Template:Original research Template:Infobox musical artist

Synyster Gates (born Brian Elwin Haner, Jr. on July 7, 1981) in Huntington Beach, California), also known as Syn, is an American musician. He is currently the lead guitarist for Heavy Metal band Avenged Sevenfold.

Brian graduated and attended the Musicians Institute in Hollywood as part of the GIT program, studying jazz guitar. Up until that time he was primarily self taught by watching music videos and reading books, which is surprising because his father was/is a songwriter and guitar player, having played with Frank Zappa during his career. After six or so months of being there, he got a phone call from Jimmy (and the rest of the current line up of Avenged Sevenfold) asking him if he wanted to come and be their lead guitarist. Brian joined up with them rather than continuing his education and becoming a studio musician.[1]

Gates joined Avenged Sevenfold (A7X) when he was 18 at the end of 1999, right before the recording of the band's first album, Sounding the Seventh Trumpet. He was featured on their EP, "Warmness on the Soul," and on the reissue of their first album. He also plays piano for the band on songs such as "The Beast and the Harlot" and "Sidewinder," though a friend of the band, bassist Justin Sane, played the piano on Warmness on the Soul.

In the Avenged Sevenfold DVD "All Excess," to emphasize the seemingly random placing of names, Gates stated that his name was thought of on a drunken drive through the park with The Rev. His exact words were, "I am Synyster Gates, and I am awesome!"[2]

Gates cites Django Reinhardt, Adam Aparicio, Dimebag Darrell, Slash, John Petrucci and Francis Canavan as his favorite guitarists and major influences. He has won numerous awards, including the "Young Shredder" award of the year in the Metal Hammer awards in 2006 and the "Guitarist of the Year" Award for Total Guitar Magazine in 2006. In June 2008 Guitar World magazine interviewed Syn, reader Shawn Butterfield asked "You're one hell of a guitarist. But who do you really look up to?" to which he responded "Definitely Slash! the Ozzy guitar dudes, Alexi Laiho from Children of Bodom! Jimi Hendrix of course, Dimebag Darrell from Pantera, Jimmy Page from Led Zeppelin, a lot man!"

Synyster Gates was also a member of the "Goblin Metal" side-project Pinkly Smooth with The Rev and Justin Sane. Pinkly Smooth was disbanded because Gates and The Rev wished to focus full-time on Avenged Sevenfold, although when asked recently, they both revealed there is a new side project being planned, featuring the two playing older Pinkly Smooth tunes.

Gates has a younger brother Brent and a younger sister McKenna. His father, Brian Haner Sr., is a musician and comedian known as "Guitar Guy", and is currently on tour with Jeff Dunham. [1]


With Pinkly SmoothEdit

With Avenged SevenfoldEdit



Syn is currently endorsed by Schecter Guitar Research, as is Zacky Vengeance.

  • Syn uses his custom 'Synyster' models, which are a hybrid of a few custom shop models.
  • A white C-1 FR with white Invader pickups.
    • Syn also has a lot of variations of his Synyster models, eg. (all of the following are the Avenger/Synyster shape) an American flag, a German flag, a Rebel flag, black with red pin stripes, and white with gold pin stripes, as seen in the Afterlife music video. The white with gold pimp stripes signature guitar is available and is limited in production to 100.

Most, if not all, of Syn's guitars are custom made. Syn uses Seymour Duncan SH-8 Custom Shop Invader pickups in his guitars and also a sustainiac neck pickup sustainer over his invader neck pickup. He uses Drop D tuning most of the time. He uses drop Db tuning for "Almost Easy" and "Scream" but for "Radiant Eclipse" he uses a Drop C tuning.

In the past Syn has used a Gibson Les Paul, a Parker Fly, B.C Rich Mockingbird and Ibanez RG Prestige.

When asked in Total Guitar magazine, he said that his first guitar was a 'Blood Red Squier Stratocaster'.


Speaker Cabinets

  • Marshall 4x12" cab
  • Bogner Uberkab 4x12" (main)
  • Mesa/Boogie 4x12" Recto Cabinet Straight

Effects UnitsEdit

  • Boss TU-2 Chromatic Tuner
  • Boss CS-3 Compressor
  • Visual Sound H20 Chorus/Echo
  • Ibanez TS-9 Tube Screamer
  • Frantone "The Sweet" Distortion
  • Boss SD-1 Super Overdrive
  • Boss BF-3 Flanger
  • Boss PH-3 Phase Shifter
  • Boss NS-2 Noise Suppressor
  • Seymour Duncan SFX-01 Pickup Booster
  • Voodoo Lab PEDAL POWER 2
  • Voodoo Lab GCX Audio Switcher
  • Jim Dunlop Crybaby From Hell Wah Pedal


  • Ernie Ball 'skinny top, heavy bottom' strings.
  • Jim Dunlop Gator Grip 2.0mm picks in custom black with a "Deathbat" logo printed
  • Voodoo Labs GCX Guitar Audio Switcher rack unit
  • Voodoo Labs DMC Ground Control Polo pro
  • Rebel Straps Skull Bottle Opener Strap
  • Rebel Straps Skull Pick Box Strap
  • White Get'm Get'm Sergeant Stripes Guitar Strap
  • Black Schaller Strap Locks
  • Red Schaller Strap Locks

Featured Guest appearancesEdit

Year Song Artist(s) Album
2007 "The River" (with M. Shadows) Good Charlotte Good Morning Revival
2008 "Dirty Little Girl" Burn Halo

References Edit


Template:Avenged Sevenfoldbg:Synyster Gates da:Synyster Gates et:Synyster Gates es:Synyster Gates fr:Synyster Gates id:Synyster Gates it:Synyster Gates he:סיניסטר גייטס lt:Synyster Gates nl:Synyster Gates no:Synyster Gates pl:Synyster Gates pt:Synyster Gates fi:Synyster Gates

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