KoRn have opened up on the impact and origin of their current stand-in bassist, 12-year-old Tye Trujillo, son of Metallica bass player Robert Trujillo.
Tye was announced as temporary replacement for long-time Korn bassist Reginald “Fieldy” Arvizu earlier this month after “unforeseen circumstances” prevented Fieldy from joining their South American run. He made his live debut with the band last week.
“It’s good, we’re having fun! He’s having a great time,” the band’s guitarist James ‘Munky’ Shaffer told NME. “His dad’s out here with us, just hanging out, shootin’ the shit and catching up. [Tye] knows like 17, 18 Korn songs, and he knows them really well – it’s crazy. All the stops, and the breaks… it’s crazy to see somebody that young so talented. He’s gonna be a professional musician, and to know that at that early of an age is just inspiring.”
The 12-year-old’s had to deal with his own new levels of fame, too, Munky explains. “When we go to the shows, he’s got people wanting his picture and his autograph – he’s a little overwhelmed, but he’s handling himself just like his dad, which is cool, collected and modest.”
Speaking of how they first met, Munky continued: “There was a moment when a couple of the guys from Metallica and Jonathan [Davis, Korn vocalist] and Fieldy kinda bumped into each other in some airline lounge, and Robert was like, ‘Hey, have you checked out my son playing bass?!’ They were watching some videos and Jonathan and Fieldy were like, ‘Woah, he’s so good!’ When we found out Fieldy wasn’t gonna be able to come on this trip with us, he suggested Tye. It’s not just some replacement – this is the DNA of Robert Trujillo, one of the greatest bass players on the planet! You can see it – it’s crazy how much you see his dad in him.”
With just a couple of shows left in the Korn fold, Tye’s own band are gearing up for some world domination of their own. “Him and his band The Helmets are mixing some original music that they’ve recorded,” Munky reveals. Could there be a Korn support slot in The Helmets’ future tour prospects? “That would be really sweet actually!” he laughed.
KoRn return to the UK to perform at Reading & Leeds Festival August 25-27.