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SoulMonster

2013.01.23 - Interview with Dj in 7 News

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2013.01.23 - Interview with Dj in 7 News

Post by Soulmonster on Tue Jan 22, 2013 9:49 pm

Axl Rose misunderstood, says G N' R mate
Ross Purdie, National Entertainment Writer, AAP January 23, 2013, 6:28 pm

Axl Rose has a reputation as one of the most difficult frontmen in rock.

Over the years, the Guns N' Roses singer has fired or fallen out with the band's entire original line-up, including founding guitarist Slash.

Despite never officially breaking up the group, Rose refused to attend when Guns N' Roses were inducted into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame last year.

The performer is renowned for storming off stage and for turning up to gigs hours late - and the 50-year-old star hardly ever gives interviews.

But as Guns N' Roses prepare to tour of Australia, replacement guitarist DJ Ashba says the world has the wrong impression of Axl Rose.

"I think a lot of people and the press try to blow it up and say he's an asshole but everyone can be an asshole if you get them on the wrong day," Ashba says.

"One thing people don't seem to get is that he's genuinely funny and he's always joking around and telling stories to make people laugh.

"I always say that if he wasn't a musician he'd be a great comedian. I wish the world could see that side of him because it's the opposite of what people have branded in their brains."

Another common myth is that Rose, the only remaining original member of Guns N' Roses, is an autocratic control freak who pulls all the strings.

The band's current incarnation - featuring Dizzy Reed, Tommy Stinson, Chris Pitman, Richard Fortus, Ron "Bumblefoot" Thal and Frank Ferrer - are encouraged to contribute to the creative process, says Ashba.

"Axl is in a position where he doesn't have to be cool with the band but he treats us like gold.

"He lets us write our own solos and gives everybody their time to shine on stage and I think that says a lot about who he is.

"He has no problem sharing the spotlight, in fact he quite likes it - otherwise he'd be doing this interview and not me."

Australian fans can expect up to three hours of songs spanning every Guns N' Roses album when they visit in March, as well as AC/DC, Pink Floyd and Rolling Stones covers plus the band's iconic takes on Wings' Live And Let Die and Dylan's Knockin' On Heaven's Door.

Their most recent record Chinese Democracy is said to be one of the most expensive ($14 million) and delayed (10 years) albums ever made, and failed to win over critics when it was eventually released in 2008.

But with Guns N' Roses touring solidly, songs such as Catcher In The Rye, Madagascar and This Is Love are starting to find their place among the classics.

"I came in right after Chinese Democracy was released and I've seen a huge difference over the last four years in how fans react to those songs," says Ashba.

"A lot of people are singing along to them now that they're more familiar."

While generations of fans have embraced the return of Guns N' Roses, other have been frustrated by the band's time keeping. Several sets in recent years were shut down early due to late starts.

Ashba insists the delays have been caused by production issues rather than arrogance on behalf of Rose, explaining a team of 100 people is co-ordinating the show from backstage.

"We have a huge rig and pyrotechnics so often it's the case of fitting all that into the venue. Our number one priority is to make the shows safe."

He understands why fans have resorted to bottling the stage or venting their anger on social media.

"That kills us as a band because we're not doing any of this on purpose.

"Our main goal is to go and give the fans a show they will never forget and we understand how expensive tickets are.

"We take that into account and when we do hit the stage it's almost impossible to get us off."

Once the tour is over, Guns N' Roses will turn their focus to working on a seventh album.

Despite dozens of songs in rough form, the band are in no hurry - but there won't be another decade-long delay.

"It won't be another Chinese Democracy but then again we're in no rush to make a bad record," says Ashba.

"Failing is not an option so we're putting our heart and soul into this one."

Guns N' Roses tour nationally with support from ZZ Top and Rose Tattoo from March 9-20.
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Re: 2013.01.23 - Interview with Dj in 7 News

Post by puddledumpling on Wed Jan 23, 2013 2:46 pm

It occurs to me that this kind of pseudo music journalism and attempted high-brow fob-off of an interview will likely endear this GNR to a new generation of angry kids (still got mine inside, no kidding). Ross Purdie got one thing right: Chinese Democracy was not embraced by the mainstream. What fans of this band there are seem pretty loyal from where I'm standing and to me, GNR is starting to come across like an underdog - again - at least Purdie's editor let DJ have the last quote. Keep up the good work boys.

"Failing is not an option so we're putting our heart and soul into this one."

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