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THE HISTORY OF GUNS N' ROSES - IN THEIR OWN WORDS

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Re: THE HISTORY OF GUNS N' ROSES - IN THEIR OWN WORDS

Post by Soulmonster on Tue Nov 20, 2018 11:43 pm

THE MAKING OF THE SPAGHETTI INCIDENT!?

In early 1989 rumors were spreading that the band planned to release a set of themed EPs, including a Punk, a Metal and a Rap EP [Kerrang!, April 1989]. Asked about his, Slash responded:

Well, we've been talking about doing an EP of cover songs, maybe. […] The cover songs we've been talking about doing, though, are things like a Steve Jones song - a Pistols song that Steve Jones sang and wrote called 'Black Leather'. And we're talking about maybe doing 'Jumpin' Jack Flash' by the Stones; an old Misfits song; and a couple of different things… [Kerrang!, April 1989]
Axl had lofty plans:

I want to do five records in two years. There's the next studio one (possibly a double) [what would become 'Use Your Illusions'], the live one [what would become 'Live Era'], his own solo LP plus two EPs, firstly a Punk covers record and, secondly, another acoustic set, this time with X-rated versions. And then there's the films... [RAW Magazine, May 1989]
This would be confirmed in July 1989 with the band talking about a punk EP, a live release, and an "an X rated acoustic EP" [Raw Magazine, July 1989].

But we have talked about doing a Punk EP. We’d probably do stuff by the likes of Fear, the Adolescents, The Sex Pistols, the sort of music we listen to before going onstage [RAW Magazine, July 1989]
In December 1990 it was reported that the song "Down On The Farm" would end up on Use Your Illusions [Musician, December 1990]. In January 1991, Slash would mention they had recorded six covers as part of the material for the forthcoming Use Your Illusion record(s) and that these would likely be released on a separate record [Rolling Stone, January 1991]:

An EP is probably the direction we’re going to go as far as some of the covers are concerned. There are six covers: “Live and Let Die,” by Wings, “Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door,” by Dylan — that new version [on the soundtrack for Days of Thunder] that went nowhere — “Don’t Care About You,” by Fear, “Attitude,” by the Misfits, “New Rose,” by the Damned, and “Down on the Farm,” by U.K. Subs. They’re songs that we like – it’s as basic as that. Each of us has an individual favorite, and at the same time we share some. “New Rose” is something Duff wanted to do, I think. “Don’t Care About You” is something I wanted. The Misfits song was Axl’s idea, and “Heaven’s Door” and “Live and Let Die” were songs Axl and I both thought about doing [Rolling Stone, January 1991]
As late as June 1991, Duff was quoted in RIP Magazine saying they had just decided to add 'Ain't It Fun' as the 36th song to be included on the forthcoming 'Use Your Illusion' records. At this time, they had decided to save 'I Don't Care About You', 'Attitude', 'New Rose' and 'Black Leather' for a future EP, but still expected to include 'Live and Let Die' and 'Down on the Farm' on the 'Illusions' [RIP, June 1991].

In the end, they decided to included only 'Live and Let Die' and 'Knockin' on Heaven's Door' on the two Use Your Illusion records and save the remaining cover songs for a later release.

In May 1991, Axl would mention that they wanted to release an EP with "six punk rock songs" [MTV, May 1991]. These were likely the four remaining punk cover songs that the band had recorded but weren't included on the Use Your Illusions ('I Don't Care About You', 'Attitude', 'New Rose', 'Down on the Farm') and a couple more.

In late 1991, Slash would confirm that there were 6 punk song leftovers from the 'Illusion' sessions intended for an upcoming EP:

The only time I kept anything through headphones [while recording] was on a punk EP we did that's going to come out eventually, which we mostly cut live in the studio. […] It's just a bunch of songs that different guys in the band really like. There's a Steve Jones/Sex Pistols song called "Black Leather." A song called "I Don't Care About You" by Fear. And "Ain't It Fun" from the Dead Boys—sort of a tribute to Stiv Bators. There's a total of six songs on it now, and we're talking about doing a Hanoi Rocks tune. […] punk was an attitude I totally related to. [...] I loved the rebelliousness of it. I believe in that shit, and I dug the chicks, who were just great. I'm not a violent person, but I love that violent attitude. Even at our shows, it's part of our thing; break down the barriers and kick ass for three hours. I don't like it when it gets so violent that people are maliciously beating each other up. But the punk scene was a big influence, especially on Duff. I almost wish that attitude would come back and kill what the record business is right now. I hate it! I hate being a part of it. […] We've always done everything in our power to stay away from the norm. But then all of a sudden we became the norm. Appetite took off, and what I call the copying period set in. And all of a sudden it was no longer fun to be in Guns N' Roses, to have that "go into a liquor store, rip off a pack of cigarettes and play your guitar all day" attitude. I think that's one of the main reasons we didn't know what to do with this new album. We were real frustrated with being so acceptable. We're not Motley Cite. We're not gonna do something that appears a little bit dangerous so we can sell records [Guitar World, February 1992].
In February 1992, Slash was asked what was happening with the "long lost" punk EP and he also mentioned that they intended to include their own song 'Ain't Going Down' on what would become an LP:

Well, that’s not gonna come out until we finish touring with this record and there’s a lot of mileage left in this album. As far as the Punk thing goes, there’s gonna be a new song on there that we didn’t finish for ‘Use Your Illusion’. It’s finished as far as all the backing tracks were done, but we didn’t finish the words. It’s called ‘Ain’t Going Down’ and it’s one of those songs that we wrote in the streets in Hollywood just walking around. Then there’s another cover that we’d like to do. It’ll probably be a Hanoi Rocks cover. Then there’s a song that I did in a band a long time ago that I used to sing that I’ve talked to Axl about but we’ll have to see. The whole thing will probably be a full record now, though [Raw Magazine, March 4, 1992].

And again in March 1992:

It was all done live and it was just really cool, so we want to release it. But at the same time we’re still touring on Illusions, which was a huge project for us and really one of those kind of things that I don’t think anybody can understand what we went through to do it. And so we’re gonna ride that out and tour on it until it’s, like, officially over and then we’ll start worrying about releasing other stuff, you know? [MTV Rockline, March 1992].


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Re: THE HISTORY OF GUNS N' ROSES - IN THEIR OWN WORDS

Post by Soulmonster on Sun Dec 02, 2018 7:02 pm

1991-1993 - DRUGS AND BOOZE AGAIN

For a guy who had always struggled with temptations when not actively touring, Slash was thrilled to finally be back on the road in mid-1991 when the band started touring the 'Use Your Illusion' albums:

I’ve been fucking going nuts. […] I’ve been a complete basket case for... I’ve been through the mill since we got off the road last time (laughs) [MTV, May 1991].
And Izzy, when asked in September 1991, would point out that they were finally in a state where they could tour:

We've just gotten to the point where everyone's back and finally coherent enough to be able to play together. That's what the deal is here. It's been such a trip from having no money and notoriety to havin' all this money, and notoriety, all these drug connections and bullshit [VOX, October 1991].
Before the 'Use Your Illusion' touring started in May 1991, Slash would discuss his various (previous) addictions with Q Magazine. When asked if he ever considered seeking therapy his answer was:

For one, I couldn't see myself going to an analyst because personally I just don't want to know. And the other part being that whole trip of pre-planning your existence is something that people do to a point where it makes life just not fun anymore, because you are trying to preconceive your next move, and so on and so forth. […] If you were to ask, as a therapist, Why do I drink? - the simple thing is you do it out of boredom and to relax. The worst thing is it's for people who are so volatile and so shy - because that was always my biggest problem, to be able to deal with everything that's going on, especially when you're in the public eye so much and then being a very reserved kind of person. You end up drinking a lot to come out of your shell. In that way it's a vicious sort of drug, because it works [Q Magazine, July 1991]
And when asked about why he used to do coke and heroin, Slash would answer:

Well [coke is] obnoxious, and you can't get it up! And you get into these really ridiculously bitter fights. And then, when you do a lot of coke, you tend to drink a lot - and I know that one real well too! […] I just liked [heroin]. I liked the way it felt. And fuck, I didn't know if I did it four or five days in a row I'd get fucking hooked on it! And that's a different subject altogether. That drug takes you over mentally and physically, so much that to come back is hard. I was never a big coke addict, ever. I had not so much a drinking problem as to just want to drink and get rowdy. I used to love to get just fucking drunk! I used it to escape a bad day. Sometimes, I'd much rather just go home, sit down with a glass or something and kick back and go to sleep. I really don't feel that I have the intense addiction that people believe [Q Magazine, July 1991].
Slash's more sober life came as the result his excesses in 1989. In the period off the road that Slash was alluding to in the quote starting this chapter, the band almost broke up due to heroin addition and heavy drinking, Axl called his bandmates out on stage when opening for The Rolling Stone, and Slash sobered up "some months" later. Yet, "sobering up" can mean different things and in May 1991 he would be clear that he wasn't "an angel or anything", something he would repeat in many interviews:

I took care of myself for a while and I still am, more or less. Like, I’m no angel or anything, I didn’t turn into that [MTV, May 1991].
Izzy would agree that Slash was doing a lot better:

And Slash, well, let's say he can pronounce his syllables better now. He was pretty bad though. Fuck, he was a mess. He's a great guy an' all, but he can't monitor his own intake, with the result that he's always fuckin' up big-time. Like leaving dope hanging out on the table when the police come to call; nodding out into his food in restaurants - shit like that. I love the guy a lot, but the fact is, man, Slash is not what you'd call your thinkin' man's drug-user. He's real careless, doing really shitty things like OD-ing a lot in other people's apartments. A lot [VOX, September 1991].
While in Mountain View in July, talking to the journalist Simon Garfield, Slash admitted that he still takes drugs, but that it is now a "minor" thing in his life:

I’m no angel, y'know? I just stopped going over­board. The habit is just not major any more. […] I'm no angel. But I know I can't get hooked on dope again, because it just does not work for me. Its just an alienating drug period. And so I've been cool [The Age/Independent on Sunday, August 1991].
Garfield would then ask a band crew backstage if "he thinks Slash will sue if I write that he still indulges" to which the reply was, "He'll probably sue if you don't" [The Age/Independent on Sunday, August 1991].

In August 1991, while the band was on tour in Europe, Slash was again asked if he was totally clean:

No, I’m not totally clean. I don’t shoot heroin any more. You know, I stopped hard-lining, okay? That’s the new word for the month, right? Hard-line, right? But I stopped being so overindulgent to the point where I wasn’t keeping up with what I really wanted to be doing [Danish TV, August 1991].
And as interviews happened throughout 1991, it was clear Slash was still a heavy drinker [Press Conference, August 1991; The Age/Independent On Sunday, August 1991].

I’m not any kind of angel. I’m still up till all hours of the morning, still chasing women around. I still drink and still party, but within the confines of sanity. […] Let’s put it this way: I don’t get into trying to outdo myself anymore [Houston Chronicle, April 12, 1992].

Regardless of Slash, the band was still partying hard:

I think I'm lucky because I went through the drug trip early in life, as opposed to having it build up and hit me when I was 30. But I have to admit, I never really thought about drugs until I got to a point when I just realized that things were getting a little too hectic. I'm 26 now; it's been two years and I haven't had a problem with it. I'm no angel, but I'm not slamming and all that stuff [Guitar World, February 1992].
There’s not a lot of sub­stance abuse happening, but I’m not gonna turn around and say we're all clean and we don’t want any booze back- stage. We like to party a bit, but it’s all in the right kind of order now. Partying doesn’t come first. We play the gig and then we might have fun, but we don’t let the fun have us [Chicago Tribune, May 1991]
Everyone has pretty much got a lot of the ex­cessive living under control. Don’t get me wrong. We’re not turning around and saying we’re Aerosmith, that we don’t party anymore. But it’s not like before, where they were get­ting too deep into it and weren’t wor­rying about the music as much [The Home News/Orange County Register, July 1991].
We grew out of [playing wasted]. Before the show I have a couple of cocktails, to loosen me up. I wouldn't chance a show on any kind of chemical; its just not conducive to accurate playing [Guitar Player, December 1991].
Right now Slash is a lot better. But these guys, they still drink, they still party. Probably way too much for their own good. Fuck, these guys like to trash the fuck out of themselves. They really haven't changed much [VOX, October 1991].
Matt would quickly embrace the lifestyle of his new band members:

Me, I like to party. I'm like your typical drummer, I guess. Sometimes I go overboard [VOX, October 1991].
Despite reducing his drinking in early 1990, and allegedly cutting it out again for Rock in Rio, Duff was drinking heavy again under the touring in 1991. While doing a conference in Copenhagen on August 19, he was described as being "noticeably drunk and kept taking drinks" [Press Conference, August 1991].

