Fact Check

Did Adam Lambert Replace James Hetfield as Lead Singer of Metallica?

A routine review of content labeled satire.

Published Oct. 2, 2019

SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA - SEPTEMBER 06: James Hetfield (L) and Lars Ulrich of Metallica perform during the "S&M2" concerts at the opening night at Chase Center on September 06, 2019 in San Francisco, California. (Photo by Tim Mosenfelder/Getty Images) (Getty Images)
Image courtesy of Getty Images
Adam Lambert replaced James Hetfield as lead singer in Metallica.

On Sept. 27, 2019, Madhouse Magazine published an article positing that musician Adam Lambert would be stepping in to replace singer James Hetfield in the band Metallica:

Adam Lambert Replaces James Hetfield in Metallica

Just hours after announcing that Metallica was cancelling their tour of Australia and New Zealand, they announced the tour was back on. Shockingly, Adam Lambert will be replacing James Hetfield as singer.

The tour was originally cancelled so James Hetfield could return to rehab. Drummer Lars Ulrich was not happy about this and frantically searched for singers to replace Hetfield.

This item was not a factual recounting of real-life events. The article originated with a website that describes its output as being humorous or satirical in nature, as follows:

Satire is awesome. And it is protected by the First Amendment. We here at Madhouse Magazine believe in Embellishments, Exaggerations and complete Fabrications. It’s all in good fun and no harm was meant.

Metallica truly did announce it was postponing its tour so that singer Hetfield could attend rehab for addiction. The band did not, however, announce that Lambert (or any other singer) was replacing Hetfield.


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Madhouse Magazine.   "Adam Lambert Replaces James Hetfield in Metallica."     27 September 2019.

Dan Evon is a former writer for Snopes.