The prolific guitarist John 5 gave an interview to No F’n Regrets during which he stated that Metallica gave him the nickname ‘Little Ozzy.’ Moreover, he also revealed the bizarre thing that Lars Ulrich wanted him to do.
On September 11, 1988, Metallica embarked on their Damaged Justice Tour to support their album ‘…And Justice For All.’ According to what John 5 said in the interview, he happened to be there as well.
John 5 commented on Metallica and revealed that he went to see them perform when he was around 16 years old. The guitarist then talked about Cliff Burton and said he was so nice when they met backstage and talked about guitar playing.
As John 5 said, he and Megadeth drummer Chuck Behler also went to see Metallica during their Damaged Justice Tour. He then revealed that he knew all of their songs and even played some guitar for Kirk Hammett. Moreover, the guitarist noted that the Metallica members remembered him later on and nicknamed him as ‘Little Ozzy’ due to his long hair.
Besides, John 5 also revealed something interesting in the interview. According to the guitarist, Metallica members made him run errands for them during that tour. Following that, John 5 claimed that Lars Ulrich made John 5 carry him on his back for a chicken fight.
In the interview, John 5 talked about Metallica as:
“I would go see Metallica early on, and back then it wasn’t like you can’t go backstage, it was kind of pretty easy. I remember I was a kid, probably like 16-17 at this time. I was talking to Cliff, just talking with them and talking with him about gear, playing, and all that stuff.
He was so nice, I remember him being just super cool and super down to earth. You would just sit with him cause he didn’t really have much to do for you. He would just hang out and talk to me, and things like that. Shows back then in these venues were really cool.”
He then continued:
“What’s super cool is they remember. Sometimes they do, sometimes they don’t. So, the drummer Chuck Behler from Megadeth lived in Detroit and said ‘Hey, let’s go see Metallica!’ and I was like ‘Absolutely!’
I loved Megadeth, and they knew him. We would go see Metallica, and those guys were friends with Chuck Behler because he was in Detroit, in the same stage. We would go see Metallica, and they would remember me.
This was the And Justice For All Tour, and I would play some guitar for Kirk because I knew all of their songs. They were like laughing, and they would call me ‘Little Ozzy’ because I had long hair for some reason.
I would hang out with those guys during the …And Justice For All Tour, and they would give me little jobs and things like that. It was really cool because they would give me silly jobs like Lars would jump on my back and they’d chicken fight, or I’d get them a beer or something like that. They were the nicest people.
Then, when I started to get known, they’d be like ‘Holy shit, that’s Little Ozzy! What’s he doing in Marilyn Manson? What’s he doing playing with David Lee Roth?’ So, it’s funny how it all comes around.”
You can check out the rest of the interview below.