JASON NEWSTED says NEWSTED concert in fort lauderdale is a "one-off”
doesn't rule out future activity
During an appearance yesterday (Tuesday, April 18) on SiriusXM‘s “Trunk Nation With Eddie Trunk”, former METALLICA bassist Jason Newsted spoke about his decision to reactivate his NEWSTED project for a May 20 concert at Revolution Live in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Newsted, who plays bass and sings in the project, will be joined at the gig by original NEWSTED members Jesus Mendez Jr. (UNDERLORD) on drums and Jessie Farnsworth (UNDERLORD) on guitar, along with new guitarist Humberto Perez.
Asked how he arrived at the decision to bring back NEWSTED after a decade-long absence, Jason said: “Kind of by happenstance and how we keep chasing it for fun. That’s always been our thing — playing with whoever, whenever.
“About a year ago at this time, THE CHOPHOUSE BAND played at the Maltz Theatre in Jupiter, Florida, and Jesus Mendez, the drummer NEWSTED, and Jessie Farnsworth, the guitarist, guested at the end of that program. And they came over to HQ, and we jammed a bit on the side. And I think that seed got replanted. And so I had to finish with THE CHOPHOUSE BAND album, so I did that. And then (I) got these guys back together a couple of weeks ago again. And it was an epiphanous kind of trip — everybody smiling at each other and happy that we’re still alive and everything. So it’s really mostly for feeling alive and marking the tenth anniversary (of the formation of the band) and being brothers again.”
Regarding whether the Revolution Live concert will be a one-off performance or if there will be more NEWSTED gigs to come, Jason said: “I’ve lived in Florida for 25 years. I’ve only ever done the acoustic stuff as any kind of public performance… So this is the first time that I reached out to anybody in the circles of people that have come to the art shows and stuff like that. And I said, ‘Where’s a cool place to play?’ And they pointed me to Revolution (Live). And we checked it out. And I talked to some folks there, and they said, ‘By all means, dude, bring it down here.’ And I talked to Jesus and Jessie, and I’ve been auditioning guitar players… We found a guy from Caracas, Venezuela. Now he’s up in West Palm for a little while — Humberto Perez — and he’s a good player. (Former NEWSTED guitarist) Mike Mushok can’t be in it ’cause STAIND‘s got their plate full right now and he’s doing his thing.”
He added: “It is a one-off thing for fun to mark the time, to mark the date, to show that we’re alive, and whoever is lucky enough to be there, that is the deal right there.”
Pressed about whether he would be open to doing more shows or recording new music in the future with NEWSTED, Jason said: “I like the idea of a possible reissue or something of the ‘Heavy Metal Music’ LP, original LP, for the ten-year thing, possibly. So if these kind of seeds are planted and the reaction that we get on that night and if I get my engine all turned up again, you never know what can happen. But I don’t wanna say never on any of it. I really have been enjoying it.”
As for why he abruptly stopped doing NEWSTED back in 2014, seemingly without an official explanation, Jason said: “I think I should have asked for more help — in 20/20 hindsight. I’ve worked hard to protect the legacy, as it were, I guess, if that’s the term. It’s important as an outsider, insider and otherwise, for the opportunity that I’ve been given. I try to be really careful about what moves I make. I really didn’t want to coattail anything from anywhere. And I wanna do my own thing and try to do it with Chophouse Records and my own stuff and wear so many hats so many different times. I jumped into ECHOBRAIN project, which is something that was kind of already assembled. VOIVOD, obviously, was already very assembled. The NEWSTED band was a fresh thing. Since FLOTSAM (AND JETSAM), that’s the only thing I’ve been a founder of since that time. I didn’t wanna ask for help from the people I could have, and I think that’s probably what it comes down to. It would have been better for my head and my overall (mental health) if I could have worn less hats and been able to concentrate more on my show.”