Metallica has been forced to cancel their headlining sets at two festivals this summer while frontman James Hetfield continues his recovery from substance abuse.
Last year, the group announced that they would headline five festivals this summer. Now, the band will no longer be performing at Sonic Temple in Columbus on May 15 and 17 and Louder Than Life on September 18 and 20 in Louisville. Hetfield released a statement along with the announcing, noting that he has “critical recovery events” on the weekends of these two festivals which can not be moved. While he apologized to fans who purchase tickets, he said the band is working with the festival promoters to ensure refunds or exchanges.
“My intent with this statement is saying ‘I apologize’ to each one of you,” Hetfield said. “The reality is that I have not prioritized my health in the past year of touring and I now know that my mental health comes first. That might sound like a no-brainer for most of you but I didn’t want to let the Metallica team/family down and, I alone, completely compromised myself.”
He noted that it is “absolutely necessary for me to look after my mental, physical, and spiritual health.” Last year, the group had to postpone their WorldWired tour dates when Hetfield first entered a treatment program.
Hetfield insists that the band will still perform their remaining 2020 shows, including a handful of shows in South America, their All Within My Hands benefit show at The Masonic in San Francisco, and headlining sets at Welcome to Rockville, Epicenter, Aftershock, and Global Citizen Festival.
“Beyond 2020, I am optimistic about the blessings I have been given and what the future brings,” Hetfield said. “I appreciate all the great prayers and support from everyone since I went into rehab last September. Like the moth into the flame, being human in this career has its huge challenges and can be difficult. Your understanding helps the healing.”
Tool and the Red Hot Chili Peppers will now headline Sonic Temple.
See Metallica’s full list of upcoming North American gigs below.
Metallica | 2020 Shows
May 1,3 — Epicenter @ Charlotte Motor Speedway – Charlotte, NC
September 12 — All Within My Hands Benefit Show @ The Masonic – San Francisco, CA
May 8-10 — Welcome To Rockville @ Daytona International Speedway – Daytona Beach, FL
October 9, 11 — Aftershock @ Discovery Park – Sacramento, CA