Metallica’s James Hetfield warns fans against falling for fake accounts

Impostor accounts are rampant across social media, and of course, iconic musicians are among the most common targets. (Just ask Mike Portnoy.) Unfortunately it seems James Hetfield is yet another victim, and he strongly warns fans to be wary of such deceptions.

Yesterday (Jan. 14) the official was Metallica The Twitter account posted a triple-image statement from the fiery frontman, beginning: “Papa Het would love for you to read this.” From there, Hetfield wrote:

There are people online who have assumed my identity, spread misinformation and caused harm to other people. There are scammers and predators out there. This is out of my control, but it is in your control who you choose to connect with. Be careful on social media and vets before contacting them.

To be clear…I am not on any form of social media, Facebook, Instagram, etc. The only connection I have with social media is through Metallica’s official website and official Metallica social media. If you follow or communicate with someone who you think is or is pretending to be me…

It is not me.

I hope this helps those who have been or are being scammed and are ashamed to talk about it.

With love and respect,
James ‘Papa Het’ Hetfield

You can see the post itself below:

Poignantly, many Metallica lovers responded to the post with not only general support, but also specific requests for Hetfield to return to social media. For example, one fan stated, “We would love to have you on Instagram. Miss you. Come back to Brazil soon!” while another replied: “Come back to Instagram Papa Het we love you!!!!!!!”

Other users offered more sarcastic responses (and understandably so). In particular, someone joked: “And here I was thinking James and I were meeting for drinks later tonight at Turtle Jack’s. Practice burping.” Similarly, another follower asked: “So does that mean he didn’t need my social security number to use the back stage Metallica pass?”

As for why Hetfield gave up his Instagram account in the first place, Blabbermouth’s transcript of his December 2016 chat with the Canadian press provides some insights:

I was sucked into the social media around… I was trying to be hip, trying to be cool. You know my kids are on Instagram [so I thought], “I want to try this thing.” I just wanted to look like the cool dad to my kids. And I ended up just… It was this huge time sink and it was all I could think about. “Oh, hey, I’m here. I can take a picture and put it on Instagram and get some hits,” or whatever, and try to get a lot of followers… But there’s a good part of it — you know , there are actually people you can meet and talk to and get to know, and then when you get to their town, you’re [like], “Wow, hello, you’re here.” And you get a friend. But most of the time it was just sucking my time and I just started neglecting the regular life. It lived in the cyber world and it wasn’t for me.

So – if it bears repeating – the next time you see someone suspiciously posing as Papa Het (or another celebrity), use basic judgment and logic to see through their scam.

Another thing you should do is keep an eye out for Metallica’s new album, 72 Seasons, which will be released on April 14 via their own label, Blackened Recordings. Oh, and be sure to check out tickets for their upcoming “M72” World Tourwhich starts on 27 April and runs until the end of September 2024. You may buy one-day tickets!

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