As a result of his newfound interest in music, at age 13 his grandmother bought him his first drum kit [Ludwig], yet percussion vyed with tennis for priority. When the family moved to Newport Beach, CA in the late '70's, the seeds of priority scattered themselves in his field: girls, rock'n'roll and the occasional funny cigarette were all keys in turning Lars from the wooden raquet to full metal racket. He got so excited about metal music that he jammed a bit with a young lad called James Hetfield before taking a teenage trip to England during June of 1981 to see his newly beloved Diamond Head. He thus managed to finagle living with them for a while before returning to So Cal and the tape-trading he enjoyed with the likes of Metal Blade Records Brian Slagel.
In 1981, when Lars discovered British heavy metal band Diamond Head. He was so excited about their style of music after getting hold of their 1980 debut Lightning to the Nations that he traveled all the way from San Francisco to London in order to see the band perform live at the Woolwich Odeon. However, the young Lars had not planned the trip out particularly well and was left without anywhere to stay after the gig. Still, he managed to meet the band backstage and explain the lengths he had taken to see them. The band warmed to him and lead guitarist Brian Tatler let him stay with him in Birmingham, where Lars spent the next few weeks touring with the band. Lars still remains a big fan of the band and even helped mix their album The Best of Diamond Head.
In the same year Lars met James Hetfield in Downey, California and ultimately formed the thrash metal band Metallica. He got the name "Metallica" from a friend, Ron Quintana, who was thinking up names for a heavy metal magazine he was starting up, and Metallica was one of the options, the other being "Metal Mania". Lars encouraged him to pick Metal Mania, and kept the name Metallica for himself. He became known as a pioneer of fast thrash drum beats, featured on many of Metallica's early songs, such as "Metal Militia" from Kill 'Em All, "Fight Fire With Fire" from Ride the Lightning, "Battery" from Master of Puppets and "Dyers Eve" from ...And Justice for All. He has since been considerably influential due to both the popularity of his band, as well as his drum techniques, such as the double bass in the song "One" (...And Justice for All) and the opening of "Enter Sandman" (Metallica). Since the release of Metallica, Ulrich adopted a more focused and precise style of drumming, and reduced his kit from a 9-piece to a 7-piece.
Metallica (pronounced /ma-tale-ika) is an American heavy metal band from Los Angeles, California, formed in 1981. The band was founded when an advertisement posted by drummer Lars Ulrich in a local newspaper, was responded to by James Hetfield. Metallica's line-up has primarily consisted of Ulrich, rhythm guitarist and vocalist James Hetfield and lead guitarist Kirk Hammett, while going through a number of bassists (Ron McGovney, Cliff Burton, Jason Newsted). The spot is currently held by Robert Trujillo. The band's original lead guitarist, before Hammett, was current Megadeth guitarist and lead vocalist Dave Mustaine.
Metallica's early releases included fast tempos, instrumentals, and aggressive musicianship that placed them as one of the "big four" of the thrash metal subgenre alongside Slayer, Megadeth, and Anthrax during the genre's development into a popular style. The band earned a growing fan base in the underground music community and critical acclaim, with the 1986 release Master of Puppets described as one of the most influential and "heavy" thrash metal albums. The band achieved substantial commercial success with their eponymous fifth album (also known as The Black Album), which debuted at number one on the Billboard 200. With this release the band expanded its musical direction resulting in an album that appealed to a more mainstream audience.
In 2000, Metallica was among several artists who filed a lawsuit against Napster for sharing the band's copyright-protected material for free without any band member's consent. A settlement was reached, and Napster became a pay-to-use service. Despite reaching number one on the Billboard 200, the release of St. Anger alienated many fans with the exclusion of guitar solos and the "steel-sounding" snare drum. A film titled Some Kind of Monster documented the recording process of St. Anger and the turmoil within the band during that time.
Metallica has released nine studio albums, three live albums, two EPs, 24 music videos, and 45 singles. The band has won nine Grammy Awards, and has had five consecutive albums debut at number one on the Billboard 200, making Metallica the first and only band to do so, this record was later matched by the Dave Matthews Band. The band's 1991 album, Metallica, has sold over 15 million copies in the United States, and 22 million copies worldwide, which makes it the 25th-highest-selling album in the country. In December 2009, it became the highest-selling album of the SoundScan era, surpassing 1997's Come On Over by country artist Shania Twain. The band has sold an estimated 100 million records worldwide as of the release of their latest album, Death Magnetic. As of December 2009, Metallica is the fourth best-selling music artist since the SoundScan era began tracking sales on May 25, 1991, selling a total of 52,271,000 albums in the United States alone.
Ulrich's drumming style has changed throughout his career. During the 1980s he was known for his fast, aggressive and, more or less, basic thrash beats. He would often utilize the double bass technique, which has become highly popular among heavy metal drummers. The best examples of this are Fight Fire with Fire (Ride the Lightning), Fade to Black (Ride The Lightning), Battery (Master of Puppets), Damage, Inc. (Master of Puppets), Blackened (...And Justice for All), One (...And Justice for All), All Nightmare Long (Death Magnetic) and, arguably his most extreme, Dyers Eve (...And Justice for All), among others. Ulrich uses groove in his drum style, including clean and fast double bass beats in many songs and heavy drum fills. However, during the 1990s and early 2000s he simplified his drum rhythms in order to fit the simplification in Metallica's overall musical style. This started with Metallica, and very roughly ended with St. Anger. With Metallica's newest album, Death Magnetic, Ulrich returned to his style from the 1980s, in which he played more complex and fast rhythms. Ulrich has also named other heavy metal drummers such as Ian Paice and Bill Ward as influences on his playing.
When he and the rest of Metallica were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2009, Ulrich was the first Danish person to receive the honor.
Lars Ulrich (born December 26, 1963) is a Danish Heavy metal drummer, best known as one of the founding members of the American heavy metal band Metallica. He was born in Gentofte, Denmark to an upper-middle class family. A tennis player in his youth, Ulrich moved to Los Angeles, California at age seventeen to pursue his training, but instead of playing tennis, he ended up as a drummer.
After publishing an advertisement in a local Los Angeles newspaper called The Recycler, Ulrich met James Hetfield and formed Metallica. He won an award for best musician of the year in Denmark 2009.
The oft-seen and heard dynamo of Metallica, when it comes to arranging all matters from songs to business, Lars is always at the epicenter. Indeed, constant activity has been a hallmark of Ulrich's life. As a child he saw his father Torben run a small jazz club in Copenhagen (sax player Dexter Gordon is Lars' Godfather) before following the family on the professional tennis circuit where Torben became an established figure.