Ulrich live Mexico City 2012
|Birth name||Lars Ulrich|
December 26, 1963 |
|Genres||Heavy metal, thrash metal, hard rock, speed metal|
|Occupations||Musician, songwriter, producer, actor|
Lars Ulrich (pron.: // UL-rik; Danish: [lɑːs ˈulˀʁæg̊]; born December 26, 1963) is a Danish drummer, and one of the founding members of the American heavy metal band Metallica. He was born in Gentofte, Denmark to an upper-middle-class family. A tennis player in his youth (he is the son of former tennis pro Torben Ulrich), Ulrich moved to Los Angeles, California at age sixteen in the summer of 1980 to pursue his training; though rather than playing tennis, within his first day in Los Angeles, he knew music was his destiny, and he picked up the drums. After publishing an advertisement in a local Los Angeles newspaper called The Recycler, Ulrich met James Hetfield and formed Metallica.
Early life 
Lars Ulrich was born on December 26, 1963. Saxophonist Dexter Gordon was Ulrich's godfather. In February 1973, Lars' father Torben obtained five passes for five of his friends to a Deep Purple concert that was being held in the same Copenhagen stadium as one of his tournaments. When it was discovered that one of the friends could not go, their ticket was handed over to the nine year-old Ulrich. The young Ulrich found himself mesmerized by the performance, buying the band's Fireball album the next day. The concert and the album had a considerable impact on Ulrich, inspiring his entrance into the world of rock and roll and later on, heavy metal. As a result of his newfound interest in music, he received his first drum kit from his grandmother at the age of twelve, a Ludwig. Ulrich originally intended to play tennis, and he moved to America in 1980.
In 1981, Ulrich discovered British heavy metal band Diamond Head. He was excited about the band's style of music after purchasing its debut album Lightning to the Nations (1980). He traveled from San Francisco to London to see the band perform live at the Woolwich Odeon. However, Ulrich had not planned the trip out properly and was left without anywhere to go after the performance. He managed to meet the band backstage and explain the lengths he had taken to see them. The band warmed to him and lead guitarist Brian Tatler let him stay with him in his home town of Stourbridge, where Ulrich spent the next few weeks sleeping on Tatler's floor in his house. Ulrich remains a fan of Diamond Head and mixed its album The Best of Diamond Head. Upon returning to America, Ulrich placed an ad in a local newspaper looking for musicians to start a band with him. James Hetfield replied to the ad and Metallica was formed.
Later in 1981, Ulrich met James Hetfield in Downey, California they formed the heavy metal band Metallica. He got the name "Metallica" from a friend, Ron Quintana, who was brainstorming names for a heavy metal fanzine he was creating, and Metallica was one of the options, the other being "Metal Mania". Lars encouraged him to choose Metal Mania, and used the name Metallica for himself. He became known as a pioneer of fast thrash drum beats, featured on many of Metallica's early songs, such as "Metal Militia" from Kill 'Em All, "Fight Fire with Fire" from Ride the Lightning, "Battery" and "Damage Inc." from Master of Puppets and "Dyers Eve" from ...And Justice for All. He has since been considerably influential due to both the popularity of his band, as well as his drum techniques, such as the double bass drum in the song "One" (...And Justice for All) and the opening of "Enter Sandman" (Metallica). Since the release of Metallica, Ulrich adopted a more focused and precise style of drumming, and reduced his kit from a 9-piece to a 7-piece.
He made his acting debut in the HBO original film Hemingway & Gellhorn, which began filming in March 2011 and was released on May 28, 2012. Ulrich made a brief cameo appearance as himself in the film Get Him to the Greek, as the partner of the character Jackie Q.
In 2012, Ulrich was the focus of the documentary film, "Mission to Lars". The film by Kate and Will Spicer concerns their journey with their brother, Tom, who lives in a care home in Devon, England and who has Fragile X Syndrome, to try to meet Lars at one of Metallica's 2009 gigs in California.
Ulrich was also ranked #5 on the top 5 metal drummers from That Metal Show.
