Megadeth producer Max Norman claimed Dave Mustaine ‘backstabbed’ him in a new Metal Voice interview.
The interviewer asked, “I want to know, Dave Mustaine as a co-producer. I can understand, it’s his band so it makes sense, but a lot of times people are like, ‘I want my name on there.’ Was he really a co-producer?”
Norman responded, “Well, I remember Dave said to me on ‘Countdown,’ when we started to do ‘Countdown,’ he said, ‘I want you to teach me how to produce.’
“And I said, ‘I really can’t teach you that, you just got to pay attention. I can’t teach you how to do it, you just got to pay attention and learn the best you can…’
“Right at the end of that album, after it was mixed and it was about two weeks before its release, I got a call from my attorney, Joe Serling in New York. I was in LA at the time, and he said, ‘OK, all the final contracts are done, and I made the change to the production credit.’
“And I said, ‘What changed?’ And he said, ‘You know, ‘produced by Dave Mustaine and Max Norman.” And I said, ‘Whoa, whoa! No, no.’ And I called Dave and I said, ‘Hey, you just fucked me by changing the credit right at the end, and they’ve already printed 400,000 copies of this! How I about I junk the fucking record right now?’
“And he started freaking out. He said, ‘Dude, dude, it’s a mistake!’ And I knew it wasn’t a mistake. It was a little bit of a backstab, and I got very, very upset about it.
“I said, ‘Listen, you wrote all the songs, you sing all the songs, you play on it, I gave you a co-production credit, and now you’re stealing my credit? That’s not right.’
“I said, ‘I’m the engineer producer, you’re the co-producer. You flip that back right now, or it’s going to be a real, real big problem. I’ll call the label right now, I’ll call Capitol right now and tell them that it’s not coming out.’
“And they already had like 450,000 out in the stores, so it was a real mess, and it took me quite a while to stop being pissed off about that. And Dave kept apologizing…
“‘Oh, I’m sorry.’ ‘It was a mistake.’ ‘I don’t know what happened.’ And I was like, ‘You’re so full of shit. You did it on purpose, I know why you did it. Don’t ever fucking try it again.’
“I don’t think that on ‘Countdown,’ that Dave was really a co-producer, but I gave him a co-producer credit anyway because, you know, I’ve been a nice guy, I guess.” Ultimate-Guitar transcribed his comments.