Megadeth Ellefson on his musical education

Dave Ellefson reckons his “formal training” in music helps with his work in Megadeth.

The bassist says his musical education not only helps when it comes to songwriting, but also saves time – and therefore money – in the studio.

He tells Maricopa Edu: “I started to be formally trained, though church organ lessons and then through the tenor saxophones. So by the time I got my hands on a bass, I could read music. But I think getting some formal education really helps.

“Being able to talk in a little bit more proper musical language, I think it only helps your experience. It helps you be less frustrated, it helps you be more economical with your time, especially in the studios, where time really is money.”

Ellefson adds that having a grounding in formal music training helps make Megadeth’s loud and fast-paced songs easier to work on.

He says: “Even in a group like Megadeth, we play with a lot of dynamics. With everything loud all the time, nothing seems loud anymore. If everything is fast all the time, you sort of get numb to the impact of accelerated tempo.

“So I think understanding things on a musical level helps you be a much better composer and definitely a much better performer.”

Megadeth brought in drummer Chris Adler and guitarist Kiko Loureiro after Chris Broderick and Shawn Drover quit suddenly. The pair make they live debuts next month in Canada. The band are working on their 15th album.

Stef wrote close to 5,000 stories during his time as assistant online news editor and later as online news editor between 2014-2016. An accomplished reporter and journalist, Stef has written extensively for a number of UK newspapers and also played bass with UK rock favourites Logan. His favourite bands are Pixies and Clap Your Hands Say Yeah. Stef left the world of rock'n'roll news behind when he moved to his beloved Canada in 2016, but he started on his next 5000 stories in 2022.