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Interview

Megadeth Bassist David Ellefson On New Book, Solo Album And Twentieth Anniversary "Risk"

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Band Photo: Megadeth (?)

Every musician strives to make their band the best it can possibly be. Some are lucky enough to translate this into commercial success and fewer still are able to transform their band into bonafide legends, which make a lasting impact on music as we know it. One such man who has been able to achieve the dreams of thousands of headbangers full of aspiration is David Ellefson, the bassist for thrash metal titans Megadeth.

But it's not just Megadeth that occupies Ellefson's time. The man known affectionately by fans as "Junior" is also an accomplished author, having released his first book, "My Life With Deth" in 2013, with a sequel, "More Life With Deth" released four months ago. Not just that, but Ellefson owns his own label, EMP Music Group, has just released his first solo album, "Sleeping Giants," launched the MEGA Life Ministries worship service in Scottsdale, AZ, founded the coffee company Ellefson Coffee Co. and now has his own film company, Ellefson Films, who are preparing to release their first movie, "Dwellers." I recently caught up with Ellefson to discuss some of these new endeavours as well as the MegaCruise, the twentieth anniversary of Megadeth's controversial album, "Risk" and much more. You can watch the interview below, while an excerpt reads as follows:

Diamond Oz: You've got a lot on your plate at the moment, I didn't realise quite how much until I looked into it. Perhaps most important is your solo album, "Sleeping Giants." I heard a little bit of it earlier and it sounds really really good.

David Ellefson: Thank you. It's kind of a combination of some new tracks. In particular "Vultures," is a brand new track. "Hammer Comes Down" and "Sleeping Giants" was music I had but then my partner Thom (Hazaert) finished lyrics to the collaboration with DMC, "Sleeping Giants," did the collaboration with Eric A.K. from Flotsam And Jetsam on "Hammer," as well as bringing in our friends Mark Tremonti and Chris Poland who played guitar. Dave McClain of Sacred Reich and formerly Machine Head put drums down so it was fun to get the whole crew together and work on those songs. Then I put some of the old F5 demos from the 2000s and then some tracks that I'd written in 1993 when we had a break in the "Countdown To Extinction" album. My friend Pat Schunk, who I was introduced to by Nick Menza, we had a really fun collaborative season, wrote a bunch of tunes, had John Bush sing on "If You Were God," had David Glen Isley sing on a handful of tracks. So yeah, these were songs that were just sat in a box at home and I just ruffled through it and started putting together with Tom and thought, "If not now, when?" It's probably the best time to do it, especially with the new book, "More Life With Deth," it kind of brings the whole story together.

Diamond Oz's avatar

Ollie Hynes has been a writer for Metal Underground.com since 2007 and a metal fan since 2001, going as far as to travel to other countries and continents for metal gigs.

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