Metallica drummer Lars Ulrich gets right to the point when inducting his heroes Deep Purple into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.”Every hard rock band in the last 40 years, including mine, traces its lineage directly back to Black Sabbath, Led Zeppelin and Deep Purple,” he says.
The drummer covered the band’s “When a Blind Man Cries” with Metallica in 2012 and had long called for the group’s induction. When Rolling Stone asked him in 2014 who he’d like to see inducted next, he said the band’s name four times.
What was it like to introduce Deep Purple?
It’s something that has been stored up in me for a long time. So it was great. The last thing my manager said to me [was] just speak really slowly and then you’ll probably talk too fast. I just had that in the back of my head. I tried to speak as slowly as I could and project into the bowels of the arena. It was awesome. It’s been 20 plus years coming. I’m honored and I’m happy for them. I’m happy I could be part of it at some level.
What was your first Deep Purple record?
Fireball. I saw them in 1973 and went to the record store the next day and Fireball was the one they had.
Give us a record update.
The record is well on its way. It may come out any century now, actually. There’s a saying: where there’s life, there’s hope.
Is it recorded?
I’d say it’s mostly done. There are all these other responsibilities that have to be taken care of. Life in Metallica these days is not only about making a record; it’s about these things and we played a show at AT&T Park and he does this, I do this. We have all these sort of different things that we turn to. But the record gets worked on where there’s absolutely nothing else going on.
That’s a nice schedule.
In all seriousness, it’s actually what we like. It works for us. It’s not just record, tour, record, tour. We like to do. We’re doing the Record Store Day next week and doing all that stuff. There’s lots of stuff going on all the time, but the record is almost done.
Additional reporting by David Browne