It was my freshman year of University, and my roommate was a big metal and Metallica fan.
Metallica’s Black Album was still at the top of the charts.
‘Enter Sandman’ and ‘Unforgiven’ were enjoying heavy air play, and made Metallica a household name.
One day, a friend of ours, who worked in the computer lab, comes over to our dorm to show my roommate a picture of the 4 faces of Metallica that you could find on the insert of that particular CD. He had drew them on the computer free-hand. At the time, this was a pretty cool thing he was able to do.
To this day, I don’t know how the conversation started, but we all loved to play practical jokes around campus. And soon a plan was hatched to play a practical joke on campus that Metallica was coming to the UMD campus to perform a free concert to get live footage for their newest video ‘Of Wolf and Man’, following a visit to the Ely Wolf Center for more footage for the video.
Flyers were printed up and hung all over campus and at the local High Schools.
Quickly, word began to spread and a buzz began to grow.
“Did you hear Metallica is coming?”
“Are you going to go to the free Metallica concert?”
“Can you believe Metallica is coming to campus?”
Everyone in our dorm knew my roommate was a big Metallica fan and they would pop in, “Scott, are you excited? Metallica is going to be here. Are you going to the concert?”
He would reply, “No, I have to work that weekend in the Cites and can’t find anyone to cover my shifts.”
They would leave and we could barely contain our laughter.
Soon, the local radio stations caught wind of this and started talking about the upcoming concert on the radio.
This was getting big.
We devised plans to wake up in the middle of the night before the ‘concert’ and put out signs for ‘Metallica Parking’ and ‘Metallica Line Forms This Way’, etc…
(A couple years later, I even found out from a friend that worked at the theater where the ‘concert’ was to take place at, that they hired extra security for that day because they knew no concert was taking place. They literally were expecting a riot once the crowd found out there was no Metallica concert.)
Unfortunately, a day or two before the ‘concert was to take place, word began to quickly circulate that the Metallica Concert was a hoax.
You see, in an attempt to make the flyers look as realistic as possible, our friend even put the record labels copyright on the flyer, but spelled it wrong. He spelled it ‘Electra’ instead of ‘Elektra’.
Someone with an attention for detail noticed this and word quickly spread that the concert was an elaborate hoax.
All of the hours designing, planning, and implementing our grand scheme never came to fruition due to the smallest of mistakes in the details.
Oh well, we’ll get them next time.
And next time, we did, well…they did. I was out of the Country living overseas at the time, but that is a story for another time.
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