Jason Newsted's Newfound Respect for Lars Ulrich

The one-time Metallica bassist wasn't on good terms with his former bandmates until recent years - now he respects them as brothers, he says.

Ultimate Guitar

One-time Metallica bassist Jason Newsted has revealed his newfound respect for his former band mates - especially drummer Lars Ulrich.

Newsted was discussing his current band Newsted's tour plans with Rolling Stone when he revealed Ulrich's savvy obsession with understanding audiences and where to book shows:

"I used to give him grief because, 'Dude, how come you're not practicing more? How come you're not on time?' And he's like, 'If you only knew what I had to do.' I didn't realize, but he was so on top of that kind of stuff, and geographically aware and all these things. 'We gotta go here, they're letting Western music in here, now we're going here,' that kind of thing.

"He was so on top of it, but I didn't realize it until now. I've gained so much respect for all those guys in the camp, but especially him in particular," Newsted added.

The pair have only seen each other twice since they were inducted to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame with Metallica in 2009, but met at the Golden God awards last night where Metallica were awarded the Ronnie James Dio Lifetime Achievement award.

Reflecting on the award, Ulrich says Metallica's greatest achievement is that they're still together. "We actually talk to each other. We can all be in the same room. We can sit on the same airplane together. We can stay in the same hotel. We can hang out at dinner. And I think that's probably the greatest achievement of all of them," he told Revolver ahead of the show.

21 comments sorted by best / new / date

    He probably should practice more, though.
    Yeah, probably. They can hire someone to do all of that extra crap.
    They probably do, and they're the reason Metallica tours this much - to cover their costs.
    Haha I like Lars, I know he's made some questionable decisions, but his personality has never bothered me!
    This is what I've tried to tell to my friends but they just keep on hating... I'll never lose my faith eventhough he should practice more. I just love that little danish dude.
    What people (or at least some people on UG) seem to forget, is that Lars is pretty much the guy who has kept Metallica together since their beginning - He's the guy who kept Metallica going, even after Burtons death, and while he did turn briefly turned into a self-indulgent douchebag in the late 90's/early 00's during the Napster-lawsuit, shortly afterwards he changed back into himself again. Generally speaking, he's a really awesome dude, and while his drumming might be mediocore for some, he has been very influential on people, and is responsible for Metallica's continuing existance. Cut the dane some slack, he might make terrible decisions now and then, but so does everyonoe else - The exception here is that people still cling on to, and moan about those mistakes, long after everyone else moved on... Also, Jason is awesome, and it's good to see him get the respect he deserves, that he didn't really get when he was in Metallica
    They should have thanked Dave Mustaine to.....Metallica should have.
    Lars.... Meh!
    Exactly. What he said is not a complement. He basically said, "Lars is a good manager, and I guess that kinda makes up for his lack of musical ability." Management is important, but this is not a complement when you are talking about someone who says they are a musician.
    On the other hand, Metallica probably wouldn't be where they are if it weren't for Lars Ulrich. The other bandmembers have said as much themselves as well. I guess it's been a juggle for him, where he chose to just barely be able to keep up. It paid off too, I mean, they're the biggest metal band in the world, and I bet his "manager" skills came in very, very handy in the 80's when they were starting out and such.
    news about members of Metallica !? WHO WOULD HAVE GUESSED anyway, the whole "lars is good at some stuff" thing is an interesting idea hmm, I guess it's possible
    Jason just saying it like it was.Lars was business minded and good at it.I like most found Lars abit flakey.If he was on top of sh*t,well enough.In Mustains book,i took away Lars was a real Metalhead.Like him or not.Now his drumming?Now adays?Whole nother matter.Still love the pounding on Justice. Jasons new stuff is good and I have said such to many.Spread the word,share the love.Cmon summer tours.