Girish Mahajan (Editor)

Sad but True

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Released  February 8, 1993
Length  5:24
Genre  Heavy metal
B-side  "Harvester of Sorrow" (live)/"So What?" "Nothing Else Matters" (Elevator Version)/"Creeping Death" (live)/"Sad But True" (Demo)
Format  CD single, Cassette, vinyl
Recorded  June 16, 1991 at One on One Studios, Los Angeles, California

"Sad but True" is a song by American heavy metal band Metallica. It was released in February 1993 as the fifth and final single from their eponymous fifth album, Metallica. The music video from the single was released in October, 1992.



Though the band had utilized the 'D standard' tuning for the recording and subsequent performances of covers such as "Crash Course in Brain Surgery" and "The Small Hours", this was the second instance of the band utilizing such a low guitar tuning for an original piece ("The Thing That Should Not Be" was the first, utilizing drop D tuning in the studio, and tuning down to drop C# live). Bassist Jason Newsted tuned his 5-string bass down to 'A standard' for this song, which is essentially the equivalent of D standard, i.e. one whole step down.

In popular culture

  • The instrumental structure was used in Kid Rock's 2000 single, "American Bad Ass". The song is on Rock's compilation, The History of Rock. A different version of the instrumental structure was used in the song's parody track "American Hair Band" by rock band Tuff.
  • Snoop Dogg has covered the song live paying tribute to the band at MTV Icon: Metallica, held in Universal City, California in 2003.
  • In 2004, Guitar Player listed James Hetfield's tone (most likely produced by an ESP MX-220 with a Mesa Boogie Mark IV along with a Danelectro Longhorn bass) as one of the "50 Greatest Tones of All Time".
  • The song was played in the background as Kurt Russell introduced the Seattle Seahawks in an opening segment for Fox Sports's TV coverage of Super Bowl XLVIII.
  • Track listing

    US Single
    1. "Sad but True"
    2. "So What"
    International Single Part 1
    1. "Sad but True" - 5:27
    2. "So What" - 3:09
    3. "Harvester of Sorrow (Live)" - 6:41
    International Single Part 2
    1. "Sad but True" - 5:27
    2. "Nothing Else Matters (Elevator Version)" - 6:31
    3. "Creeping Death (Live)" - 8:01
    4. "Sad but True (Demo)" - 4:53
    UK Picture Single
    1. "Sad but True" - 5:26
    2. "Nothing Else Matters (Live)" - 6:13
    3. "Sad but True (Live)" - 6:12
    UK & Germany Vinyl 7" Single
    1. "Sad but True" - 5:24
    2. "Nothing Else Matters" - 6:29
    French Single
    1. "Sad but True" - 5:27
    2. "Nothing Else Matters (Edit)" - 6:29
    International 7" Inch Vinyl Single
    1. "Sad but True"
    2. "Nothing Else Matters (Live)"
    3. "Sad but True (Live)"


  • James Hetfield - lead vocals, rhythm guitar
  • Kirk Hammett - lead guitar
  • Jason Newsted - bass, backing vocals
  • Lars Ulrich - drums
  • John Marshall - guitar on Nothing Else Matters (Live)
  • References

    Sad but True Wikipedia

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