METALLICA drummer Lars Ulrich and guitarist Kirk Hammett will team up with former VAN HALEN frontman Sammy Hagar in a jam band that will make its live debut during Hagar's week-long birthday celebration in early October at Sammy's nightclub, Cabo Wabo, in Cabo San Lucas, Baja, Mexico, according to an interview with Hagar that aired via the Cleveland station WMMS (www.wmms.com) last Friday. My band is going to play a night, and then the guys from METALLICAI don't know if the whole band, but for sure Lars and Kirk are going to be there, and we'll put together a jam band. Some of the guys from NICKELBACK are going to come, because they had to reschedule from last year when the hurricane hit and we had to blow out the Mexican Meltdown. So, it's going to be the craziest week of rock and roll ever.
Hagar also downplayed the possibility of a jam with fellow VAN HALEN singer David Lee Roth during the pair's upcoming co-headlining US tour, which is scheduled to kick off on May 29th in Cleveland. I wanted [the two of us to have a jam at the end of the night], Sammy said. I had seen Elton John and Billy Joel on tour, even though this is not much like Elton and Billy (laughing), although it might be more like a WWF version. I thought it was a great show the way they co-mingled and the way they started together acoustically singing each other's songs. The first thing I presented, I was like, 'Dave, we can really do something great for the fans doing something like that,' and he said, 'Absolutely not. I've never jammed with anybody. I've never sang anybody else's songs and I'm not going to start now.' And I was like, 'Fine.' I've got no problem with any of it. Like I said, anything goes with me. I just felt that when I'm out on stage that I don't want to hear from anybody else about nothing until I'm done. When I'm done, then I'm done. Dave doesn't want to do it. At the press conference, he had a little bit of a change of heart, a little bit. He said, 'well, once we get out there and get to know each other and see what each other's doing, you never know. Anything could happen.' So I'm saying, 'OK.' I'm a jammer. Any town I'm in, if there's another musician on the side of the stage, I'm inviting him out. That's just the way I am. That's why I build the Cabo Wabo, to jam with my friends and stuff. I'm really open to that, and hopefully it turns into that, but I wouldn't guarantee that. Really, it's just two bands and two solo artists going out there and trying to make the other guy wish he wasn't there.
In the same interview, Sammy offered more information on PLANET US, the band that he formed with VAN HALEN bassist Michael Anthony, JOURNEY guitarist Neal Schon, and JOURNEY drummer Deen Castronovo. Michael Anthony is at my house right now, Hagar revealed. He stayed last night and he's staying for the next three days. With my band, we are rehearsing during the day, and with PLANET US, we are trying to write some new songs at night and trying to get as many songs in the can as we can, so that when we start recording in the fall, we'll have a lot of material there. We really postponed the project until the fall because I'm on tour and JOURNEY is also on tour this summer. Poor Mikey is sitting around scratching his head going, 'Why aren't I out there playing?' We're writing, and it's really an exciting project. I don't want to hype it too much it's so brand new, but the energy between us is so unique. Everyone knows that [former GUNS N' ROSES guitarist] Slash was originally asked to do it, and he was in, but as soon as we started rehearsing, he never made it. Finally, we recorded two songs without him, and it was so good that we were like, we don't really need anybody else because it was so good with Neil. Neil's a very busy guitar player, and Deen Castronovo is an unbelievably busy drummer and Mike is a very busy bass player, so it was kind of like really rockin'. It's like kind of early ZEP meets CREAM meets VAN HALEN maybe, and meets TOOL maybe. It's a little more modern like TOOL. It's very intense, and kind of RUSH-y. It's not like any of that, really, but it's on that ilk of bands. It's very musical. I'm very excited about it. If it wasn't for the Sam and Dave Tour this summer, I was going to work exclusively with PLANET US, because it's that exciting. I'm not leaving my band. This is a project, and it's really, really good.