Newsbites: Even Metallica can’t afford to stop touring
Metallica guitarist Kirk Hammett has revealed the music industry’s current woes has even affected them to the extent they can’t afford not to tour. He says: “The cycles of taking two years off don’t exist any more. We were able to do that because we had record royalties coming in consistently. Now you put out an album and you have a windfall maybe once or twice. But it’s not the way it used to be – a cheque every three months.” He says their merchandise takings paid for their new studio: “We basically take funds from wherever we can. This is a real luxury, but great things come out of this.” The band believe they best they’ll do at their Orion Music Festival in July is break even. [Rolling Stone]
The actor who played David St Hubbins in This Is Spinal Tap has suffered a broken leg in a road accident. Michael McKean, who’s currently appearing in Broadway production Best Man, was struck by a vehicle in New York City yesterday. The 64-year-old is reported to be in a stable condition.
KK Downing has thanked fans for their support a year after Judas Priest announced he’d quit. The guitarist says: “I hope you have a fantastic time at festivals. I’m going to try to get to a couple myself in the UK – and hope to catch up with my old buddies who I used to traverse the world with. You know who you are.”
Rush singer Geddy Lee says he sometimes struggles to establish the headspace to deliver the band’s lyrics, which are all written by drummer Neil Peart. Lee explains: “There are times where there is a lot of discussion, when we get a lyric and it’s not happening. You sit down and say, ‘Tell me the story again – why is the character in this situation? What do you want him to be feeling?’ Other times, it’s quite clear to me, and when that happens I can bring my own interpretation into the music. It’s really important for me to be clear with him. I have to write a vocal melody and I have to mean it.” [Spin]
Charlie Benante and Frank Bello of Anthrax have recorded a public service announcement for Musicians Opposed to Bullying. Bassist Bello says: “The people that are bullying you — girls, guys, whoever it may be — they’re feeling so badly about themselves, they have to take it on somebody else; that’s how they get it out. You have to understand that and be smarter and be somebody above them. And don’t be afraid to tell. I was close to my principal in school. When I was getting bullied, I talked to him, and he acted as a confidant. And he told me what to do; it was very secretive. You can do it all in secret. Don’t feel like there is no way out; there is a way out. And it’s not suicide. It’s absolutely not suicide. There’s a long life ahead of you.”
Hellyeah will complete their current tour as a four-piece after guitarist Greg Tibbett was forced off the road to deal with a family emergency at home. Singer Chad Gray says: “We all stand with Greg. There’s a lyric in our new song Band of Brothers that says, ‘I’ve got your band and you’ve got mine,’ and that couldn’t be more true for us right now.”
One of just six copies of Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band signed by the Beatles is being offered for auction. The framed album was signed by all four band members and has been verified as genuine. Only 132 signed Fab Four albums are believed to exist in total. LiveAuctioneers, handling the sale, estimates the item’s will increase by around 15% per year.
Slayer drummer Dave Lombardo has recalled how his love affair with music started at an early age. The musician is known for his interest in genres far removed from the thrash he’s known for. He remembers: “My mom would try and get me to go out and dance to the bands that would perform parties at the social club. But I would be backstage, sitting on a piano stool and staring at the musicians in the band. My mom would say, ‘Come on, Dave! There are some pretty girls out there that want to dance.’ But I was more interested in watching the band performing.” [Noisecreep]