Metallica’s Ex-Bassist Ron McGovney Claims Lars Ulrich Ripped-Off Their Name

via Team Coco / Youtube

Former Metallica bassist Ron McGovney has recently stirred up some intrigue by alleging that the band’s iconic name might not have been an entirely original creation by Lars Ulrich, the band’s drummer. The revelation came during a Q&A session, where McGovney was asked about the origins of the name “Metallica.”

In response to a question about his initial thoughts when introduced to the name “Metallica” as a potential band name.

McGovney stated:

“I thought it was a good name, even though Lars heard it from someone else and kinda stole it.”

When another user inquired about the person from whom Ulrich allegedly borrowed the name “Metallica” and whether that individual had a fanzine or publication, McGovney revealed, “Metal Mania… Ron Quintana is his name.” This additional detail adds more depth to the story behind the band’s name.

A follow-up question aimed to clarify whether it was true that Ulrich had sent a Mötley Crüe t-shirt to a friend in Denmark in 1981, suggesting that Mötley Crüe was a new band worth exploring.

McGovney expressed doubt about this story, asserting:

“I doubt the story. I was the one who followed Mötley Crüe in the clubs. I got James [Hetfield] to go with me to a couple of shows, but not Lars. If he sent anything, it was probably James’s stuff because he and I joined the fan club.”

Interestingly, Lars Ulrich himself addressed the origin of the name “Metallica” in a 2017 interview with NPR.

In that interview, Ulrich confirmed the story McGovney shared. Ulrich recalled his encounter with a San Francisco acquaintance named Ron in 1981, who was planning to start a hard rock fanzine. Ron sought Ulrich’s advice on whether to name it “Metallica” or “Metal Mania.” Ulrich suggested “Metal Mania,” which is now part of the band’s history.

Ron McGovney’s recent revelations add an intriguing layer tothe story behind the iconic name of one of the most famous rock bands in the world. While the origins of the name “Metallica” may have some twists and turns, it ultimately became synonymous with heavy metal greatness, regardless of its initial source of inspiration.