ScorpioN is now accepting questions! Submit here: Before you ask a question, read the SCORPION ARCHIVES and make sure that your question has not already been answered! ScorpioN may not be able to answer every question asked. Please only submit one question per email in an easy to read format. Check back here to often to see if your question was selected! ScorpioN section is updated every Monday.

  • ScorpioN,

    I have ran across a Megadeth track off the ECW: Extreme Music featuring the song "Trust" as a different instrumental version. Could you please tell me how this track was born in this version?

    Manheim PA, USA

    Hi Brett,

    Extreme Championship Wrestling was a division of professional wrestling from 1994-2001, which aired on the TNN network in the U.S. The 1998 album ECW: Extreme Music featured different ECW wrestlers choosing a theme song, many of which were metal covers done by established bands such as Motörhead and Anthrax. The wrestler Jerry Lynn was featured with the instrumental version of "Trust", from Megadeth's Cryptic Sounds EP, proclaiming, "the only thing harder than Megadeth is beating me in the ring".


  • I am just an amateur. I've had dozens of guitars. My favorite to play is the esp Ltd dv8r. The neck on this guitar feels like it was practically made for me. Can you tell me how the neck dimensions on your dean's compare? Are the cheaper Dean Mustaine models equipped with the same neck?

    Thank you

    Hi Gordon,

    Well I'm not sure how Dave's Dean guitars compare to ESP in regards to the neck, but I will give you some neck specs on his guitars and you can do the comparison.

    VMNT models:
    Scale length - 25 1/2" (648mm)
    Neck shape - Dave Mustaine Spec. D shaped
    # of frets - 24 Medium
    Fretboard radius - 14" and 16"

    Zero models:
    Scale length - 25 1/2" (648mm)
    Neck shape - Dave Mustaine Spec. D shaped
    # of frets - 24 Medium
    Fretboard radius - 14"

    Neck material varies between Maple and Mahogonay
    Fretboard material varies between Rosewood and Ebony

    Hope that helps!

    Check out Dave's entire line of Dean guitars at


  • Hey Scorp!

    Is there any possibility of a Cryptic Writings reissue on vinyl? It is such a good record that needs to be reissued! Thank you!

    -Josh Holmes (SC)=

    Hi Josh, Cryptic Writings is not available on vinyl at this time there are no plans to release it on vinyl. Not saying that it will never happen, you never know! I agree with you, it's such a great album. Did you check out news recently? We are offering a six-picture disc vinyl bundle which includes; Youthanasia, So Far, So Good... So What!, Rust In Peace, Peace Sells, Countdown To Extinction and Dystopia! Quite a bundle. Check it out at

  • Hi ScorpioN !

    I have a few questions for you.
    I wanna know if the VIP Package would be available in Chile (August 2) and if its available it has an stock?
    And the other question is.. Megadeth will come alone or with another band? you know, something like a special guest :)

    Thats all, thank you so much !

    Beatriz from Chile.

    Hello Beatriz,

    VIP packages are indeed available for the show at Teatro Caupolicán in Santiago, Chile on August 2, as well as the majority of the rest of the South American tour. You can go to to order your VIP package!

    A support band hasn't been announced yet for Santiago, but I'm sure it will be a good one and the concert should be epic with Megadeth headlining the show! You won't want to miss it ...and definitely pick yourself up a VIP package! ;)


  • Hi Scorpion I hope you’re doing great!

    I’m a big fan of Megadeth and I’m totally in love with the new album, specially the instrumental song “Conquer or Die!” but I really want I want to know what is the line at the end of the song I think is Latin or something similar.

    Thanks Scorpion and take care!


    Hi Alejandro,

    You are correct, it is Latin from the Biblical Verse: 2 Timothy 3:2. Spoken on the album by USM Latin Professor, Dr. Miles Doleac ...with some studio effects. ;)

    "Et erunt homines se ipsos amantes, cupidi, elati, superbi, blasphemi, parentibus inoboedientes, ingrati, scelesti."

    "For men will be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, revilers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy."


  • Hi!

    This would be for Dave since this about his guitars.

    I know there is available multiple VMNT guitars with several album paint jobs. I have previously owned Angel of Deth, but i sold it because it felt little bit fragile and maybe cheap "mahogany shouldn't be that light imo".

    I have since started to think that i would get "Rust in Peace" since it´s my favorite album. Then i started thinking that anyone can get one so that particular guitar wouldn't feel unique. Then once i was listening "The Threat is Real" and it hit me: i must get "Dystopia" guitar!

