My father had a friend who actually had a hollow-body bass guitar and didn't work through an amp, but because it was hollow body, I could play it. So I kind of played on that for about a year, learning scales and all that. And here I am.
You listen to a Metallica song, and you listen to the drums, and they're not necessarily swinging, but the arrangements are different. Why is that? Because it's more in tune with jazz arrangements. It's very different. It's not a traditional rock and roll production, in terms of the drums.
I like that Metallica has found a way to have these non-pedestrian arrangements but then the vocal melody is strong and intense. I've always appreciated that as a fan.
The great thing about Santa Monica civic auditorium was it was a place you could ride your bike to. In this case, my dad dropped me and my friends off, and we'd go see Ronnie James Dio or Jean-Luc Ponty or Weather Report or the Pretenders.
Back in the day, being a young, inspired bass player, I started to gravitate toward jazz fusion. I almost would have called myself an elitist. I got to the point where, for a little bit there, I was more interested in instrumental music.
Lemmy is, I think, for anybody in the world of rock n' roll - you don't have to be a bass player - he is a pioneer, and he was true to his music and also the lover of a lot of different styles of music.
Traditionally, the role of the bass player was just to keep things simple and solid, so it's really a special thing when you can get a player that can actually bring in a lot of presence and also a visual presence, too.
We all grew up with Black Sabbath. I mean, there's no secret there. Any of us, any of the members of any band I've ever been in, or anyone I've ever worked with.
When Lars said, 'We want you to be in Metallica,' I was blown away.
That's all I ever do, just try and do the best I can and cater to the song, cater to the music.
Mike Clark, who's a really amazing surfer, got me back into surfing. I surfed a lot from '82 to '86, and then I kind of started slacking.
I call it a process of elimination. You're nurturing ideas, and that takes time. What happens is there's so many, what I say, 'great ideas.' What you have to do is try to consolidate them and put them into one song, and then your song becomes eight minutes long.
I think that young people should embrace artists like Lemmy from Motorhead but also be open to different styles.
There were a lot of different styles in the house - Motown, Led Zeppelin, Rolling Stones, jazz - and my dad played flamenco guitar. Soon I realized that bass was what was really grooving me.
We used to go to Palm Springs, ditch school when I was in eleventh grade, and go hang out poolside with our ghetto blaster and listen to Pat Metheny 'Offramp' and kind of trip out on a lot of his music.
I've been a baseball fan in the early part of my life, so through the '70s and the '80s, I was a huge fan. I actually followed the Dodgers back then, back in the Kirk Gibson years, Steve Garvey.
I've played with the best drummers in rock, ranging from Josh Freese to Brooks Wackerman to even Dave Lombardo.
There's a lot of personality in Lars's drumming. That's what makes it unique.
I've been friends with Jaco Pastorius's son since 1996 - Johnny Pastorius, the eldest son. And I remember when I first met him, I said, 'Some day, you've gotta make a film about your father,' because his influence is so broad.
There is a lot of energy between Lars and James, and sometimes that energy can erupt. I know that before I was in the band, Kirk was the guy who was often in the middle, and it was important at that time. And now I feel like sometimes I'm the guy that's in the middle between not just James and Lars, but even Kirk.