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LES CLAYPOOL Recalls His METALLICA Audition: ‘I Didn’t Fit And They Saw That’

PRIMUS frontman Les Claypool spoke to Goldmine journal about auditioning for the then-vacant bassist slot in METALLICA following the September 1986 loss of life of the group’s earlier bassist, Cliff Burton. Requested if he thinks that being handed over by METALLICA in the long run turned out to be a blessing, because it allowed him to pursue totally different artistic paths, Les mentioned: “On the time I did not assume that. I assumed that I might be capable of give up my carpentry job and head to Japan. However there is a purpose why they did not choose me. I did not match and so they noticed that. I had my very own factor going and it was a sensible transfer on their half. And even when it got here up once more [following Jason Newsted‘s departure], they knew that I wasn’t the suitable man for it and so they obtained the proper individual. Robert [Trujillo] is likely one of the nicest people that I’ve ever met within the music business and he is a monster bass participant.”

Again in Could 2021, Claypool was requested by Kerrang! journal if it is true that when he auditioned for METALLICA, James Hetfield mentioned one thing like, “Man, you are a lot too proficient. Go do one thing splendidly bizarre by yourself.” Les mentioned: “He undoubtedly didn’t say that. He mentioned that in a while in an interview, which was very form of him. I believe they thought I used to be a freak. They had been very good — Lars [Ulrich, drums] was notably variety — and, after all, I knew Kirk [Hammett, guitar] from highschool. However I believe that James thought I used to be some form of thug. Put it this fashion, I undoubtedly did not look the half.”

In line with Les, he “wasn’t actually into steel on the time” of his METALLICA audition. “I simply knew that it was my buddy Kirk‘s band and that they had been doing very well,” he mentioned. “It wasn’t till the audition that I obtained a way of what was actually occurring. It was a little bit of a heavy factor, the audition, and I did not notice till I obtained there that it was form of a giant deal. Afterwards I fantasized about quitting my carpentry job and touring Japan with them, however I did not get the gig.”

Requested what METALLICA would have appeared like with him as one quarter of the band, Les mentioned: “Effectively, nonetheless it could have sounded, I might have solely lasted for a month or two earlier than they kicked me out. They have sufficient cooks within the kitchen in that band — they do not want a man like me.”

Recalling the expertise of Claypool making an attempt out for METALLICA, Hetfield mentioned within the band’s VH1 “Behind The Music” particular that Les was not awarded the job as a result of “he was too good” and that Claypool “ought to do his personal factor.”

Claypool later advised Citypages about Hetfield‘s feedback: “I would say, that is an unfaithful story. I imply, James mentioned on VH1 ‘Behind The Music’ that I used to be simply too good, however ah, he and I had been hanging out fairly a bit throughout that point once they did the VH1 interview. And I mentioned, ‘What the hell are you guys speaking about? You did not need me. You thought I used to be a freak!’ And he simply laughed. Ya know, I confirmed up with a bleach blonde mohawk and carrying saggy skater pants, and two totally different coloured tennis sneakers. They had been all in black with tight pants and the entire bit.”

Burton performed on METALLICA‘s first three studio albums — “Kill ‘Em All”, “Experience The Lightning” and “Grasp Of Puppets” — and co-wrote basic songs like “Experience The Lightning”, “For Whom The Bell Tolls”, “Fade To Black”, “Creeping Loss of life” and “Grasp Of Puppets”. His life was tragically reduce brief on the age of 24 in a tour bus crash on September 27, 1986 in Sweden.

Burton‘s preliminary alternative within the group was Jason Newsted, who stayed within the lineup till 2001. Trujillo joined in 2003 and stays within the band to at the present time.

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