Tenacious D reveal which songs inspired ‘Tribute’

Metallica and Led Zeppelin were the primary sources of inspiration

Tenacious D’s Jack Black and Kyle Gass have revealed that ‘One’ by Metallica and Led Zeppelin‘s ‘Stairway to Heaven’ had a “large” influence on their hit song ‘Tribute’.

‘Tribute’, which was first released in 2001, famously recounts a performance of “the greatest song in the world”. However, in a recent interview with Zane Lowe on Apple Music, the duo were at odds as to which song this specifically referred.

Gass stated that Metallica’s ‘One’ was the primary inspiration for ‘Tribute’. However, Black was initially less convinced.


“When we were talking about what’s the greatest song in the world, at the time it was Metallica – ‘One’, some would say. But really, you can’t say that that was a greater inspiration than ‘Stairway To Heaven’.”

“[Metallica] were going places that people didn’t normally go, but also with really staccato riffs,” Gass countered, “they were very exciting. It just seemed very important.”

Black conceded that the Metallica track’s influence on ‘Tribute’ was sizeable.

“You can tell that it’s [Metallica’s] best song, because whenever you see them live, they always save that for the end. They know that people are waiting for ‘One’,” he said.

Black added that Charlie Daniels Band’s ‘The Devil Went Down To Georgia’ had a big influence on the song’s story. Like ‘Tribute’, the song features a Faustian pact between the singer and Satan.


“There’s a great tradition of doing battle with Satan in rock’n’roll music and before rock’n’roll,” Black said.

“And of them all, I think ‘The Devil Went Down To Georgia’ is probably the most powerful, iconic version of that story.”

Earlier this year, Jack Black made waves on TikTok after posting a video of himself dancing shirtless. The ‘School of Rock’ star’s video racked up over 500,000 likes.

Tenacious D are scheduled to tour US swing states in the lead-up to the American election on November 3. The duo have not yet announced whether these dates will proceed, as the coronavirus pandemic continues to affect the United States.

Tenacious D are also gearing up to release a graphic novel later this year. Post-Apocalypto, based on their album and animated series of the same name, hits shelves on September 15.