Metallica is very much loved all over the world & especially here in El Paso. In fact, one El Paso musician loves them so much, he's been known as "The Metallica Guy". His name is Kevin Leyva.

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Kevin's love of Metallica is clearly shown on his social media, & after talking to him, his love  for Metallica was made even more clearer. "I got into Metallica at the age of 8 years old. The song that really resonated with me was Seek & Destroy. That intro riff was INSANE. I liked it so much it inspired me to pick up the guitar & learn how to play. And don't get me started with the bridge riff to Fade to Black."

Even when you go to his YouTube channel, most of videos are Metallica-related, mainly involved with the production of their albums. "I've always been obsessed with Metallica's production on their albums. The raw guitar tone off of Kill 'Em All, the electrifying distortion & wah pedal bass lines from Ride the Lightning, the crunchy chugs from Master of Puppets, the amazing drum & guitar tones from ...And Justice For All, the huge sounding production of The Black Album...I always told myself 'I want to sound exactly how they sound on the album'... so I invested in all kinds of amp sims & EQ matching software to try to nail their guitar tone & drum programs to match Lars's drum sounds. Then I started experimenting with existing songs of theirs & altered the guitar tones to make it sound like their previous records or more recent records."

His playing even got him noticed by famous YouTuber, Jared Dines (with over 1 million subscribers), on his own music channel back in 2019. Needless to say, Kevin was pretty excited at that opportunity: "He posted a tablature on his Instagram. Basically he wanted his audience to film their interpretation of the tabs conjunction with a drum beat he provided. All for a chance to be featured on his YouTube channel. I seized the opportunity, came up with something I felt went with the drum groove &... evidently, I was chosen & got a lot of amazing feedback in the comment section." You can see Kevin playing at the 4:36 mark in the video.

Kevin has also been recording his own music since 2014 (his song "Code Red" has been heard on Q Connected), drawing inspiration from bands like Lamb of God, Gojira, Meshuggah, Periphery, & of course...Metallica. He also does freelance gigs on Fiverr; making jingles for businesses, mixing gigs, drum programming, being a session guitarist & making his own beats. Before we wrapped up our interview, Kevin did want to say one last thing: "I'd tell Metallica thank you for creating amazing content that inspired millions including myself & for paving the way for other metal bands. I hope to one day create something that'll inspire a fraction of the people that they have".

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