“There’s a lot of musicians who get successful and they start to believe their own hype” Dave Mustaine on why rock stars turn into “mean assholes”

Megadeth frontman Dave Mustaine calls out the rock world’s narcissists and egomaniacs, stating “We’ve gotta stop treating people like other people don’t matter.”

Photo by Katja Ogrin/Redferns

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Rockstars have a tendency to develop a bit of an ego. But Dave Mustaine is having none of it – at least according to him.

In a recent interview with Carmen Coronado of Monterrey Rock, the Megadeth legend criticised narcissistic rockers. In his eyes, Megadeth’s success has hinged on one thing: keeping their egos in check.

“It’s not compromising, and sticking to your convictions – being true to yourself and just not being a mean asshole,” Mustaine said. “There’s a lot of musicians who get successful and they start to believe their own hype, that they’re really cool. And you know what? We’re all the same. That’s the end of the story. Period.”

He goes on to allude to horror stories he has heard about certain stars who’ve let fame get to their head. “I heard about some band where this woman singer would make everyone call her ‘miss something,'” he recalls. “And you couldn’t LOOK at her. I know Madonna did that, but this was somebody else before that.”

The news made him lose all respect for the artist. “I thought, ‘Wow, I don’t like her anymore,’” he continues. “And it wasn’t that I liked her in the first place, but I just thought, what kind of an asshole does that? ‘Don’t look at me!’ All right!! Don’t look at this!! – Fuck you!”

While Mustaine is an iconic thrash metal legend, he’s keen to reassure everyone that he’s just a normal guy. “You might be better at something than other people, but you know what? Man, we’re all the same,” he concludes. “We’ve gotta stop treating people like other people don’t matter.”

Elsewhere in the interview, Mustaine reflected on the success of Megadeth’s colossal 2022 release, The Sick, The Dying… And The Dead!. The record was their highest-charting release to date, debuting at the top of the charts during its first week of sales and taking the number 3 spot on the Billboard 200, as well as earning the number 1 spot on the Top Album Sales, Top Current Albums Sales, Top Rock & Alternative Albums, Top Rock Albums and Top Hard Rock Albums charts.

“It’s been very well received – it was successful for us,” he smiles. “We have had some really high-charting records before, but this was the highest-charting record of all when it comes down to around the world.” And he’s not exaggerating – the record saw Megadeth hitting number 1 In Finland, number 2 in Australia, Poland, Switzerland, and Scotland, and number 3 in the UK.

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