    Does Dean have any plans to start producing them? Cause i can't afford custom one.

    Come here soon!
    Niko from Finland

    Hello Niko!

    You are in luck. Dean just released a new model, the 'Zero Dave Mustaine - Dystopia' guitar.

    From the Dean Guitars website:

    "A must-have for any true Megadeth fan! This guitar features a solid Mahogany body and neck with a stunning Rosewood fingerboard. The DMT Design pickups scream heavy-metal-shred while the contours of the guitar give easy, comfortable access to all 24 frets! This axe also comes with a bold, custom Dystopia graphic to melt your eyes as well as your ears! Get your wings today!"

    You can pre-order one now at


  • Is Megadeth going to play live in San Juan Puerto Rico on April 28 2016?


    Hi Sebastian, Megadeth will be playing at Coliseo de Puerto Rico in Perto Rico on April 28 with Anthrax! For upcoming Dystopia World Tour dates, check


  • Hey Scorps,

    Got a question for the lord and saviour for all metal bass players: David Ellefson

    Back in the KIMB era David played with his fingers (I'm a finger style player as well) and I realy enjoy playing that stuff, what brand of strings did Mr Ellefson use back then (if he played with fingers or pick) I trayed a lot of strings before and attempting to play with pick and fingers.
    I found out that DRs are to heavy for finger play and Rotosound not durable enough for pick.

    So would be awesome to know what brand David used to play.


    W. Baeten

    Hi W.B.

    David used Rotosound Swing Bass sets back in those days: He eventually switched to Dean Markley and to D'Addario in the 90s and has now settled on SIT Strings Powerwound since 2010 due to the punch and clarity.


  • ScorpioN,

    I discovered Megadeth shortly after So Far, So Good... So What! Since then I've been to dozens of live shows. Particularly during the 90s and early 2000s many of the shows opened with spoken audio directed at the audience as if we were living in an Orwellian state (similar to the opening for Endgame). Sometimes the tracks had music and sound effects as well.

    As a fan of dystopian fiction I've always been fascinated by them. I've long wondered where they came from. Can you tell me anything about them?


    Joel Steverson
    Lakewood, Colorado, USA

    Hello Joel,

    The intro music you are referring to is called "Shut Up, Be Happy".

    This is actually the opening track on Ice T's third album, The Iceberg/Freedom of Speech...Just Watch What You Say! The music in the background of the song is Black Sabbath's "Black Sabbath" and the voice you hear delivering the spoken word is Jello Biafra, the singer of the Dead Kennedys, who is a self-proclaimed anarchist and member of the Green Party. Here are the lyrics, reprinted courtesy of Sire Records:

    We interrupt this program with a special bulletin:
    America is now under martial law.
    All constitutional rights have been suspended.
    Stay in your homes.
    Do not attempt to contact love ones, insurance agent or attorney.
    Shut up.
    Do not attempt to think or depression may occur.
    Stay in your homes.
    Curfew is at 7 PM sharp after work.
    Anyone caught outside of gates of their surveillance sectors after curfew will be shot.
    Remain calm, do not panic.
    Your neighborhood watch officer will be by to collect urine examples in the morning.
    Anyone caught interfering with the collection of urine examples will be shot.
    Stay in your homes, remain calm.
    The number one enemy of progress is questions.
    National security is more important than individual will.
    All sports broadcasts will proceed as normal.
    No more than two people may gather anywhere without permission.
    Use only the drugs described by your boss or supervisor.
    Shut up, be happy.
    Obey all orders without question.
    The comfort you demanded is now mandatory.
    Be happy.
    At last everything is done for you


  • Scorpion, I was on iTunes and I saw that Dystopia contains tracks that are not on the physical version of the album. Will these be released as deluxe edition in the future or on the release date? -- Rick

    Hi Rick,

    The standard CD will contain 11 songs. There's an exclusive version at iTunes and Best Buy that will have 13 songs. Album release date, January 22, 2016!


  • Scorpion,

    There really isn't much information on Dave's pre-Metallica band Panic. Could we have a little information on the band such as whether or not any recordings/demos will surface or how the band broke up, or what the band sounded like?

    I asked Dave about his first band Panic, and here is what he had to say:

    "Panic was my first real band – Drummer Mike Leftwych, Bass Bob Evans, Guitar Tom Queck, Singer Pat Voeks, and I Dave Mustaine was lead guitar.
    And although I had gotten together and played with various other friends and acquaintances, Panic would be my first band that I actually performed anything under. Songs like, “The Mechanix,” “Jump In The Fire,” “Childsaint,” and several other riffs that made it into the Metallica or Megadeth fields.

