Change is nothing new for Megadeth, with Kiko Loureiro being the most recent member to step away from the group this past fall. Though he chose Teemu Mäntysaari as his successor, he's claimed that he also suggested Megadeth bring back former guitarist Marty Friedman to take his place.

Loureiro first announced that he was stepping away from Megadeth in September, just prior to the start of their fall North American tour. He also revealed that he'd picked Mäntysaari as his fill-in, and it appeared to only be a temporary situation. However, in late November, the guitarist shared a new statement that he was extending his absence from the thrash group. Dave Mustaine released a statement of his own shortly after, assuring that he fully supported Loureiro's decision and that Megadeth would move forward in 2024 with Mäntysaari.

In an interview with Guitar World, Loureiro agreed that it would have been great to see Friedman, who reunited with Megadeth for a few performances in 2023, return to the group in his place.

“Actually, I even mentioned to management and Dave that I thought bringing Marty Friedman back would be amazing," Loureiro said. “I have no idea if they’re talking about it or talking to him, but I did say that. But again, I have no idea beyond that, and I don’t want to make anything more complicated.”

“The fans never said anything bad about me or complained, which was amazing,” he continued. “But I’m a fan, and I always understood that Marty was a part of those iconic albums like Rust in Peace and Countdown to Extinction. I understood that Marty was the guy who helped create that sound and style, you know? From the moment I joined Megadeth, I knew the fans could show me love, but I would never win their hearts over Marty.”

Friedman joined Megadeth in 1990, replacing previous guitarist Jeff Young, and appeared on five studio albums before departing in 2000.

READ MORE: Kiko Loureiro Cites One Key Factor for 'Choosing Not to Be in Megadeth'

"There was so much more that I wanted to do, so much more musically I had to say, and I thought that Megadeth could go on with their goals a lot better with a different person in tow — and they did," Friedman told us of his departure from Megadeth in an interview a few years ago. "They got a lot of great guys who were more suited to what they were trying to do than I was, so I think it was a win-win for everybody."

The guitarist took the stage with Megadeth for the first time in 23 years last February for a couple of songs during the band's show in Japan, where Friedman resides. In August, he made another surprise appearance with the band during their Wacken Open Air set in Germany.

The Least Played Song Live Off Every Megadeth Album

The rarest of the rare.

All stats last updated Jan. 2, 2024 (via setlist.fm).

Gallery Credit: Joe DiVita

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