Metallica cancels Australia, New Zealand tour as lead singer reenters rehab

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Metallica said Friday they are canceling an upcoming tour of Australia and New Zealand because lead singer and guitarist James Hetfield, 56, is reentering an addiction treatment program.

SAN FRANCISCO, CA – AUGUST 12: (L-R) Robert Trujillo, Lars Ulrich, Kirk Hammett, and James Hetfield of Metallica perform on Lands End stage during the 2017 Outside Lands Music And Arts Festival at Golden Gate Park on August 12, 2017 in San Francisco, California. (Photo by Getty)

“We are truly sorry,” the band said in a statement to fans posted on their Instagram. “As many of you probably know, our brother James has been struggling with addiction on and off for many years.”

The note from band members Lars Ulrich, Kirk Hammett and Rob Trujillo said they plan to head back to the Southern Hemisphere as soon as the band’s health and schedule permits.

“We are devastated that we have inconvenienced so many of you, especially our most loyal fans who often travel great distances to experience our shows,” they said.

The band said all concert tickets will be refunded.

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