Black Collar Workers



So you think your favorite underground bands are the only ones suffering from the current shitty state of the music industry? Not so! Even fancy rockstars like the dudes in Metallica can’t live off of record royalty checks alone these days. As Kirk Hammett recently told Rolling Stone:

“The cycles of taking two years off don’t exist anymore. We were able to do that because we had record royalties coming in consistently. Now you put out an album, and you have a windfall maybe once or twice but not the way it used to be — a check every three months.”

Of course, it’s a little hard to feel sorry for Hammett when —

  • Most people don’t get to take two years off from work, ever.
  • Metallica’s royalty checks are probably still a gajillion times greater than those of, say, pretty much any other band in metal, or any other genre, for that matter.
  • The amount of money Metallica makes from touring is still staggering — for example, the World Magnetic Tour in support of (duh) Death Magnetic was the tenth highest grossing tour of 2009, raking in $89.1 million according to Pollstar — and that doesn’t include merch sales. Even when you factor in taxes and the payroll for the group’s managers, attorneys, and road crew, it’s hard not to imagine that each dude in Metallica didn’t make a killing.
  • Hammett’s San Francisco home (pictured above), which he purchased for  $2.56 million in 1993, sold for $8,995,000 in 2009… which, to be fair, was less than the $12.5 million he was apparently asking for it. Sniff, sniff.

So, yeah. I know times are tough for everyone in the music biz right now, but, y’know, cry me a river, Kirk. Some people have actual problems right now.


[via Metal Insider]

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