Former-Metallica bassist Jason Newsted says it was his bandmates’ chronic disrespect for him that forced him to walk away from the job of a lifetime. During a chat with Loudersound, Newsted, who in the past has cited the band’s unbending denial of giving him time to develop his side band Echobrain, to his own addiction issues as the reason for his departure, says it was really all about respect.
Newsted explained, “The thing that set me away from Metallica is what I call ‘the perpetual dis’. No matter how hard I worked, there was still disrespect. Not the hazing that I got from the first six months of my career, but the general disrespect that I got, dismissiveness. The dis and dis, I call it.”
He went on to say, “It stemmed from, as a collective and as individuals, (the fact) they had never managed to deal with their grief from Cliff (Burton) when he died. This kind of s***, it manifests itself in young men’s minds, young millionaires’ minds. Spoilt, spoilt, spoilt millionaires’ minds, and I include myself in that. . . it would be hard to get your head around that. So it was much more a personal thing. I needed to rest; they refused to give me the time to rest; I had to leave to get that rest.”
Newsted left Metallica in 2001 after 14 years and told us a while back what went wrong during that time: “Nobody ever wanted to speak up and rock the boat, throw a wrench into the machine. Y’know, it was just rolling like a freaking tank over everything that came in its way, and nobody ever wanted to mess with that really. And so emotions, feelings, personal stuff, all that was kind of buried in the hole, wherever they buried it, inside themselves or somewhere else, y’know? Then people started realizing the value of things.”