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Nick Menza (ex Megadeth) passes away at 51

Sad news, the former Megadeth drummer who was featured on the legendary Rust in Peace, as well as Cryptic Writings, Youthanasia, Countdown to Extinction, and also worked as a guest with/supported several other projects has passed away after suffering a heart attack on stage last night.

I had really hoped for a Rust in Peace lineup reunion some day, but that's no longer possible without Nick's drumming prowess. What a talent, RIP.
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Nick Menza [R.I.P.] (of Megadeth) - auction + free download,h_112,al_c,q_85/image.jpg

The estate of late MEGADETH drummer Nick Menza will launch an online private and intimate auction this coming March - So now is your chance to own a piece of MEGADETH history!

All available tour memorabilia comes from Nick’s personal and private collection that he collected throughout the years while the drummer for MEGADETH during the touring cycle of Rust In Peace - Countdown To Extinction - Youthanasia - Cryptic Writings

Highlight's of the auction will feature some singed items and very rare VIP backstage tour laminates, tour books and a very rare, one of kind brown suede vest Nick wore during the 1994 Youthanasia photo shoot, signed by “Dave Mustaine” just to name a few!

"It simply doesn't get any more real and authentic than this"

A preview of the entire auction catalog will be available online Tuesday, February 28th,h_2000,al_c,q_85/image.jpg
The estate of late MEGADETH drummer Nick Menza In conjunction with the Croatian melodic thrash metal band SUFOSIA have released a cover of the MEGDAETH classic “Holy Wars” via where fans can download it for free.

This is the first series of un-released final recordings Nick recorded between 2013 / 2016 months before his tragic death in May, 2016 - More of this series of covers / original songs are expected to be released this year.
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from: Menza Estate <>
Tue, Apr 18, 2017

The estate of late Megadeth drummer Nick Menza in conjunction with J. Marshall Craig have released drum clinic footage of the late drummer at his Disintegrator Studios in Studio City, California that can be seen below.

Filmed by Craig in 2013 during the research / writing of his memoir, "MegaLife: Nick Menza - The Book by J. Marshall Craig -

J. Marshall Craig: I spent a year living with late, great, heavy metal drummer Nick Menza at his home in Studio City, California, trying to get the enormously private and proud man to open up and let me write his story.

A story of the heights of rock and roll stardom, dreams come true and dreams shattered.

We spent a lot of time talking, listening to music, playing music, and even began filming a drum-clinic video that comprises the final chapter of his book.

On May 23 of 2016, Nick was preparing to visit me here at my Cape Cod home and publishing offices for the final round of interviews on a project that was nearly four years in the making.

Tragically, Nick didn’t make it. He died two days before, almost instantly from a massive heart attack, while on stage at the Baked Potato with Chris Poland and Robert Pagliari in their band Ohm.

But the book is still coming late 2017.

A normally extremely private man, Nick decided to hold back nothing in telling his story. He revealed the most exciting moments in his career, taking the reader right on stage with him before more than 100,000 screaming fans. And he humbly revealed the lowest depths of a depression that nearly cost him everything before he earned his career back in his final years.

It’s a book celebrating great times, great music, great friends. It’s a book of honesty.
It’s a book of wit. And it’s even a book, sometimes, of wisdom!

Menza's long time manager Robert Bolger says the book will reveal how poorly Nick was being treated by Megadeth leader, Dave Mustaine and the brutal truth of why there was never a Megadeth reunion with the bands Rust In Peace lineup.

Nick rightfully earned his place as heavy metal’s fiercest drummer during Megadeth’s 10-year peak at the top. With Megalife: Nick Menza the Book, music fans are going to be thrilled to discover his candor just as fierce as his drumming.

The highlight of his career, Nick said, was playing Rock In Rio before more than 100,000 people. The lowest point was being fired by Megadeth founder Dave Mustaine while he was still in a hospital bed after surgery to remove was doctors feared was a cancerous growth.


Nick Menza was still groggy from the anesthesia but elated when the doctors told him the scary growth on his knee was benign and that he’d soon be back at work – as the thunderous drummer for one of the world’s greatest thrash metal bands, Megadeth.

“I was so relieved,” he says, “I didn’t think I had a worry in the world.”

So when band leader Dave Mustaine called two days later, Nick was expecting great news about returning to the Ozzfest ’98 tour.

Instead, Mustaine said, “We’re letting you go.”

