Metallica’s James Hetfield and Kirk Hammett Remember Late Bassist Cliff Burton
In a recent interview with Kerrang! Radio to promote the new album 72 Seasons, Metallica's James Hetfield and Kirk Hammett shared memories of their late bandmate Cliff Burton.
During the interview, Hetfield and Hammett were asked if there was a moment in the band's 42-year career they wished was captured on film. Hammett said he wished the first few years of Burton being the band was documented more, "Because there's just not enough footage of him, there's not enough pictures of him, there's just not enough of him. For people who are coming into Metallica and finding out about Metallica, there's just not enough information about him.
Hammett went on to say that if there's one thing he has regrets, it's not documenting Burton more. "But, you know, back then, we didn't know that it would be the situation that it is now," he continued. "And so it would have been weird to say: 'Okay, Cliff, come here. We're just gonna film you.'"
Burton died on September 27, 1986, when Metallica's tour bus crashed in Sweden. The band were on the European leg of their "Damage, Inc" tour. He had joined Metallica just a few years earlier in 1982 after the band saw him perform with his group at the time, Trauma.
Hetfield and Hammett went on to share fond memories of the late bassist in the interview. "He was hilarious all the time. Other than music, his other huge things in his life were beer and breakfast. He lived for beer and he lived for breakfast," Hammett said. Hetfield added that "He loved fishing and hammers as well. He would take his little Pocket Fisherman on tour and find any little lake. And he carried a hammer in his suitcase. I was, like, 'What are you doing with that?' He [was, like], 'I don't know. Just in case. Just in case you need a hammer.' He was quite a character — very, very himself. He was unapologetically Cliff. And yeah, we miss him to this day."
You can watch Metallica's full interview with Kerrang! Radio below. And if you want to see more of the band, make sure to grab tickets to see them live here.
James Hetfield and Kirk Hammett on Kerrang! Radio