To Rolling Stone who talked to him in June, on the other hand, he claimed to drink much less, "far from the 2 gallons of vodka a day" back in the band's early days. He would also explain that the uncertainty of whether the band would break apart or not "a few years ago", caused him to drink. When things began to look more secure he decided to stop drinking and quit for 71 days [Rolling Stone, September 1991]. These 71 days probably happened early in 1991 during Rock In Rio when Duff and Izzy were rumored to have sworn off alcohol and drugs for 60 days [Kerrang! January 1991].

When I have kids, I will stop drinking for good. I'm not going to be like my fuckin' Dad. I came to that conclusion when I was in the 2nd grade [Rolling Stone, September 1991].
In addition to drinking, Duff would develop a cocaine habit. Sebastian Bach, the singer of Skid Row who opened for Guns N' Roses in 1991, would describe how he was handing out cocaine to Duff during their first show together at Alpine Valley Music Theatre in East Troy, Wisconsin on May 24, 1991 [Sebastian Bach, 18 and Life on Skid Row, Harper Collins, 2016].

In the March issue of RIP Magazine, it would be claimed that Duff's drinking got so bad his doctor in October 1991 told him to quit [RIP Magazine, March 1992]. Three months later, in January 1992, Duff was still sober but said it was hard:

I want to go a year, but it's gonna be tough [RIP Magazine, March 1992].
Izzy would in late 1991 state he had been sober for quite some time:

I don't fuck around with that stuff [=drugs]. I just reached the point where I said 'I'm gonna kill myself. Why die for this shit [Rolling Stone, September 1991].
I've been straight for a year and a half now. No booze, no weed, no nothing. I just stopped cold. I said 'Fuck, I should give this a shot.' At first it was real hard. When I finally stopped and then started going out, just riding around on a fuckin' bicycle, I thought 'Wow, this is really cool. How did I forget all this simple shit?' [VOX, October 1991].
Izzy's last drink was taken in the company of Keith Richards and Ron Wood [Rolling Stone, September 1991], around December 19, 1989, when Axl and Izzy played with the Stones in Atlantic City, New Jersey [VOX, October 1991].

This means that the rumor about Izzy swearing off alcohol for Rock In Rio was wrong; he had already been sober for a year by then. Perhaps the rumor pertained to someone else in the band or was false altogether?

We used to do a lot of funny shit [laughing]. But I don't miss it. There is nothing like throwing up out a bus door going 65 miles an hour [Rolling Stone, September 1991].
Matt would confirm that Izzy was sober, and also imply he was opposed to it:

Izzy just doesn't dig it at all anymore. He don't dig the drinking, even [VOX, October 1991].
While Slash would say Izzy was the one who is "suffering the worst from being clean" [Dayton Daily News, January 10, 1992].

And that's one of the reasons that Izzy, even though he's completely clean, has to be away from any sort of drug activity. He doesn't know how to deal with it. Whereas with me, people can do whatever they want and I don't give a shit. I'm comfortable being on the same planet with them. […] He was definitely struggling to keep himself clean. That's why he traveled separately from us and so on [Guitar World, February 1992].


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Re: THE HISTORY OF GUNS N' ROSES - IN THEIR OWN WORDS

Post by Soulmonster on Sun Dec 02, 2018 10:11 pm

1991-1992 - AXL AND SLASH

Axl and Slash had had their differences in 1989 and 1990. Slash's struggles with heroin had resulted in Axl calling him out from the stage in October, 1989, when the band opened for The Stones (which helped Slash gain sobriety). On the other hand, Axl had been taking a increasing leadership role in the band as his band mates struggled with addiction, and while Slash was now in a productive physical state, Axl's notorious temper and mental instability that resulted in marriage problems and confrontations with the police and his neighbor, vexed on Slash in early 1991 as it delayed the making of the two 'Use Your Illusion' albums.

Well, [Axl's problems are] a pain in the ass, and they keep things from getting done. I’m the most uptight about all of this. It’s just my nature — Axl thinks I’m this sort of sick-minded workaholic. And it’s true — in some ways, I do get uptight. I can get very negative about it. But there are moments when it [Axl’s troubles] really gets in the way of what I think is productive, and we end up spending a lot of money. Sometimes I think Axl has no idea, or has a very slight idea, of what the financial reality is. I mean, to me $400,000 or whatever to make a record is ludicrous. Of course, if I was to say that to Axl outright, he’d say I don’t know what he’s going through, and there’d be a fight right there. That’s the way we’ve always been — there’s something I can’t relate to or vice versa, and that’s where we butt heads. So I just sit there with my head between my knees, freaking out…But Axl’s craziness drives me crazier than it does Axl, unbeknownst to him. And that’s the truth. […] Axl is like a magnet for problems. I’ve never met anybody like him. He’s the kind of guy that would get a toothbrush stuck down his throat because that particular toothbrush happened to be defective. [..] I mean, shit goes on with that guy, and if you talked to him, he’d tell you the same thin [Rolling Stone, January 1991].
And:

I don’t want to talk about Axl, because everybody is constantly trying to pit us against each other. You know, they’re trying to put two fucking Japanese fighting fish in the same bowl. We’ve always been the same. We have our ups and downs, and we butt heads. As long as I’ve known Axl, we’ve had so many differences that have been like the end of the line as far as we were concerned. I think that happens with most singers and guitar players, or whatever that cliché is. It might look a little intense on the outside, seeing all this shit that we’re going through, but it makes for a tension that’s — in a morbid kind of way — really conducive to the music we collaborate on. But as far as Axl goes, he is the best singer-lyricist around [Rolling Stone, January 1991].
Before the touring in 1991, Slash would open up a bit on his relationship with Axl:

If there ever was a combination of fucking opposites, like me and Axl or whoever else in the past, that one is crystal clear. Me and Axl are so unalike that we attract each other. […] The relationship between most lead singers and most lead guitar players is very sensitive, very volatile - I could go on listing these things for hours. It's just very intense. It has major ups and major downs. But somewhere between all this intensity and this friction there's a chemistry. And if the chemistry's right, like me and Axl are really tight, then there's something - a spark or, you know, a need, that holds it together. You fight too. The biggest fights are between me and Axl. But that's also what makes it happen [Q Magazine, July 1991].
And when asked what they fight over. Music? Drugs? Who gets the most attention?

I don't remember us ever fighting over who gets the most attention! No, dumb things. Like a marriage. I hate to harp on that subject because it's so negative and there's so many other cool things about the two of us, everybody else in the band too, that are just more interesting [Q Magazine, July 1991].
And when describing the "cool things":

Well, when we talk, we're not band members. We talk about ideas that we have, or remember seeing this or hearing that? We'll just sit up all night and talk, and it's me and Axl talking. It goes beyond anything you could write down. Whatever entity the Slash-Axl combination makes, you can't define it like that. It's just how we are... If I ever gave it that much thought and had an answer, then it would make the whole thing too fucking predictable, wouldn't it? [Q Magazine, July 1991].
In September 1991, Rolling Stones would discuss the different personalities of Axl and Slash: "Slash seems to have accepted the occasional flare up arising from his and Rose's warring internal time tables as par for the course; its clear that he sees the tension as a necessary evil, the spark that makes for the combustible energy at the heart of their creative collaboration" [Rolling Stone, September 1991].

As Axl caused controversies during the 'Use Your Illusion' touring in 1991, Slash received more and more credit for keeping the band together. The Boston Globe would say that Slash is "widely viewed as keeping Guns in gear" and that he "has become the band's expert at damage control" able to "throw a positive spin on all events" [Boston Globe, December 5, 1991]. Slash himself would downplay Axl's negative media coverage:

The best way of putting it is that his (Axl's) image gets blown way out of proportion. Some of the things are true, but some are blown way out of proportion. And then there are complete falsehoods -- and even those are blown out of proportion from the first time they came out [Boston Globe, December 5, 1991].
In December 1991, Slash would also say that he and Axl never fight anymore and that they have a professional relationship [The Philadelphia Inquirer, December 16, 1991]:

Every night I show up, he shows up, we talk about normal things. We figure out what the first song should be. We’ve been doing this for a while, so we’ve gotten good at picking up whatever the other person is feeling, which is important, because things are so spontaneous we have to be really together as a band [The Philadelphia Inquirer, December 16, 1991].
He would corroborate on this in early 1992:

[The relationship between him and Axl]'s only been stormy in the public’s eyes because of the media. Axl and I haven’t had a fight in about a year and a half, and the couple fights that we did have were the kind of fights that any family could have over such a volatile situation as the one we’re in [Dayton Daily News, January 10, 1992].
During the band's second show in Dayton, on January 14, 1992, a quarrel broke out onstage between Axl and Slash when Axl misheard something Slash had said:

We had a run-in in Dayton [Ohio], because both myself and Dougie thought [Slash] said something shitty to me onstage. That was the night I cut my hand to the bone. Backstage we have monitors much like the ones onstage, and while I was back there dealing with my hand, I thought I heard him take a potshot at me. I wrapped my hand up in a towel and was like, "Let's get it taken care of, so I can finish the show." I came back onstage and was a dick to him and told him I'd kick his f?!king ass in front of 20,000 people. That was f?!ked up. I was wrong, and I apologized the second I realized I was mistaken. Someone who is supporting me as strongly as he does is a hand I never want to bite [RIP Magazine, September 1992].
Axl's amazingly misunderstood. I've known him for a long time and we've gone through a dozen different plateaus in the relationship. It took me a long time to understand him. We're so different as far as personalities go. He's highly complex; I'm very black-and-white. So we have a lot of run-ins. But we're really close [Star Tribune, January 21, 1992].
In February 1992, Slash would again talk about the complexity of Axl's personality and how Slash would act as a mediator:

Well, I know Axl real well and a hell of a lot better than anyone’s gonna know him from reading the press. I know where he’s coming from and I may be a little more level-headed so I guess I get labelled as the mediator at this point. With Axl though, a lot of it comes from just unbridled sincerity. Everything about him as a performer and a singer comes from his personality, so the shit that makes him crazy or the shit that he finds hard to deal with is, at the same time, what makes his talent, you know? […]Sure, shit goes down and I keep it together, but with me it’s pretty simple. It’s ‘Get the fuck up there and plug in that guitar and go!’. With him it isn’t that simple. There’s a lot going on part from the three hours that we spend up there and it’s that shit that affects him. I can say that really, apart from getting laid, we’ve all realized that there ain’t that much fun in the music business! [Raw Magazine, March 4, 1992].
In a RIP issue published in March he talked about how close they were:

The thing about me and Axl is, both of us have no real life outside of this band. All I do is play guitar. My life is completely devoted to my own personal career and Guns N' Roses. So, like, Axl might seem like a pain in the ass to everybody involved, but at the same time. he's as dedicated to it as I am - even more so in many ways. He cares about a lot of things I don't even think about, because I'm sort of just a rock guitar player... book the gig and play it! Me and Axl have gotten really close lately, talking about this whole Guns N' Roses trip and what this band is capable of doing, and about making a few statements as far as what we're about, because we're getting sick of having other people tell us what we're supposed to be about [RIP, March 1992].

An example of how Slash would protect Axl and downplay any of his negative sides, is from MTV in March 1992 when Slash was asked to explain the band's late concert starts, and even challenged on whether it wasn't Axl's fault and how he felt about that. Slash would refuse to throw Axl under the bus and instead prevaricated [MTV Rockline, March 1992].


