Ray Burton, Father of Metallica Bassist Cliff Burton, Dies at 94
Ray Burton, the father of late Metallica bassist Cliff Burton, has died. He was 94.
Burton’s passing was confirmed by daughter, Connie, in a Facebook post.
During the promotion of their 2016 book Metallica: Back to the Front, the video below was added to the Metallica YouTube page, and each member of Metallica spoke fondly about Ray Burton. Notable among the band’s comments was James Hetfield who said, “When I grow up, I want to be Ray Burton. He is so inspiring. His energy, his love of life, it’s very attractive to me, because I’m the other side of the battery most of the time. But he brings a smile to my face. I just look at him and I start smiling.”
In 2017, Burton said in an interview with the podcast Alphabetallica the family has quietly been donating his son’s Metallica royalties to scholarships for music students at Castro Valley High School in the San Francisco Bay Area, where Cliff Burton attended. Burton said, “The kids who won it, they invariably write and thank me for. And I think Cliff probably would have done that with his money, because he was not against education by any means. He liked it very much.”
Burton also accepted his son’s Rock and Roll Hall of Fame award on his behalf in 2009.