Video: Metallica's James Hetfield Visits Guitar Center in San Francisco

Metallica's James Hetfield recently visited Guitar Center in San Francisco (where I tried out, and almost bought, a very nice Gretsch 6120 about 11 years ago).

The guitarist, who sat in the store's "little room," shared stories about his early fears, becoming a musician and rising to fame. He even played some guitar!

All the while, customers shopped in the store with no idea that a member of Metallica was supplying those loud riffs they heard in the background.

In the 13-minute clip, which you can check out below, Hetfield is playing his new ESP Iron Cross signature model in a lovely Snow White finish (Check out the NAMM photo gallery below, which includes photos of the ESP and LTD versions of this model).

For more about the ESP version of this guitar, which was introduced at the 2014 Winter NAMM Show in Anaheim, California, last month, visit

For more about ESP's new NAMM offerings, head here, and check out RELATED CONTENT to the left (under the photo of Hetfield).

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Damian Fanelli
Editor-in-Chief, Guitar World

Damian is Editor-in-Chief of Guitar World magazine. In past lives, he was GW’s managing editor and online managing editor. He's written liner notes for major-label releases, including Stevie Ray Vaughan's 'The Complete Epic Recordings Collection' (Sony Legacy) and has interviewed everyone from Yngwie Malmsteen to Kevin Bacon (with a few memorable Eric Clapton chats thrown into the mix). Damian, a former member of Brooklyn's The Gas House Gorillas, was the sole guitarist in Mister Neutron, a trio that toured the U.S. and released three albums. He now plays in two NYC-area bands.