James Hetfield has performed as a surprise guest for an Eddie Money tribute show in California – his first musical appearance since his rehab stay.
The Metallica frontman re-entered a treatment programme last September to focus on his recovery, which meant the legendary metallers had to postpone their tour of Australia and New Zealand.
Now, Hetfield has performed live for the first time in months at a tribute show for the late musician Eddie Money, who died last September.
“The Star-Studded Tribute To Eddie Money”, which benefited the USC Eddie Money Cancer Research Fund, was held at Saban in Beverly Hills yesterday (February 20).
Event organisers had not listed Hetfield on the bill. Audience members would have no doubt been surprised to see Hetfield turn up to play an acoustic rendition of Money’s 1978 hit ‘Baby Hold On’. Watch footage below.
As Blabbermouth reports, Hetfield revealed during the show that he Money were friends and recalled how he first connected with the late singer.
“So I got to hang out with Eddie the last probably three years of his life,” Hetfield said before playing the song. “I saw the cleaned-up version of Eddie.”
He explained that he first met Money at an Oakland Raiders football game where Eddie was performing the national anthem. “I met him before he went out there, and he kinda blew me off,” Hetfield recalled. “I thought, ‘Who is is this pompous ass?’ And if you spot it, you’ve got it, is what I’m saying. So it was like two big dogs going in a circle around each other, which was kind of funny.
He continued: “I saw through it. I saw through that ego, and he saw through mine, and we got to be friends, ’cause I think our egos matched the size or our insecurities.”