Ex-MEGADETH Bassist DAVID ELLEFSON Still Buys All His Own Albums

June 28, 2023

In a new interview with Poland's Pełna Kulturka, former MEGADETH bassist David Ellefson was asked how he listens to music nowadays. He responded (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): "I always listen to it on — quite honestly on this very iPhone I'm talking to you on. [Laughs] It has my entire music catalog on it. And it's because I fly and I travel. I buy most of it, so it's in the phone and my cloud, so I have it, because I'm not always on wifi, so when I wanna listen to music, I wanna have it. So I pay for it. I buy my own albums. When DIETH pre-order went up, I pre-ordered it. I buy my own albums. I buy my friends' albums. When IRON MAIDEN or JUDAS PRIEST or GHOST albums are coming out, I always buy it because I support them as my friends and I'm a fan of their music. And it's important to stay a fan, I think, too, to be excited about it: 'Oh, man, the new album is here. Let me listen to it.' I will say this: at home, I have a vinyl player. It's not a great one. It's just a small little thing that I have.

"I was glad to move away from vinyl because I learned how to play bass to vinyl," he continued. "The needle would be there, and you'd have to pick it up and move it back and listen to it and pick it up; that's how I learned how to play bass. So I was glad to move past it. And I love the convenience of digital.

"But I will say this: I love vinyl album covers. I bought so many albums — AC/DC, VAN HALEN, the SEX PISTOLS, JUDAS PRIEST, IRON MAIDEN — so many records, I became a fan of these bands from their album covers. So I will buy it on iTunes. I'm an Apple guy, because, by the way, also pays us the best as royalties. So I'd rather give Apple my money. I love Steve Jobs. I think he settled the Napster dispute by creating the iTunes store, even if it was just so he can sell iPods. Whatever. He fixed it, so I hail him."

Ellefson added: "I bought BACHMAN-TURNER OVERDRIVE 'Not Fragile'. I have it in here [on my iPhone]. That's one of the first albums that got me into rock and roll. But then I went on Amazon and I bought the album cover. 'Cause I wanted to have the vinyl album cover. And I found it. It was, like, 10 dollars, and I had it shipped to my house. So now I have the album cover so I can look at the album and listen to it on my phone the same way I used to as a kid sitting in front of my stereo, looking at pictures, reading… 'Cause, to me, that's such a part of this.

"That's why, I think, as metal artists, we go to such great lengths to make these elaborate album covers with these gatefolds and these digipacks and all this stuff, because we put the lyrics, who played what solo, who wrote what song, because we know as fans ourselves that fans want to see this stuff. This isn't just a song that's passing us by. We are all into a culture. Our bands, our t-shirts — that's who we are. So we go to great lengths to do that. That's why, just even still as a fan, if I buy a KISS album… I bought a 38 SPECIAL album and I bought the album cover. I found it at a record store, just 'cause I wanted to take it home and remember the experience I had when I was a teenager listening to my favorite records on my stereo at home when I was growing up."

DIETH, which features Ellefson alongside Swedish guitarist/vocalist Guilherme Miranda (formerly of ENTOMBED A.D.) and drummer Michał Łysejko (ex-DECAPITATED), released its debut album, "To Hell And Back", on June 2 via Napalm Records. The LP includes the song "Walk With Me Forever", featuring the first-ever solo lead vocal performance of Ellefson's career. The track's haunting accompanying music video shows Ellefson narrating a story of love and loss, directed by Oskar Szramka and starring notable Polish actors Jan Napieralski and Agnieszka Goździewicz.

Ellefson was fired from MEGADETH by Dave Mustaine in May 2021, just days after sexually tinged messages and explicit video footage involving the bassist were posted on Twitter.

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