Ulrich noted he wants Metallica to go on for as long as possible, but can’t predict the future.
“When people ask me to look into the crystal ball into the future: ‘What do you think? Are you still gonna be playing…?'” he said. “It’s the great, big unanswered question. Mentally, creatively, spiritually, aesthetically, we’ll go for another hundred years [and] we’re fine. Physically, obviously, it’s the big question.
When touring, Metallica employs a couple of physical therapists to keep the band going.
It’s actually kind of pathetic. People come backstage [and ask], ‘Where’s the Jack Daniel’s?’ There’s no Jack Daniel’s. It’s brown rice and nasty protein shakes and a couple of trainers that are stretching us and stitching us back together again after the show,” said Ulrich. “But at least we’re still playing, and at least we’re still functioning, and at least it still has some of the weight that it used to. So, so far so good, so we’ll see where it takes us.”
One drummer who comes to mind that’s still playing at a frenzy is Iron Maiden’s Nicko McBrain, who is now 64 years old, and never misses a fill.
Only time will tell how long Ulrich can keep it going. You’ve gotta figure he’s got at least another 10 years in him.