Citing Rehab Obligations, James Hetfield Issues Statement as Metallica Cancels Two Festival Dates


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Rock Cellar Magazine
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Metallica guitarist/vocalist James Hetfield headed back to rehab in late 2019 to combat his battles with addiction, and as of yet he hasn’t returned to full-on touring obligations with the legendary band.

On Monday, Hetfield issued a statement through Metallica’s channels giving a bit of an update on his progress toward mental health rehabilitation — as well as the news taht Metallica has to cancel two of its planned 2020 festival dates.

https://www.instagram.com/p/B89XKaAHVZZ/

The message:

Dear Metallica Family,

It pains me to write this, but I have to let all of you know that I cannot make it to Sonic Temple in Columbus and Louder Than Life in Louisville this year. As part of my continuing effort to get and stay healthy, I have critical recovery events on those weekends that cannot be moved. I apologize to all of our fans who have bought tickets for these festivals. We are working with the festival promoters to provide for refunds or exchanges. My intent with this statement is saying “I apologize” to each one of you. The reality is that I have not prioritized my health in the past year of touring and I now know that my mental health comes first. That might sound like a no-brainer for most of you but I didn’t want to let the Metallica team/family down and, I alone, completely compromised myself.

Looking on the brighter side, my therapy is going well. It was absolutely necessary for me to look after my mental, physical, and spiritual health.

I want to stress that the band will play all other announced 2020 shows.

I am looking forward to getting back to playing and seeing all our great South American fans in April. And, of course, playing the Epicenter in Charlotte, Welcome to Rockville, in Daytona and Aftershock in Sacramento. We will still play two unique sets at each of these festivals.

Beyond 2020, I am optimistic about the blessings I have been given and what the future brings. I appreciate all the great prayers and support from everyone since I went into rehab last September. Like the moth into the flame, being human in this career has its huge challenges and can be difficult. Your understanding helps the healing.

– James

Red Hot Chili Peppers and Tool have stepped in to take over Metallica’s headlining duties at Sonic Temple, per a news report:

Multiplatinum and Grammy winning bands Red Hot Chili Peppers (recently reunited with guitarist John Frusciante) and Tool have been announced as new headliners for Sonic Temple, joining Saturday’s multiplatinum, Grammy winning headliner, Slipknot for the May 15 – 17 festival at MAPFRE Stadium in Columbus, Ohio. Red Hot Chili Peppers will headline Friday, May 15 while Tool will headline Sunday, May 17.

Danny Wimmer Presents founder and festival creator Danny Wimmer says, “First and foremost, I want to say how much I respect and support James for taking care of himself, and for his commitment to getting healthy. At the same time, I am also deeply devoted to providing our festivalgoers with the biggest and best festival experience in the world. As disappointed as we all are to lose Metallica, I am thrilled that Red Hot Chili Peppers and Tool, dear friends of both DWP and Metallica, are stepping up on short notice to join Slipknot, keeping Sonic Temple on track to be the greatest rock festival in America.”

Continued best wishes of warmth to James Hetfield!


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