Miley Cyrus performed Metallica’s “Nothing Else Matters” alongside the heavy metal legends on Thursday’s Howard Stern Show, with the performance coming just hours before the arrival of the all-star covers LP Metallica Blacklist.
Cyrus first performed the “Black Album” classic during her set at the 2019 Glastonbury Festival, she told Howard Stern prior to the performance.
“When I first started covering this song, it was for Glastonbury, because it is about honoring music, and ‘nothing else matters’ at that moment… It was about two weeks before the world knew I was getting a divorce… I had just lost my house in the [California] fires,” Cyrus said of her connection to the track, which she covers — alongside Elton John, Metallica bassist Robert Trujillo, Yo-Yo Ma, Watt, and Red Hot Chili Peppers drummer Chad Smith — on The Metallica Blacklist.
“I was so heartbroken and my purpose was coming from this performance. I got sober at that time. I really pulled my fucking shit together. This song was what drove me to that place, because I knew nothing else mattered. My life in regards to love was falling apart, but I had my love for music.”
While Elton John didn’t take part in the performance (he plays the piano intro and outro on Cyrus’ Blacklist version), the singer did Zoom into the Stern show to talk about “Nothing Else Matters,” “one of the best songs ever written.” The compliment made James Hetfield well up emotionally.
“You can’t really define them,” John said. “They’re not a heavy metal band; they’re a musical band. Their songs aren’t just heavy metal, they’re beautiful songs. This is just such a melodic song. It’s fucking great actually.”
In addition to the interviews, Metallica also delivered an in-studio rendition of “Sad But True”:
Both the Metallica Blacklist and the massive “Black Album” reissue are out now.