    The band was a five piece and we hardly ever played or rehearsed toward the end. We just went to parties, set-up and shredded, and by the time people knew what hit them, we were already packing it back up or we had taken over the place. One of the low lights for Panic was the first show ended in tragedy with a car crash resulting in the deaths of both of my friends, sound man Joe (it has been so long I have forgotten his last name), and drummer Mike Leftwych.

    There were never any tapes made that I know of, certainly no demo tapes made up. But you never know, they could have had a bootlegger there from before.

    This was my first and only amateur band. My next two bands, Megadeth and Metallica, would sell almost 100,000,000 records worldwide."


  • On the album The System Has Failed, can you tell us more about the musicians?

    Yes, I can tell you more about the musicians who played on The System Has Failed. In addition to Dave Mustaine, the other musicians are Vinnie Colaiuta - Drums, Jimmy Lee Sloas - Bass, and Chris Poland - Guitars. Vinnie Colaiuta's resume includes the renowned Frank Zappa. In addition to being amazing at the bass, Jimmy Lee Sloas is also a talented Producer and Song Writer. Chris Poland (unless you have been living under a rock, that is a name that most of you should recognize), is a former member of Megadeth and his previous Megadeth credits include Killing is My Business...and Business is Good! and Peace Sells...But Who's Buying?

  • Hi, I am turning 14, I play bass and I really want to know what would be a good distortion overdrive pedal.

    Hello, David Ellefson recommends the MXR bass distortion pedals.


  • Hey ScorpioN, Megadeth has been my favorite band for a long time and I've always loved the song "Mary Jane" off the album "So Far, So Good...So What!" And I'm curious as to what the meaning of the song is. I've heard it's about a girl practicing black magic, but I've also heard it pertains to marijuana. Thanks a lot ScorpioN!


    Legend has it that Mary Jane Twilliger was a young witch buried alive by her father in the nearby Loon Lake, MN cemetery. The mystery surrounding her grew to such legendary proportions over the years that it was rumored anyone who dared violate her grave in any was was doomed to a certain and immediate death. There were even stories of deadly car crashes involving people who got drunk and caused mayhem on her grave, thinking it was all harmless fun.

    The Jackson County Historical Society relocated the headstone from her grave to its museum located in the nearby town of Lakefield, MN. Check out a photo of David Ellefson with Mary Jane's headstone below. Her headstone’s epitaph was the inspiration to the bridge section lyric of the song.

    "Beware my friends, as you pass by
    So you are now, so once was I
    As I am now, so you must be
    Prepare my friends to follow me"


  • Scorpion,

    The other day I was just staring at the front of my Copy of Rust In Peace, and noticed, the two guys sitting to Vic's left are Mikhail Gorbachev and George H.W. Bush, but I have no idea who the other three guys in the hangar are.

    You are indeed correct about the two gentlemen at Vic Rattlehead's left being Gorbachev and Bush. And to answer your question, to the right of Mr. Rattlehead in the Hangar, we have Richard von Weizsäcker, Toshiki Kaifu and John Major. Dr. von Weizsäcker was the president of Germany during the timeframe when Rust in Peace was released in 1990. Likewise, Toshiki Kaifu was Prime Minister of Japan at the time, albeit for only a very short-lived time. And John Major was Prime Minister of the UK and leader of the British conservative party. Collectively, these five world leaders represent the five so-called "Superpowers" of the world during the early 1990s.


  • Hi Scorpion, I have a question that I don’t think has been asked on here before…

    I found that a split 7” of Megadeth and a Ska-Punk band called Less than Jake exists, with Megadeth’s “The Disintegrators” on one side, and a song by Less Than Jake called “All My Best Friends Are Metalheads” on the other. Is it a bootleg or something? I just find it kind of funny to have Megadeth doing a split record with a Ska band!

    Thanks for your time..

    Cody Stanley

    Hi Cody,

    The Megadeth/Less Than Jake split 7" is not a bootleg, it is an official release that was sold during the Ozzfest '98 tour, which featured Megadeth, and the Warped Tour '99, which featured Less Than Jake. The two bands were labelmates at Capitol Records at the time.

    Thanks for your question!


  • Dear ScorpioN

    I was flicking through channels when I saw an episode of Duck Dodgers that was starring Dave Mustaine! Did someone fake Dave's voice or is that actually Dave's voice?