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Re: THE HISTORY OF GUNS N' ROSES - IN THEIR OWN WORDS

Post by Soulmonster on Mon Dec 10, 2018 7:17 pm

AUGUST 13-31 - TOURING 'USE YOUR ILLUSION', FIRST EUROPEAN LEG

After a short break the band travelled to Europe to continue their 'Use Your Illusion' tour in August 1991. For this leg of the tour the band had got a chiropractor and masseuse on tour with them, especially for Slash who needed to have "his back aligned before each show to prepare him for the stress of jumping off stage ramps" [Boston Globe, December 5, 1991]. Slash would also be more conscious about his health:

I used to play in cowboy boots, but now I'm in my Adidas. We have a chiropractor on the road; right before the show, he'll crack me up and make me a bit more limber. And we have a masseuse. My left hand cramps up some-times, and she gets right in here and loosens it up. There have been shows when between songs I'm going, "Ax, I can't play'—my fingers are like this [makes fist]. Now at the hotels, regardless of whether I want to or not, for breakfast I'll eat cornflakes and bananas for the potassium. Axl's always been very health-conscious; I'm the complete opposite—I used to do as much damage as humanly possible. Now that were headlining, all of a sudden I'm really aware—as aware as my personality will allow—of my physical status. […] It's more that I don't want to burn out or have some physical ailment pop up in the middle of a set. It was a conscious effort by people who work with us, who said, "Try this." For so long, my attitude has been to blow everything off; now I'm striving to be open-minded. I started taking vitamins—pop four with a Coke [grins]. I mean, I'll never completely grow up. After an awesome show, you come away feeling fuckin' jazzed. It's the best feeling in the world, so you do whatever you can to support that. And yes, it does help to have 20,000 people enjoy your show [Guitar Player, December 1991].
Skid Row travelled along as the opener. The first shows was at Helsinki Ice Hall in Helsinki, Finland on August 13 and 14. The European leg started where the North American had ended just 10 days before, with Axl being volatile:

[...] Axl walked offstage just as we started playing 'Welcome to the Jungle' and disappeared for twenty-five minutes or so [Duff's autobiography, "It's So Easy", 2011, p. 190].
And I started therapy in February (1991) and, Jesus, I'm right in the middle of stuff. I mean, if a heavy emotional issue surfaces and you've got a show in four hours, you have to figure out how to get that sorted out really quick before you get onstage so that you're really quick before you get onstage so that you're not in the middle of "Jungle" and have a breakdown. The pressure of having to do the show when whatever else is going on in my life is hard to get past. We did a show in Finland where I just couldn't understand why I was doing what I was doing. I sat down while I was singing "Civil War," and I was kind of looking at my lips while I was singing and looking at the microphone and looking at the roadies, and everything just shut off. Well, that doesn't make for a very good show [Rolling Stone, April 2, 1992].

After this the band played two shows at Globen in Stockholm, Sweden on August 16 and 17. On the second of these the show started three hours late:


[...] At the fourth show [of the European leg of the Use Your Illusion tour], in Stockholm, Sweden, [Axl] went to a street festival and watched fireworks before turning up to the gig three hours late [Duff's autobiography, "It's So Easy", 2011, p. 190].
The band then travelled to Denmark for a show at the Copenhagen Forum in Copenhagen on August 19. On the very same day a coup d'état took place in Soviet and Axl would hoist a Russian flag at the concert in protest [Press Conference, August 1991].


It was a one-time happening that we did because of what's happening in the Soviet Union. We're not gonna meddle in the politics, but it was our way to express our opinion [Press Conference, August 1991].
During this concert an explosion was heard and the band stopped playing. Axl yelled that they would not continue until the culprit had been arrested. After a little while the band came back and Axl explained that a guy had turned himself in [Press Conference, August 1991].

The band was then supposed to travel to Norway for a show in Oslo, but this concert was cancelled.

The next show was in Germany at the May Market Arena in Mannheim on August 24. At about 25 minutes into this show, Axl was hit by an object under 'Live and Let Die,' and, as a result, left the stage. According to Slash and Duff, the promoters prevented Axl from leaving the arena, forcing him back onto the stage, and a riot was prevented.


We went on late - late even for us - then, pretty early in the set, something happened and Axl walked off for what reason I have no idea. He wasn't getting heckled as far as I could see, no one hit him with a bottle or anything, but he wasn't having it. Th stage at that venue was literally about a mile away from the production office and dressing room, so a van was there to shuttle us back and forth. When Axl left the stage, he went to the van and headed off to the dressing room.

The rest of us came offstage and were standing around, waiting to find out if Axl was coming back or if his van had taken off to the hotel. [...]

I remember standing there with Duff while Matt was fuming. [...] "Fuck that guy," he said. "I'm gonna go straighten him out."[...]

By this point we'd discovered that Axl's van had not left for the dressing room; he was sitting in it but refused to come out and return to the stage [...] So Matt went down to Axl's van to rally him, but as he got down there, he ran into Axl, who had emerged to head back to the stage. Matt was so fired up, though, that he got in Axl's face regardless, to the degree that it almost got physical.

"What the fuck are you doing?" Matt yelled. "Get back onstage!"

I ran up and got between them, because it wasn't a good situation. Axl can get completely psycho when he decides to fight and Matt weighs twice as much as I do - and he plays the drums - so it wasn't exactly a good place for me to be. Axl went back to his van, and it didn't look like he was coming out again. The clock was ticking.

The promoters saw the drama that was going on and closed the gates around the venue so that we couldn't leave. They'd heard what had happened in St. Louis, and it's a good thing they did; if they hadn't, I'm positive that the thirty-eight thousand fans there would have rioted, we would have been held liable and arrested, and people might have died. The local police were already there in riot gear, ready to deal with a full-on situation. It was a scary, tense scene, and a very near miss.

We got Axl back onstage once he realized he had no choice, and the rest of the show went as planned. All I could remember thinking as I walked offstage after the encore was Fuck that was close
[Slash's autobiography, p 343-344]
When Axl left the stage in Mannheim, Germany, another riot looked inevitable. We had gone on late again. The venue was huge, an outdoor stadium packed with twice as many people as even the biggest of the basketball arenas we had played in the United States up to this point. Matt Sorum tried a novel approach when Axl left; maybe to a "new" guy it was the obvious thing to do. He went to find Axl and confront him. He was turned away by Axl's security detail. The promoters - not the band members, not the managers, not the entourage - saved the day. Their threat was that Axl would be arrested if a riot occurred might not have worked on its own. But they also locked us into the venue [Duff's autobiography, "It's So Easy", 2011, p. 194]
The band then headed to the last show on the first European leg, at Wembley Stadium, London, in England on August 31. Before this show the band allegedly told the Brent Council they would refrain from swearing or jumping offstage [The Guardian, September 1991].

After the show Slash met Brian May from Queen. Guns N' Roses would later play in Freddie Mercury's tribute concert at Wembley (April 20, 1992], May would play with the band at Wembley (June 13, 1992], and May would also work with the band during their Chinese Democracy era in the late 90s/early 00s.

I’m trying to get to the point where I can get known as a good guitar player as opposed to the drunken drug guy. I met Brian May after Wembley and he gave me a lot of compliments. He was really sweet [The Guardian, September 1991].
As Slash was talking to May, an elderly man and a teenager approached, asking if they could have his autograph and then introducing themselves as Slash's grandfather and cousin [Music Life, November 17, 1991].

I hadn't seen them in 15 years! […] And then out of the blue I got a letter. One of my uncles is a rock fan – he turned me on to the Moody Blues when I was still living in England – and he was reading a Jethro Tull article in a magazine and he saw the names Ola Hudson (Slash's mother), Saul Hudson – Saul being me – and that's how they knew how their relative was. […] So I knew they were coming but I didn't know who they were. I was really nervous about it for a little bit. And when my grandparents – my grandfather; my grandmother has apparently passed away – after the show I was sitting there fucking exhausted going, okay, I'll just have a drink and I'll go out. And when I saw them, they had fucking baby pictures of me, the whole thing! Very bizarre! [laughter] But it was cool, It's just an example of how weird this whole fucking business gets [Music Life, November 17, 1991].
The Wembley show will go down in history as the last show with Izzy.

Izzy didn't walk away and force the cancellation of the Wembley show. He stayed and played one last gig to draw the curtains on this leg of the tour - the last show before the release of the albums we were ostensibly touring. Axl arrived on time. We played spectacularly well, as fierce and inspired and together as ever before. If not for the additional people and gear onstage, it could have been mistaken for one of our club shows [Duff's autobiography, "It's So Easy", 2011, p. 194].
Izzy's final show was before seventy-two thousand people at Wembley Stadium, in London, a venue we sold out faster than any artist in history [Slash's autobiography, "Slash", 2007, p. 344-345].
The Wembley concert was also the last before the release of 'Use Your Illusion I' and 'Use Your Illusion II'. Slash would comment upon how it had been to play the shows before the albums were out:

We were amazed that the shows were sold out and we could headline without a record. That's a great way to break your band in. It was a lot like when we first started and we didn't have a record out and we were playing and opening up for Motley Crüe and all that and people had no idea who we were but we pulled it off because the band was good. And so we just did it again. We started without having the album and people can get familiar with the material on the album by hearing it at the show and then they can look for it on the record as opposed to the other way round. It's very ass-backwards! [RAW, October 1991].


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Re: THE HISTORY OF GUNS N' ROSES - IN THEIR OWN WORDS

Post by Soulmonster on Mon Dec 10, 2018 8:33 pm

SEPTEMBER 17, 1991 - THE RELEASE OF USE YOUR ILLUSION I & II

In May 1991, the song 'Bad Apples' leaked to the media [Los Angeles Times, June 1991] and when Guitar Player got to listen to a pre-release copy of the records in August security was tight due to "piracy problems" [Guitar Player, December 1991]. But finally, in September 1991, after numerous delays and a long process, the two records, 'Use Your Illusion I' and 'Use Your Illusion II', were released.

More than a year before the release date Axl would discuss the title:

It might be called Use Your Illusion. We’re talking with an artist named Kostabi, because I bought a painting and we want to use it as a possible cover, and the title of the painting is “Use Your Illusion”, and that’s what we may use. I wrote a song the night before that says, “I bought me an illusion and put it on the wall”, and the next day I found a painting called “Use Your Illusion" [Unknown Source, July 1990].
The song Axl is referring to is 'Locomotive' off 'Use Your Illusion II'.

Apparently, the name and artwork of the records was all Axl's idea:

It’s the title of a painting by some controversial artist. I don’t know who. I’ve never heard of him. I don’t keep up with art circles. But that’s the name of this painting that Axl bought, and he said, “Let’s make this the cover of the album.” Like the last album cover, we just said, “Fine,” no discussion [Rolling Stone, January 1991].
Ιt’s an artist by the name of Mark Kostabi. And I picked that painting because I was like, I was really tired and I was having dinner somewhere. And there was an art gallery across the street, and I went like, "Well, I’ve never walked into an art gallery before being able to afford something" [chuckles]. […] And I went in, and I happened to know this guy who worked for Billy Idol, and he was working there. And I wandered around, and then I walked into the office when no one was around, and it had all these other paintings. And I had just written Locomotive, where I said “I bought me an illusion and I put it on the wall”, and I found this painting that I really liked. And then I looked at the back and the title was “Use Your Illusion”. And it was just kinda like meant to be. It was, like, the first painting that I’ve ever bought. And I took it home and took everybody by a little while to warm up to it, but, you know... And everybody finally got into it. And Slash decided that it said a lot, you know, and we agreed as a band that it was pretty cool. I also wanted to use that picture because it was art. It was art that has a lot of controversy around it, because of Kostabi’s methods of actually doing the paintings. The background was taken from a very old painting, but it’s still something really nice to look at and it’s - I don’t know how I feel about how it was done, I just know I like it. So to me that’s kinda like with songs, when using a tape or using tape machines to create things. Sometimes that’s a problem, other times it’s just like, “Well, maybe that’s how they need to get it done and you get to hear the song”, you know. So that’s why I like this particular cover, a lot of reasons. […] Plus, it was, like, a cover to go, to go to people that could go on, “Guns N’ Roses is just obnoxious” or whatever. And I might go on, “Yeah, well, why don’t you put this nice picture in your house”, you know? Sitting there, you know? […] “You didn’t expect that from us, did you”? [Rockline, November 27, 1991].
But Slash found the title brilliant:

The title, "Use Your Illusion" - which is every bit as splendidly apposite to Guns as "Appetite For Destruction" - came from a painting by Mark Kostabi that Axl liked, just as "Appetite" was named after the outrageous robot rape painting that graced its sleeve until record shops refused to stock it. […] "Use Your Illusion' is also very ironic for us. I mean, I don't know why but this band has just generated bullshit hype for so long that it's like throwing it back in their faces [Melody Maker, August 1991].
Before the two 'Use Your Illusion' albums were released, Matt, Slash and Duff would describe how the follow-ups would differ from 'Appetite':

‘Appetite’ was a party album. This new stuff goes deeper than that. It’s more about relationships [than politics], stuff that’s hap­pened to the band over the last few years [Chicago Tribune, May 1991].
I will say it leans more to the darker side. There’s not a ton of really happy material on it, you know? Most of it is pretty fucking pissed off. It’s very pissed off, and it’s very heavy, and then there’s also a subtlety to it as far as us really trying to play. […] he way our lives turned around, the repercussions of our success and the general shit that we do from day to day gets brought up a lot. There are a lot of semi-humorous drug tunes and a few songs about love going in whichever direction. Regardless of whether it sounds like the blues or not, basically that’s what it is. It’s a strange thing. I never thought we were a naive band; I always thought we were pretty hip to what’s going on. But when we used to just hang out on the street, it was more fun than when we had lots of money and became part of society and were forced to deal with responsibilities. I think money is like the central nerve of it all, too. It’s like I think Jimi Hendrix said — “The more money you make, the more blues you can sing [Rolling Stone, January 1991].
I’ll put it this way, take the songs from ‘Appetite,’ the rocking songs, the heavy songs ... they’re magnified by 10. The pretty songs? Magnify that by 10, too. 'Sweet Child o’ Mine’ was a real pretty song, but compared to the new s—, it’s real amateur [Detroit Free Press, May 1991].
And how they had expanded the instrumentation:

