James Hetfield Turned Down Opportunity to Buy ‘Greeny’ Guitar Before Kirk Hammett
There's no doubt that Kirk Hammett loves the "Greeny" guitar that he purchased that once belonged to Fleetwood Mac's Peter Green and Thin Lizzy's Gary Moore, but Hammett wasn't the first Metallica member to have a chance to buy it.
While appearing on The Howard Stern Show (as seen below) this week, James Hetfield revealed that he turned down the chance to buy the guitar before Hammett ultimately purchased it. The guys in Metallica had a good laugh as it was revealed that Hammett was actually the third person in the band approached about the instrument.
"I played it before he did. I don't know if you knew this. The guy brought it backstage to show it to me, and I rejected it," admitted Hetfield, before revealing, "He was asking an exorbitant amount."
Lars Ulrich then added, "And I played it before James."
"That's why it got so expensive," says Hetfield jokingly. "Lars played it. Thanks Lars."
Within the chat, Stern asked Hammett about acquiring the legendary guitar, but the guitarist shot down talk that he paid over $2 million for the instrument. "That's just the rumor, but I would never pay a couple million dollars for just about anything," said Hammett.
"So the owner came to me, Manny Hughes, in financial straits, and I said, 'I'm not going to buy a $2 million guitar. And he said, 'It's not $2 million, that's poppycock.' British guy. So he brought it to my hotel and I plugged it in and literally within 30 seconds I said, 'You're not getting this guitar back.' It was just an amazing sounding guitar," said Hammett.
The guitarist went on to speak to his attachment to the instrument. "I picked up on the energy and the mojo of this guitar immediately," says Hammett. "It's inseparable now. Where I sleep, it's literally 10 feet from me, no matter where I am. I keep it and bring it everywhere and play it onstage too."
You might see Hammett playing "Greeny" live as Metallica supports their latest album, 72 Seasons, on tour dates spanning into 2024. Be sure to get your tickets here.