    Hello Brendan,

    No, you were not just hearing things. That was indeed the voice of Dave Mustaine, starring as himself. The episode of Duck Dodgers you are referring to is called "In Space, No-one Can Hear You Rock/Ridealong Calamity". It originally aired Saturday, November 5, 2005 on the Cartoon/Boomerang Network. In this episode, the Martians create a weapon to drain energy from Earth's music and use its atomic power to destroy the Earth. Dodgers unfreezes Dave to play enough heavy metal to overload the device. Megaduck rules! Now I've always known Dave was a rock star, but to save the planet as well? My hat is off to you sir!

    Duck Dodgers was not Mustaine's only television appearance. He has also been featured on Rock N Roll Jeopardy!,The Drew Carrey Show, Black Scorpion, Behind the Music, I Love the 80s, Never Mind the Buzzcocks, Top Ten, Headbanger's Ball, CNN, and several others. Seems he's had quite the TV career!


  • Dear ScorpioN,

    Are there any plans for a 30th anniversary of the "Killing Is My Business...and Business Is Good!" album celebration, like a tour or probably another remaster of the album? I'd like to know.

    Many Thanks,
    Valentin, Bulgaria

    Hello Valentin, just today in fact, Dave Mustaine made a Tweet giving a clue. See below!

    Stay tuned!

  • Hello Megadeth! I was just wondering what I should practice as an electric guitarist, songs, scale, and arpeggios. I'm turning 15 June 3rd, so I'm not a god at guitar just want some song suggestions for intermediate players. Thank You! I will be purchasing your new album!


    Hello Mark,

    Great question and happy to hear you have so much interest in playing the guitar. I went right to Mr. Dave Mustaine himself with your question. here is what he had to say:

    "Pick your influences, be careful of the tab that is out there, because most of it is crap, and ask a lot of questions. -Dave Mustaine"

    Hope that helps! Keep up the great work!


  • Hi ScorpioN,

    While listening brilliant track "Go To Hell' I've started to wonder who the female voice in the beginning of the song belongs to.
    Could you tell me this information please? :)


    Alex from Russia

    Hi Alex,

    The female voice on the track "Go To Hell" is that of David Ellefson's wife. Her maiden name was Julie Foley at the time and that would be her credit on the recording.

    Dave Mustaine asked her to do it and was recorded at The Enterprise Studios in Burbank in 1991 for the film soundtrack "Bill and Ted Go To Hell" but was later retitled "Bill and Ted's Bogus Journey".

    Ironically, this song released within only a few weeks of Metallica's "Enter Sandman" that contained the same prayer! Neither Megadeth or Metallica knew each other was recording it.


  • Hi!

    I really love the song "1000 Times Goodbye" from The World Needs a Hero album, and I've been wondering for a long time who is the female voice in it?



    Hi Mikaela,

    Her name is Heather Keckler, and she was my predecessor in this Q & A section. She worked on for many years as a columnist under different monikers such as "Miss Megadeth" during the Cryptic Writings era, "Catnip" around the time Risk was released, and ultimately she was the "She-Wolf" Q & A columnist, which eventually became my column, the ScorpioN.


  • Hey ScorpioN

    Vic Rattlehead is the greatest mascot of all time in my opinion, but what is he holding on the Rust in Peace cover? It really stands out on my signature VMNT!


    Hi Kyle, this question had already been answered in a previous ScorpioN column. I will gladly repost.

    "Rust In Peace is my second favorite album, next to The System Has Failed, of course. Band artwork is always fascinating to me, so I was happy to pass along your question.
    Dave said, "It’s a McDonald’s cheeseburger from 1961. Not really, I think it is supposed to be like Kryptonite."

    So I guess that means that Vic Rattlehead isn't Superman..."


  • Dear ScorpioN,

    I am a bass player from Edmonton Alberta, Canada, and David Ellefson is one of my favorite players of all time! He is who inspired me to get a Jackson bass because I love the tone of his bass in all the Megadeth albums. My question is this:

    How exactly does David achieve his tone? It's really "tinny", really bright and really punchy, but it still has that warm sound to it.

    Thank you in advance for answering this!


    Hello Kristian, I have an answer for you right from David Ellefson himself.

    "Thank you Kristian and glad you're liking what you hear! My tone has evolved over the years but I do try and maintain that tight low end while having that "bite" on the top end to cut through the drums. The Jackson basses with SIT Strings Nickel Powerwound strings, medium heavy Jim Dunlop Tortex plectrums and Hartke amplification certainly help but it is also in how I attack the strings and anchor my hand on the bridge to control the string's performance. You can probably see this more clearly on my Rockhouse Method instructional DVDs and even You Tube videos of live Megadeth performances, too.