Nick thought it was a joke. “Where? Disneyland? Stop fucking around, Dave, now’s not the time.”

Mustaine wasn’t joking. “I don’t think you’re hearing me clearly.”
A decade and a half later, Nick leans back in his chair in front of the console at his Los Angeles Menzanation Studios and reflects. “That was it,” he says with a shrug. “My run with one of heavy metal’s top bands at the top of its career was done. It came crashing down and it was bad. Very bad.”

Only a few gray hairs gave away the passage of time: Nick was fit as ever - not just from drumming but from his obsessive mountain-biking habit. “Yeah, I admit it, I sank into a pretty dark place. I survived, come out the other side with purpose and spirituality, and I want to make play more than ever now. I have fallen in love with music again. Fans ask me all the time if I wish I was still in Megadeth. It took a long time to realize the answer, which is...”


Nick's Drumstick Tricks & Tips!

The Conjuring - Menza re-mix with Rust in Peace style drums
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Nick Menza Remembered On One Year Anniversary Of His Death
from: Menza Estate <>
date: Sun, May 21, 2017 at 7:55 AM

Today commemorates the one year Anniversary of the regrettable passing of a great man and legendary drummer Nick Menza who is remembered today by David Ellefson - (MEGADETH), (Alex skolnick TESTAMENT), (Jason Bittner OVERKILL / SHADOWS FALL), Rob Cavestany (DEATH ANGEL), Chris "OJ" Ojeda (BYZANTINE), Anthony Tiny Biuso (TSOL/Doyle), Tomislav Ivkovic / Davor Garasic SUFOSIA), Chad Brandolini (VATER Percussion Inc.), Cory Danziger (Scenefour Inc.), (Dante / Nicholas Menza) - Video below.

The Menza Family would like to thank Robert Bolger / Keith Johnston for putting this tribute together and to all of those that participated. Thank you for sharing stories and for keeping his legacy alive. Nick will forever be in our hearts. Don, Rose and Donia Menza

Nick Menza, seven time Grammy nominee American drummer best known for his work with thrash metal band Megadeth.

​As the son of jazz musician Don Menza, Nick began playing drums at the age of two, at which age he performed at his first public concert when during the intermission someone sat him down on Jack DeJohnette's drums and he proceeded to play. His influences stem from being nurtured around the tutelage of such notables as Buddy Rich, Steve Gadd, Nick Ceroli, Jeff Porcaro and Louie Bellson Nick caught the attention of then Megadeth drummer at the time, Chuck Behler and became his tech. He had also been chosen to play in Slayer on South of Heaven, but original drummer Dave Lombardo was asked to came back. When Megadeth needed a drummer in 1989, Nick Menza was asked by Dave Mustaine to join the band.

Mustaine noted that Menza previously filled in on drums when Behler was unable to. Menza first played live with Megadeth on May 12, 1988 in Bradford, England.

​This prior experience and personal relationship led to the invitation to join Megadeth for the 1990 recording Rust in Peace and for the next ten years, Nick became associated with Megadeth's "classic" period 1992's Countdown to Extinction, 1994's Youthanasia, and 1997's Cryptic Writings.

​Released worldwide on September 24, 1990, Rust in Peace was a hit with fans and critics alike, debuting at No. 23 in the US and No. 8 in the UK The album featured the singles "Holy Wars","The Punishment Due" and "Hangar 18", both of which had music videos made of them and remain live staples. Rust in Peace went on to sell more than a million copies in the US and received Grammy nominations in 1991 and 1992 for Best Metal Performance.

What would become Megadeth's most commercially successful effort, Countdown to Extinction. The album was the first to feature writing contributions from each band member, and was named by drummer Nick Menza. Released on July 14, 1992, Countdown to Extinction was an instant hit, debuting at No. 2 on the Billboard Top 200 album charts in the US, and No. 5 in the UK. Anchored by the Mainstream Rock hits "Symphony of Destruction" "Foreclosure of a Dream" and "Sweating Bullets" The album quickly went double platinum in the US, and received a Grammy nomination for Best Metal Performance in 1993.

More success was followed from Youthanasia, released on November 1, 1994 debuting at No. 4 on the Billboard Top 200 album chart in the US, Certified gold in Canada after thirty minutes and was certified platinum in the US. Later in November, the band was invited twice to perform at David Letterman's Late Show: the first time they performed "Train of Consequences"and "À Tout le Monde" on the second occasion.

