James Hetfield’s ‘Messengers’ book has recently come out and is a beautiful treat for music lovers. Metallica‘s legendary singer and guitarist shares details in the book about his favorite guitars and what they mean to him. For Metallica fans, this is a perfect opportunity to know more about one of their musical heroes.
The thing about James Hetfield’s ‘Messengers’ book is that it also shares some interesting details about the guitars. For those guitar fanatics, this can be a nice insight into what makes Hetfield’s guitars tick. This is also a great way to understand Metallica‘s music even further.
More details about James Hetfield’s ‘Messengers’ Book
The book officially came out today and the legendary musician has been promoting it this month. Hetfield has been signing copies of this book in places such as Detroit, Michigan, and St. Louis, Missouri, in the last couple of days. He also did a video on Metallica‘s YouTube channel to unbox the book and show it to his audience.
This release covers all the guitars Hetfield has used throughout his career with special commentary by the man himself. There are also a lot of unique photos and portraits that were never seen before. It also shares some insights about James‘ favorite moments in his career.
James Hetfield’s ‘Messengers’ book serves to get to know the man on a deeper level when it comes to music. It is also a great read for those who want to know a bit more about guitars. Hetfield is a guitar fanatic and it shows throughout this book.
What James Hetfield told Music Radar a few years ago about his guitar sound:
“(It’s) the never-ending quest for the Holy Grail of guitar sounds. For me it’s got to be percussive. It’s got to push air, what we call bark. It’s got to bark. But I don’t want it really abrasive, so any fake fuzz to me really just takes away from the sound. And it’s tough because when you turn guitar sounds down, you really hear what they sound like and when you push them up it sounds a different way.”
“So we’re trying to find that balance of enough mid push while still sounding big and what I’ve found is the wider and bigger you make it sound, the thinner it becomes in a way, at least depth-wise. You’ve got to find your space, elbow your way in there and sonically make some room. And it varies throughout certain songs. The guitar is really important in this song but this one, maybe it’s all about groove. I think we’re learning to be a little more forgiving on each other’s need for volume [laughs] and look at the big picture.”
James Hetfield in Ernie Ball talking about his musical influences
Beyond talking about James Hetfield’s ‘Messengers’ book, this was also a great moment for the man to talk about his musical influences as well:
“For me it was a little more raw, the stuff that I liked. Discovering bands like AC/DC, then Judas Priest, and then the whole New Wave Of British Heavy Metal came out, and that was Iron Maiden, then Motorhead and Black Sabbath, for sure, was a number one influence for me. Seeing that first album cover and seeing that first Iron Maiden album cover, it drew me right to it. I just got continually heavier and heavier as I was discovering music.”
“I’m kind of a little bit of a barbarian when I play. I’m always interested in the riff. It was the foundation of the song. Tony Iommi, he’s ruling the song with his riff and everything else joins him. Johnny Ramone, lots of down picking lots of, you know, just fast down picking. That helped develop my style. So kind of a combination of punk rock and heavy rock at the time turned into just the down-picking style and with melody along with it.”
Where to buy the book, Messengers: The Guitars of James Hetfield
While you can buy the book from Metallica’s website. The cheapest place we found it was on Amazon.
The best Metallica songs to get into the band
Metallica is one of the most popular metal bands of all time. In fact, one could argue is the biggest metal band of all time. Be that as it may, songs like “One“, “Master of Puppets“, “For Whom the Bells Toll“, “Orion“, “Creeping Death“, “The Unforgiven“, and a few more are some of the best ways to get into the band.
The band eventually left its thrash metal roots to focus on more mainstream rock and metal, not without its success. However, it’s a much more controversial era for the band in that period. James Hetfield’s ‘Messengers’ book reflects a bit on that musical evolution.