James Hetfield’s Heartfelt Revelation Prompts Metallica Group Hug
James Hetfield got emotional during Metallica’s recent performance in Brazil, thanking his bandmates for helping to lift him up during a bout of insecurity.
"I've gotta tell you I wasn't feeling very good before I came out here,” the frontman admitted to more than 60,000 fans assembled at the Estádio do Mineirão on May 12. “[I was] feeling a little bit insecure, like I'm an old guy, can't play anymore, all this bullshit that I tell myself in my head. So I talked to these guys, and they helped me -- as simple as that. They gave me a hug and said, 'Hey, if you're struggling on stage, we've got your back.' And I tell you, it means the world to me."
At that point, all of Hetfield’s bandmates approached him on stage for another group hug, drawing cheers from the crowd. Clearly touched by the gesture, the frontman once again addressed the audience.
"Seeing you out there, I am not alone. I am not alone, and neither are you."
From there, Metallica launched into their classic tune “Sad But True.” Watch videos of the speech and performance below.
Hetfield has been open in the past about his struggles with alcoholism and his own mental health. In 2019, Metallica canceled a planned tour of Australia and New Zealand so the singer could return to rehab for the first time in years.
More recently, Hetfield admitted he’d been focussing on taking care of himself, including “asking for what you need, asking if you can help, connecting to the world in different ways. ... [I have] a lot more knowledge about myself and my relationship with the world.”