Napster controversy 
In April 2000, Ulrich became a vocal opponent of Napster and file sharing as Metallica filed a lawsuit against the company for copyright infringement and racketeering. In July 2000, he testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee after Metallica's entire catalogue, including the then-unfinished track "I Disappear" was found to be freely available for download on the service. The case was settled out-of-court, resulting in more than 300,000 Napster users being banned from the service and earning him the nickname Lar$. Since the Napster ordeal, Ulrich was quoted by LAUNCHcast as having some regrets:
|“||I wish that I was more...you know, I felt kind of ambushed by the whole thing because I didn't really know enough about what we were getting ourselves into when we jumped. [...] We didn't know enough about the kind of grassroots thing, and what had been going on the last couple of months in the country as this whole new phenomenon was going on. We were just so stuck in our controlling ways of wanting to control everything that had to do with Metallica. So we were caught off guard and we had a little bit of a rougher landing on that one than on other times than when we just blindly leaped. But you know, I'm still proud of the fact that we did leap... and I took a lot of hits and it was difficult.||”|
Ulrich's drumming style has changed throughout his career. During the 1980s he was known for his fast, aggressive thrash beats. He would often utilize the double bass technique in Latin breakbeats (which is influenced greatly from the song Overkill by Motorhead), which has become highly popular among heavy metal drummers. The best examples of this are "Metal Militia" (Kill 'Em All), "Fight Fire with Fire" (Ride the Lightning), "Battery" (Master of Puppets), "Damage, Inc." (Master of Puppets), "Blackened" (...And Justice for All), "One" (...And Justice for All), "That Was Just Your Life" (Death Magnetic), "All Nightmare Long" (Death Magnetic) and, arguably his most extreme, "Dyers Eve" (...And Justice for All), among others. Ulrich uses groove in his drum style, including clean and fast double bass beats in many songs and heavy drum fills. He has been known to drum in sync with the rhythm guitar played by James Hetfield. However, during the 1990s and early 2000s he simplified his drum rhythms in order to fit the simplification in Metallica's overall musical style. It was a huge contrast to his previous performance and as a result, he was criticized as being a poor drummer.
"[The criticism] used to [bother me], back in the day - and I spent a lot of time overcompensating for that on the early records. But then you wake up one day and you're like, 'Whatever.' It hasn't bothered me for about 15 years. I'm no Joey Jordison. I'm no Mike Portnoy, and I have nothing but love and respect and admiration for all those guys. When I hear some of the young dudes, they blow my mind with what they can do with their feet and stuff - but it's not something that makes me go, 'I need to feel better about myself so I'm gonna learn how to do what they do with my feet.' I'm not a particularly accomplished drummer but I am very, very, very good at understanding the role of the drums next to James Hetfield's rhythm guitar. I guarantee you I'm the best guy in the world for that, and that's enough for me!"
This started with Metallica, and very roughly ended with St. Anger. With Metallica's ninth album, Death Magnetic, Ulrich returned to his style from the 1980s, in which he played more complex and fast rhythms. Ulrich has also named other heavy metal drummers such as Ian Paice, Roger Meddows Taylor and Bill Ward as influences on his playing.
Personal life 
Ulrich has been married twice. His first marriage was in 1988 to Debbie Jones, a British woman he met on tour, but divorced in 1990 due to Ulrich's constant absence during the recording of Metallica. His second marriage was to Skylar Satenstein, an emergency medicine physician, from 1997 to 2004. They have two sons, Myles (b. 1998), and Layne (b.2001). Myles is following his father's footsteps by playing drums for the band My Missing Half.
Ulrich dated Danish actress Connie Nielsen from mid-2004 until 2012, after his divorce from Skylar and the couple had their first child, Bryce Thadeus Ulrich-Nielsen, (b. 2007) in San Francisco. Nielsen also has another son named Sebastian (b. 1991).
Ulrich is a noted collector of art. His father, Torben, was also a fan of art and paintings. Ulrich grew up surrounded by art and music, and both have always been a part of his life. After forming Metallica, he began visiting museums and art galleries during the band's long periods on tour. In an interview from 2002 Ulrich said: "I felt I could lose myself in art and get away from the music world. It became this great hiding place."
In 2008, in an interview with Stereo Warning, he said: "We had art all over the house when I was growing up. It's been a passion of mine for 20–25 years. It's one area where I can go and be myself. It's not about being in Metallica or being the drummer in a rock band. I'm accepted for who I am in the art circles. I love going into artist spaces and galleries and auction houses. It's great because it has absolutely nothing to do with Metallica. It's my place of sanctuary."
When he and the rest of Metallica were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2009, Ulrich was the first Dane to receive the honor. He was in the audience during Andre Ward vs Mikkel Kessler in Oakland for the first bout of the Super Six World Boxing Classic on the 21st of November 2009 to support fellow Dane Mikkel Kessler.
Ulrich endorses Tama Drums (where he is one of the few endorsees to have had a full signature drum kit as well as a signature lacquer finish), Zildjian Cymbals and Remo Drumheads. He is rarely, if ever, seen without these brands onstage. He was an endorser of Calato Regal Tip drumsticks, before switching to Easton Ahead in 1994 because he said in an interview that wood sticks break during his playing. He would use one wood stick in his hand and the Ahead stick in another during studio sessions because he liked the sound of cymbals being hit by wood and still does it up to this day. After that, Tama Drums has produced two Lars Ulrich Signature Snare drums, one with a steel shell (with diamond plate-like finish) and another made out of bell brass which was once Tama's most expensive snare drum on the regular catalogue. Both snare drums measure 14x6.5".
