The Time Kerry King Jammed with Megadeth

Kerry King and Dave Mustaine, two titans of thrash metal, momentarily silenced their rivalry for a harmonious rendezvous in 1984.

Dave Mustaine and Kerry King on stage (April 1984)
Dave Mustaine and Kerry King on stage (April 1984)
Key Takeaways
  • In April 1984, Kerry King of Slayer briefly joined Megadeth for about five shows, including Megadeth’s debut gig at the Keystone in Berkeley, California.
  • King returned to Slayer shortly after, stating his true allegiance was with the band he helped form.
  • The collaboration showcased the brotherhood among musicians in the golden age of metal, as both King and Dave Mustaine of Megadeth were willing to share the stage despite their competitive streaks.

You know, they say in the world of metal, there are connections so fascinating that they’re more intricate than a Slayer solo. One such epic tale is Kerry King’s brief soiree with Megadeth in the early ’80s. Yep, you heard it right. This clash of titans wasn’t just confined to the record charts or mosh pits; it was a live, electrified spectacle.

Picture this: It’s 1984, and Slayer has just unleashed their debut beast of an album, “Show No Mercy”. While most would be basking in the glory of their first release, King was already itching for another challenge. Enter Dave Mustaine, the enigmatic ex-Metallica guitarist, who was busy forming Megadeth, his rebound band. Mustaine, always one to recognize talent, extended an invite to King, who was more than game. After all, Mustaine’s fretwork was something King admired.

So there it was. King donned the Megadeth jersey, albeit briefly, for about five shows in April 1984. One of these was Megadeth’s debut gig at the Keystone in Berkeley, California. Now, that’s what you call a high-stakes first impression!

But like all good flings, this one was short-lived. King returned to Slayer, stating that his heart truly lay with the band he helped form. Mustaine, never one to hold a grudge, continued to build Megadeth into the powerhouse it is today.

This blip in the metal timeline is not just trivia; it’s a testament to the brotherhood that existed among musicians in the golden age of metal. Despite their competitive streaks, King and Mustaine were more than willing to share the stage, united by the sheer love of thrash metal.

Now, we can’t help but ponder the grand “what if?” What if King had stuck around with Megadeth? Would we be talking about a different thrash metal landscape today? Well, that’s a debate best settled over some cold brews and loud tunes, but one thing is certain: both bands have carved their own monumental legacies, and we wouldn’t have it any other way.