Metallica’s James Hetfield Was Big Fan Of This ’80s Rock Band

Metallica’s James Hetfield Was Big Fan Of This ’80s Rock Band
Original Photo Credits: James Hetfield - Raph_PH, CC BY 2.0 ( | Marq Torien - Movie Stars and Rockets, CC BY-SA 2.0 (, via Wikimedia Commons

In their “Nothing Else Matters” video, Metallica drummer Lars Ulrich famously threw darts at a poster of ’80s rocker Kip Winger.  “I never met Metallica,” Winger said in 2019. “I’ve never met them to this day. I have no idea why that was happening — none whatsoever. It’s just kind of immature to put down other musicians and stuff like that. I think they were just on a high that they were the biggest band at the time, and he had something against me. I have no idea, really — that would be a question for him.”

As leaders of the thrash metal movement, Metallica voiced disdain for the glam rock scene. Ulrich told Howard Stern that at the time glam metal bands were “the enemy, the opposition, that was who stood in our way for achieving what we wanted to do.” 

One band that was associated with the glam metal scene, however, had a big fan in Metallica frontman James Hetfield. The BulletBoys formed in 1986 in Los Angeles and released their self-titled debut in 1988. The band leaned more towards the hard rock and blues genres than hair metal and were produced by longtime Van Halen producer, Ted Templeman. The band’s frontman, Marq Torien, recently told 96.7 KCAL-FM that Hetfield used to frequent the band’s shows. “I love James Hetfield,” Torien said. “He was a big champion for the BulletBoys when we first started playing and would come to all of our shows when we played up north. He would come walking in, and he would hang with us, love on us, drink some whisky and beer with us and stay there through the whole show.”

He continued: “When we started playing up in ‘Frisco, we played at a place called The Stone, and he was always there to come and see us. He said that [the first BulletBoys] record [blew] his mind because he didn’t think a band could come out and have that sound. He goes, ‘The sound that you have and Ted Templeman.’ And he said, ‘This record is gonna last forever.’ We laughed, ’cause he goes, ‘No, no. no. Listen to me.’ And that’s young James — with his moustache, handlebar moustache, full of p*ss and vinegar. He’s looking at us with that look in his eyes, and it was kind of scary. He goes, ‘Dudes, I’m telling you right now. Don’t eff this off. This will be for the rest of time, this album. I know you idiots don’t know it right now, but I’m telling you, this is one of the greatest rock records that I’ve ever heard.’

“I love Metallica,” Torien added. “Back in the day, my place to go was The Troubadour because at the front bar you’d get the hottest chicks. We were all young, and all the big stars would hang out there. And when Metallica was first starting, that’s where they would hang out… They used to hang out with all of our friends. And everybody at one point used to hang out with them, and they were really good people. They were a full thrash band, though, when they first came out. It was like something that you’d never heard before. It was very, very dangerous. They didn’t care. Cliff Burton [bass] was in the band, and Cliff, for all intents and purposes, he was the guy writing the songs with James.”

BulletBoys recently released a new single, “Holy F*ck,” 

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