James Hetfield Net Worth is a dream for most aspiring musicians and in this post we are going to look at his Early Life, Career, Personal Life and how he made his money.
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Who is James Hetfield
James Hetfield (born August 3, 1963) is an American singer, songwriter, musician, and guitarist. He is best known for co-founding the iconic heavy metal band, Metallica, with drummer Lars Ulrich.
Hetfield is Metallica’s lead vocalist, rhythm guitarist, and chief songwriter. Hetfield has had an extremely successful musical career. He is ranked among one of the greatest metal guitarists of all time.
Additionally, Metallica as a group act has won many awards including a record nine Grammys. Metallica is among the best-selling bands of all time, with sales over 60 million in the US alone, as tracked by the Nielson SoundScan.
Below you will find detailed information about James Hetfield’s life, career highlights, net worth, and much more.
James Hetfield Early Life
James Hetfield was born in Downey, a city in California, on August 3, 1963. He was born to Cynthia Bassett and Virgil Lee Hetfield.
Bassett was an opera singer and musician and Hetfield a truck driver. Bassett and Hetfield divorced in 1976 when James was 13.
Bassett passed away due to cancer in 1979 and her death would later inspire much of Metallica’s lyrics. James has three siblings in total: two older half-brothers from Bassett’s previous marriage and one younger sister.
James attended Downey High School and finished his high school graduation at the Brea Olinda High School in 1981. He is of mixed Scottish, English, Irish, and German ancestry.
James’ interest in music began with him receiving piano lessons at the age of 9. He briefly got acquainted with drums as well around this time.
At age 14, he realized his heart and passion lies in rock music. He decided he wanted to be a guitarist and was heavily influenced throughout his youth by the American rock band, Aerosmith.
During his adolescent years, James was in a few bands, Leather and Obsession to name a few.
James Hetfield Net Worth
This is an astonishing number, considering that James Hetfield is not exactly a ‘present-day’ artist, but if the numbers are any indication, his fame as an acclaimed musician and band artist continues even today.
Coupled with Metallica’s exceptional commercial sales; the high worth of Hetfield’s brand and fame, and Hetfield’s vast wealth, a triple-figure in the millions as James Hetfield’s net worth does not come as a surprise.
You should also know that Hetfield also very diverse real estate portfolio which adds to his net worth.
His property initially included over 1,150 acres of land which he has, over the years, donated to various charities. As of 2019, 50 acres of the original total property still exists to Hetfield’s name.
He also owns a large property in Maui, Hawaii, outside of Marin County and Vail.
If the fans’ interest in and loyalty to Hetfield and Metallica’s music endures and given that Hetfield’s personal and professional business ventures continue to succeed, there is faith that James Hetfield’s net worth will be consistent in future years as well.
However, we can only speculate. It is difficult to make any definite statements on issues of net worth (especially posthumously) as the financial and entertainment industries are ever-changing and unpredictable.
James Hetfield Career Highlights
James Hetfield’s career and musical journey as a member of Metallica is by no means lacking in successful highs and moments of great acclaim. Metallica’s most successful album is their eponymous album, Metallica, also known as The Black Album, which was released in 1991.
Hetfield has been a part of the making of many hit singles for Metallica: “Enter Sandman”, “The Unforgiven”, “Turn the Page”, “Until It Sleeps”, “I Disappear”, “Nothing Else Matters”, “Wherever I May Roam”, to name a few.
Even today, Metallica is one of the best-selling group acts in musical history. Their performances even in the contemporary music scene generate a revenue of around $100 million.
This is a hint of Hetfield and Metallica’s power and influence which has continued to inspire generations of artists from a variety of genres.
James Hetfield & Metallica
The story of how James Hetfield came to be a founding member of Metallica is a famous one. James came across an ad in the LA newspaper, Recycler. The ad stated that a band was going to be formed and for that, metal fans were wanted.
The ad was placed by Metallica’s to-be drummer, Lars Ulrich.
James responded to the ad and rest, as they say, was history.
On October 28, 1981. Ulrich and Hetfield officially established Metallica. Metallica released its first studio album, Kill ‘Em All, which was released in 1983. Since then, Metallica has gone to release ten studio albums, five extended plays, and 39 music videos.
Metallica has released a whooping number of total songs- 150, in a career spanning almost 40 years. Metallica has been listed as one of the most influential and iconic bands of all time by the popular magazine, Rolling Stones.
They are also one of the most commercially successful musical acts of all time.
James Hetfield Personal Life
James Hetfield married Francesca Tomasi in August 1977 and together they had three children. Hetfield lives in Vail, Colorado, crediting the place for its picturesque surroundings and quiet environment.
It is also Francesca’s birthplace. Hetfield has several tattoos, each corresponding to a personal memory or life event. For example, he has the letter M and the digits 81 on his left hand, which stand for Metalica and the year Metallica was founded in, respectively.
He has some Christian tattoos as well, probably reflective of his parents’ strong Christian faith. James is also an avid hunter and fond of automobiles and bikes and enjoys working on them and customizing them.
He also enjoys beekeeping and farming. Hetfield has through several public statements expressed his dislike of politics and political discussion.
He says, “Politics get in the way of things; they get in the way of getting things done, and getting our music across is what we wanna do…Our philosophy is ‘think for yourself’ at the end of the day – do what you think feels right.”
Hetfield has suffered from alcoholic abuse over the years and has checked into rehabilitation facilities multiple times for treatment. He went into rehab for the first time in 2001 and recently reentered in 2019.
His struggles and problems have been documented to some extent in the critically acclaimed documentary on Metallica, Metallica: Some Kind of Monster. His stint in rehab in 2019 caused the Metallica New Zealand/Australia tour to be put on hold.
James Hetfield Quotes
“I’m on this eternal quest to get the best guitar sound in the world, but my vision of what is ‘the best’ changes every time I go into the studio. Sometimes my goal is to make my guitar jump out, and sometimes I want it to lay back.”
“We do this basically for ourselves. People appreciate it, which is cool, but I think they appreciate that we’re doing it for ourselves. We’re doing it our way, and how people like it is not up to us. We like it.”
“I’d much rather talk about guitar playing. I hate it when people ask me about my lyrics. I always feel like telling them to just go and read them.”