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Glastonbury Headliners On Social Media: Metallica

Metallica and social media do not get along

The social media world exploded when news hit that Metallica were going to be headlining Glastonbury 2014 on the Saturday. The heavy metal band are the most illustrious outfit of the three headliners at this years event, and their existence in the media has been one of great controversy.

Social Media Glastonbury
Source: renegadecinema.com
Here is how Metallica have viewed the music industry in a world dominated by social media.


Metallica are known for their heavy sound, and great live performances, but they are not such fans of social media. In an interview with Noisey, the bands guitarist Kirk Hammett revisited on of the most controversial periods of Metallica’s history. He was answering questions about the band’s infamous lawsuit in 2000 against Napster, the file-sharing service. He was asked about how he has adapted his views on piracy since the legal battle which Napster, which effectively saw the file-sharing service go under, and he said: “It’s just become too big of a beast to control. The best thing to do is to try to put a positive spin on it and embrace it for what it is because it’s still keeping our music alive and out there, and people are still hearing us and listening to us. We’re learning how to roll with the changes.”

Towards the climax of the interview, he was asked if he had embraced social media, considering what had occurred with Napster, and his colourful reply was: “Well, personally, I don’t give a f**k about social media. I’m not on Facebook, I’m not even on Twitter, I’m not on Instagram, I’m not on all these other F**kin’ things that I don’t even know about, and I don't give a f**k. There are people in our organisation who recognise the power of social media and the power of getting the word out there.

“Social media can be extremely effective for whatever thing you're doing or whatever cause so I think it’s important, but personally, I don’t give a f**k.”

This is a very odd opinion for a musician to have, as Metallica have become successful in contemporary society because of social media. Revelations such as iTunes and social networking are actually keeping music alive. Social media is the new word of mouth, and even though bands will never become as big as they used to because things move at such a pace nowadays, social media still proves as a good thing for musicians.

Social Media Glastonbury
Source: rollingstone.com
If iTunes hadn't have come along, Metallica would not be seeing digital royalty earnings, and everybody would be pirating music, to complement the physical technology such as iPods.

Metallica’s view of social media would not have been improved after a petition was launched to ban them from this year’s festival. An online petition was launched due to James Hetfield’s love of hunting , and his membership of America’s National Rifle Association. As well as the petition launched online, there was also a Facebook page which gained more than 30,000 followers.

The lead man is set to narrate an eight-part series called The Hunt on the History Channel, which focuses on the killing of Kodiak brown bears in Alaska.

Whilst Metallica may not appear to be the most likeable of acts at the festival this year, they will guarantee a great show, and change of pace also. Glastonbury has been about diversity in recent years, and Metallica are proof of this.

Alex is an English Literature and Sociology undergraduate whose love for written word has led him to write about some obscure topics in his time. Currently a content writer at Social Media Frontiers, be sure to follow him @AlexSatSMF.

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Glastonbury Headliners On Social Media: Metallica Reviewed by Unknown on Thursday, June 26, 2014 Rating: 5
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