Metallica Says MTV Made Us Do It

08-11-03 Keavin
Metallica’s Lar Ulrich has revealed that MTV had a bit more to do with the selection of bands for the MTV Icons special than the band. 

In an interview with Metal Edge Magazine, Lars was asked how political the selection process was for the program. He responded, "To me, it's not so much politics, it's that they [MTV] come to you and we have a chat about it, and there's conditions to having people who are part of the 'now' generation. It's not going to be VENOM or MOTÖRHEAD, and we understand that.” (Interesting choice of bands to name as having been inspired by Metallica, since both Motorhead and Venom formed years before Metallica).  Lars continued, “I mean, they asked every time if we thought it might be good, and we thought it was awesome. I thought it was cool that it was generational, with bands like KORN and LIMP BIZKIT, and it was really cool to kind of feel the love from that era. I was actually really psyched because when I watched it the other day, it was a lot more generational than the AEROSMITH one was last year. I had mixed feelings about some of it going into it, because I definitely kind of have issues about this thing  — I'm still in my 30s, and they're all talking about 'Icon' and all that  s***… Call me in 20 years! I sort of have to just come around this corner and realize that it was all just about respect."

Lars also discussed how they came up with the lineup for the Summer Sanitarium tour.  "When Summer Sanitarium was conceived three years ago, the idea, in a nutshell, was to recreate all the s*** we grew up on, which was  Day On The Green and Texas Rockfests and all that s***, because no one does that anymore," he said. "We thought that if you were going to do that, the premise had to be variation, not METALLICA and four f***in' METALLICA support bands. It's gotta be other bands  who are fully capable of headlining in their own right. The idea of seeing a bunch of headliners together, that was always the theme. In 2003, after you've done KORN and SYSTEM OF A DOWN and KID ROCK, where else do you go but to LIMP BIZKIT and LINKIN  PARK? No one else is capable of doing it. To me, I will not have METALLICA and a bunch of second-rate bands. It's gotta be the bans who are innovators, and whether you like him or you hate him, [LIMP BIZKIT frontman] Fred Durst is an innovator. Fred Durst is a f***in' pioneer, and I will yell that from every rooftop. And so are LINKIN PARK. If you're going to do this thing in 2003, that's what   you're going to do. I'll look all of those people in the eye — whether there's 10, 10,000 or 50,000 people there — and say that I'm proud of these bands being with us. I like these bands, and I'm totally psyched that these bands are here, and I wouldn't have them on tour if I didn't respect them. It's really interesting that post-'Icon' [MTV's performance tribute to METALLICA at which LIMP BIZKIT and KORN performed—Ed.], there's a lot of love for Durst now. On all the METALLICA threads on our web site, it's all respect to Fred Durst."  (Lars must not read antiMUSIC or most major rock websites that allow fan discussions). 

What about Deftones Chino Moreno’s negative comments about Metallica and other bands on the tour?  Lars spoke with Yahoo Launch Media about the controversy surrounding tour and also some of the ego problems that they encountered when trying to put the tour together. 

"You know, Linkin Park and Limp Bizkit kinda committed to the tour pretty early," Ulrich said. "But when we were talking to some other bands about some of the further down spots and just kind of putting some feelers out there, I kind of ran into a lot of, 'Well, we don't want to play with that band, and we don't want to play with that band, and we sold 17 more copies than that other band,' and all this type of stuff. So I found that there was a little more ego stuff that played a part."
Metallica plan to take their show to arenas early next year. 

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