Metallica frontman James Hetfield has Lemmy's ashes tattooed into finger

Metallica frontman James Hetfield has shared details of his latest tattoo - featuring the ashes of the late Motorhead rocker Lemmy.

Hetfield posted a picture on Metallica's Instagram account, showing a new Aces Of Spades inking on his right middle finger in reference to Motorhead's biggest hit.

The singer and guitarist told the band's 11 million followers the tattoo is "a salute to my friend and inspiration Mr Lemmy Kilmister", adding: "Without him, there would be NO Metallica."

He went on to say: "Black ink mixed with a pinch of his cremation ashes that were so graciously given to me. So now, he is still able to fly the bird at the world."

Lemmy, whose real name was Ian Kilmister, was the founder and frontman of British rock band Motorhead. Formed in the 1970s, the band went on to release more than 20 albums, with hits including Overkill, Iron Fist and Ace Of Spades.

He died in December 2015, just days after being diagnosed with cancer.

Hetfield formed American rock act Metallica with drummer Lars Ulrich in the early 1980s, and the band released their 11th album, 72 Seasons, last year.

They are best known for hits including Enter Sandman, Master Of Puppets, Nothing Else Matters and Until It Sleeps.

'The most badass tribute'

Hetfield has previously spoken about Motorhead's influence on Metallica, and in 2022 called for Motorhead to be inducted into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame.

"It's just a nod, a tip of the cap. What does it really mean to be in there? I don't know. But to some of these bands it might mean the world," he said in a radio interview.

"With the passing of Lemmy, it's really, really important for me to see Motorhead acknowledged in that - because there's no more rock'n'roll person on this planet than Lemmy."

Many fans commented on his tattoo photo, with one calling the inking "the most badass tribute possible".

Another said: "RIP Lemmy. This is a wonderful gift!"