James Alan Hetfield, born August 3, 1963 in Downey, LA County to a trucker father, Virgil, and an opera singing mother, Cynthia - His parent strong "Christian Science" believers brought James up in the same way, being strong believers in their faith, one that abhorred the use of conventional medicine, saw James' mother die of Cancer. James was nine when he began learning the piano and fourteen when he finally picked up a guitar, but only after he had started having a crack at playing his brother's drums. Hetfield identifies Aerosmith as having been his main musical influence as a child, and has said that they were the reason why he wanted to play guitar. Other bands such as Motörhead, ZZ Top, Black Sabbath, Saxon, Diamond Head, Johnny Cash, Kiss, Rush, Iron Maiden, Alice Cooper, Queen, Waylon Jennings, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Judas Priest, AC/DC, Blue Öyster Cult, Venom, Led Zeppelin and Thin Lizzy also had a major influence on his musical tastes.
I was looking through some images from a recent festival shoot and came across this shot of James, which is what made me have a bit of a read about him. I've been a Metallica fan admittedly only since the Black Album, but then since that have become a fan of pretty much everything they've done. I was 17 when I first heard Metallica, I purchased it as my first cassette on the train trip from Coffs Harbour down to Melbourne when I "left the nest" I shelled out for it and a purple Sony Walkman with the last $80 dollars that I had spare - the train trip from Sydney to Melbourne was amazing.. Me, Metallica my dads old guitar and a bag of clothes... I was living!
I think my fave Metallica album would have to be Ride the Lightning
Now I'm sleeping! Night!