The music community is reeling in the wake of the onstage murder of Damageplan/Pantera guitarist "Dimebag" Darrell Abbott at the hands of a gunman earlier this week.

The music community is reeling in the wake of the onstage murder of Damageplan/Pantera guitarist "Dimebag" Darrell Abbott at the hands of a gunman earlier this week. As previously reported, Abbott was killed Wednesday in a Columbus, Ohio, nightclub in a shooting spree that left three others dead. The assailant, Nathan Gale, was shot to death by police.

"We are shocked and saddened," reads a statement released by Atlantic Records, whose labels released music by Damageplan and Pantera. "Dimebag Darrell was an exceptional musician and an extraordinary person. Along with his brother and bandmate, Vinnie Paul, he was a member of the Elektra/Atlantic family for the past 14 years, and he will be deeply missed. The bravery displayed by Damageplan, their crew, their fans, and the local police will never be forgotten."

"I don't know a single person who didn't love the music Dime created," said Mark Hunter, lead singer of metal act Chimaira. "I am so thankful for the all of the music he gave us and I am truly upset about this. I immediately broke into tears when I heard the confirmation. Dime's music gave me so much to live for when I was younger and he truly changed the face of metal with his unique style of guitar playing. There isn't a metal band I know that hasn't borrowed a riff or three from him. My heart goes out to the Abbott family, their friends and all of the fans who had to witness this tragedy in Columbus."

"[Abbott] was a heavy-metal icon, kids around the world found release and a place to belong in his music," said Juliya, host of "Uranium," a heavy metal show on cable video network Fuse.

"Dimebag was one of the most influential musicians in our time," Trivium singer/guitarist Matt Heafy said. "Dime was a legend who really made the world seem that much better. He was a man who helped inspire countless numbers of players, fans, and people in general, including me. It's a terrifying feeling that now at concerts, at the place that we seek our release from the everyday world we want to escape from, our heroes are being murdered."

Yesterday, Columbus rock radio station WBZX aired a press conference by police live on the air, then took several hours of phone calls from listeners and concert attendees. While easing back into the music, afternoon DJ Scoop Richards, who attended the Damageplan concert, said that much of his show would be open to listeners sharing their shock and disbelief.

Fuse and satellite broadcaster Sirius are paying tribute to Abbott with special programming. Fuse's "Uranium" will air an interview with the guitarist taped just 10 days before his death at 8 p.m. ET. The special will feature live footage of Damageplan, as well as interviews with Black Label Society/Ozzy Osbourne guitarist Zakk Wylde and Anthrax singer Scott Ian, among others.

Sirius' Hard Attack channel (27) aired a two-hour tribute yesterday afternoon that will repeat tonight at 9 p.m. ET, Saturday at noon and Sunday at 9 a.m.

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