During an appearance on this past Tuesday's (April 18) episode of SiriusXM's "Trunk Nation With Eddie Trunk", Jason Newsted was asked about his current relationship with his former bandmates in METALLICA. He said (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): "I've texted back and forth with Lars [Ulrich, METALLICA drummer] the last couple of days. We try to stay in touch — he and I do — and talk about whatever. He's interested in [my] art a lot; he's always been very supportive of that, so I'm grateful. But also with the music stuff… And I know that his sons [who have their own band called TAIPEI HOUSTON] — I'm a fan of them and they're fans of my stuff, and that's a cool thing. It's an incredible thing, actually. And I've got nothing but mad respect. That's it. That's what I've got. And I'm so frickin' proud of those guys. Still cutting it like that, man? C'mon now. And taking this big of a bite and going for shows all the way up through — what? — fall of '24 or something? Frickin' huge balls, dude. Incredible. How can't you applaud that? … I'm always surprised. It was obviously meant to be. Who has this kind of staying power? I mean, it's such a unique thing — such a unique thing."
Asked if he has ever had any discussions with current METALLICA bassist Robert Trujillo about his approach to playing the band's classic songs live, Newsted said: "We haven't really had conversations with that kind of detail before. No." He added: "They sound killer right now. They have for a while live. They've got a great thing going, man, for real. It sounds killer."
Jason left METALLICA back in 2001 but was inducted into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame, along with guitarist/vocalist James Hetfield, Ulrich, guitarist Kirk Hammett, and the man who replaced him, Trujillo, in 2009.
Back in 2009, Newsted told Rolling Stone that he had no regrets about exiting METALLICA. "I tell you very honestly, one billion percent, I have never regretted leaving METALLICA," he said. "It was the right thing for everyone. It was the right thing to do for the camp, that's it. I've never told anyone that I wanted to go back or anything like that, not once. I made up my mind. It was not an easy thing to do, but it was something I had to do. I thought about it very much before I pulled the trigger, and because of that, I have never looked back. The past is where it's supposed to be."
He added: "I was one of the biggest fan of the band before I went in, and I'm a METALLICA fan still. I was always the one person in the world who had an inside look and an outside look at the band, at the same time, and now, I've been out for a while, and I'm able to be a fan again."
As previously reported, Newsted will perform with his NEWSTED project for the first time in nearly a decade on May 20 at Revolution Live in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Newsted, who plays bass and sings in the project, will be joined at the gig by original NEWSTED members Jesus Mendez Jr. (UNDERLORD) on drums and Jessie Farnsworth (UNDERLORD) on guitar, along with new guitarist Humberto Perez.