Dan Donegan

Dan Donegan

Donegan performing live at Starland Ballroom.
Background information
Birth name Daniel James Donegan
Born August 1, 1968 (1968-08-01) (age 43)
Oak Lawn, Illinois, U.S.
Genres Alternative metal, heavy metal, nu metal, thrash metal
Instruments Guitar, keyboard
Labels Giant, Intoxication Records, Reprise, Warner Bros.
Associated acts Disturbed
Website http://www.disturbed1.com

Dan Donegan (born August 1, 1968 in Oak Lawn, Illinois) is an American musician and guitarist for heavy metal band Disturbed. Donegan began playing guitar as a teenager and eventually formed a band called Vandal, which was an '80s-style hair band.[citation needed] Recently, Donegan was added to the guitar show "Chop Shop's" list of "Top 100 Most Complete Guitar Players of All Time" at number 76.[1]


History and personal life

Donegan had very long hair during the early days of Brawl and Disturbed.[2][3] According to Disturbed's DVD titled M.O.L., Donegan got a job with his father doing construction work. He was required to cut his hair for it, but instead opted to wear a wig to fool his dad and keep his long hair. It worked, and his dad eventually let him keep his long hair.[2] Donegan has a daughter named Maya and a son named Justin.

Technique and style

Donegan is a self-taught guitarist.[4] He uses one handed and two handed tapping in many of his solos, with pull-offs, legatos and hammer-ons, also sometimes using the "flick off" technique, as used in the solo for the song "Indestructible", and in others as well. His heavy riffs and sweep picking are seen in many music videos. He uses his DigiTech Dan Donegan, "The Weapon" for many effects in and out of his solo work. He also combines arpeggios with finger tapping and many other techniques. He is known for shredding in some songs and uses finger vibrato on occasion. He uses the whammy bar in many songs to give it a certain sound effect.

In the video "The Making of Indestructible", he mentions he prefers "tasteful" solos, as opposed to shredding solos that rely primarily on speed. Disturbed's frontman David Draiman mentions "he [Donegan] can rip with the best of them". David also mentions "He's [Donegan] in my opinion you know among the best in existence, and he doesn't give himself enough credit". In the 80's, he was in a hair metal band known as Vandal, where many of his solos were shred guitar solos, but he would incorporate other techniques, which many consider his own style of playing.


Early on with his career with Disturbed, Donegan played Gibson Les Paul Standards and SGs. Then, he switched to play a few Paul Reed Smith models, the Tremonti Model and a PRS Singlecut. In 2005, Washburn Guitars built Donegan his own signature model called the Maya, named after his daughter. For 2010, Dan built a signature guitar with Schecter guitars, that is based on the ultra classic model (his being the ultra DD).[5] Donegan is a fan of GHS Boomer guitar strings and uses the 12-52 gauge set. He also uses Seymour Duncan pickups in his guitars.


  • Current:
  • Schecter Ultra Dan Donegan signature model
  • Schecter Solo-6 2010 limited edition (used in the studio for Asylum)
  • Past:
  • Washburn Maya DD81 signature model (Indestructible)
  • Washburn Maya signature model (Ten Thousand Fists)
  • PRS Singlecut (Believe)
  • PRS Mark Tremonti (Believe)
  • Gibson Les Paul Standards (The Sickness)
  • Gibson SGs (The Sickness)
  • Ibanez Iceman (used in the early days of Disturbed)


  • Randall RM4 preamp with 1 "Clean" and 3 "1086" modules into a RT2/50 Power Amp. Has used Randall Cyclone and V-Max heads in the past since 2001, when Dan received an endorsement. Uses Randall R412XLT cabs
  • Mesa/Boogie Dual and Triple Rectifier amps with Mesa/Boogie Rectifier 4x12 cabs. Used until his Randall endorsement
  • Bogner Ecstasy heads
  • Marshall Heads and 4x12 cabinets in the early days


Note: All controlled by a Voodoo Lab Ground Control, except for the Whammy and Wah

  • 2 Digitech Dan Donegan "The Weapon" overdrive/effects pedals
  • Digitech GSP1101 Preamp
  • DigiTech Whammy
  • Boss MT-2 Metal Zone (for a lo-fi effect)
  • Korg Toneworks 411FX
  • Dunlop Custom Shop Rackmount Crybaby with wireless foot control
  • 2 Boss NS-2s and 2 ISP Decimators in tandem



  • Better Days


  • Demo Tape (1994)



External links

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