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JASON Newsted : black on black
An open letter to Jason and Metallica : by JamesLaw



I 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 them in!

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 this site, the best submission each month will win a LIVE METALLICA SHOW ON CD!!! There are no limits to the number of submissions you can send in! Enter each month as many times as you like!




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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.

Metallica, however, 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, 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.
Feb, 2001

NOTE: 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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For those of you who didn't know, Jason recorded 3 songs with Devin Townsend a few years back. These songs are heavy!! Jason does vocals and they are even harsher than what he did live with METALLICA!! ENJOY!!


Black on Black



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