Metallica members, Kirk Hammett and Lars Ulrich talked in a conversation with Louder Sound, and they discussed Cliff Burton’s influence on the band.

Lars revealed a little-known fact about late Metallica bassist Cliff Burton. He said that ‘Cliff wasn’t really part of the songwriting on [Metallica’s 1983 debut album] Kill ‘Em All”.

Here’s the statement:

“Cliff came from a different musical background. He didn’t know who Diamond Head were, he didn’t know who the Tygers of Pan Tang were.

He would sit there and listen to Lynyrd Skynyrd and the Eagles and Yes and Simon & Garfunkel. I knew who Simon & Garfunkel were, but I’d never heard them – or if I had, I turned it off as quick as I could.

Cliff wasn’t really part of the songwriting on [Metallica’s 1983 debut album] ‘Kill ‘Em All’ – when he joined, all the songs were basically the way they were. But his influence and contribution is pretty significant on the stuff on [1984’s] ‘Ride the Lightning.'”

Kirk chimed in:

“Cliff had studied music. He was at a more musical level than I was. There were concepts I didn’t understand, which he knew and explained to me – relative scales and whatnot.”

Lars continued:

“He understood words like ‘harmonies’ and ‘arpeggios.’ We couldn’t even spell them.”

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