Metallica filmed ‘St Anger’ video at San Quentin while Richard Ramirez was on death row

"He was a Metallica fan, but he was on death row and he could only hear us"

Metallica‘s Kirk Hammett has reflected on how notorious US serial killer Richard Ramirez was on death row when the band filmed their ‘St Anger’ video at California’s San Quentin prison.

The band filmed the acclaimed video at the prison in 2003 while Ramirez was serving a death sentence after being found found guilty in 1989 of 43 crimes, including 13 counts of murder.

Recalling the shoot to Kerrang!, Hammett reflected on how he even received a memento which was linked to the notorious killer.


“I got a really cool thing from one of the correctional officers,” he explained. ​

“It was a magazine with us on the cover and the subscription tag said ​‘Richard Ramirez’– the ​‘Night Stalker’ killer who was at San Quentin while we were playing. He was a Metallica fan, but he was on death row and he could only hear us. I still have the magazine. It’s a nice little novelty item.”

Reflecting on the experience, Hammett added: “There were some women who came with us and they had to be restricted to a certain area because it was just too dangerous for them to even be seen.

“At one point, one of the inmates screamed over to me and said, ​‘Hey, Kirk, I know your mom!’ and I was like, ​‘Excuse me?’ He goes, ​‘Yeah, I used to mow her lawn!’ He added that he knew so-and-so from the neighbourhood, too.


“I was like, ​‘I might know more people here than I thought!’ But it was cool, it was really mellow. All the inmates were really appreciative of the fact that we were there and it was a distraction for them.”

Metallica are set to perform on a special Super Bowl edition of The Late Show With Stephen Colbert this weekend.