You know, there’s actually some synth on the new record, but it’s not, like, Milli Vanilli didn’t do (laughs). […] No, I mean it’s not that kind of stuff. It’s just with the band playing and there’s some other stuff, like, thrown in. And just because we were screwing around it’s very Guns N’ Roses. We did work with somebody – I won’t mention his name – that was using samples on the drums and, like, when Axl and I discovered it, we flipped, literally. We were like, “What?” You know, it was all these Guns N’ Roses samples he used [MTV, May 1991].
There’ll be a lot of different instruments. I’ve got guitars doing all different kinds of sounds and things. There are horns on “Live and Let Die.” We didn’t get into sampling, but right now, as we speak, Axl is in the studio with a rack of synthesizers, so we don’t have to bring in an orchestra for a couple of songs. There might even be a bunch of kids singing on “November Rain,” because it’s that kind of song. It’s very angelic. We’ll do whatever it takes to make the songs as powerful as possible [Rolling Stone, January 1991].
Yet, it did not signify a change in musical direction:

It’s not a change in direction; I don’t think we ever had a real direction. But we have gotten a little bit more experimental, I guess. I hate that word — we’ve just been doing shit, whatever we felt like doing. This album goes from one extreme to the other, from some very, very intensely raunchy, over-the-top stuff to being very mellow — and everything in between [Rolling Stone, January 1991].
Slash would also shed some light on the collaborative effort:

Left on our own, I'm sure everyone would make very different albums. I write songs that are maybe a little more intricate than what Izzy wants to play—there's one on the record, 'Coma,' that's about 10 minutes long and 500 chord changes. But if the melody doesn't catch you at first it's hard to develop an interest in anyone else learning it. We all have different ideas, but there's no hierarchy. We still have to do everything as a band [Musician, December 1990].
The band would discuss why the decided to release two records:

Well, on album form, on the wax, it’s four albums, because we wanted to have the deepest grooves and stuff for... Since vinyl is somewhat going out, we wanted to be one the last bands doing the best job we could for audiophiles and stuff. You know, the deepest grooves and a minimal amount of time on each side. And figuring out the sequencing was really hard (?) anything else, to start each side and end each side with a cool song, so that it sounded like it began and ended right, resolved properly. And the CDs and the tapes being two separate things, we’re echoing well a lot of kids. A lot of people, when they go to buy a record, they go to buy one and they won’t be able to... It’s like, if there’s a choice, “Well, I’d like to get Guns N’ Roses, but it’s $29.95 and there’s this other band’s album, well I’ll get that one.” You know, we were like, maybe we can get past that a little bit. […] I’m sure it will sound better on CD. We worked to make it sound stronger on CD, but we’re gonna definitely work on the mastering to get the best sound we can on the vinyl. Everything gets as much attention as anything else. Every single song has got as much attention as anyone’s song. Every little part. You know, we’re kind of perfectionists and you never quite get it right, but... (chuckles) [MTV, May 1991].
For one, we didn’t wanna look that pompous and we didn’t wanna make anybody go out and have to spend, like, 30 bucks or whatever it is for a double record. Double records just seem to be just, like, out-of-date anyway. And we’ve been in the concept, when this concept started to form, of separating it and making it so you go out and buy one and, if you like it, then maybe you buy the other one. You have a choice of the two and stuff like that, that made it more fair to the public, you know [MTV, May 1991].
We didn’t make it a double album because that’s a little overboard and a little pretentious. Plus, this way, a kid can go out and buy one record, his buddy can go buy the other record or whatever... and maybe when they get enough money to buy the other one, they can do that. Plus, it’s never been done this way before [Detroit Free Press, May 1991].
There was a lot of old material that we wanted to include. It's not possible to release your second album as a double so we thought it was a good idea to release two separate albums instead. Besides many fans can't afford a double-album. Now two friends can buy one album each and tape them from each other. If you buy "Use Your Illusion I" and think it's good you then can buy "Use Your Illusion II." […] We had been separated from each other in over one year and the recordings were a way for us to get together again. That's why it was nice to be in the studio so long that we once again became a unit. […] During our entire career we've put material aside. We've been thinking "this we can use later" and we ended up having too much material put aside. Now there isn't any unreleased material with Guns N' Roses, so when it's time for out third album it will be up-to-date [Press Conference, August 1991].
So that the people could afford it. You know, they can buy one or buy the other; or they can buy one and a friend can buy the other and they can tape it, and... So that the package, you know, for the price, they could buy one or the other. And it was also competitive with other things out there in the market. You know, if somebody else’s record is 12.95 and ours is 30 bucks, it’s like, that’s... [Rockline, November 27, 1991].
Describing the difference between 'Use Your Illusion I' and 'Use Your Illusion II':

Well, I’d say, the first half of the first CD is more in line with Appetite, no new songs. And the second half of the first CD has Coma, November Rain, and The Garden... So some really experimental numbers for us. And then I’d say that the first half of the second one is “the south will rise again” (laughs). We didn’t plan on that, but there’s, like, Heaven’s Door, and Civil War, and the song Yesterdays and a song called Breakdown that definitely have a bit of a southern rock feel. […] Like, I’d say, Paradise City - in the chorus - kind of has that. And Sweet Child kind of has that. And it ended up the best sequencing to make the record flow all the way through. We didn’t plan on putting all those songs in that vein together, but to make the record flow all the way through, so if you wanted to listen to all of it, that’s the best way. […] And there’ll be a version of Don’t Cry on both records, one on the first one and one on the second. The one on the first one is the newly recorded version of the original lyrics. And then the second one is the newly recorded version of alternative lyrics; they’re kinda like ’91 updates, got different words and melody in the verses [MTV, May 1991].
Alan Niven would hype the records:

"Use Your Illusion" is a cross between Physical Graffiti and "The Wall. It's a record that's gonna amaze and frighten at the same time [RIP, June 1991].
The two albums were finally released on September 17, 1991. And it was an immediate success. The expected sales within just the first two hours was $5 million [Los Angeles Times, September 1991]. Needless to say, Geffen Records president Eddie Rosenblatt was thrilled: "This is the most exciting thing that's ever happened in the record business" [Los Angeles Times, September 1991]. After a week, Geffen estimated that each record had sold more than 2.5 million copies [Los Angeles Times, September 1991]. This would be down-adjusted to between 1.5 and 2.0 copies in total, with 'Use Your Illusion II' selling 100,000 more copies than 'Use Your Illusion I'. As with 'Appetite', some stores, including Kmart and Walmart, refused to sell the records, citing the band's image and lyrics [MTV News, September 1991].

During the process of recording the albums, band members would comment upon the lenghty process:

In May 1991, Slash was asked why it had taken so long:

Actually, you know, there’s a lot of stuff that’s taking long and that made it take a long time. I mean, all this success made it take a long time, that sudden realization of, like, being huge. I know it blew my mind and threw me for a loop, right? Especially cuz we’ve been... we were, sort of like, just not from that school at all. So that took a little while. I mean, that took till just recently for me to adjust as far as home life goes. And then there was the associated drug problems that ensued. And then there was, you know, the situation with Steven and then finding somebody to replace Steven and, you know, finding somebody to fit into the band, fit into the folds, right? Which was no easy task at all. So, like, we couldn’t put an ad in the Post, you know. And then, after that, it was getting us in a studio. No, working out the material with Matt and then getting in the studio. And we did the studio stuff really quick, like, the basics, and then I went and did guitars and all that stuff. Then we just spent a lot, we enjoy being in the studio, and although we did wanna go out on tour, we had all this material and we wanted to do it good, so I mean... yeah. Plus we just sat around, like, sort of watch the music scene turn into sludge again. I was terrified so we just hung out until the timing was right [MTV, May 1991].[/i]
Well, we toured for so fucking long, and by the time the tour was over we were told we were mega - Spinal Tap, you know. You're great! You're great! And we're still walking around trying to make sure you don't have a stain on your jeans after you take a piss kind of thing. And there's all this stuff going on around you, all these people treating you like you're on a pedestal even if you don't feel that way. So we went from nowhere to being this really huge band, not feeling any different, only having people tell you that and react to you a certain way.

When they dropped us off at the airport after the tour was over, I had nowhere to go. It kind of runs in the family with us - maybe not with Axl but defenitly with me - where if I'm not busy and focused, I get loaded to pass the time. So that's what happened. I went through a phase of that and then I cleaned up and we tried to rehearse and we were writing material.

The worst thing of it, though, was because of no longer having to live in one room, the band got separated, getting their own homes. And that was the hardest part. It's like Slash is here, Axl's here, Izzy's over there, Duff's here, and I don't even know where Steven lives, right? Like, Duff, can we come over? "Well, the gardener's coming today..." That was a whole huge experience that took a really long time for me to adjust to
[Q Magazine, July 1991].[/i]
I moved into an apartment, the cheapest apartment I could find off of Sunset Boulevard - that's how demented I am, right? - and we just used to party all the time and have amps all about the place and I'd write songs and Duff would come over and every so often Axl would come over and we'd write together. But it was such a long period. And I got so wrapped up in dope and coke and all the fucking scum that goes along with it that finally it just got out of hand. So I cleaned up and bought a house. Then I sat in the house for a while and hated it. I'd lay in bed and stare at the ceiling. There was nothing to do. And then I got back into it and got strung out in a serious way, where everybody was really worried and I had some close run-ins with the police. But then the Stones gigs came around - which I really wanted to do to bring the band back together; that's why after the Stones gigs (and Axl's onstage ultimatum) I went and cleaned up - and then it was Steven's turn [Q Magazine, July 1991].[/i]
I keep reading about delays in getting the record out, but as far as the band is concerned, there really have been no delays. The only (rule) we had was to make the best record we could, regardless of how long it took. […] But we had people at the record company come up with deadlines on when they wanted the record out and we'd go, 'OK, we'll do our best (to meet the deadline),' and we tried. But we were not going to give anybody the record until we felt it was done [Los Angeles Times, July 1991].[/i]
People want something, and they want it as soon as they can get it. Needy people. And I'm the same way, but I want it to be right - I don't want it to be half-assed. Since we put out Appetite for Destruction, I've watched a lot of bands put out two to four albums. They went out, they did a big tour, they were big rock stars for that period of time. That's what everybody is used to now - the record companies push that. But I want no part of that. We weren't just throwing something together to be rock stars. We wanted to put something together that meant everything to us. […] I've had a good understanding of where I wanted Guns n' Roses to go and the things I wanted Guns n' Roses to achieve musically, and I can't say that everybody's had a grip on that. We're competing with rock legends, and we're trying to do the best we can to possibly be honored with a position like that. […] We want to define ourselves. Appetite was our cornerstone, a place to start. That was like 'Here's our land, and we just put a stake in the ground. Now we're going to build something [Rolling Stone, September 1991].[/i]
And after its release, Slash would blame the press and people pestering them:

You know, the biggest thing is that we work so hard at playing and yet everybody spends so much time trying to pull out so much negative stuff about us and drugs and sex and bad relationships and the guys in the band and stuff, and it makes it hard for us just to concentrate on playing. Which is one of the reasons why it took us so long to get the record together because, after awhile, the hype just got to be overwhelming, We'd lock ourselves away in the studio and it was great to be in that environment and just spend all your time playing. But even then it came and crept into the studio. It was really hard. […] Everybody just started to know where we were and every time we'd come out to the studio there'd be people waiting outside. it was like, 'C'mon, give us a break, you know, It's just a band. We're trying to make a record' [RAW, October 1991].[/i]


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Re: THE HISTORY OF GUNS N' ROSES - IN THEIR OWN WORDS

Post by Soulmonster on Mon Dec 10, 2018 8:39 pm

JUNE 1991-JANUARY 1994 - SINGLES FROM THE 'USE YOUR ILLUSIONS'

Despite Slash claiming there weren't any singles on the upcoming two 'Use Your Illusion' albums, the band would end up releasing eight singles.

