ROBERT TRUJILLO: Playing First Full Show With SUICIDAL TENDENCIES In 27 Years Was 'Really Special'
November 26, 2023
During an appearance on the fifteenth episode of "The Metallica Report", the recently launched podcast offering weekly insider updates on all things METALLICA, METALLICA's Robert Trujillo explained how he ended up playing bass for SUICIDAL TENDENCIES at the Mike Muir-fronted outfit's October 26 concert at House Of Vans in Mexico City. He said (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): "[My 19-year-old son] Tye has a band called OTTTO, and OTTTO had a corporate gig which had been booked literally a year ago — something that was very important to them. But then there was also a gig for SUICIDAL TENDENCIES that came up, let's say within sort of eight weeks. Tye has been touring with SUICIDAL TENDENCIES for probably close to three years, and there happened to be this one opportunity that came up within sort of the balance between OTTTO and SUICIDAL. And basically it was this date that the schedules conflicted, and it hasn't happened in the three years, which is kind of a miracle, but here's this one date. So I was trying to think of a sub. And then I just kind of said, 'I'll play it.' And he was, like, 'Really?' I go, 'Of course. I know the songs.' It's, like, as long as you play the songs that I had history with, and some of the songs I actually wrote, I said, 'I'll play it. It would be fun.' And he was, like, 'Really? Oh, man. That'd be so cool.'"
Robert continued: "I haven't played in the SUICIDAL TENDENCIES sort of format since 1996, so that was really, really interesting. It was really special in that I obviously haven't been on stage with that version of the band ever, and to be able to reconnect with some of those songs, it was really, really rewarding."
Trujillo, who is of Mexican and Native American descent, also talked about what it was like returning to Mexico to perform once again.
"Mexico City always delivers," he said. "The fans are so passionate there, especially with METALLICA. They just love METALLICA so much. And, of course, they love SUICIDAL TENDENCIES as well. I always feel the love there. It's just genuine, and it's an amazing place to play."
A onetime member of SUICIDAL TENDENCIES, Robert previously rejoined his former bandmates on stage on September 9 at State Farm Stadium in Glendale, Arizona to perform the song "I Saw Your Mommy...". SUICIDAL TENDENCIES played at State Farm Stadium as the support act for METALLICA at the latter band's rescheduled second concert in Arizona.
Back in 2017, Robert spoke to Records In My Life about SUICIDAL TENDENCIES' self-titled debut album, which was released in July 1983 and which featured the original studio version of "I Saw Your Mommy..." He said: "I didn't play on that album, but I tell you, that was an album that… I mean, before I was in the band, I would wear the hat and t-shirts, and that was even before I knew Mike Muir. I knew Rocky George, the guitar player, 'cause I went to junior high school with him, so I've known him for many years. But that particular album, to me, really represents where I grew up and just the progression of alternative music and multi-racial bands incorporating other styles into hardcore music."
Trujillo was first invited to join SUICIDAL TENDENCIES for a European tour in 1989 supporting East Coast thrashers ANTHRAX. While with SUICIDAL TENDENCIES, Robert appeared on some of the band's most successful albums: "Lights...Camera...Revolution!" (1990),"The Art Of Rebellion" (1992) and "Still Cyco After All These Years" (1993). During Trujillo's years with SUICIDAL, Muir heard some of Robert's homemade demos and they collaborated on a funkier, more progressive sound under the name INFECTIOUS GROOVES. They produced a number of albums such as "The Plague That Makes Your Booty Move..." (1991),"Sarsippius' Ark" (1993) and "Groove Family Cyco" (1994).
Back in 2021, Trujillo humorously revealed in an interview that before he signed on as the bass player for METALLICA, SUICIDAL TENDENCIES would gobble up METALLICA's leftover dinners whenever they could during a joint 1993 tour. And even though the METALLICA members respected Trujillo's playing with SUICIDAL TENDENCIES, METALLICA frontman James Hetfield admitted that when Robert's name came up during bassist auditions, he thought, "there's no way he's going to join us. He's too amazing, he's too spectacular."
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