Mustaine Stands By His ‘Sack Ulrich’ Story
Megadeth mainman Dave Mustaine has confirmed to Classic Rock the story that Metallica once plotted to fire drummer Lars Ulrich.
In a recent interview with RollingStone.com, Mustaine – who was a member of Metallica for fewer than two years in 1981-1983 – was asked if, as far as he knows, it is true that on the last Metallica tour bassist Cliff Burton was on before he died, the band were planning to fire Ulrich at the tour’s end.
“That’s what Scott [Ian, Anthrax guitarist] told me,” Mustaine replied. “He said that when Metallica got home, that James [Hetfield], Cliff [Burton] and Kirk [Hammett] were going to fire Lars.”
However, in an interview yesterday with Classic Rock‘s Dave Ling, Mustaine steadfastly stood by his story.
Here’s the lowdown:
Ling: Given that Scott Ian wasted little time in issuing a denial, do you now regret breaking the story about Metallica’s alleged proposed sacking of Lars Ulrich?
Mustaine: No. It was something Scott told me. I was trying to help him promote his autobiography. I love Scott and would never do anything to hurt him – never. But it’s what he told me and I know other people who’ve heard it, too. With all the things that are out there on the net, I know that Scott’s having a bad time. People are starting to say, ‘We believe Dave and Scott’s a liar. He lied about the thing with Dan [Nelson, the singer who controversially parted company with Anthrax]’. That’s the last thing I wanted. I love Scott. I wish I could just make this thing go away. But I didn’t say it, he did.
Ling: So how do you explain your role in all of this?
Mustaine: Like I said, I was trying to help Scott. I wanted to say something that would make people think, ‘Oh shit, I’ve got to have Scott Ian’s bio’. I was not trying to make them think, ‘Oh, Scott’s a gossip’ or, ‘Hey, don’t believe Scott’. I’m really fucking mad that people are saying bad stuff about him.
Ling: It’s even been implied that you ‘planted’ the question with the interviewer from Rolling Stone to ensure it achieved maximum publicity.
Mustaine: Yeah, how ridiculous is that? This is Megadeth, not Kiss.