Metallica’s former psychotherapist has revealed that Jason Newsted, who was hired to replace the late Cliff Burton, didn’t really want to leave the band. Phil Towle was brought in by the band members in 2001 to help them repair their relationship with Newsted.
Towle said, “…I think that Jason — this is my second-hand knowledge — but I think that Jason, coming off of [late Metallica bassist] Cliff’s [Burton] reputation and the way that Cliff died so tragically, and that he was so instantly a replacement for Cliff, that he became what the guys would say a ‘whipping boy.’ He was the way that they grieved unhealthily. And Jason, because he was so — like anybody else — so grateful to be a part of the band, never felt like he could quite make it. He was hazed to the point where I think it blew because he’d had enough of something. And when we’ve had enough of something, then it’s hard to go to somebody and say, ‘Can we sit down and talk about this?’ No. It’s, ‘F— you.'”
Read more of Towle’s comments and the back story behind Newsted’s departure here.