Slayer's Kerry King Was Star Student, Won Math Awards Until He "Discovered Girls" | Revolver

Slayer's Kerry King Was Star Student, Won Math Awards Until He "Discovered Girls"

"Once you put the tits and the pussy in the equation, school went right out the door"
slayer kerry king 2018 HENDRIKX, Eric Hendrikx
Slayer's Kerry King, 2018
photograph by Eric Hendrikx

"I was the youngest and the only son, so I was pretty spoilt," admits Slayer guitarist Kerry King. "It was a lot harder for me to get into trouble because I was the golden child." In a new interview with Metal Hammer, King discusses his life before he helped mold heavy metal into what it is today through his contributions to the thrash scene. As it turns out, he was quite an innocent child who excellent at math and was a great student — "until I discovered girls, and then it was all over," he recalls. 

"I remember in Junior High, I got the math award for the entire school, so marks weren't a problem, but once you put the tits and the pussy in the equation, school went right out the door," he told the magazine. The Slayer axeman claims he didn't even know what rebelling was until his 12th grade year, at which point he decided he'd had enough of school. King also says he didn't drink alcohol until he was 21, and not because he was waiting for it to be legal, but because "that was just my time, you know?"

The interview also covers the beginnings of Slayer and King's career as a guitarist, and the shredder gives credit to his older sisters for playing the radio and allowing him to hear and fall in love with Judas Priest at a young age. Another influential band for King was Van Halen, who he saw in concert approximately six times over the course of their first three album cycles. 

He also gets a bit riled up over the controversy caused by one of the band's earlier songs, "Angel of Death." When asked how he felt about some people taking offense at the Reign in Blood cut's lyrics, which refer to Josef Mengele and Nazi Germany, he replies, "We're all hypocrites. We're supposed to have freedom of speech, but you're gonna get offended by us because we're playing a song about that? That's wrong. I think, on the whole, that mankind is full of fucking idiots. In a nutshell, our lyrics just say 'think.' That's it."

Slayer are currently on a brief hiatus from their extensive final world tour, which starts back up March 7th in Brisbane, Australia, before coming back to North America this spring and summer. Find more information on that tour, including guests and dates, here