Kerry King Plays Onstage With Megadeth For the First Time In 26 Years
Slayer guitarist and spokesperson Kerry King joined Megadeth on stage to play on ‘Rattlehead’ in Hollywood this past Thursday, October 21st. It was the first time he had joined the band on satge since he left the band some 26 years ago. Speaking about the collaboration, King has said: “I never in a million years thought it would happen. And he asked me in the midst of the first run. And I said, ‘Let’s not get ahead of ourselves. If we’re gonna do it, let’s do it in Hollywood.’ And I just picked up the song two days ago. It’s not like ‘Am I Evil?’ — I can’t pick it up in 10 minutes; there’s real intricate riffs I’ve gotta perform. So I’ve been working on it; this is the third day now. It sounds pretty good. So it’s gonna be cool, man. I’ve got pictures of me playing with him, man… in ’84… What was that, 26 years ago?! And now we’re gonna get pictures 26 years later. It’s cool.”
Regarding the first few shows he played with MEGADETH back in 1984, King said, “Yeah, it was after Slayer’s first album. I was an admirer of Mustaine, ’cause I saw Metallica play with Mustaine; not many people can say that. And I was blown away by how good that kid was. And I think we didn’t really know each other, but we both played B.C. Rich, so an acquaintance brought it up, ‘Hey, why don’t you see if Kerry will play with you. And (he) asked me, ‘Would you be interested in playing with Mustaine?’ And I was a fan of his playing and admired how he played. So I [was], like, ‘Yeah, man, I’ll help the dude out.’ So I played the first five shows. Maybe that’s where the original bad blood came when I left; I don’t know. But my band’s always been Slayer. I saw it as an opportunity when we played, ’cause we mostly played in the Bay Area — I think that’s all we played. But if people saw me, they would associate Slayer as well. I’ve always thought about, ‘How can I make Slayer something bigger by doing something on my own?’ And that was my thinking when I did the Beastie Boys album, too. I’m like, ‘These guys will probably get a video. We’re never gonna get a fucking video; we’re in a metal band.’ And if people see me with my nails and stuff, they’ll associate Slayer with the Beastie Boys, and they’ll think Slayer, so that’s just how I think.”
Mustaine also had the following to say about the collaboration: “Not very many people know this, but Kerry King played guitar in Megadeth in the very beginning,” Mustaine said. “David Ellefson still touts [Kerry] as being the best rhythm guitar player that Megadeth ever had, which I think is really cool.”
“It’s funny, because when Kerry played with us, he would still wear his Slayer colors. We didn’t, so we would be there with high-tops and sneakers on and Kerry would be there with nails for days everywhere. And I remember going to his house and he was making that thing [nail-studded wristband], man. His dad’s sitting on a chair watching TV and Kerry’s just sitting there just hammering away, making a pentagram like it was nothing — not a big deal at all. [laughs] And we had a great time, man. He’s a really smart player and he was able to learn the stuff that I wrote really quickly, which made a huge impression on David, ’cause he still talks about it.”
Check out King playing ‘Rattlehead’ with Megadeth below!