am now taking letters/comments/rants/etc. about Jason leaving Metallica
and posting them on this site. I will post them in their unedited
form, so be sure your thoughts will not be diluted.
If you have any stories related to
Jason, pictures that you have taken, etc. that you'd like to see
on this site, just send
This site serves as an archive in tribute
to Jason. Contribute to it and be part of history! I
have received many already and will have them up soon. Be sure to
get yours in before my next update!
Of course, credit will be
given for all submissions. But, as a special offer only made on
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"Artistic Differences." We've all heard these words uttered
by many a musician departing their bands. I would generally
shrug when I found out that so-and-so was leaving Band X,
because I never really had a great amount of fondness for
any of the bands around when I was growing up in the 1980's.
is no Band X, and while Jason may not have exactly stated
that artistic differences are the reason he is leaving the
band, I think any hardcore fan of the band can see the implication.
If there was ever a band to make the same kind of connection
with their fans, produce top quality music throughout their
continuing career, and generate interest in music in general
since the Beatles, it was (and still is) Metallica. Neither
band compromised their position, or artistic differences.
Both bands have had to deal with silly media attention that
had nothing to do with the art that being created. We all
know how fans and the media alike cringed when Metallica
cut their hair and released "Load." Most of you might not
know that the Beatles faced similar scrutiny when they grew
their hair long right before releasing their opus, "Sgt.
Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band." Kids on Dick Clark's
"American Bandstand" look revolted when they saw publicity
photos of John, Paul, George and Ringo prior to the release
of, arguably, one of the best albums in history.
Fans of the Beatles
were devastated when they learned that there would be no
more. It's hard and it hurts, but eventually we carry on
and nothing can stop us from looking back and remembering.
I was sitting in
my office when I learned about Jason leaving Metallica.
A friend of mine was returning my call yesterday. Knowing
how much of a Metallifreak I am, the first words out of
his mouth were, "Jim, did you hear? Jason Newsted is leaving
Metallica." Since he had pulled similar goofs before, telling
me that the band was breaking up so that James Hetfield
could replace the Dixie Chick's lead singer, I just laughed
and brushed him off. Then I checked out CNN.com, and man,
if I didn't have the least productive day at work since
I can remember. I will admit that I was angry when I saw
both Jason and the band's official press release. It doesn't
seem to offer a clear answer to the big question: "Why?"
I was also skeptical about the timing of the release. With
the presidential transition occurring tomorrow, the whole
of the media will be focused on that event. Any interest
or buzz on Jason's story will be obscured in the shadow
of the inauguration coverage.
We may never know
the real reasons for Jason's decision. And that is fine.
He doesn't owe us, the fans, anything. He was part of an
organization that gave us more than our money's worth: incredible
music. He was always there for the fans, and gave 110% playing
live. We will miss him as much as we miss Cliff. Unlike
the circumstances which brought Jason to Metallica and us
in the first place, however, we get the chance to do something
that we weren't allowed to do back in 1986. Say good-bye.
All the content included here can be downloaded for personal
use, but cannot be posted on another website without my permission.
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