Dave Mustaine Earns Jiu-Jitsu Purple Belt 18 Months After Cancer Diagnosis

Megadeth mainman Dave Mustaine has earned his purple belt in jiu-jitsu at age 59, a year after beating throat cancer.

Megadeth cancelled its touring slate in 2019 so Mustaine could undergo cancer treatment. The guitarist/vocalist completed his treatment program in the fall of '19 and returned to the stage in early-2020 with Megadeth in Europe, where he announced from the stage that he was "100 percent cancer-free."

According to the Jiu-Jitsu Times, Mustaine achieved the middle rank roughly two years after earning his first stripe on his blue belt. He was promoted by master Reggie Almeida, who leads a martial arts school in Spring Hill, Tennessee.

Mustaine began practicing martial arts in the early-1990s after multiple stints in treatment for drug and alcohol addiction. In addition to his new rank in Brazilian jiu-jitsu, Mustaine has black belts in Ukidokan Karate and Taekwondo.

Megadeth's forthcoming 16th studio album (tentatively titled The Sick, The Dying...And The Dead!) is expected to arrive this year, though a title and release date have yet to be announced.

Mustaine and co-founding Megadeth bassist Dave Ellefson have likened the new material as landing somewhere between 1992's Countdown to Extinction and 2016's Grammy award-winning Dystopia.

Photo: Getty Images