Vinnie Paul’s estate shoots down Pantera “reunion”, call it a “celebration” instead

Pantera guitarist Dimebag Darrell resting his head on drummer Vinne Paul’s shoulder
(Image credit: Paul Natkin/Getty Images)

The estate of late Pantera drummer Vinnie Paul have shot down the description of the Phil Anslemo and Rex Brown-led comeback shows as a “reunion”, insisting they should instead be viewed as a “celebration”.

“There can never be a Pantera reunion without Vinnie and Dime [Dimebag Darrell, original Pantera guitarist]," their statement reads. "However, there is no better way to celebrate and honor Vinnie and Dime's legacy, than to bring the music of Pantera directly to the fans. 

“We are honored that Charlie and Zakk, their very close friends and musical brothers, will share the stage with Philip and Rex, to unleash the power of Pantera live around the world."

Singer Anselmo and bassist Brown announced earlier this year that they would be touring under the name Pantera for the first time since 2001. Dimebag Darrell, who died in 2004, will be replaced by Zakk Wylde, while Anthrax’s Charlie Benante will sit in for Vinnie Paul, who passed in 2018. The announcement divided fans, with one fan saying, “Without Dimebag and Vinnie, what’s the fucking point?” - a sentiment seemingly echoed by many.

The estate’s statement comes on the eve of the reconstituted group’s first show, which takes place on December 2 at the Hell & Heaven Open Air festival in Toluca de Lerdo, Mexico. It also follows an interview in which Charlie Benante didn’t rule out writing new material with Anselmo, Brown and Wylde.

“Oh man, who knows?” Benante told BraveWords. “Creatively, if we are just flowing and getting going, and things are starting to be really good, musically speaking, you never know what could happen. I’ve got tons of riffs.

“But we’re putting the cart before the horse. I like the positivity there, but I don’t know how people would react to that either at this point. I think first, let’s get out there and establish that we can play. I’m always open to the future.”

In addition to the Paul estate’s statement, former Pantera producer Sterling Winfield offered his own, slightly cryptic opinion on the matter.

"Here's the press release that the 'media' said we had already done six months ago," he posted on Twitter. "It was just posted about five minutes ago for the first time EVER. Don't believe everything the media tells you. Choose for yourselves. Enjoy it with open arms, minds & hearts. Or don't. The choice is yours. But don't make that choice for someone else.”

Pantera will be playing selected shows in 2022, 2023 and 2024, including dates opening for Metallica on their M72 tour.

Pantera 2022-23 live dates

Dec 02: Toluca de Lerdo Hell & Heaven Open Air, Mexico
Dec 06: Monterrey Metal Fest, Mexico
Dec 09: Bogotá Knotfest, Columbia
Dec 11: Santiago Knotfest, Chile
Dec 12: Santiago Movistar Arena, Chile*
Dec 15: Sao Paulo Vibra, Brazil#
Dec 18: São Paulo Knotfest, Brazil
May 26: Sofia Armeets Arena, Bulgaria
May 27: Bucharest, Metalhead Meeting Open Air Festival, Romania
May 30:  Budapest Barba Negra, Hungary
May 31: Vienna Gasometer, Austria
Jun 2-4: Nürburgring Rock Am Ring, Germany
Jun 2-4: Nürnberg Rock Im Park, Germany
June 06: Lodz Atlas Arena, Poland
June 8-10: Rock Fest Hyvinkaa, Finland
June 10: Sweden Rock Festival, Sweden
June 12: Prague O2 Arena, Czech Republic
June 13: Berlin Verti Music Hall, Germany
June15: Copenhagen Copenhell, Denmark
June 21: Hamburg Edel Optics, Germany
Jun 22-24: Oslo Tons Of Rock, Norway
Aug 04, 2023: East Rutherford, NJ MetLife Stadium, USA +
Aug 11, 2023: Montreal Stade Olympique, CAN +
Aug 18, 2023: Arlington, TX AT&T Stadium, USA +
Aug 25, 2023: Inglewood, CA SoFi Stadium, USA +
Sep 01, 2023: Glendale, AZ State Farm Stadium, USA +
Nov 03, 2023: St. Louis, MO - The Dome at America’s Center, USA +
Nov 10, 2023: Detroit, MI Ford Field, USA +

* Headline show
# with Judas Priest
+ with Metallica

Pantera 2024 live dates

Aug 02, 2024: Foxborough, MA Gillette Stadium, USA +
Aug 09, 2024: Chicago, IL Soldier Field, USA +
Aug 16, 2024: Minneapolis US Bank Stadium, USA +
Aug 23. 2024: Edmonton Commonwealth Stadium, CAN  +
Aug 30, 2024: Seattle, WA Lumen Field, USA +

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