Dave Mustaine Reveals Top 3 Most Important Things When Choosing Megadeth Members, Shares Honest Opinion on Band’s Ex-Guitar Players

Megadeth is one of those bands that had countless musicians pass through the lineup. And similar to Whitesnake, it’s almost like a solo project where the leader chooses nothing but the most proficient musicians in the genre. But one can’t be the best at everything and there are some specifics he should look for. So what have been some specific criteria Dave Mustaine looked into when choosing new Megadeth members?

Well, in a recent appearance on Talkin’ Rock’s Meltdown, Mustaine discussed the topic. When asked about how he always chooses some of the best guitar players and whether there’s a tree where he picks them from, he answered (transcript via Ultimate Guitar):

“No, it’s very difficult to find people at the level of Marty [Friedman] and Kiko [Loureiro]. You know, Glen Drover was a really exceptional guitar player, so was Chris Broderick. But in order for somebody to be the right fit for Megadeth, there’s the three As – attitude, appearance, and ability.”

“The attitude is really important. Megadeth music has to come before all else. And the only reason that is so, is that when that is your outlook on things, then you don’t really have to worry about anything else, because Megadeth will take care of you. And when you have free time to do whatever else you need to do, it will be there because Megadeth was the beginning and the end, and any other thing that you want to do can work in that scenario.”

Marty Friedman - Tornado Of Souls (Warchest DVDRIP).flv

“The second thing is, obviously, the ability. If they can’t play the songs, nothing’s going to change that. And there are so many bands that have never made it because they had a member in there; there was a friend, somebody who they went to school with, somebody they were childhood friends [with].

And, you know, usually what happens is, somebody will get a guitar, and then they’ll have their friend and say, ‘Why don’t you play the bass?’ And most kids will say, ‘Well, I don’t want to play the frickin’ bass. I want to play guitar…'”

Mustaine also explained how on a new album, he always strives to outdo what Megadeth did on the previous one with his current lineup of musicians. He added:

“I loved making Megadeth music in the beginning because I didn’t know where it’s going. Now, there’s a challenge every time to make a song better than the last one. And that’s the inspiration for me, it’s got to be better than the last music we did. I’ve got such great players it would be really dumb not to use them, and use them to the n-th degree of their ability.”

Photo: Will Russell (Dave Mustaine 2011)


  • David Slavkovic

    David always planned for music to be nothing more than a hobby. However, after a short career as an agricultural engineer he ended up news editor at KillerGuitarRigs, senior editor at Ultimate-Guitar.com, as well as a freelance contributor to online magazines such as GuitaristNextdoor.