The Metallica frontman - who was entered in 2009 with bandmates Lars Ulrich, Kirk Hammett and Robert Trujillo - thinks it is ''really really'' important that the late Motorhead star, who died in December 2015 from an aggressive form of cancer, is ''acknowledged'' because he was the most ''rock 'n' roll person'' to exist.
The 53-year-old rocker said: ''There are so many great bands that haven't been acknowledged - and if they do or don't, it's not up to me.
''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.
''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.''
The 'Enter Sandman' hitmaker says Metallica wouldn't be a band if it wasn't for the 'Ace of Spades' rocker and when they heard he'd passed away it hit the heavy metal group ''pretty hard''.
He told Californian radio station 95.5 KLOS: ''I loved being murdered every night by that thing, man. He was just such an icon, such an inspiration to us as a band. There's certainly no way we'd be around if there was no Motörhead.
''And you know, to see your idol, your immortal one actually be mortal, it hit us pretty hard.''
Metallica have penned a track called 'Murder One' - which features on their upcoming album 'Hardwired... to Self-Destruct' - in tribute to Lemmy.
Of the song, James previously said: ''Motorhead had a lot to do with Metallica sitting here right now. Lemmy as an entity - a kind of father figure - helped us a lot. He was unafraid and he was a character. And he was himself. We all respected that so much. He did his own thing to the last breath. No matter who you are, how could you not be inspired by that?''
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