I don’t think there are any singles on this record. […] I don’t mean to rock the boat or anything, but I think there’s a swearword of some sort on every song. Every potential single it’s, like, whoops, oh, well, not that one. But there’s some great songs, and I don’t care if they say “fucking” in it or if they say “shit” or if they’re talking about girls in the way we’re not supposed to [Rolling Stone, January 1991].
The first single out was 'You Could Be Mine' which was released on June 21, 1991. It sold more than 1.5 million copies in the first 30 days [Geffen Press Release, September 1991]. The song would be featured as the theme song in Terminator 2: Judgement Day. The music video would hence feature Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Arnold was great. Arnold’s really nice. […] He apparently is a Guns N’ Roses fan. […] And he was working on his movie and he said that he was talking with Jim Cameron, the director who did The Abyss and he was saying he wanted to get (does a Schwarzenegger impression) “some good music, some hard music, some Guns N’ Roses”...for a very long time and finally, like, in the last month, all of a sudden he was like, “I think you’re right” and Arnold was like, “It’s a little late”. But it worked out really cool because we wanted to put out a version of the song You Could Be Mine. And also with Don’t Cry we had a rocker and a ballad. And we let them listen to a lot of material and the song they picked was You Could Be Mine. So it worked out good for both of us and we shot a video for it, we filmed the show in the Ritz and then, you know, I guess Arnold was flying back from Congress and going, (does Schwarzenegger impression) “I want to be in the video”. So Arnold got all his people and put together a video so we’ll have yet to see what it’s like [MTV, May 1991].
I mean, I guess [Schwarzenegger] liked the songs and stuff. We hung out really. We got along really, really well. And he gave the whole band jackets from the movie and these great French leather biker jackets, right? With bullet holes, everywhere. And the one jacket I got was from my favorite scene. I mean, they’re at random and he gave them to us, right? And I got my favorite one, which is, like, he gets shot six million times and they all come through his back, right? So I got that one. The sleeves come down to my fingernails (laughs). Anyway, I gave that to my security guard and he flipped. And I gave Arnold my top hat. […] No, [You Could Be Mine] is a rocker. It’s the first release on the record and it’s in the movie, and so we shot in New York and we shot some, like, footage of us coming out of the dressing room, there's a stage door at the Roxy in L.A., where we come face-to-face with Arnold in his Terminator gear and it was all pretty funny [MTV, May 1991].
Arnold was great. I was real skeptical about getting involved with "Terminator" at first, because… uhh… It's just… It's another one of those things people do a lot nowadays. And you see these videos that makes absolutely no sense. It's like, the song, and then… and then… uhh… and then… uhh… you know, some clip from the movie, and then you see the band and the two… The twain don't meet on the same ground for some reason. And so, I didn't wanna get involved into that sort of campy way of doing things. But at the same time, "Terminator 1" was great. And so we liked that, you know. And sort of in good faith, we gave them four songs for them to check out. To see if they're really interested or not. 'Cause they brought it up to us, we didn't go to them. And they picked "You Could Be Mine" and… So, we went to Arnold's house and we had dinner and we hung out. And it was like, we stripped away all the… the celebrity status stuff and just really hung out and had dinner and had a great time. So that meant a lot, you know, to get personal and get toe-to-toe with somebody. That's like, one of the most important things for us, is to be able to feel comfortable with somebody. And believe me, that's a hard thing for us to do. And so, that went over well. And they… they took "You Could Be Mine"… and they put it into a rough edit and we went and saw a screening. And the movie was cool and the song was really cool where it was in the movie. And… as long as we had final approval on the… on how we were gonna use it in the video, then everything was great. And the finished product was cool. So, I'm actually happy with it. And I thought for a movie… uhh… for… for… you know, music video… music video slash movie kind of thing, it was pretty original, you know. And pretty dynamic [WNEW 102.7, September 1991].
It worked out really cool because we wanted to put out a version of the song You Could Be Mine. ... and we shot a video for it, we filmed the show in the Ritz and then, you know, I guess Arnold was flying back from Congress and going, (does Schwarzenegger impression) "I want to be in the video" [MTV, May 1991].
We hung out, really. We got along really, really well. And he gave the whole band jackets from the movie and these great French leather biker jackets, right? With bullet holes, everywhere [MTV, May 1991].
He was kind of real soft spoken, nice guy [MTV, May 1991].
[…] we shot some footage of us coming out of the dressing room, there’s a stage door at the Roxy in L.A., where we come face-to-face with Arnold in his Terminator gear and it was all pretty funny [MTV, May 1991].
Schwarzenegger himself would comment upon it:

"[The band members] have been big, big fans of Terminator and have expressed that many times. And I have been a fan of their music, so we checked into what it will be like to do a video together or to get some of the music" [MTV, September 1991].

The second single was 'Don't Cry', released on September 17, 1991, the same day as the two albums were dropped. Axl now wanted to realize his lofty aspirations for filmatic music videos, and reportedly had planned the schematics of the associated music video already back in May 1991 [RIP, September 1991].

[…] the video that we just did for 'Don’t Cry' fits even better with the new lyrics than the old one [Rockline, November 27, 1991].
At the end of the music video for 'Don't Cry' the text "P.S. thanx Joseph!" In his 1991 Rockline interview, Axl would explain this was to honor Joseph Brooks who had played a role in the band's early success:

And Joseph was the guy who... You know, Don’t Cry was his favorite song. He’s a DJ out here in Hollywood that keeps a lot of bands alive, and keeps people listening to them - you know, a bit alternative and a bit hard rock - and he works in all the hard rock clubs. And he’d got our song, Don’t Cry, to the record company in the beginning, and I didn’t feel that anybody that he had helped had really thanked him enough. And I knew if I put it on there, it would be permanent, and if I didn’t put his last name – his name is Joseph Brooks – people would be like, “Oh, who is Joseph?” [Rockline, November 27, 1991].
Explaining the babies with different eye colors in the video:

Well, the eyes, it was different babies, and it was meant to be that it was two different people, you know, and it was like birth and rebirth. And it was meant to show that, you know. And we just used green eyes cuz I have green eyes. And “there’s a lot going on” means that there’s a lot more going on in the world than most people think or care to realize [Rockline, November 27, 1991].
The third single was 'Live and Let Die'. The video was finished on November 25, 1991 [Rockline, November 27, 1991]:

Just got it done 2 days ago and we’re really happy with it. We used a lot of shots from our childhood and stuff that we’ve had to live through. I think it will be fun for people [Rockline, November 27, 1991].

Then they released 'November Rain' on February 18, 1992. With that single the band was accused for being indulgent:

Yeah, indulgent, right. It’s funny ‘cos I always thought music was indulgent in the first place. Putting out two double albums might be indulgent, but if you ask me we’re musicians doing exactly what the fuck we want to do and having the space to do it. We’ve never adhered to industry standards and I felt that going out there and playing those songs that no-one had heard in front of 20,000-60,000 people per night was pretty ballsy. I can’t see Bon Blow-me doing that, can you? Otherwise they’d be out there now. I don’t think we bored too many people and, in fact, as a live band I think we showed exactly where our confidence lies. No one told us to play bund of hits and I think we managed to crossover from being a band that people went to see to get fucked up to, to a band that people actually listen to, that’s cool, whatever anyone says [Raw Magazine, March 4, 1992].


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Re: THE HISTORY OF GUNS N' ROSES - IN THEIR OWN WORDS

Post by Soulmonster on Mon Dec 10, 2018 11:23 pm

STEVEN, AFTER GUNS N' ROSES

The split with Guns N' Roses hit Steven hard:

Steven: "Besides losing my best friends and my family, which was that band, my wife also left me… […] I was married and my wife left me. First the band treats me like I'm dead, then my wife leaves me. And at that point I was feeling so sorry for myself it was ridiculous" [Hot Metal, December 1991].

Not long after being fired, Steven briefly attempted to form a new band with former Hanoi Rocks guitarist Andy McCoy [VOX, October 1991]. According to one Gunner "it lasted maybe a couple of weeks, then someone overdosed over at the house and that was that" [VOX, October 1991].

Later Steven pieced together that included former members of the Vain [Hot Metal, December 1991]. The band was called Road Crew, the same name of the band Slash and Steven had in 1983, before Guns N' Roses [Circus Magazine, October 1991].

Steven: "I loved the name of that band, and it's copywritten under my name. Slash has Guns N' Roses, so I got Road Crew" [Circus Magazine, October 1991].

Steven would further claim he had been clean for "more than six months" and that people could "expect a tour and album by summer 1992" [Circus Magazine, October 1991].


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Re: THE HISTORY OF GUNS N' ROSES - IN THEIR OWN WORDS

Post by Soulmonster on Thu Dec 27, 2018 9:50 pm

AXL TAKES CONTROL

For quite a while, the band's approach to Axl had been to leave him alone rather than confront him. As one band member was quoted as saying to VOX journalist Nick Kent: "Nowadays we just let Axl do pretty much what he feels, 'cos he'll only do it anyway" [VOX, October 1991].

Kent would also write that Axl had insisted on the 'Use Your Illusion' albums being so long, had insisted that Skid Row should open on their tour (despite band members despising them), calling for the resignation of Alan Niven, and what music would be played over the PA before the shows [VOX, October 1991]. It was likely Izzy who had a problem with Skid Row, since Slash and Duff would party with Sebastian Bach [Sebastian Bach, 18 and Life on Skid Row, Harper Collins, 2016; Slash's biograhy] and Duff would invite him to play on his record [source?]. Similarly, Slash would repeatedly argue in favor of the long 'Use Your Illusion' albums to get rid of the backlog and allow them to start afresh on the next record [Rolling Stone, January 1991; Melody maker, August 1991; Slash's biography].

Many articles would also imply that the label was afraid of Axl and his temper and behavior and would rather accommodate him than put the foot down [Entertainment Weekly, August 1991]. Simply put, "Axl runs the group" [VOX, October 1991] or, in the words of "a source at Geffen": "Axl’s got everybody by the balls"[/i] [Entertainment Weekly, August 1991].


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Re: THE HISTORY OF GUNS N' ROSES - IN THEIR OWN WORDS

Post by Soulmonster on Fri Dec 28, 2018 1:19 am

NOVEMBER 9, 1991 - IZZY LEAVES THE BAND

I don't really enjoy being a center of attention. I'm more into the music and what's happening with that. I enjoy having those guys take care of the publicity [Circus Magazine, September 1988].
If anybody in the band – including Matt, but especially within the four of us, Axl, Duff, lzzy and I – if any of us left there wouldn't be a Guns, it's the only band like it. Guns N' Roses is unique. You can't take pieces out of it. We're more like a family. It's not Bon Jovi, okay? [Music Life, November 17, 1991].
------------------------------------------
In the beginning, Izzy was an immensely important piece in the puzzle that was Guns N' Roses:

I think that if either Axl, Izzy, or Slash leave the band, it will be completely different. You know, Izzy's really an essential part of that band, more than I think most people realize. The songwriting is a big part of it, but Izzy really is essential to what Guns N' Roses is. Everybody thinks Axl is what Guns N' Roses is, but Izzy's the founder of the whole idea. Izzy's the one that wanted to get the big hair, the image, that whole thing going. So, he's really like a major part. He's not just the rhythm guitar player, he's the guy that stuck with it, really pulled the thing from the bottom up [Rock Scene, October 1989].
But as the years went by, Izzy started to separate himself from the band. This happened already after the Appetite touring, partly to get some distance from the partying when he was trying to sober up, but also because he likes solitude: "[Izzy] is the closest thing in the band to a loner; when he's on tour he likes to wander the streets by himself, and his girlfriend mentions he'd like to buy a house in the desert" [Musician, December 1988].

