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   Metallica The Band Cliff Burton Quotes


“I remember this guy lit my couch on fire a couple of times.”

Lars, 1986
“Cliff was so completely honest to himself and the people around him. He hated all this being-put-on-a-pedestal bullshit.”

Metallica drum tech, Marrs on the first time James and Lars saw Cliff play
“I could just see them go, ‘oh my God! Look at that guy!’ The thing that struck them most was that while you see lead guitar-playing, here you had a guy playing lead bass! They thought that was great.”

Kirk, 1988
“To this day, I think about him every day.”

“We heard this wild solo going on and thought, ‘I don’t see any guitar player up there.’ It turned out it was the bass player, Cliff, with a wah wah pedal and this mop of hair. He didn’t care whether people were there. He was looking down at his bass playing.”

“We always miss Cliff, but he is kind of on the record (…And Justice For All). The song “To Live Is To Die” is really based on a number of riffs that Cliff wrote a couple of years ago. It’s kind of cool to have something written by Cliff on the new album.”

Jason, 1988
“He was a great and very special talent… Cliff’s solos were absolutely brilliant.”

James (on continuing after Cliff’s death)
“Knowing Cliff’s attitude, he’d kick our butts if we quit.”

“I know Cliff, more than anyone else in the band, would have been the first guy to give us a kick in the ass, and wouldn’t want us to sit around. It’s what he would have wanted us to do.”

James, 1993
“I saw the bus lying right on him. I saw his legs sticking out. I freaked. The bus driver, I recall, was trying to yank the blanket out from under him to use for other people. I just went, ‘Don’t fucking do that!’ I already wanted to kill the guy. I don’t know if he was drunk or if he hit some ice. All I knew was, he was driving and Cliff wasn’t alive anymore.”

“He was always against looking too posey, he was always into just looking natural.”

"He is the Hendrix of bass for his ground breaking style".

"Cliff Burton was the man who had that wild spirit that makes a band like Metallica a quality band. He wasn't only the bass player, or someone else in the band who co-write the songs, he was the man who made Metallica reach the sky. After his death, Metallica sold their souls for fame and fortune, things that he would never wanted to deal with. He'd never allowed all that "Black Album" to happen, and neither that damn "Load" thing. When Metallica lost their bass player, they also lost their soul."

James, 1993
“He was a wild, hippie-ish, acid-taking, bell-bottom-wearing guy. He meant business, and you couldn’t fuck around with him. I wanted to get that respect that he had. We gave him shit about his bell-bottoms everyday. He didn’t care. “This is what I wear. Fuck you.” He loved music. He was really intellectual but very to the point. He taught me a lot about attitude.”

Dave Mustaine
“…we came up here and played with Cliff, who just blew the doors off of anyone we’ve ever played with. He’s the new Steve Harris of metal.”

“I had seen Cliff in this band called Easy Street when I was like 16 years old at a club called International Cafe in San Francisco… It always stuck in my mind. This guy with wild, wild red hair flying all over the place and a Rickenbacker and a real distinct bass style and I thought to myself, ‘This guy is fuckin’ wild!’”

Jason (upon replacing Cliff)
“There was a huge shadow there. I’d always looked up to him so much.”

Lars, January 1987
“I wasn’t too angry in the beginning. I was obviously grieving, but the anger started setting in when I realized that it’s not new that people in rock-n-roll die, but usually it’s self-inflicted in terms of excessive drink or drug abuse. He had nothing to do with it. It’s so useless. Completely useless."

Kirk, 1987
“The only person who was able to figure out a time and write it on a piece of paper was Cliff. He had an immense knowledge of timing, musical harmonies and music theory in general.”

“People probably thought, ‘Oh, they're not going to do the heavy lyrics now because of what happened.’ Man, those lyrics mean a lot more to me now."

“If we had hung it up, Cliff would've been so pissed off.”

James, 1986
“Cliff’s taken classes in school on music theory, things like mixing harmonies together. I think he took a junior college course."

“In Denmark while recording Master Of Puppets, we hung out a lot. We’d go out and play poker for 8 hours straight after being up for 24 hours. We’d find a seafood restaurant that was open, eat raw oysters and drink beer, scream at the natives while we were drunk… that’s some of my best memories of him.”



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