Slayer heavy metal guitarist Jeff Hanneman dead at 49

LOS ANGELES Thu May 2, 2013 7:58pm EDT

Related Topics

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - U.S. guitarist Jeff Hanneman, a co-founder of the seminal heavy metal band Slayer, died in Southern California on Thursday, the band said in a statement posted on their website. He was 49.

"Hanneman was in an area hospital when he suffered liver failure," the band said.

Hanneman founded Slayer with fellow guitarist Kerry King in the early 1980s in suburban Los Angeles.

The band was known as one of the "big four" thrash metal groups of the 1980s, along with Anthrax, Megadeth and Metallica.

The thrash metal genre was distinct for its extremely fast tempo, big double-bass drums and dark themes, often dealing with Satanism, war and serial killers.

Music website said the band's trademark "full-throttle velocity, wildly chaotic guitar solos, and powerful musical chops paint an effectively chilling sonic background for their obsessive chronicling of the dark side."

Hanneman is best known as a writer of the songs "Raining Blood" and "Angel of Death" from the 1986 album "Reign of Blood," which is considered a landmark of the genre.

Hanneman is survived by his wife and three siblings.

(Reporting by Eric Kelsey; Editing by Paul Simao)

We welcome comments that advance the story through relevant opinion, anecdotes, links and data. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of Reuters. For more information on our comment policy, see
Comments (3)
Clevenative wrote:
Lived longer than Elvis.

May 02, 2013 8:23pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
nukeajs wrote:
This is like Chuck Berry dying for metal fans. At least he died a rock star’s death.

May 02, 2013 9:25pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
DublinFrodo wrote:
Rock on Jeff, you left us all too soon. A part of my childhood just died with you but keep on rocking on the other side! Tonight the pantheon of Metal Gods has a new member! All Hail Jeff Hanneman!

May 03, 2013 1:18am EDT  --  Report as abuse
This discussion is now closed. We welcome comments on our articles for a limited period after their publication.