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Billy Corgan: Metal doesn’t get the respect it deserves

Smashing Pumpkins leader Billy Corgan says that metal still doesn’t get the credit it’s due from certain sections of society – despite its huge popularity.

Corgan was speaking with Lars Ulrich on the Metallica drummer’s Apple Music Beats 1 show about being a metalhead when he was younger. And he says it’s still looked down upon because of “weird class politics.”

Corgan says: “For years, I would take shit about being a fan of metal – it should be beneath you. It gets into weird class politics. Most of the people who criticise people like us for being who we are, what we are, or what we represent, had better backgrounds than we had.

“We didn’t necessarily go to the nice school, we didn’t get to read the cool newspaper. For me, bands like Metallica told me that there is this other world that is more closely aligned with the experience you’re having than the one you’re being told about.

“So when I heard Mercyful Fate, Metallica or Ted Nugent, that told me, ‘Wait, there’s this other world than the world you’re telling me that I’m supposed to believe in.’

“Even to this day, for all the money that metal moves, it’s amazing how disrespected it is.”

He adds: “You can’t get that through to a hipster’s brain. If you sat around and drew up who you wanted to be on paper, you wouldn’t be in Metallica or The Smashing Pumpkins. Those type of bands grow out of almost like a personality conflict.”

Earlier this year, Corgan revealed the names of eight tracks (opens in new tab) that he, Jimmy Chamberlin and James Iha have been working on for the new Smashing Pumpkins album.

Smashing Pumpkins 2018 Tour Dates

Jul 12: Glendale Gila River Arena, AZ
Jul 14: Oklahoma City Chesapeake Energy Arena, OK
Jul 16: Austin Frank Erwin Center, TX
Jul 17: Houston Toyota Center, TX
Jul 18: Dallas American Airlines Center, TX
Jul 20: Nashville Bridgestone Arena, TN
Jul 21: Louisville KFC Yum! Center, KY
Jul 22: Atlanta Infinite Energy Aerna, GA
Jul 24: Miami American Airlines Arena, FL
Jul 25: Tampa Amalie Arena, FL
Jul 27: Baltimore Royal Farms Arena, MD
Jul 28: Philadelphia Wells Fargo Center, PA
Jul 29: Uncasville Mohegan Sun Arena, CT
Jul 31: Boston TD Garden, MA
Aug 01: New York Madison Square Garden, NY
Aug 04: Pittsburgh PPG Paints Arena, PA
Aug 05: Detroit Little Caesars Arena, MI
Aug 07: Montreal Centre Bell, QC
Aug 08: Toronto Air Canada Centre, ON
Aug 11: Columbus Schottenstein Center, OH
Aug 13: Chicago United Center, IL
Aug 16: Kansas City Sprint Center, MO
Aug 17: Indianapolis Bankers Life Fieldhouse, IN
Aug 19: St. Paul Xcel Energy Center, MN
Aug 20: Omaha CenturyLink Center, NE
Aug 21: Sioux Falls Denny Sanford Premier Center, SD
Aug 24: Seattle Key Arena, WA
Aug 25: Portland Moda Center, OR
Aug 27: Oakland Oracle Arena, CA
Aug 28: Sacramento Golden 1 Center, CA
Aug 30: Los Angeles The Forum, CA
Sep 01: San Diego Viejas Arena, CA
Sep 02: Las Vegas T-Mobile Arena, NV
Sep 04: Salt Lake City Vivint Smart Home Arena, UT
Sep 05: Denver Pepsi Center, CO
Sep 07: Boise Ford Idaho Center, ID

Scott looks after and updates Louder’s online buyer’s guides and also scouts out the best deals for music fans from every corner of the internet. He's spent more than 28 years in newspapers and magazines as an editor, production editor, sub-editor, designer, writer and reviewer. Scott joined our news desk in the summer of 2014, where he wrote extensively about rock, metal, prog and more, before moving to the eCommerce team full-time in 2020. Scott has previous written for publications including IGN, Sunday Mirror, Daily Record and The Herald covering everything from daily news and weekly features, to video games, travel and whisky.