The discovery of the song in early 2000 on the P2P file-sharing network Napster helped bring the illegal sharing of mp3 files to the spotlight, leading to the massive lawsuits that eventually brought down the original incarnation of Napster.
The video to the song, directed by Wayne Isham, features the members from Metallica in scenes that reference other movies, James Hetfield is driving a car down a San Franciscan hill, in a chase sequence resembling Bullitt, Kirk Hammett is on a desert being chased by a plane (North by Northwest), Jason Newsted is in a mansion struggling against hundreds of people that walk by him (Brazil), and Lars Ulrich jumps off a building (Die Hard). The car driven by James in the video is a 1967 Chevrolet Camaro. Upon the video's completion, it was given to Hetfield as a gift. It was later auctioned off on eBay by James himself for charity.
This is Metallica's last studio release featuring bassist Jason Newsted, who left the following year.
Battling Attitudes through Story and Song 'Before I Disappear' Movingly Tells of Drugs, Prostitution, Sexual Identity and, Finally, Self-Acceptance
Jul 19, 1996; Byline: Tom Valeo Daily Herald Theater Critic "Before I Disappear" - Mini review: A tasteful, touching account of a turbulent...