Dave Sabo

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David Sabo
Dave Sabo – Wacken Open Air 2014 03.jpg
Sabo in 2014.
Background information
Birth nameDavid Michael Sabo
Also known asThe Snake
Born (1964-09-16) September 16, 1964 (age 55)
OriginSayreville, New Jersey
  • Guitarist
  • songwriter
  • manager
  • Guitar
  • vocals
Years active1978–present
Associated acts

David Michael Sabo (born September 16, 1964), nicknamed "The Snake", is an American guitarist who plays in the American metal band, Skid Row. He is co-guitarist with Scotti Hill.


Sabo was born on September 16, 1964, in Perth Amboy, New Jersey. He grew up in Sayreville, down the street from Jon Bon Jovi.[1] His mother, Dorothy, or "Mama Snake" as she is known, raised him and his brothers on her own. Influenced heavily by the rock n' roll music of the era, including some Motown, he found himself listening to the likes of Kiss, Aerosmith, Judas Priest, Black Sabbath, the Rolling Stones, and Van Halen. From an early age, Sabo was a gifted athlete, even having scouts coming out to see him play. At the age of 13 Sabo saw Kiss, which acted as a catalyst for him to give up sports and focus his time on music and learning guitar.[2] His mother had bought his brother a $40 guitar which he soon lost interest in, paving the way for Sabo to take up the instrument at the age of 14.[3]

He was the original lead guitar player for Bon Jovi in 1983. A childhood friend of Jon Bon Jovi, Sabo agreed to a short three-week tour to support the demo version of "Runaway" which became a surprise New York City-area hit in 1983.[4] Soon afterwards, Richie Sambora replaced Sabo in Bon Jovi.

He is also the uncle of former ATP Tennis professional Matt Sabo.[5]

A chance meeting with local bass player Rachel Bolan in the Garden State Music Store in Toms River, New Jersey, where he was employed, set him in the direction of forming the band that would earn him fame. Their partnership would not only prove to be the right step with their songwriting, but for friendship as well, as they still consider themselves to be best friends.[citation needed]

Skid Row[edit]

Skid Row is an American hard rock/heavy metal band which became one of the flagship bands of the late 1980s hard rock scene. They were one of the most successful hard rock bands of the era until they were eclipsed by the Seattle grunge bands in the early 1990s. The band was not named after Gary Moore's first band, Skid Row.

Skid Row was formed in New Jersey in 1986 by Bolan and Sabo. The pair added guitarist Scotti Hill, drummer Rob Affuso, and vocalist Matt Fallon who was later replaced by Sebastian Bach in 1987. The band began playing shows in clubs throughout the eastern United States.[6]

With the assistance of friend Jon Bon Jovi, Sabo secured a record deal for Skid Row with Atlantic.[2] In 1989, the band released their first album, Skid Row, which was an instant success, mainly due to power ballads. The record went multi-platinum and produced the hit singles "18 and Life", "I Remember You" and "Youth Gone Wild". Skid Row turned in a heavier direction on their double-platinum follow-up, the 1991 album "Slave To The Grind". Sabo has worked as assistant producer on many of the band's songs.

Sabo composed music for the 2006 film The Still Life.

Kryst the Conqueror[edit]

Sabo played lead guitar on the track "Trial of the Soul" in the band Kryst the Conqueror with featuring former members of the Misfits and Jeff Scott Soto, from the Yngwie Malmsteen band. Scott is credited under the pseudonym "Kryst the Conqueror" as he was under contract to Yngwie Malmsteen and forced to remain anonymous.[7]


Sabo was briefly a touring guitarist for Anthrax during their "Attack of the Killer A's" tour.[8]


  1. ^ Makin, Robert. "Kiss it Goodbye", Courier News (New Jersey), June 8, 2000. Accessed February 15, 2011. "Lifelong members of the Kiss Army, such as guitarist Dave 'Snake' Sabo of Sayreville and music writer Jeff Kitts of Scotch Plains ..."
  2. ^ a b "Snake Sabo (Skid Row) 2013 Interview on the Signals of Intuition". The Signals of Intuition. 99.1 CJAM-FM. May 28, 2013. Retrieved 2013-08-25.
  3. ^ Erlewine, Stephen Thomas. "Biography: Bon Jovi". AllMusic. Retrieved June 10, 2010.
  4. ^ L.M Matin. Jon Bon Jovi: The Sinner and the Saint.: The New Unauthorised Biography. BookBaby, August 20, 2013; Chapter 4
  5. ^ "Matt Sabo". Atpworldtour.com. September 16, 2002. Retrieved May 6, 2019.
  6. ^ Weber, Barry. "Biography: Skid Row". Allmusic. Retrieved June 10, 2010.
  7. ^ "Kryst the Conqueror on Misfits Central". Misfitscentral.com. Retrieved May 6, 2019.
  8. ^ "Anthrax And Sebastian Bach Swap Guitarists". Mtv.com. February 2, 2000. Retrieved May 6, 2019.