Metallica played series of shows at San Francisco’s Fillmore Auditorium to celebrate the band’s 30th anniversary. Once-upon-a-time Metallica lead guitarist and ever-since-then Megadeth maestro Dave Mustaine performed with Metallica on the final night. According to Mustaine, scalpers were reportedly getting over a thousand bucks per ticket to heavy metal history. What was it like to finally work again with Metallica on the recent Big Four shows that featured Megadeth, Metallica, Slayer, and Anthrax, and how did that compare to playing with Metallica at the Fillmore?
At the Big Four shows we got everybody up onstage at the same time, so there were 16 musicians. It was quite a conundrum. At the Fillmore it was just the other four Metallica guys and I onstage, and it was really fun. It was very cathartic. Robert [Trujillo] made me feel very welcome. Kirk [Hammett] asked me to play all the guitar solos and I was very surprised because I thought he was going to do some of them.
What did you play?
We played “Phantom Lord,” “Jump in the Fire,” and “Metal Militia.” Then [formative period guitarist] Lloyd Grant took the stage. We played “Hit the Lights” and finished with “Seek & Destroy.”
What was it like to play guitar along with Hetfield again?
We make a great team. We were probably one of the greatest guitar duos of all time. “This is cool,” I said as I hugged him at the end. “I love you too,” he said. I didn’t clarify. I let him think that I said I love him because I do. Part of the sadness about all the stupidity over the years is that we really do care about each other. He was my first real guitar partner. We changed the world together. Getting back together and playing the songs that started it all was really neat. It was also bizarre—like going into a time warp.