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See Dave Mustaine’s 10 Most Prized Possessions (Including Mini Horse!)


When ax-slinging thrash king Dave Mustaine was fired from Metallica in 1983, he started Megadeth as an act of revenge. Though the legendary metalheads patched up their differences, it’s fair to say the split worked out for both. “I was just some skinny redheaded kid, and the next thing I know, everybody wanted to give me their drugs or their girls,” he says. Today, triumph means something else. Mustaine, 50, lives on a sprawling ranch outside of San ?Diego with two teenage children and his wife, Pamela, while Megadeth just notched a 13th album, the shockingly raw, awesomely loud, and accurately titled Th1rt3en.

1) AC/DC Let There Be Rock I used to sell pot, and this girl who worked at a record store would pay me in albums. I remember putting this one on — the first song is called “Go Down” and the cover shows the scruffiest-looking hooligans I’d ever seen. I thought, “This is my band.” It changed my life.

2) Crossbow When we moved [to San Diego] from Arizona, my son Justis and I wanted to have a sport that we did ?together, so I got him a plastic bow and he was like, “Dad, this sucks — I want a real one.” He’s really good with this thing. We almost got a compound bow, but that’s too ?serious. I don’t wanna be Ted Nugent.

3) Peanut M&Ms When we were recording Endgame, I ate so much red licorice my pee turned red. I needed a new candy so I tried trail mix and only liked the M&M part. Now I can’t stop eating them. It’s like back in the day when we were smoking crack.

4) Shofar I was raised as a Jehovah’s Witness, rebelled by doing witchcraft, and got into all kinds of bad stuff before I saw a cross on a hill one day and said, “What’ve I got to lose?” [Mustaine is now a Christian.] But my mom is Jewish, and on holidays I blow this ram’s horn to get rid of bad spirits.

5) Certificate I met a fan in Kentucky who had throat cancer. He was only supposed to live a few weeks. For some reason, I reached out, grabbed his throat, and started praying for the dude. He lived long enough to give me this on our next tour. It’s signed by the governor and says I’m an honorary Kentucky Colonel. As far as I know, it’s the real deal.

6) Unpainted guitar body I’m a proud supporter of Dean guitars, and they asked me to paint this guitar for a charity auction. I’m thinking about doing a self-portrait — a picture of me painting myself. The guitar is so high quality it’ll be worth having regardless of how ugly it turns out.

7) Troy sword replica The tip’s bent. I think Justis used it to open a can of paint for his mom. That, or he killed some delirious nomad out in the desert. One can only hope.

8) Autographed helmet I’ve been a Raiders fan ever since ?I was a kid in Costa Mesa. I didn’t know much about the team then, but the logo was the baddest thing.

9) Coat of arms The Mustaine name came from Finland originally. My wife Pam had this made for my 40th birthday with a cake to match. The motto is “Our strength comes from God.”

10) Miniature horse We found Rocky living in a junkyard, abused and malnourished. A lot of stuff was wrong with him and he didn’t like people at all, but we just loved on him, and now he’s really friendly. He comes into the house to hang out. Sometimes he spits up his apples. When you’re a horse person, you get used to it.

Shot for SPIN in San Diego, October 7, 2011