Metallica frontman James Hetfield will be making his first public appearance at the opening night of the Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles, CA on January 30th, his first since entering into rehab last year, which saw the band cancel their Australian tour.
The event is to display what has been dubbed Reclaimed Rust: The James Hetfield Collection, and is an exhibition that features 10 of Hetfield’s vintage cars.
“For the first time, all 10 of James’ custom creations will be on display together in one “rockin’” exhibition!” reads the press release.
“Enjoy a fireside chat with James Hetfield and an auction with exclusive items as you sip on cocktails and enjoy the amazing new exhibition.”
While it’s no doubt a huge event for car enthusiasts, it’s a huge moment for Hetfield as he steps back into public life since his return to rehab last year.
Hetfield, who’s publicly documented struggles with addiction were captured on the band’s groundbreaking doco Some Kind Of Monster, has kept a low profile whilst the Metallica empire has continued to roll.
“He’s doing what he needs to; he’s in the process of healing himself,” said drummer and spokesman Lars Ulrich in an interview last year.
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“I don’t have anything more to add – we put out a statement a week ago. I think the biggest surprise is just how positive the feedback has been from our fans and friends and peers alike.
“It’s very heartwarming, and it’s just blown our minds how much love and appreciation and support we’ve gotten in the last week since we had to postpone this. It’s an incredible thing.”
Watch: Metallica’s struggles laid bare in the Some Kind of Monster documentary
Hetfield spoke about his journey with sobriety on the Joe Rogan Experience podcast in 2017, noting that “losing my family, that was the thing that scared me so much, that was the bottom I hit, that my family is going to go away because of my behaviours that I brought home from the road.
“What worked for me was 7 weeks someplace, like basically tearing you down to bones, ripping your life apart, anything you thought about yourself or what it was, anything you thought you had, your family, your career, anything, gone. Strip you down to just, you’re born. Here’s how you were when you were born, you were okay, you were a good person, let’s get back to that again, then they slowly rebuild you.”
Watch the excerpt of the interview below and keep those fingers crossed for some rescheduled Metallica dates soon!