During the touring in 1988, Izzy got reacquainted with his estranged father. When telling about this in late 1988 to Musician magazine, he sounds wistful about Indiana and the simpler life he once had:

He comes walking backstage unannounced, completely out of the blue. Took a second or two to recognize him. It was a real trip. But it was definitely not...well, I don't want to get into it. I mean, in 10 years I've only been back to Indiana twice. I don't even know anyone there anymore; I don't keep in touch like Axl does. But when I look back, I do see some kind of stability that comes from growing up in a fucking cornfield. You're at one with the earth [laughter].  You don't give a shit about much. It's a simple life [Circus Magazine, September 1988].
According to this quote from Axl, he had also considered quitting the band at some point before 1991 due to people misinterpreting their songs:

[…] there's a line in ["It's So Easy"], "I drink and drive/and everything's in sight". We were talking about, kind of, how we got away with things and we're lucky to be here. It was real hard knowing that some of these kids would just go out and go, ”Yeah, I drink and drive and everything's in sight.” I mean, Izzy put it best when he said that a lot of people think our record means you know, party and do cocaine and rock ‘n’ roll. And it's like, that just ain’t what it is. So Izzy was gonna quit at one time because he was... didn't like the way people reacted to it [MTV Famous Last Words, August 1990].
In August 1989, he would sound almost paranoid when talking about drug wars and crazy fans and the police out to get him [The Face, October 1989], and how big the band was starting to become:

I just realized that Guns N' Roses had become way, way bigger than anything you could possibly hope to control as a musician. I mean, when you play clubs you're pretty much in control. But the energy forces in these stadiums and arenas are beyond anything... It's frightening, y'know. And the fuckin' money that's involved... like with us, then with this Stones tour... I mean, what are the promoters goin' to off us next? Is that next? Y'know, "Come to our city and take all these drugs" [The Face, October 1989].
In early 1991, when asked if he was the guy "in charge of getting everybody’s butt together and saying, 'Let’s go do this', 'Let’s go do that'", Izzy would say:

No, I don’t think so. Not so much, you know? I’m usually the first one who wants to get on the plane, like, a day earlier or something. Let’s go check the place out, you know? For the gig. But, yeah, I wouldn’t say that [MTV, January 1991].
When the band started touring the 'Use Your Illusion' albums in May 1991, Izzy distanced himself from the band. The Rolling Stone journalist who followed the band would remark that Izzy's bandmates were confused as to how Izzy was spending his time, because they only saw much of him at concerts [Rolling Stone, September 1991]. It was also obvious Izzy was struggling with all the controversies the band generated and in particular the late starts:

We've got the gigs booked, so we'd best show up and play. 'Cause I don't want to be on CNN anymore [Rolling Stone, September 1991].
Axl's just naturally late. It can get pretty tense at times, particularly when you're supposed to be on-stage and you're sitting there, literally counting the seconds, thinking 'man, we've just had a riot in St. Louis. Now we're in Texas. What the fuck is going to happen here?' [Interview done in July 1991, published in VOX, October 1991].
And at the same time, Izzy was looking forward to what he was going to do after the touring:

After this tour's finished, I'd like to go hang out in Europe, preferably somewhere near the ocean, and just keep writing songs [Interview done in July 1991, published in VOX, October 1991].
For the band's last concert of their 1991 European leg of the 'Use Your Illusion' tour, at Wembley on August 31, rumors had it that no one knew if Izzy would show up and play and that he might quit the band due to Axl's "attitude" [Music Life, November 17, 1991].

And on September 24 the media reported that Izzy might stop touring with the band. The rumor had started when Izzy failed to show up for a video shoot of 'Don't Cry' in September 15. Izzy had also been absent from the last scenes in the video to 'You Could Be Mine'. According to the band's publicist, Bryn Bridenthal, Izzy was touring Europe at the time and didn't want to return just for the video. But Tom Atencio, the co-manager of Jane's Addiction, said that Dave Navarro, the group's guitarist, has been contacted about sitting in for Izzy if the guitarist decides to stop touring. A source close to the band would emphasize that this was very different from what went down with Steven: "This is totally Izzy's decision, and it appears to be based on whether he wants to spend the next two years of his life on the road in such a highly volatile situation" [Los Angeles Times, September 1991].

In October, the rumors said he was permanently out of the band, implying his problems with the "madness of it all" and "Axl's tantrums":

"Izzy's absence at interviews appears to be more than just a passing phase. Never the most verbal of the band and certainly the only founder-member able to walk the streets relatively unrecognised, his decision seems to have a more permanent quality about it. Throughout the whole tour Izzy had travelled seperately from the rest of the band and rumours concerning his departure from the band began to emanate when the Gunners were in Germany and cancelled a show. These now appear to have been founded with the guitarist finally feeling that the madness of it all had grown too much and that Axl's tantrums had gone too far. Quite whether he has left for good has yet to be clarified, although it is understood that the rest of the band are attempting to coax him back" [RAW, October 1991].

On November 16, the guitarist Marc Ford told that he have received a phone call from Slash (on November 11 and 12) where he'd been asked to become Guns N' Roses' new touring guitarist. Ford, who had recently joined The Black Crowes, declined [Los Angeles Times, November 16, 1991].

And finally, on November 27, on a Rockline interview, Axl would announce that Izzy had resigned and that Gilby Clarke would replace him for the tour:

Izzy has resigned. […] At this point, no [=Izzy will not continue writing with the band]. And we have our own plans for the next - the follow-up - and then the record after that. And it’s kinda like, we’re going in separate directions, and he’s not really into touring or video or anything like that. And Slash and I are the ones, you know, figuring out the direction that Guns N’ Roses is going, and Izzy is not really part of that anymore, so...[…] Right now we have a guitar player named Gilby Clarke. And he’s been in Hollywood about as long as us. And, you know, he’s doing a really good job. But I don’t know about farther than the touring [Rockline, November 27, 1991].
When confronted with a fan who was shocked about Izzy leaving:

Well, we’ve been together for 15 years, so it’s kind of a shock to my system too [Rockline, November 27, 1991].
Axl would also philosophize on losing members and turn a positive spin on it:

Yeah, well, it’s kinda like...It’s evolving, you know. And certain members necessarily couldn’t keep up with where it’s going, and, you know, we actually ended up being more happy with where we’re at now than where we were. It’s like, we’re glad about the times we had with these people and the songs we did, but it’s evolving, and we’re really happy to be where we’re at right now. And we feel stronger than ever, you know. There’s obstacles every day that seem like the bottom fallout. But we put it back together and we’re usually much more happy with the results of putting it back together than where we were before the accident happened. […] And it’s like, everybody wants to see that togetherness that maybe they aren’t necessarily able to achieve in their own lives, you know, and to relate to it in someone else’s. And it would be nice if we were able to make people happy in that way. But that’s just, unfortunately, how it’s worked for us. And, you know, we’re really happy musically with where we’re going and the directions we’re going [Rockline, November 27, 1991].
In February 1992, Slash would say that Izzy "dropped out three weeks before we were meant to start the US tour" [Raw Magazine, March 4, 1992], probably meaning the leg of the tour that started on December 5, 1991, meaning that Izzy quit the band in mid-November 1991. This coincides well Marc Ford being asked to replace Izzy on November 16, although the band had obviously tested out other guitarists, including Dave Navarro as early as September 1991. Later, Slash would pinpoint the date of Izzy's departure to November 7 [RIP, March 1992].

There would also be bitterness about Izzy leaving, with Slash claiming that Izzy had been absent during recording of the 'Use Your Illusion' albums, too, with Slash having to record most of his parts:

[Izzy] just wanted to hang out. He thought it would be easy. Even on stage, I knew I had to walk around this person. We never got a sound thing together, or a guitar combo — I ended up playing most of the guitars on the record. […] When he left, he didn’t even resign to us. He called the office, and sent out a memo to everybody. There was a certain amount of hurt in that [The Philadelphia Inquirer, December 16, 1991].
In December 1991 and January 1992, Slash would also for the first time indicate that Izzy had been threatened to be demoted from "partner" to "employer" unless he started to work harder just before he quit the band:

Izzy just let me down really badly. The guy’s a great songwriter. He’s got his own style. He's a cool character. But I'm so ambitious about what I do that I’m always a mile ahead of myself. He’s so not into doing anything. He could be so potentially awesome if he would let himself get totally involved in the band trip, or even his own thing. But he’s so laid back he’ll probably never get around to it. […] It’s strange, but when he got high, everything was cool. He got clean and he couldn’t hang out in the Guns N’ Roses element, or whatever. […] He didn’t wanna do any videos, hardly wanted to show up in the studio. When we ended the last leg of the tour, he didn’t play guitar for three months. He was riding his bike in Indiana or whatever. […]When he showed up at rehearsals for this leg, he sounded like he hadn’t played in three months. The next day he didn’t show at rehearsal at all. Me and Axl were at the end of our f—ing rope. He wasn’t contributing. He was equal partner in the band, so we told him, ‘Until you start doing something you’re not an equal partner.’ He resigned. Didn’t even tell us. Sent notification to the office, the accountant [St. Petersburg Times, December 27, 1991].
I'm real... hurt, confused and disappointed with Izzy. He stopped wanting to do it, you know, and he didn’t want to go through the ups and downs of what any rock band goes through, which is sort of like your own life, but we live our life out in public.

But he just didn’t want to make any effort
[Dayton Daily News, January 10, 1992].
But basically, we just came to the conclusion that Izzy wasn't putting in the time we thought was necessary for the good of the band. It had been building up for a long time. And finally Izzy came out in the open with me and Axl and said he didn't want to deal with the work that was involved. So we decided to work with someone else [Guitar World, February 1992].
Furthermore, Slash would claim that the band worked up Izzy’s songs from the rhythm guitarist’s demo tapes, and that he refused to rehearse, record overdubs, appear in the band’s videos and was virtually lifeless on stage [Dayton Daily News, January 10, 1992].

So then Axl and I decided that he wasn’t an equal partner, per se, unless he decided to change his ways about a few things — at least do like a couple videos a year, and work harder on the road. And Izzy said, ΌΚ, I resign'. […] But I can’t understand why he would drop out of something as cool as what we’ve been doing. That’s not an ego thing — that’s not like ‘We’re the biggest band in the world and why would you want to quit that?’ I was like, ‘Why would you want to quit the relationship that we have that got us to where we are? Why would you just want to flake out on it?’ [Dayton Daily News, January 10, 1992].
This would add another plausible explanation for why Izzy quit: he was upset over the possibility of losing his partnership. The claim that Izzy didn't put in enough effort and that the partnership was no longer equal, was an argument Slash would repeat when discussing Izzy [Houston Chronicle, April 12, 1992].

In February 1992, Slash would discuss how Izzy had started to phase out from the band already back in 1989 and how Axl and Slash had been holding things together:

The whole things goes back quite a way. That goes back to the end of our first tour (which ended around late ’88). Izzy and I both went through a breakneck fuckin’ drug bout where we were both very scarey. There came a point where Izzy had to go out to Indiana and straighten himself out as well as me reaching a point where I had with the authorities in the US. I just felt it was ridiculous. The band weren’t doing anything, we’d just played the Stones dates and it was a case of trying to get it all back together again. We went to Chicago to try and do that, as you know. Izzy just didn’t show up for like three months or something. It was just then that it became increasingly obvious that he wasn’t making any effort to do it anymore.

All this shit was going on but, like I said, I don’t go public about shit that’s that personal when it can harm us. And the shit that was going on with Matt and Steven was enough to possibly destroy us. If it hadn’t been for Axl and I really holding on to what Guns N’ Roses is all about and what we had in store for the future was concerned, I’m sure that we would’ve broken up already by then. Izzy was doing nothing to keep it together. He wasn’t playing that great and when he finally showed up he hadn’t touched his guitar for like four months, he didn’t want to be in the videos and he hardly played on the records. All the songs on these records that are his are old demo tapes from years ago that we worked on.

The bottom line is that you’re only as weak as your weakest member and that’s pretty true. When it got to the point where it was me, Matt and Duff rehearsing and trying to get ready for the European tour it didn’t look too good. When we came home after Wembley we carried on rehearsing ‘cos I wanted to hire some horn players. Izzy just wasn’t there.

While I was hiring all these horn players and doing all this work Izzy didn’t seem to care about what we were doing. He showed up right at the tail end of rehearsals and it just was like ‘What the fuck is going on with this band?!’.

The next thing we found out though was that he’d been down to the accountants to find out how much money had been spent on what, when it had nothing to do with him. Axl and I went to him and said ‘Unless you start doing such and such you’re not a full partner anymore’ (Slash’s reference to ‘partners’ here deals with the GN’R corporation which all initial members were part of to take care of business – Ed). Then, without even calling us, he resigns through the office. Axl had a talk with him on the phone and just said ‘Well, listen if you don’t want to do this anymore then that’s fine ‘cos maybe we can write together in the future’ and Izzy was cool and it was real amicable. Then he turned around and told Matt and Duff behind our backs that we’d kicked him out. That pissed Axl and me off to no end. Izzy didn’t know we knew and he went over to Axl’s and Axl just turned around and said ‘Get the fuck out of here!’. It was pretty bad
[Raw Magazine, March 4, 1992].

and

It’s kinda funny because I know a lot of people are pointing their fingers at Axl and me as being the assholes in this whole thing because they really liked Izzy. The truth of the matter is that we tried everything to keep him going and he just didn’t want to do it. It was a real shame [Raw Magazine, March 4, 1992].
Later Slash would say Izzy would still write with the band and occasionally play with them, but that he was out as a touring musician:

Izzy resigned from Guns on November 7, 1991, because his heart wasn't in it. He's just not interested anymore. It was one of those things where he just didn't want to tour again. Izzy's been keeping himself more or less clean for quite a while now, and the chaos of being on the road, especially with the rest of us driving him crazy, he just couldn't deal with it. He's been 110% sober for the past two years, and even though I'm not shooting up or anything anymore. I'm still a nutcase when it comes to extracurricular activities. He tried to come back though. He came to a couple rehearsals, but he really wasn't there. He didn't care. His heart wasn't in it. Izzy's still gonna write with us, and he might make a few special appearances on the road, but he's no longer a touring member of the band. As for me, personally, I'd rather Izzy be happy. And this is what he wants [RIP, March 1992].
Based on the quotes from Slash it seems Izzy was upset by how much money was spent on the tour (as well as other frustrations he felt at the time, as described in this chapter). Slash and Axl, on their side, was frustrated with Izzy and how he had (for a long time) cares less and less about the band. They then gave him an ultimatum, he either had to pull more weight or he would be demoted (from partner to salaried employee). This likely angered and hurt Izzy resulting in him resigning through the office, which in turn hurt Slash (and likely Axl).