Current tour kit (2008–2012) 
- Drums – Tama Starclassic Maple, LU Magnetic Orange
- 10"×8" Tom
- 12"×10" Tom
- 14"×16" Floor Tom
- 16"×16" Floor Tom
- 22"×16" Bass Drum (×2)
- 14"×6.5" Lars Ulrich Signature Snare Drum
- Note: Ulrich uses the standard Lars Ulrich Signature LU1465 snare live on tour (diamond plate), while he uses both the LU1465 and LU1465BB (bell brass) in the studio, depending on what type of sound he wants.
- Cymbals – Zildjian
- 14" Z Custom Dyno Beat Hi-Hats
- 17" A Custom Projection Crash
- 18" A Custom Projection Crash (×2)
- 19" A Custom Projection Crash
- 18" Oriental China Trash
- 20" Oriental China Trash
- Note: Ulrich will occasionally use a 22" A Custom Ping Ride when playing live. He has also used splash cymbals in past tours.
- Drumheads – Remo
- Toms – Coated Emperor | Clear Ambassador
- Bass – Clear Powerstroke 3/Powersonic (depending on venue)| Ebony Powerstroke 3
- Snare – Coated Controlled Sound (black dot on reverse) | Clear Hazy Ambassador
- Hardware – Tama and Drum Workshop
- Tama IronCobra Power-Glide Single Pedal (×2)
- Tama IronCobra Lever-Glide Hi-Hat Stand
- Tama Roadpro Cymbal Stand w/Counterweight (×2)
- Tama Roadpro Cymbal Stand (×3)
- Tama Roadpro Double Tom Stand
- Tama Roadpro Snare Stand
- Tama Cymbal Holder (×2)
- Tama Multi-Clamp (×2)
- Tama Hi-Hat Attachment
- Tama Ergo-Rider Drum Throne
- DW Drop-Lock Hi-Hat Clutch
- Ahead Lars Ulrich Signature Sticks (1994–present)
- Calato Regal Tip Lars Ulrich Signature sticks (1981-1993)
Mercyful Fate 
- In the Shadows (Guest on "Return of the Vampire 1993") (1993)
- Scaggs, Austin (September 2, 2004). "Lars Ulrich". Rolling Stone (Straight Arrow Publishers) (956): 64. ISSN 0035-791X.
- "Metallica". The Penguin encyclopedia of popular music. "...emigrated to USA '80 ..."
- "Galaway Advertiser, The Week, June 2007". Retrieved 2011-10-30.
- HBO Builds Cast For 'Hemingway & Gellhorn' Deadline. 10 March 2011
- "Metallica's Lars Ulrich has cameo in Get Him to The Greek" Artist Direct 21 May 2010 Retrieved 04 June 2012
- "Mission To Lars". Mission To Lars. Retrieved 2012-06-24.
- Shenaz Bagha. "Napster bans more than 300,000 for downloading Metallica". The Falcon Newspaper.
- Lar$ at Urban Dictionary
- PiTRiFF Online[dead link]
- McIver, Joel (2012). Rhythm Presents 100 Drum Heroes. Future Publishing Ltd. p. 66. ISBN 1858706114.
- "METALLICA Drummer LARS ULRICH, Girlfriend CONNIE NIELSEN Expecting". Blabbermouth.net. December 6, 2006. Retrieved 2006-11-18.
- "Lars Ulrich, Jessica Miller: Metallica Drummer Dating American Model". Noisecreep. October 22, 2012. Retrieved 2012-11-04.
- "TAMA – artist profile – Lars Ulrich" (in (Japanese)). Tamadrum.co.jp. Retrieved 2011-10-30.
Further reading 
- Steffan Chirazi and Metallica (2004). So What!: The Good, The Mad, and The Ugly. Broadway. ISBN 0-7679-1881-9.
|Wikiquote has a collection of quotations related to: Lars Ulrich|
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Lars Ulrich|
- And Justice for All Kit for Roland Vdrums TD12
- "Lars Ulrich's Biography on Metallica.com". Metallica.com. Retrieved January 19, 2012.
- Lars' kit setup
- Lars Ulrich Drummerworld.com profile
- New York Times article about Lars' art collection
- Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame: Metallica FuseTV
- Rip It Up Video Interview In New Zealand
- Appearances on C-SPAN
- Lars Ulrich on Charlie Rose
- Lars Ulrich at the Internet Movie Database
- Works by or about Lars Ulrich in libraries (WorldCat catalog)
- "Lars Ulrich's St Anger Tour Setup". Tamadrum.co.jp. Archived from the original on January 4, 2006. Retrieved February 19, 2006.
- "Lars Ulrich's Load/ReLoad/Garage Inc./S&M Tour Setup". Tama.com. Archived from the original on February 16, 2006. Retrieved February 19, 2006.
- "Napster bans more than 300,000 for downloading Metallica". thefalcononline.com. Retrieved June 19, 2007.