Metallica: James Hetfield was almost replaced by frontman from another band

Metallica perform 'Battery' on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert

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Throughout the 1980s Metallica toured America and Europe to bolster their notoriety and, along the way, the quartet made a number of friends from other bands – including one singer who was almost the new voice of Metallica.

James Hetfield has been the singer of Metallica since the band’s inception in 1982.

But the frontman has now revealed they almost moved him aside for another singer.

Speaking on the SiriusXM channel Mandatory Metallica, Hetfield revealed: “A lot of those earlier memories were celebrated with a band called Armored Saint, who were a fellow LA band back in the early 80s when we were getting started.”

Armored Saint began in 1982 as well, before bringing their music to an end in 1992. In 1999 the metal band picked up their guitars again and continued rocking until now.

Hetfield revealed the singer from Armored Saint was looked at as a replacement for him.

Hetfield continued: “Obviously, John Bush was a singer we got to know really well and really, really tried to get in him into the band as a singer.”

Unfortunately for the band, the Metallica star revealed, it “didn’t work out”.

He explained: “He was dedicated and very in love with what he was doing with his brothers in Armored Saint, and we absolutely respect that but we got to hear them and love them every single night.”

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Bush has gone on to have a powerful career as a vocalist for not just Armored Saint, but also with Anthrax.

The star released ten albums with Armored Saint from 1984 to 2020.

With Anthrax Bush released five albums from 1993 to 2004.

In 2020 Bush spoke out about almost replacing Hetfield in Metallica.

Bush revealed he rejected Metallica’s generous offer.

He said: “That was definitely not my destiny, to be the singer of Metallica.

“I mean, I would’ve literally changed heavy metal, because I was not meant to be that person.

“It was meant to be James [Hetfield] with his voice doing that.” (Via Speak N Destroy Podcast)

Bush added: “Sure, it could’ve been some form of success, it probably would’ve been because they were destined for something, but it would’ve been different.

“To what degree, who knows? I never really thought about it, I just have to laugh. ‘Here we go again, let’s talk about it.’ But it kind of seems to fit well with just my life in some weird way.”


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