Please allow this moment for a music geek to pay Happy Birthday respect to his musical idol on his 48th birthday.
and a hearty
Metal Up Your Ass
James Alan Hetfield,
and founding guitarist
of the mighty
Thirty years ago in 1981 when you were a pimple-faced,
denim and leather-clad social misfit with a dream and a guitar,
you hooked up with the little drummer from Denmark, Lars Ulrich to form
Metallica, a band I and millions of others still love to this day.
For me personally, had it not been for discovering your music in 1987 and
truly getting into it and thrash in general in 1988, I would not have started
playing guitar that year and getting serious about it in January of 1989
at age fifteen Nor would I have been inspired to form my first band in August 1989 –
a thrash metal band called Metatrosity (yes, I purposefully exchanged the ‘c’ in the word atrocity for an ‘s’ because it looked better in the logo I designed — hey, I was fifteen, don’t judge).
Inspired by your great band Metallica, my band Metatrosity — in its two years of existence — served as the all-father sire of so many other local underground bands in Indianapolis because many key musicians either spent time in the band’s lineup, or so many people were connected to us as well as so many other people in the scene that there’s a huge family tree that roots back to my little thrash metal band that rarely had a drummer (a problem that reocurred with my last metal band Dichotomous). It’s literally
six degrees of separation for those of us who were in Metatrosity.
But enough about me.
This day is about you, man. It’s August 3rd –
your birthday. And a day to celebrate
and honor your mere existence
and your grand and rather
on me, my music
and my life.
Fun Fact: I owe my fateful decision to pick up a guitar and become a musician to the late, great Jimi Hendrix, George Lynch and James Hetfield. So many other guitarists inspired and mattered a great deal, but those three were the little birdies who repeatedly and urgently whispered to me “You can and should do this too.”