asked Questions
Megadeth produced their debut album “Killing Is My Business… and Business Is Good!” After spending almost ½ of the money given to them by Combat Records, they were forced to fire the producer and produce the album themselves.
The title for the album “Rust in Peace” came from a car bumper sticker that Dave Mustaine saw which read, “May all your warheads rust in peace”.
The Sex Pistols song that Megadeth covered which caused a riot in Northern Ireland was “Anarchy in the UK” which he changed to “Anarchy in Antrim”. The riot broke out after he introduced the song by saying “This one’s for the cause”.
The Megadeth song that contains the lines “The military intelligence, Two words combined that can’t make sense” is “Hangar 18” from the album “Rust in Peace”
The megadeth album track that won a Grammy Award for best metal performance was “Dystopia” the title track from their 2016 album.
The Megadeth song that contains the lines “The whole house is creaking, I know they’re out there, the things kept from sight, I beg to the shadows, I can’t sleep” is “Insomnia” which was taken from the album “Risk”.
The opening riff from “Peace Sells” was used as the intro for MTV News.
The guitarist who played rhythm guitar for a few live shows with Megadeth in 1984 was Kerry King (Slayer).
The Megadeth song that contains the line “Their master has come, the moon is full tonight.” is “Bad Omen” which was taken from the album “ Peace Sells… but Who’s Buying?”
Dave Mustaine is a martial artist, with a black belt in both Taekwondo WTF and Ukidokan Karate.
Before joining Megadeth, Chris Poland was playing guitar in a jazz band.
The Megadeth song that contains the line “A dose of metal you need, to bang your head till you bleed” is “Rattlehead” which is taken from the album “ Peace Sells… but Who’s Buying?”
The US senator’s pamphlet that Dave Mustaine saw which gave him the idea for the name Megadeth was Alan Cranston.
Before they were called Megadeth, the band was known as “Fallen Angels”.
The Megadeth song that contains the lines “Outlawing all the questions to the answers, that no one likes when someone ends up dead” is “Dystopia” which was the title track of their 2016 album.
The Malaysian government did cancel Megadeth’s show in their capital in 2001 because they had a negative view of the band’s image and music.
Dave Mustaine claims the metallica song “The Four Horsemen” is the same as “Mechanix” only “Mechanix” is faster.
The TV music trivia show that Dave Mustaine appeared on and won was “Rock ‘N’ Roll Jeopardy”. Other players were Moon Zappa and George Clinton.
The Megadeth song that contains the line “With sharp and pointy teeth. An animal so vicious” is “Chosen Ones” which was taken from the album “ Killing Is My Business… and Business Is Good!”
The famous guitarist that never joined Megadeth because Dave Mustaine couldn’t take his brother too was Dimebag Darrell. He said he would leave Pantera if his brother and fellow Pantera band mate Vinnie Paul (drums) could come too. But Mustaine had just recently hired Nick Menza as drummer.
Have You Got Any More?
That’s our 20 impressive facts about Megadeth you didn’t know. Do you have any more? Let us know in the comments.