Lou Reed Asked Kirk Hammett To Stop Playing ‘Belly Dancing Sh-t’ For ‘Lulu,’ Metallica Producer Recalls

Metallica’s producer, Greg Fidelman, shared a story from the recording of ‘Lulu’ with Lou Reed in The Metallica Report.

Lou Reed and Metallica released their collaborative album ‘Lulu’ on October 31, 2011. They made the album after playing together at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s 25th Anniversary Concert. But many fans didn’t like it.

Lou Reed’s Feedback To Kirk Hammett

Fidelman revealed that the project was spontaneous without a clear plan. He explained how they started by just jamming together, and this kind of music-making was new to Metallica. He then recalled:

“I remember, at one point, like Kirk [Hammett] was doing something… [Laughs] This literally still is in our lexicon. Kirk was doing something kind of like Middle Eastern-y kind of weird… I don’t know if he had a wah or whatever, whether it was the phase shifter or whatever. It was very Middle Eastern. Lou just stops, he goes, ‘No belly dancing sh*t!’ [Laughs] We were just like, ‘What?! Oh my god, that’s amazing.'”

Hammett’s Thoughts On The Record

In June 2022, Hammett spoke to NME about his fears regarding ‘Lulu.’ Despite the negative reception, the guitarist expressed his love for the album, saying:

“David Bowie’s defining ‘Lulu’ as Lou Reed’s greatest work was one of the highest compliments I ever got as a musician and artist. Working with Lou Reed was an incredible honor, and I loved the ‘Lulu’ album. I remember Lou sharing with me that letter David Bowie sent to Lou: it was written on paper, and it was such a glowing, grueling appraisal of the ‘Lulu’ album. When Lou showed it to me, it brought me to tears!”

‘Lulu’ is a double album inspired by Frank Wedekind’s ‘Lulu plays.’ It features Reed’s spoken words with Metallica’s music, and James Hetfield sometimes sings along. Reed wrote most of the words.

You can see the full interview below.