For those who don’t know, Clifford Lee Burton was the second electric bass player of Metallica who served in the band for six years before his untimely and gruesome death on September 27th, 1986. Burton had the upper half of his body crushed in a tour bus accident after the bus hit black ice:
As a heavy metal bassist, I’ve always considered Cliff Burton to be one of my biggest influences next to Jason Newsted (also of Metallica) and Steve Harris of Iron Mainden. Cliff taught Metallica how to harmonize their guitars, and was a prolific song writer in how epic all of the songs he wrote sounded. Cliff was also very open-minded about different forms of music, so I’m sure he would have liked the idea of Metallica experimenting with different styles of music to some extent.
Some people feel that Cliff was an “overrated” bassist, but I don’t why they would say that since they never did anything better musically themselves and probably never will. To use a saying famous in my generation, “haters gonna hate.” Since I was born in 1989, Cliff died well before my time and I’m saddened by that fact. However, his influence lives on to inspire new generations of bass players (myself included). I’m also happy to know that he’s still recognized for his accomplishments and talents 28 years later.
RIP Cliff, I’m sure you’re jamming with other great musicians in the great beyond.