    I hope this helps and I hope you enjoy your Jackson bass!"


  • Hello ScorpioN,

    Is there an official list of all the songs Megadeth has covered?

    Dallas Durbin

    Hello Dallas, you can check out the official list of every song Megadeth has ever put out on a Megadeth album, originals and covers, at


  • Hi ScorpioN,

    In the latest video post Dave is seen in front of a dry erase board with the words:

    No one will deny me
    No one will defy me
    No one will define me... .

    Are these by any chance lyrics for a new song?
    Or is this Dave’s mentality and mantra for recording the new album?


    Hello Droogie!

    I took your question directly to Dave Mustaine and here is what he had to say...

    "Words to live and die by. Maybe lyrics...definitely my motto."

    There ya have it!


  • Hi Scorpion,

    I've been a huge Megadeth Fan since the 80's. Recently I saw Dave Mustaine on an Episode of Hell's Kitchen (which I am a fan of as well). I was curious as to how that experience was for him.


    Hi Jay,

    Dave Mustaine and his wife Pam were indeed guests on an episode of Hell's Kitchen which aired earlier this month. I went to Dave Mustaine himself with your question and this is what he had to say.

    "We were very excited to go, the show was great, Gordon was brilliant, and we are happy to have seen a genius chef at work.
    The competitors got their heads handed to them and rightly so. My face said it all when they asked me what I thought about the food."

    There ya have it! ...and I am certainly glad I wasn't on the menu! You never know with Chef Gordon Ramsay!


  • Hi Scorpion,

    Thanks for the archives which is full of interesting questions and answers. My question is, What is the meaning of the sign on Cryptic Writings album?


    Hello Sifat,

    It is called a "Veve". It was a style of writing warnings and notices for what we would call "homeless travelers" or "hobos". They indicate safety as well as danger, shelter, etc.

    Here's what Dave Mustaine had to say regarding the cover soon after the album was released:

    "It's called a veve [pronounced vay vay]... It's a voodoo symbol... It means that you can enter into a premises, that it's safe and there is no poison. It's a warning telling you where you can and can not go. It's also a direction. Most of the hobos were people who practiced voodoo. They would go from building to building whether it was a shanty or it was a shack. They would go in there and they'd find chalk writings on the wall that told them if it was a safe place. It was usually done with a burnt stick... When I first got the artwork back it was littered with voodoo symbols and all kinds of stuff. I told them that it was too heavy. I didn't want anything on there that would give homage to pagan gods and shit like that. I want it to be about the music. As it is, that symbol right there, we don't really know exactly what the combination of everything is. We know pretty much what the breakdown of each symbol is but it's like crossing different kinds of medications. You take two separate medications and they have a different and combined effect. There might be something where those symbols counter another symbol and turn it into something else."


  • ScorpioN,

    In the song “Hook in Mouth”, there are references to a P.M.R.C. What is the PMRC?


    Hi Drew,

    The song Hook in Mouth is about censorship, and it is basically aimed at the P.M.R.C. P.M.R.C is an acronym for Parents Music Resource Center. It was founded in America in the mid-1980's by Tipper Gore, to quote "alert the public of the growing trend in music towards lyrics that are sexually explicit, excessively violent, or glorify the use of drugs and alcohol." Essentially we have the P.M.R.C, and Mrs. Gore of course, to thank for the vile "Parental Advisory/Explicit Lyrics" stickers.


  • ScorpioN, could you tell me about David Ellefson's tour in Australia this month? Is he only speaking or will he be playing music as well? Can you tell me more about it?


    Hello Aaron,

    David Ellefson's "My Life With Deth" 5-date Spoken Word Tour kicks off in Perth, Australia on March 24th and wraps up in Adelaide, Australia on March 29. The evenings with David will feature stories from life on the road with Megadeth, a bass demonstration and audience Q&A. There are meet & greet packages available as well which gets you some merch, autographs, a photo with David and you get to meet him! Check out the following link for more info:


  • The music video "Breadline", what was the inspiration behind it


    Hello Lynda,

    "Breadline" is about when Dave Mustaine and David Ellefson used to have to drive downtown everyday past the soup kitchens and they would see the derelicts out in the street with their shopping carts. They realized that if they didn't make it soon they would be one of them because they were running out of options and they had no other choice but to make it or die trying.