Yet, a little while later Slash would indicate that they probably weren't going to be working together after all:

I don’t know what’s gonna happen with Izzy. That’s a personal kind of a situation in a way, cuz of course, you know, we’ve been together for a long time, and him and Axl’s known each other for a long time. We went through a lot of stuff together. But he basically just wasn’t interested in doing it anymore for whatever reasons [that] are basically unknown. I mean, I have my ideas, and Axl has his ideas and Duff as well, so... It’s like, the songs that he wrote on this record, a lot of them the band really had to work up to make them sound the way that they do. Maybe he didn’t want them to sound that way, I’m not really sure. So as far as writing songs in the future, I just figure, you know, the three of us are gonna do what we’re gonna do. I don’t know if we’re gonna keep working with Gilby or not, because we’re just touring right now doing songs that have already been recorded. And as far as the relationship with Izzy goes, if it doesn’t happen, obviously we’re not gonna, like, go, “We can’t write songs anymore,” because obviously we’ve written a lot of songs without him, and so... [MTV Rockline, March 1992].
And when asked if he was still in contact with Izzy:

No, I don’t think we’re a real good – you know, in a good way as far as a relationship goes, but it is a time-will-tell thing [MTV Rockline, March 1992].
Axl, being asked why Izzy left:

To get a clear answer, you'd have to ask Izzy. My personal belief is that Izzy never really wanted something this big. There were responsibilities that Izzy didn't want to deal with. He didn't want to work at the standards that Slash and I set for ourselves. […] He didn't want to do videos. […] He just wasn't into it. Getting Izzy to work on his own songs on this record was like pulling teeth. When Izzy had 'em on a four-track, they were done. I mean, I like tapes like that, but we'd just get destroyed if we came out with a garage tape. People want a high-quality album. And it was really hard to get Izzy to do that, even on his own material. Izzy's songs were on the record because I wanted them on the record, not because Izzy gave a shit either way. If people think I don't respect Izzy or acknowledge his talent, they're sadly mistaken. He was my friend. I haven't always been right. Sometimes I've been massively wrong, and Izzy's been the one to help steer me back to the things that were right. But I know that I wanted to get as big as we possibly could from Day One, and that wasn't Izzy's intention at all. I think he's ready to do like an X-Pensive Winos (Keith Richards's band) thing. So maybe the world'll get another really cool band. I know that I'll be trying to get an advance tape, just like everybody else [Rolling Stone, April 2, 1992].
Talking about how it went down:

But I can fault someone, in the same way someone can fault me, for being an asshole about the way he went about it. A comic book says how Izzy comes to me and says, "You know, I just don't feel I'm up to this," and I go, "Yeah, and you're scared, too, aw, shit." Well, that ain't the way it went down. […] We were filming "Don't Cry," and he had to be there. Instead, he sent a really short, cold letter and didn't show up. We got this letter saying, "This changes, this changes, and maybe I'll tour in January." And they were ridiculous demands that weren't going to be met. I talked to Izzy for four and a half hours on the phone. At some points, I was crying, and I was begging. I was doing everything I could to keep him in the band. There were stipulations, though. If he was going to do like the old Izzy did, he wasn't going to make as much money. It was like "You're not giving an equal share." Slash and I were having to do too much work to keep the attention and the energy up in the crowd. You're onstage going, "This is really hard, and I'm into it and I'm doing it, but that guy just gets to stand there." […] But when the guy's getting up at six thirty in the morning and riding bicycles and motorcycles and buying toy airplanes, and he's donating all this energy to something else, and it's taking 100 percent of our energy to do what we're doing on the stage, we were getting ripped off. I'm hoping Izzy's new album rocks. But at the same time, it'll be like "Why couldn't he do that with us?" He wouldn't do anything [Rolling Stone, April 2, 1992].
I'm angry with him because he left in a very shitty way, and he tries to act like everything's cool. He put his trust in people that I consider my enemies. People like (former G n' R manager) Alan Niven, who I think is his manager now. I don't need Alan Niven knowing jack shit about Guns n' Roses. Everybody has a lot of good and bad, and with Alan, I just got sick of his fucking combo platter. It's like "If you're involved with these people, we can't talk to you [Rolling Stone, April 2, 1992].


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Re: THE HISTORY OF GUNS N' ROSES - IN THEIR OWN WORDS

Post by Soulmonster on Fri Dec 28, 2018 1:23 am

GILBY JOINS THE BAND

With Izzy leaving the band, the band again found themselves in a position of having to replace a member that they had thought was irreplaceable.

When we decided to look for a new guitarist, I put the word out as discreetly as possible. A couple of my friends recommended Gilby—he's a guy that Axl and I sort of knew from Guns N' Roses' early days. He was in another band at the time, but we had lost track of him. Axl and I auditioned 17 guitarists or so, and he's the one who fit in the best. He had to learn about 30 songs in two weeks in order to be ready for the tour on time, and he's done a great job. We're really happy [Guitar World, February 1992].
One of the guitarists that auditioned, was the guitarist of Jane's Addiction, Dave Navarro. That Navarro was auditioning to replace Izzy had also rumored in the press before Izzy's departure was official [Los Angeles Times, September 1991].

[Navarro] didn't work out. He's got a little too much going on right now with his own personal situation [Guitar World, February 1992].

Later, Slash would emphasize that he only rehearsed with one other guitarists, indicating that the 16 others they considered for the job either didn't play at all, or played alone (possibly with recorded backtrack):

Despite what everyone said, Gilby was the only one that I physically rehearsed with and it worked out great. It was real casual and he just makes the effort on stage that Izzy didn’t [Raw Magazine, March 4, 1992].

Despite having found Gilby, the band wasn't sure whether he would be a recording member or just a touring members:

Right now we have a guitar player named Gilby Clarke. And he’s been in Hollywood about as long as us. And, you know, he’s doing a really good job. But I don’t know about farther than the touring. […] He was in the band Candy when we were playing the clubs, there was all kinds of different bands [Rockline, November 27, 1991].
Chemistry between musicians is something that takes a while to develop. So right now we're just touring. We don't have any plans for recording or writing together [Guitar World, February 1992].
We have a person that we are working with, named Gilby Clarke, who has played around Hollywood about as long as us. But I don’t know about the next album, you know. We’re still talking with other people and stuff as far as that goes [Rockline, November 27, 1991].
I don’t know if we’re going to write with [Gilby] when the tour’s over but I actually call him up and say ‘You wanna do this?’ and we hang out. With Izzy, the only time we used to do that was when we were getting stoned. That was like over three years ago [Raw Magazine, March 4, 1992].

One of the reasons for this reluctance might have been a hope that Izzy would return:

Discussing if Izzy is out for good: That's something I have no idea about—how this is going to affect Izzy and his attitude. He may be happy not doing this anymore. Or he might really want to come back and make the effort that he wasn't making before. […] I just can't understand how [Izzy] could let something like this just fall apart. I mean the guy didn't want to tour or do videos; he hardly wanted to record. I just never thought he was one of those guys that this would happen with. It's a lot different than the Steve Adler situation. So I don't know what's going to happen a year from now: whether we'll be working with Gilby, Izzy or somebody else altogether. A lot of things are up in the air right now. But we've got a heavy duty tour going on, and we've got a killer band to do it [Guitar World, February 1992].
Slash was thrilled about having Gilby in the band and would claim that "for the first time in years, he is getting harmonic support on his guitars solos" [The Philadelphia Inquirer, December 16, 1991]. He would also say that Gilby's "enthusiasm" countered Izzy's "lethargic stage presence and rudimentary guitar work" [St. Petersburg Times, December 27, 1991].

As the touring went on, other band members would praise Gilby:

Well, he’s done a really good job considering that he had only about two weeks to learn the entire set, you know, of tunes. And basically we don’t learn a set; we learn, like, a lot of songs. So he learned about 30 songs for the tour and we pick from those. So, you know, in that respect he learned a lot of stuff in a short period of time, which is really brave [Video Interview, February 1992].
Gilby was the guy that fit in, like, right off. Same way that Matt worked out. And Gilby was the only guy that we actually had come down to the studio and rehearse on stage with us. So it was that kind of chemistry [Video Interview, February 1992].


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Re: THE HISTORY OF GUNS N' ROSES - IN THEIR OWN WORDS

Post by Soulmonster on Fri Dec 28, 2018 8:09 am

GILBY BEFORE GUNS N' ROSES


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Re: THE HISTORY OF GUNS N' ROSES - IN THEIR OWN WORDS

Post by Soulmonster on Fri Dec 28, 2018 8:10 am

TURNING INTO ADULTS

'Appetite' was released when the band members were in their early 20s. As the guys matured they would quickly have to deal with defending lyrics they might not feel fully represented them as grown-ups:

You know, we're not trying to promote, you know, drug abuse or anything like this. It's very scary, I mean, it almost killed us, almost broke this band. It's almost, you know, killed a few of us a couple times, you know. It's something that we stay away from. And it's like being here in New York, you know, we've had some bad experiences before and, you know, and you just have to be really careful because, like, a lot of people take all kinds of meanings out of your songs which has nothing to do with the fact that, basically, it's about something that happened in your life two years ago [MTV Documentary, November 1989].
I feel I have responsibilities to myself and to music, and things I want to do with it, like, you know, trying to relate to as many people and help open their minds up and least make them think. I'm not telling them that we can save the world but I can kind of describe the world, and, you know, just at least let them think about it, you know [MTV Documentary, November 1989].
Our first major tour was with Motley Crue and the audience was younger than most audiences that we played, like on Aerosmith tour or on other tours or on our own tours and the tours with The Cult. And it was real hard to do the song It’s So Easy because there's a line in there, "I drink and drive/and everything's in sight". We were talking about, kind of, how we got away with things and we're lucky to be here. It was real hard knowing that some of these kids would just go out and go, ”Yeah, I drink and drive and everything's in sight.” I mean, Izzy put it best when he said that a lot of people think our record means you know, party and do cocaine and rock ‘n’ roll. And it's like, that just ain’t what it is. So Izzy was gonna quit at one time because he was... didn't like the way people reacted to it. I heard something on the radio last night; when Frank Zappa broke up The Mothers [Of Invention] it was ‘cause people were clapping for all the wrong reasons [MTV Famous Last Words, August 1990].

Their lifestyles would also be scrutinized by the media and band members would frequently defend or discuss it:

You learn from experience. We were very arrogant and in many ways an ignorant band, that just thought we could do everything our way. And we try to hold on What. I mean, there's still no formula For us. But then you see how people love to drag out dirty laundry, they expect you to come onstage and throw up or something. Which has nothing to do with music and every-thing to do with attitude. But of course, attitude has a lot to do with music. Personally, I don't want to piss off anyone. But we'll probably always be controversial. Life goes on [Musician, December 1990].
I just turned 25, and something went off in my head. When I started this I was 19, and at that age there's nothing to stop you, so far as you can see. And then as you get older—not to say I'm old now—but you do change a little and see things differently. It's pretty natural. Some people are a little luckier than others as far as living through it. 'Cause there are extremes. When you're 22 and on the road with access to excess—well, you can get in trouble [Musician, December 1990].
I think we're a pretty decent mirror for what kids and young adults go through, if you're not brought up in a totally stiff atmosphere. For people who have spent time on the street or have family problems, alcohol problems, we've voiced some opinions about what we were going through. And some of the reason we did so well is that a lot of kids related to that. Of course their parents might have freaked—It's that 'our generation' kind of thing—but it's what we went through. And now, what we have to say is a little different [Musician, December 1990].
We’re older and we’re more experienced. This is sort of a G Ν’ R cliché now — we’re not saints, and things still happen, but we try and keep them confined to the band, cos everything goes public now. People expect me to be drunk or people expect me to throw something out the window or expect Axl to break something and walk off the stage. That’s not what we’re all about. After a while, you keep everything to yourself. If you do smash the TV set, just quietly get rid of it y'know? [The Guardian, September 1991].

In 1991 Axl went through therapy that helped him to understand why he was the way he was and to grow:

I really think that the next official Guns n' Roses record, or the next thing I do, at least, will take some dramatic turns that people didn't expect and show the growth. I don't want to be the twenty-three-year-old misfit that I was. I don't want to be that person. […]I guess I like who I am now. I'd like to have a little more internal peace. I'm sure everybody would. [Rolling Stone, April 2, 1992].


