Mick Fleetwood recalls "weird, but not weird" friendship with Metallica

Publish Date
Wednesday, 16 June 2021, 9:12AM
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No one was more surprised at Mick Fleetwood's seamless friendship with Metallica lead guitarist Kirk Hammett than Fleetwood himself.

The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame drummer looked back on his connection with Hammett in a recent conversation with Goldmine magazine.

When they're not on tour, Fleetwood and Hammett live near one another in Maui. The two had encountered each before other in the area, but they didn't really strike up a friendship until James Hetfield was in town for a charity concert that Fleetwood was hosting. Hetfield and Hammett visited Fleetwood at his house to rehearse a Metallica song for the gig.

"And I'm s----ing myself," Fleetwood recalled of his head space before the thrash metal icons' arrival. "What am I gonna do? You know, I play what I play. But any Metallica song is like a machine, and if one thing is out of place, it doesn't work. So I said, 'I'll do my best.' I'd met Kirk before that in a funny little shop here on Maui. But I had never met James Hetfield, and he said to me, 'This is one of the greatest moments in my life. Do you know how much your band means to me?' It was so humbling. And so that night, Kirk was actually onstage playing on [Peter Green's 'Greeny'] guitar. It was weird, but not weird. All these connective stories that are almost unbelievable, but that was why they were all on that stage."

If Fleetwood and Hammett have one thing in common, it's a mutual love for Peter Green and his music.

Hammett has owned the famous 'Greeny' 1959 Gibson Les Paul since he bought it for an undisclosed sum in 2014. The instrument was Green's primary guitar during his Fleetwood Mac years, and its unique sound has made it arguably as famous as its namesake.

Hammett performs often with the guitar and even lent it back to Green in 2019 during sessions for what became Green's final studio recordings.

Hammett also used the guitar during the Mick Fleetwood & Friends Celebrate the Music of Peter Green and the Early Years of Fleetwood Mac live concert in February of 2020. A live album and film of the all-star tribute arrived this past April.

Hammett says he initially bought the 'Greeny' guitar for its sound and its historic significance, but the instrument has paid him back in dividends thanks to experiences it has led to, like connecting with Fleetwood and with Green himself.

This article was first published on iheart.com and is republished here with permission