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Formed over 40 years ago, in 1981, Metallica is an American heavy metal band from Los Angeles, California. The band has been through many lineup changes over the years, but the core members have remained James Hetfield (vocals and rhythm guitar), Lars Ulrich (drums), and Kirk Hammett (lead guitar). Since 2003, Robert Trujillo solidified the bass position.

They have released 11 studio albums, 8 live albums, 44 singles, and 50 music videos. Metallica has sold over 125 million albums worldwide, making them one of the best-selling music artists of all time.

But beyond the mosh pits and thrashing energy lies a story of immense financial success. Let’s dive into the wealth Metallica has won, exploring everything from individual members’ net worth to the band’s royalties.

 


Is Metallica the Richest Heavy Metal Band Ever?

 

With a staggering global presence and a legacy that transcends generations, Metallica stands as the richest heavy metal band ever. Their monumental success solidifies their status as one of the best-selling bands in history.

Crowning the richest heavy metal band is no easy feat. However, Metallica consistently ranks at the top. Estimates suggest their net worth could be as high as $1 billion. They’ve sold over 125 million albums worldwide, generating massive revenue streams. Touring is another goldmine. Metallica consistently sells out stadiums, with some shows fetching millions of dollars. Booking fees can range from $3 million to $ $15 million per concert, depending on venue, location, and production costs.

Among the heavy metal bands on the top 10 list of wealth, those following Metallica include:

  • Ozzy Osbourne – $225 Million
  • Iron Maiden – $100 Million
  • Judas Priest – $80 Million
  • Tool – $70 Million
  • Korn – $60 Million
  • Megadeth – $40 Million
  • Anthrax – $39 Million
  • Slayer – $35 Million
  • Slipknot – $30 Million

 


Who Is the Richest Member of Metallica?

 

This astronomical amount underscores the individual contributions of each member: drummer and founding member Lars Ulrich has a fortune of $350 million, while the singer/ guitarist and also founder James Hetfield boasts a wealth ranging between $300 and $350 million. Guitarist Kirk Hammett follows with a substantial net worth of $200 million, while bassist Robert Trujillo rounds out the ensemble with a respectable $30 million.

Lars Ulrich holds the title of the wealthiest member of Metallica due to his extensive portfolio of lucrative assets. The Danish drummer owns a significant amount of undeveloped land spanning 56 hectares in Marin County. This vast property was listed for sale at a staggering $39 million in 2015, as reported by Celebrity Net Worth.

Moreover, Ulrich’s financial success extends beyond real estate, as he has amassed millions through his passion for art. Notably, he has garnered substantial earnings as an art collector, rather than an artist. In 2002 and 2008, Ulrich achieved significant returns by selling two prized Jean Michel Basquiat paintings from his esteemed collection. According to the same reputable source, these auctions yielded impressive sums of $5.5 million and $13.5 million respectively.

 


Who Owns Metallica’s Rights?

 

In 2012, Metallica took a monumental step by assuming complete ownership of their master recordings and launching their record label, Blackened Recordings.

Their longstanding partnership with the Warner Music Group, which dated back to 1994, came to an end in November 2012. For the last 12 years, the band would exclusively possess all their recordings, including music videos and long-form videos, granting them full creative autonomy over their music.

James Hetfield, reflecting on this historic milestone for the band, expressed gratitude to everyone at Warner Music Group for their 28 years of partnership. Lars Ulrich echoed this sentiment, emphasizing the band’s pursuit of control and independence. He remarked, “It’s always been about control for us as a band. Forming Blackened Recordings is the ultimate in independence, giving us 100% control and putting us in the driver’s seat of our own creative destiny“.

For over a decade, Blackened Recordings has served as the home for all things Metallica. Five years into this strategic shift, Lars Ulrich acknowledged in a 2017 interview with 92Y that: “The whole business model changed’ after getting rights to all of the band’s master recordings because now we have to sort of run all of this ourselves.

Metallica’s entire business model had evolved after gaining rights to all their master recordings. With newfound responsibilities, the band emphasized the need to manage their affairs independently.

 


How Much Does Metallica Make Each Concert?

 

In 2022, Pollstar unveiled two distinctive charts illustrating the enduring influence of box office performances throughout the Pollstar Era, spanning from 1980 to the present day. These charts present cumulative totals for each artist, meticulously compiled from countless box office reports received by Pollstar since the early 1980s.

The two lists are:

“Top Touring Artists Of The Pollstar Era: Boxoffice Grosses”: #9 Metallica ($1,219,599,179).

“Top Touring Artists Of The Pollstar Era: Tickets Sold”: #6 Metallica, with 19,468,173 tickets sold for a gross total of $1,219,599,179

In 2019, just before the onset of the global coronavirus pandemic, from November 22, 2018, to May 22, 2019, the band’s “WorldWired” arena tour across 21 North American shows garnered an impressive total gross of $41.7 million, resulting in an average per-show gross of $1.99 million. With an average attendance exceeding 16,000 per show, Metallica collectively sold nearly 350,000 tickets during this timeframe.

In 2022 it was estimated that Metallica had made a total of $1,219,599,179 from touring over the years, making them the top-grossing metal band of all time.

Metallica is rocking out on their M72 World Tour in support of their latest album, “72 Seasons,” which was released in April 2023. With shows scheduled through the end of the year, their coffers are sure to be overflowing. Check out the tour dates, tickets, and supporting bands at this link.

 


5 Interesting Facts About Metallica

 

The Band’s Name Was Almost Metal Mania

Lars Ulrich was brainstorming names for the band when he came up with the names “Metal Mania” and “Metallica.” He asked his friend Ron Quintana which name he liked better, and Quintana chose “Metallica.” Ulrich then suggested that Quintana use “Metal Mania” for his fanzine.

 

Metallica Was the First Band to Perform on All Seven Continents

In 2003, Metallica became the first band to perform on all seven continents when they played a show in Antarctica. The show was held at McMurdo Station, a research station located about 2,000 miles from the South Pole.

 

Metallica Has Its Brand of Whiskey

In 2018, Metallica released its brand of whiskey called Blackened. The whiskey is a blend of American rye and bourbon whiskeys, and it is aged for eight years. Blackened is available for purchase online and at select retailers.

 

The Band Has Been Nominated for 12 Grammy Awards and Has Won Nine

They have been nominated for 12 Grammy Awards over the course of their career, and they have won nine. Their first Grammy Award was for Best Metal Performance for the song “Creeping Death” in 1989. Their most recent Grammy Award was for Best Rock Album for the album “Hardwired… to Self-Destruct” in 2017.

 

Metallica Is One of the Only Bands to Have Played at the Super Bowl Halftime Show and the Oscars.

The Heavy Metal Kings is one of the few bands to have performed at both the Super Bowl halftime show and the Oscars. They played at the Super Bowl XLIX halftime show in 2015, and they performed the song “Nothing Else Matters” at the 89th Academy Awards in 2017.

 

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Is just a guy who got tired of bothering his friends talking about music, and decided to create a blog to write about what he loves the most.
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