Metallica’s Kirk Hammett: ‘I Developed My Own Musical Path While Being in Record Stores’
With 2016's Record Store Day quickly approaching on Saturday, this year's ambassadors Metallica have been reflecting about what record stores have meant to them. Recently drummer Lars Ulrich reminisced about a record store he went to growing up in Copenhagen, Denmark, and now guitarist Kirk Hammett gives us some of his early record store memories. Check out the video above.
"When I was 15 years old, I used to take public transit an hour from my house to Berkeley, California and I would go to two record stores: Rather Ripped Records and Rasputin Records," Hammett recalls. "Rasputin Records still exists. I would go immediately to the import section to see if any new heavy metal records had come from Europe. That was my weekly thing, was to make the migration out to Berkeley, go straight to the import section and see if there were any new albums by UFO, Scorpions, Motorhead, Tygers Of Pan Tang, Judas Priest, the whole bit."
Hammett continues, "That was even before there was even a heavy metal section in record stores. It was under the title "hard rock" back then. I did that for a good three or four years and built up my heavy metal record collection that way, and in the meantime just learned a lot about music because that was my conduit to what was going on in the heavy metal scene in Britain and in Europe as a whole."
The rocker concludes, "Those records informed my playing style and had a lot to do with influencing me and really, really developing my musical aesthetic I have with me today. So record stores are important for me because I kind of sort of developed my own musical path while being in record stores."
Not only does the Rasputin Records Hammett went to as a youth still exist, Metallica will be playing a special live in-store set there on Saturday to celebrate Record Store Day and the release of Liberté, Égalité, Fraternité, Metallica!, which was recorded live at Le Bataclan in Paris, France in 2003. All profits from the release will be donated to the victims of the 2015 Paris terrorist attacks.
On Friday (April 15), deluxe box reissues of the classic Metallica albums Kill ‘Em All and Ride the Lightning will be available as fans patiently wait for the band's next studio album, which Ulrich says is "mostly done."
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