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Watch Metallica jam with Stranger Things star Joseph Quinn backstage at Lollapalooza

[L-R] James Hetfield and Joseph Quinn
(Image credit: Metallica/YouTube)

Stranger Things star Joseph Quinn recently met and jammed with Metallica prior to the band’s July 28 headline set at Lollapalooza.

The meeting has been somewhat inevitable since Eddie Munson – the guitar-toting protagonist Quinn plays on the hit Netflix series – shredded Master of Puppets in its season four finale, once again thrusting the 1986 thrash metal classic into the mainstream. 

Following the episode’s release, Master of Puppets was downloaded on Spotify 17.5 million times in one week alone, and online guitar lesson platform Yousician says that it is now the number one song aspiring guitarists want to learn.

During the meet-up – which you can watch in the video above – Metallica frontman James Hetfield tells Joseph Quinn that Stranger Things has been a “bonding experience” for him and his kids, adding that the actor appears taller in real life than on TV.

After Quinn thanks the band for letting the producers of Stranger Things use Master of Puppets in the show, Hetfield thanks him in return for doing the track justice.

“It’s all I was listening to for two years,” Quinn reveals. “I feel very connected to you guys.”

After some pleasantries, Quinn and the band get straight down to brass tacks and head to their rehearsal space for a jam. “I’m a bit rusty so I might need a lesson,” Quinn jokes.

After the band saddle the actor up with one of Hetfield’s signature ESP Snakebyte electric guitars, Lars Ulrich kicks things off with a four count, before the group play the track’s iconic opening riff. Perhaps most impressively, Quinn keeps up with Hetfield’s legendary right hand with ease.

“You’re hired,” Kirk Hammett exclaims. “I’d like to make an announcement,” Ulrich adds, “Metallica is now a five-piece, guys.”

And after Quinn proves himself to the corporeal deities of heavy metal, they gift him a B.C. Rich x Stranger Things Warlock, the limited-edition guitar released earlier this year that is modeled on the one Eddie Munson plays during the show’s season four finale.

While the episode features the original version of Master of Puppets, it was revealed last month that Robert Trujillo’s son Tye was recruited to add additional guitar parts, and even received help from Kirk Hammett to do so.

And while Joseph Quinn clearly has guitar chops, it was actually heavy metal guitarist Aidan Fisher who acted as his body double for the scene. This was to ensure the fingering was believable to the more eagle-eyed viewers.

“I’ve been playing guitars since I was a kid, fortunately, but by no means have I kept it up the whole time,” Quinn says. “I’m an actor, not a heavy metal guitarist. So I let this brilliant guitarist, Aidan, take care of the more complex fingering.”

Master of Puppets isn’t the only classic track to have gone viral as a result of this season of Stranger Things. Kate Bush’s Running Up That Hill was also featured, leading it to skyrocket to the top of the charts. As of July 4, the track – which has been the subject of many guitar-led covers – has earned Bush $2.3 million (opens in new tab) since its inclusion in episode four.

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Sam is a Staff Writer at Guitar World, also creating content for Total Guitar, Guitarist and Guitar Player. He has well over 15 years of guitar playing under his belt, as well as a degree in Music Technology (Mixing and Mastering). He's a metalhead through and through, but has a thorough appreciation for all genres of music. In his spare time, Sam creates point-of-view guitar lesson videos on YouTube under the name Sightline Guitar (opens in new tab).