Pictures of Jason Newsted Nicole Leigh Smith -

On September 27, 1986, during the European leg of the Damage, Inc. Tour, Metallica's bassist Cliff Burton died when the band's tour bus crashed. Following Burton's death, the group began a search for a new bassist. They considered and auditioned over 50 musicians, including Greg Christian of Testament, Gene Gilfen of Blind Illusion, Mel Sanchez of Abbatoir, Mike Jastremski of Heathen, Troy Gregory, Les Claypool, David Ellefson of Megadeth and various others were considered. Newsted was the last in line and ended up winning the part. He said in a 2015 interview that he learned about Metallica's plan to open for Ozzy Osbourne's tour at the time. To his advantage, Newsted strategically procured the band's setlist, studied it, and presented it to drummer Lars Ulrich saying he knew all these songs, much to Ulrich's surprise. Two days later, Metallica invited Newsted back and announced to him that he had been chosen to fill the bassist position. The band involved both of Burton's parents in the decision to choose Newsted as the group's new bassist and, in ceremonious fashion, Burton's parents were present during the announcement so they would know who would be carrying on their son's legacy and to "pass Cliff's torch on. " In a highly emotional moment, after the band broke the news to Newsted, Burton's mother hugged him tightly and said, "You are the one. Please, be safe. "