Metallica’s Lars Ulrich has shared a post to social media in which he reflects on the band’s infamous Grammy loss to Jethro Tull.

Quick question, which band do you believe to be more representative of the genres ‘hard rock’ and/or ‘metal’; Jethro Tull or Metallica? If you said anything except the former, then it’s clear that you weren’t employed by The Recording Academy back in the late ’80s.

Ask any fan of heavy music and they’ll undoubtedly tell you that the Grammy Awards of 1989 were a rather controversial affair.

After recognising the genre by introducing the award for Best Hard Rock/Metal Performance Vocal or Instrumental, The Recording Academy frustrated a lot of fans when they picked their winner.

Despite the likes of Metallica, AC/DC, Iggy Pop, and Jane’s Addiction all being nominated for the award, it was Jethro Tull who took the Grammy home, despite their frequent classification as a folk band.

Check out Jethro Tull’s controversial Grammy win:

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In fact, the decision was so criticised that in addition to boos from the audience, it has since become an embarrassment of sorts for The Recording Academy.

Jethro Tull later tried to make light of the situation though, joking that “we do sometimes play our mandolins very loudly”. Meanwhile, their record label took out ads that claimed “the flute is a heavy metal instrument”.

When Metallica’s Black Album won the award in 1992, Lars Ulrich decided to “thank Jethro Tull for not putting out an album this year”, indicating that the band had adopted something of a jovial nature towards the whole affair.

Now, 30 years on, Ulrich has opened up about the incident in a social media post.

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Today 30 years ago, February 22 ‘89, we played the Grammys for the first time and that was quite a mindfuck!! First time we were in front of a mainstream TV audience. First time mainstream America was exposed to whatever the hell it is we do. First time they had a hard rock/metal category on the Grammys. First time we were Grammy losers, since Jethro Tull, somewhat unexpectedly to most people, walked away with the win. But all was not lost.. The expressions of disgust from most members of the audience (other than Iggy!) is something I will treasure for the rest of my life And I was rocking some pretty crazy hair that was edging dangerously close to a mullet! Happy days indeed!! #wanna #flashbackfriday #grammyawardlosers #jethrotull #grammys

A post shared by Lars Ulrich (@larsulrich) on

Taking to Instagram on Friday to mark the 30th anniversary of the infamous Grammy snub, Lars Ulrich shared a number memories about the incident.

“Today 30 years ago, February 22 ‘89, we played the Grammys for the first time and that was quite a mindfuck!!” he began. “First time we were in front of a mainstream TV audience. First time mainstream America was exposed to whatever the hell it is we do.”

“First time they had a hard rock/metal category on the Grammys,” he continued. “First time we were Grammy losers, since Jethro Tull, somewhat unexpectedly to most people, walked away with the win.”

“But all was not lost.. The expressions of disgust from most members of the audience (other than Iggy!) is something I will treasure for the rest of my life.”

“And I was rocking some pretty crazy hair that was edging dangerously close to a mullet!”

While most dedicated followers of Metallica are still bitter about their Grammys snub, it seems that Lars Ulrich has managed to find a bright side to the whole affair.

Since Metallica seem over it, maybe we should be sparing a thought for the poor song choice during Megadeth’s long-awaited win back in 2017?

Check out Metallica performing ‘One’ at the 1989 Grammy Awards:

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