In the Avenged Sevenfold DVD All Excess he recalls that before Avenged Sevenfold, he was in a one time punk band called MPA*, which stands for Mad Porno Action. He implies that they were not successful. He and M. Shadows (who at the time was singer for a band named Successful Failure) formed Avenged Sevenfold. He was also responsible for the creation of the acronym "A7X". He is left-handed. He taught himself how to play the guitar when he was thirteen.
The guitar he first learned on was actually his dad's, who was right-handed. He learned by watching his favorite bands and other people he knew who played and practiced as much as he could. He would also read each edition of Guitar World cover to cover, learning the tabs of the songs published in there and watching the professionals perform it until he got it right. His influences in his style are Rancid, Misfits and Bad Religion. Zacky's favorite bands also include Pantera, Metallica, ELIXIR, and Guns N Roses.