Les Claypool Information
Leslie Edward Claypool (September 29, 1963) is an American author, filmmaker, record producer, singer, musician, and songwriter. He was born in Richmond, California. Kirk Hammett, the guitarist for Metallica, pushed his high school classmate and fellow bassist Les Claypool to audition after Cliff Burton's untimely death in 1986.
Claypool joked during the audition that he didn't know much about Metallica's thrash metal approach, so he asked if they wanted to "jam on some Isley Brothers tracks," according to the Behind the Music episode about the band. He "wasn't a big metal guy" and didn't know how prominent Metallica had become until he came for the audition; Hammett had handed him a copy of their 1984 album Ride the Lightning.
Frontman James Hetfield explained that Claypool "should pursue his own thing" and "was too excellent" to be offered a position with Metallica. As for Claypool's response, he said that he "wasn't the proper fit" for the band since he was a "weirdo" and that he thought Hetfield was just "being polite" with his remarks. Featuring Todd Huth on guitar and Jay Lane on drums, Claypool formed a short-lived alternative/funk rock band in 1988. In April 1994, Prawn Song Records released the band's self-titled debut album. They went on short tours and supported acts, including Helmet, Rollins Band, and Slayer.
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