The hard rock and metal god facade cultivated by many rock musicians and singers is sometimes nothing more than that. Most of the time, the guys and gals who thrash guitars and vocals for hordes of fans slamming together in a sweaty, bloody mosh pit have a softer side illustrated by their anti-rock star hobbies. Not every metal god collects skulls or coffins, with most choosing to play a relaxing round of golf or pore over their rare stamp collection.
From breeding horses to playing poker on the professional circuit, these creators of the hardest music to ever hit the airwaves prefer to spend their time off leaving behind the hard riffs and screaming vocals to revel in their softer side.
In a 2007 post on the Megadeth website, singer and guitarist Dave Mustaine shared news of a new arrival in his family: a black colt he named Zane de Mustaine. The musician already had a history with horses, starting with a pregnant mare he received and bonded with years prior.
Mustaine shares an 11-acre ranch with his wife, Pam, that holds stables and room for their horses. They breed and show their horses, and in 2012, Mustaine shared his miniature horse Rocky with SPIN magazine. He told SPIN how he saved the animal from a junkyard and brought him back to roam his large equestrian estate.
Metallica's frontman James Hetfield shared in 2017 that he keeps bees at his home. In a 2016 episode of the podcast Joe Rogan Experience, Hetfield shared that he began raising bees for a few years at his ranch in California. He considered the time spent with the bees as "me time" when he isn't touring or recording. He picked up the hobby from his father who also kept bees.
Hetfield shared some insider secrets, like the fact that dressing in black makes the bees think you're a bear and eating bananas makes them aggressive toward you. If nothing else, his beekeeping proves there's more to Hetfield than Rock & Roll Hall of Fame-worthy music.
The "School's Out" horror rocker Alice Cooper prefers to leave his heavy eyeliner and creepy onstage costumes behind when indulging in his preferred hobby of golf. According to Cooper himself, he's been playing the game since the 1980s and never leaves his home without his beloved golf clubs - lest a chance to play presents itself. When talking to Golf News in 2018, the rocker shared that he plays nearly every day and won't even vacation without access to the green.
He's a member of several golf clubs across the world, including some in Arizona, one in Germany, and even Maui, but his favorite course to play is Jack Nicklaus's Muirfield Village in Ohio.
Tool first hit the scene in 1990, coming up in the clubs with bands like Rage Against the Machine before finding huge commercial and critical acclaim with their music. When not fronting Tool or A Perfect Circle, Maynard James Keenan owns Caduceus Cellars and Merkin Vineyards, as well as a co-op called Four Eight Wineworks, and has been part of the Arizona Winegrowers Association since 2009.
In a 2006 interview with Keenan, Wine Spectator learned he is a hands-on owner and winemaker:
It's crush right now, and I missed all the Sangiovese inoculation, and most of my Syrah. But I just made it home in time for the Cab. It cooled down in California and I just got off the road two days ago, so I'm going to have all my Cab coming in the next two weeks and I'll get to be here for all that: inoculation, pressing, barreling. I'll be doing it with three or four other people here, not watching somebody do it.