On June 17, 1997, Capitol Records released Cryptic Writings. The album debuted at No. 10 on the Billboard Top 200, and was Megadeth's sixth consecutive studio album to be certified platinum in the United States. "Trust", a single from Cryptic Writings, became Megadeth's highest charting single to date. The No. 5 Mainstream Rock Track was also nominated for a Best Metal Performance Grammy in 1998.

Megadeth joined Ozzfest 98 but, halfway through the tour, drummer Nick Menza discovered a tumor on his knee and was forced to leave to undergo surgery. Megadeth then hired a temporary replacement, Jimmy DeGrasso rather than cancel any dates.

When the time came to record a follow-up album, Menza was not asked back and DeGrasso became the band's official drummer. while in the hospital recovering from knee surgery, Nick received a phone call from Mustaine that simply said your services are not needed anymore.

A few weeks after, they all got together (Dave Mustaine), (David Ellefson), (Marty Friedman), (Nick Menza) for a dinner meeting at the Anaheim White House restaurant with former manager Ron Laffitte to discuss plans for a new Megadeth record and touring schedule.

Soon as Menza returned back home to Los Angeles it was time to sit down and negotiate his terms in moving forward as the bands official drummer again. He was offered very unfair terms and after trying to negotiate, Megadeth leader Dave Mustaine blocked his emails, changed his number and then, apparently Ron Laffitte was fired as the band's manager.

Menza even went as far as, recording and demoing drums on five new Megadeth songs that Dave had sent him that where later re-arranged / re-recorded by Lamb of God drummer Chris Alder, and released on the groups 2016 - (Dystopia)

In 2015 Menza officially joined OHM, the instrumental rock/jazz fusion group led by another ex-Megadeth member, guitarist Chris Poland.

May 21, 2016 Menza was performing live with his band, OHM at the Baked Potato jazz club in Studio City, CA. and only three songs into the set, Menza collapsed onstage behind his drumkit.

He was rushed to a hospital where he was pronounced dead on arrival. An autopsy later showed the cause of death to be congestive heart failure, Menza was 51.
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Late Nick Menza to be inducted into the Hall of Heavy Metal History
Monday, Jan 15, 2018

Late Megadeth drummer Nick Menza will be inducted into the Hall of Heavy Metal History, on January 24, 2018. in Anaheim CA. @ the Wyndham Anaheim Garden Grove 12021 Harbor Blvd Garden Grove, CA 92840-4001

"Nick was the beating heart of Megadeth," Says Menza's manager Robert Bloger. "He was a huge part of the bands imagery, energy and power, with a very unique animated style of playing that fans latched onto."

"Nick Menza was an inspiration for both Megadeth fans, and metal drummers around the world," says Hall of Heavy Metal History President/CEO Pat Gesualdo.

"It is a great honor to have Nick Inducted into the Hall of Heavy Metal History, and to have his legacy preserved in metal music forever."

The 2018 Hall of Heavy Metal History Inductees:
Bill Ward
Lzzy Hale
Billy Sheehan
Carmine Appice
Jordan Rudess
Metal Mike Chlasciak
Nick Menza
Munsey Ricci (President, Skateboard Marketing)
Sammy Ash (COO Sam Ash Music)
Elliott Rubinson (Owner, Dean Guitars, with Rubinson family accepting Induction)


The Hall of Heavy Metal History is a non-profit organization dedicated to enshrining forever, those Iconic musicians and music industry executives who are responsible for making Hard Rock and Heavy Metal music what it is today. Their contribution to the genre is invaluable, and they keep inspiring Heavy Metal fans throughout the world, from generation to generation.

The Hall of Heavy Metal History does an Annual Celebrity Benefit Gala in January, in Anaheim CA. The Hall also has does an Annual on-stage Induction Ceremony at Wacken, the world's largest heavy metal festival, for the "Global Metal Ambassador Artist Award." The Hall of Heavy Metal History is part of the non-profit organization D.A.D. (Drums and Disabilities), where celebrities, sports stars, law enforcement agencies, the United States Department of Defense, and major corporations join to help special needs children and wounded soldiers on a Global basis. D.A.D. and the Hall of Heavy Metal History also join with the Ronnie James Dio Stand Up And Shout Cancer Fund.

For tickets or more information, please visit
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