Kirk Hammett, the lead guitarist and contributing songwriter of Metallica, has talked about how it was to work with the guitarist of The Velvet Underground, Lou Reed, as he recalled what he said to him about lead guitar playing.
During a recent interview Hammett gave to Marin Independent Journal, he has expressed his views over the band’s collaboration album, ‘Lulu,’ which they created with the legendary guitarist Lou Reed.
Saying that they were there to help Reed fulfill his vision, Hammett revealed the two songs he is most proud of from the album. He said ‘Junior Dad’ and ‘Ride the Lightning‘ are highly special for him.
Kirk Hammett also recalled a memory from the time they were recording the album with Lou Reed. He said that Lou was really not into solo guitar playing and strongly opposed to Hammett by saying no guitar solos and no wah-wah when Kirk once set the wah pedal. Hammett admitted Lou had his musical preferences and boundaries.
The rock singer-songwriter Lou Reed passed away at the age of 71 in 2013 of liver disease, after his final full-length studio recording project with Metallica. Reed’s distinctive deadpan voice, poetic lyrics and experimental guitar playing were the trademarks throughout his long career.
Here is what Kirk Hammett said about Lou Reed:
“He’s a really, really good rhythm-guitar player. He had a good, solid rhythm pulse to his playing. He was really not into lead guitar playing, and he was really, really not into wah-wah.
In fact, one time during a rehearsal, I set the wah pedal and he just walked up to the microphone and said, ‘Noooooo. No guitar solos. No wah-wah.‘ And I was blown away. [Laughs]
He had his musical preferences. He had his musical boundaries. And he was not shy in letting us know what those preferences and boundaries were.”
Hammett also talked about their collaboration album ‘Lulu’ and said:
“It was a real accomplishment, as far as I was concerned. We were there to help Lou Reed fulfill his vision and I think we did that 100%.
This was not a Metallica album and it was not a Lou Reed album. It was Lou Reed and Metallica together, doing something completely different.
It’s not for everyone. But ‘Junior Dad,’ I think, is one of the best things we’ve ever been associated with, in terms of real art and literature and music coming together. That, to me, is a real accomplishment, just as much as [1984’s] ‘Ride the Lightning‘ is.”
You can check out the rest of the interview here.