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Metallica's James Hetfield: Orion Fest Was a 'Disaster Financially'

Frontman hopes band will be able to tour the United States soon

January 30, 2014 4:15 PM ET
 James Hetfield Metallica
James Hetfield of Metallica
Michael Stewart/WireImage

Metallica's decision to nix this year's Orion Music + More festival might have been for more urgent reasons than they first let on, frontman James Hetfield told a Houston radio DJ earlier this week. Speaking with Don Jantzen of 94.5 The Buzz, he said that the fest had been "a disaster financially and it's not able to happen again because of that." Hetfield added, "We're doing what we can to keep things alive here."

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The subject of touring came up when Jantzen asked about the video release of the group's concert movie Metallica: Through the Never, which came out this week. Regarding plans of a possible U.S. tour, Hetfield said Metallica haven't launched a full-fledged trek since 2009 because "the States have gotta step up and want their music."

"I'm not sure what's going on in the States as far as rock and metal goes and concert-wise, but there's not really any willingness to get a big show out there and make it worthwhile to actually get out there and play," he said. "You see other bands gathering up six different bands just to go out and play. It's pretty tough in North America."

In Hetfield's words, Metallica have "hit the coasts or done TV stuff" in recent years, but he hopes to tour the States in the future. Most recently, the group performed their song "One" at the Grammys with concert pianist Lang Lang.

A rep from Orion promoter C3 told the Detroit News in December that the fest would have conflicted with the metal band's European tour plans. At the time, the spokesman said that the band could possibly resume the festival in 2015. 

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