On This Day in Metal: May 9th 1981 James Hetfield Answered an Ad Placed by Lars Ulrich and They Met For The First Time
Nobody knows the actual day that James and Lars first met but it was around May 1981 when they did.
"There was a 7-Eleven [store], and 7-Eleven had a local classified ads newspaper called the Recycler, or it was available at all 7-Elevens. And you could buy and sell cars and lawnmowers and kitchen appliances or whatever. And in the very back, there was a small section about musicians looking for bands and bands looking for musicians. So I put in an ad saying, ‘Drummer looking for other heavy metal fans,’ or whatever, ‘to start band. Influences: DIAMOND HEAD, ANGEL WITCH, TYGERS OF PAN TANG and VENOM‘ or something. And I would get all these calls from these guys saying, ‘I’m into heavy metal. I like STYX and I like KANSAS and I like VAN HALEN‘ or whatever. And, ‘Who’s DIAMOND HEAD?’ Then we would sort of have that conversation. And then I went and tried to play music with a bunch of these people and none of it worked out. And then one day, there was a call from a guy called Hugh Tanner, who had said if he could bring a friend of his along, and we met up and played music for an afternoon. And the guy that he brought along was James Hetfield.
[James was] very shy, super introverted, could barely look you in the eye, barely have a conversation. But there was some connection with him as we were playing. And even though nothing happened that day, I ended up being kind of frustrated with the whole thing. And now it was June of 1981, so I went back and spent the summer in Europe."
Lars said in a later interview about that first meeting “I remember connecting with him. I could see that, even though he was painfully shy or whatever, that there were some distinctive similarities."
“Hetfield and I ended up staying in touch. And when I came back from traveling in Europe a few months later, I called him up and said: ‘Hey, do you want to play and see what happens?’. And he was up for it.”
According to former Metallica bassist Ron McGovney this never happened:
Also guitarist Hugh Tanner who was in James Hetfiled's first band "Leather Charm" commented this...