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Re: THE HISTORY OF GUNS N' ROSES - IN THEIR OWN WORDS

Post by Soulmonster on Sat Dec 29, 2018 6:11 am

SOCIAL CONSCIOUSNESS

Another chapter that I need to place somewhere. It is about the band's growing sense of social responsibility and charity. The first clear quote on this is from when the band visited Brazil in early 1991:

Axl: We’ve been asked to do so many different things, and, you know, in America it’s real big to talk about the rainforests and stuff. But the poverty down here is, like, nothing I’ve ever seen. And I imagined my... You know, when we were first coming to the stadium to do soundcheck the first day, we went under the tunnel, and when I looked up and saw the houses, I thought of myself as a little kid here and having, you know, to try to make a life and starting that way. And it, like, ripped my heart out, right? So we’re trying to find whatever angle we can to get involved and... Cuz we haven’t really ever taken on any cause, you know, charity cause or anything, and it’s something I’m interested in. And since we do want to come back and we know we can make a lot of money playing the shows, maybe we can do something to help a little bit if we can find the right way to place things where we know the people are going to get the money. When we put Civil War out, we put it on The Romanian Angel (?) and George Harrison and his wife were, like, handling it directly to make sure that 400,000 babies got the medical supplies and stuff. We’d like to see if we can possibly help something, like first start something like that here. We don’t know... We don’t really know who to talk to. Everybody we talk to gets scared, you know, of where the money will go. […] Yeah. So we wanted to possibly if... It’s something I’m really interested in and then I asked the band, and the whole band is into it. We just don’t quite know who to talk to yet [MTV, January 1991].

And when Axl introduced 'Welcome to the Jungle' at the first Rock In Rio show, he would do it with this spoken word introduction:

Axl: When the poor come down to the street
And the death squad is out of reach
Everybody’s looking for a piece of the pie
I look outside my window
I see your [?]

And when the poor come down from the hills
At night
And the government and the merchants send the death squads out
To remove the beggars
Keep them out of the way of the rich
To keep the slums from coming down into the city
You gotta watch your ass, homeboy
Cuz I ain’t been at many places
But you know where you motherfuckers live?
I said, do you know where you live?

Do you know where you are?
You’re in the jungle, baby
Rio de Janeiro jungle, baby
And if you don’t watch your ass
You’re gonna die! [Live from stage, January, 1991].

Later he would talk about wanting to support organizations that would help abused children:

Axl: I’m trying to find the right organizations I want to get involved with things for child abuse and sexual abuse for children, but I don’t know exactly where to place... You know? [MTV, May 1991].

Later he would be asked to elaborate on his comments to Rolling Stone:

Axl: "Well, I feel that… umm… you know, child abuse… you know, and sexual abuse. Especially… child abuse is like, kind of the key to why there's so many problems in the world today. Umm… The more books I read on it, and the more work I do on trying to overcome the problems… you know, that I had in my childhood that I accepted it as normal behavior for my life. And I realize now that it wasn't normal behavior. And it's caused me to act in… umm, many ways because it's what I was trained, it's what I was taught, it's what I saw. It's… umm, my formative years were… very ugly. And you know, people had picked up on that one. They listen to some Guns N' Roses songs. And: "This isn't right, something's wrong here…" Da, da, da. Well, they're right. Umm, the Herald Examiner ran a piece on… you know: "We find out the hidden truths of Axl Rose" and da, da, da. You know, we'll find 'em out, soon as I find 'em out. [laughs] A lot of people don't know, including myself. I'm… I'm working on it. Umm, I would like to… find some organizations to… donate money, or… umm, you know, go talk to kids or… talk to groups of people about my experiences and how hard it was, and still is for me on a daily basis, in dealing with people in my relationships, because of the abuse that was present in my childhood. I don't necessarily wanna elaborate any further on this right now, because it's something that I have to… umm, do in stages. Little by little, and I think getting, you know, too much of that right now… Umm, could really get… you know, make it too hard on myself, so… I think we'll stop there" [WNEW 102.7, September 1991].

And when Axl settled in a suit following the St. Louis riot, he suggested to donate money to charities that would help abused children [St. Louis Post-Depatch, October 1993]. At this point, Axl had gone through therapy sessions where it was indicated that many of his issues stemmed from how he was treated as a child. He would imply this in an interview with Rolling Stone that was published in September 1991, and again reiterate that he wanted to help abused children:

Axl: I'd like to be part of an organization working with child abuse," he says. "Sexual abuse and child abuse. I figure you gotta start somewhere [Rolling Stone, September 1991].

On August 19 1991, in Copenhagen, Axl would protest the ongoing violence in Soviet by displaying a Russian flag from stage [Press Conference, August 1991].


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Re: THE HISTORY OF GUNS N' ROSES - IN THEIR OWN WORDS

Post by Soulmonster on Sat Dec 29, 2018 6:15 am

DECEMBER 5, 1991-FEBRUARY 1, 1992 - TOURING 'USE YOUR ILLUSION', NORTH AMERICA PT. 4

After a break since their Webley gig in August 31, 1991, the band continued with their touring in support of the 'Use Your Illusion' albums in December 1991. This leg of the tour would feature some changes, firstly, Izzy had been replaced with Gilby, and in addition the band had added three horn players and two backup singers to the touring lineup:

We've used horns in clubs before, but that's it. And they're just for certain songs . . . We're just trying to do whatever we can to make the band sound as cool as possible[/i][Boston Globe, December 5, 1991]
As Axl would later explain, "five guys on stage was too much of a homosexual thing" [Onstage at the Worchester Centrum Centre, December 5, 1991]. Adding the all-female horn section was Slash's idea [Raw Magazine, March 4, 1992] and that they themselves had opted for wearing lingerie [Star Tribune, January 21, 1992].

They would also add a second keyboard player [Rolling Stone, April 2, 1992].

When asked his thoughts on people who preferred the band when it was more stripped down, Axl would say:

But I don't think it's losing any of its energy. There's a lot more energy now. I think that before, people were seeing the potential. […] Yeah, well, there are people who like a girl that had the same haircut she had ten years ago, too. I understand that. I understand that a lot. But it's like, we're evolving, and it's us. I read a quote where David Bowie was saying that Pink Floyd was Syd Barrett to him. I'm like "Yeah, but to deny anything that Pink Floyd's done after that?" Certain elements of our music and our performance and our attitude are still there, but we're not the same people we were then. Maybe it would've been best for the purists if we'd died or broken up. Then they'd get to keep it the way they liked it[/i][Rolling Stone, April 2, 1992].
In addition, the band had gotten Soundgarden as the opener.

The first two gigs were at Worcester Centrum Centre, in Worcester, Massachusetts, USA, on December 5 and 6. The band would start the shows well over two hours late [Hartfort Courant, December 7, 1991]. The late starts, which had plagued the tour so far, would continue for this leg with 90 minutes or more wait after the opener becoming the norm more than the exception.

These would by Gilby's first shows with the band:

Talking about what he remembers from his first gig with the band: yes, a lil... i was hungover. i met up with some friends the night before & had a yager party. it took the edge off [A4D Interviews, August 2011]
Then followed three shows at the Madison Square Garden in New York City on December 9, 10 and 13. During the first of these, which started almost 2 hours later than announced because Axl had the flu which left him throwing up backstage between the songs [Rolling Stone, December 1991]), Axl would say they expected to pay $24,000 in curfew fees [New York Times, December 11, 1991]:

You people are worth more than the $24,000 we’re paying in overtime[Onstage at Madison Square Garden, December 9, 1991]
The band then played 7 more shows before coming to play two shows at The Summit in Houston on January 9 and 10, 1992. For the first of these shows the Houston chapter of the organization Queer Nation organized a protest titled "Pansies against Roses," calling out and showing displays, "Racist, sexist, anti-gay -- Guns N' Roses, go away!," and "Gay bashers are closet cases." The demonstrators were met by hecklers chanting "Guns N' Roses!" and "Faggots go home!" [Houston Chronicle, January 10, 1992].

After the two shows in Houston the band came to Fairborn near Dayton in Ohio, on January 13 and 14, 1992. For the first show the band was even more late than usual, long after the "around 8 PM" time printed on the tickets [Dayton Daily News, January 15, 1992]. At 11:52 PM Slash came on stage to announce the show would be delayed due to a technical problem with one of the stage monitors: "I didn’t build the... equipment — I just play through it" [Dayton Daily News, January 15, 1992]. The band entered the stage first at 12:25 AM [Dayton Daily News, January 15, 1992]. Several members of the Nutter Center’s support staff allegedly said that Axl did not arrive at the venue until after midnight [Dayton Daily News, January 15, 1992]. The show ended at 3:05 AM [Dayton Daily News, January 15, 1992]. From the stage Axl would imply psychological issues, saying "You’ve got to realize that this is not a pleasant place for me to play" while explaining that his step-father was from Dayton and that he had needed time to prepare himself mentally for the performance [Dayton Daily News, January 15, 1992].

Talking about trying to get a crowd reaction: I approached it a bit differently when we did the first show in Dayton, Ohio. We'd been told we're the perfect house band for David Duke's America. And it's like, fuck David Duke, I don't like being associated with that. I asked the crowd: "Is that what you get out of this, that we're racists and you're supporting it? 'Cause if that's the case, I'm gonna go home. That's not why we're here." I asked the crowd about those things. I got some real interesting responses. The way they reacted was a little bit different than normal. There was silence in different places and cheering in others. You could tell that they were thinking for a minute[Rolling Stone, April 2, 1992]
During the second performance in Dayton, Axl slashed his hand open on a broken microphone stand:

It happened at the beginning of the set and he made it through the whole show. It was making everybody nervous. I didn't want anything to happen to the hand. I just wanted him to get it checked out to make sure it was OK. He was a trooper[Star Tribune, January 21, 1992]
While Axl was backstage having his hand looked at, he thought Slash said something critical about him and when entering the stage he would call Slash a "punk motherfucker" and that he would "kick your fucking ass". Before things escalated the band started playing 'Welcome to the Jungle'.

We had a run-in in Dayton [Ohio], because both myself and Dougie thought [Slash] said something shitty to me onstage. That was the night I cut my hand to the bone. Backstage we have monitors much like the ones onstage, and while I was back there dealing with my hand, I thought I heard him take a potshot at me. I wrapped my hand up in a towel and was like, "Let's get it taken care of, so I can finish the show." I came back onstage and was a dick to him and told him I'd kick his f?!king ass in front of 20,000 people. That was f?!ked up. I was wrong, and I apologized the second I realized I was mistaken. Someone who is supporting me as strongly as he does is a hand I never want to bite. [RIP Magazine, September 1992]
To get stiches the band would end the show about 30 minutes early.

I apologize. We’re going to play a few more songs and go so I can get some stitches [Dayton Daily News, January 16, 1992].
The band then played two shows at Target Center in Minneapolis on January 21 and 22. Again, Axl was late. Before the show, Soundgarden's singer, Chris Cornell, had talked about the headliner's late starts:

"The bottom line is if you’re trying to incorporate regimen in rock ’n’ roll, you’ll end up with a paradox. It’s like putting a three-dimensional picture in a two-dimensional frame. Rock is supposed to be spontaneous" [Star Tribune, January 22, 1992].

And Cornell would quip about this before they left the stage:

"You’d better appreciate us. We may be the last band you’ll get to see for a while" [Star Tribune, January 22, 1992].

The band then came to Las Vegas for a show at the Thomas and Mack Center on January 25, 1992. The day before the show, January 24, Axl would be interviewed by Kim Neely for Rolling Stone magazine, and Neely would describe Axl's good mood including how he had welcomed two girls who had managed to sneak past security and knocked on his hotel room door [Rolling Stone, April 2, 1992].

Later, Axl would look back at this gig:

I think it's pretty much on my shoulders and I don't mind that at all. The band works the stage and gets off on the crowd, but I'm kind of a shield. If I'm gone they don't really know how to get on top of it. If I'm out there and not handling it, no one can really rescue me. It's just very hard sometimes. We've done shows where I could feel that it was a very taking thing and I turn around and Slash is doing handstands because he's still getting off on the chaos of it. And I'm having the shit beat out of me. This happened in Vegas. My jaw was hurting, my back was hurting, my leg was hurting. I call it shadow boxing because it comes down to between me and the audience. And for Guns N' Roses to be successful, I have to win. And if I win, everyone wins. If the crowd wins then a lot of people lose, including the crowd. They didn't get to be satiated, they get to go home pissed off because we crumbled under it[Musician, Shadow Boxing with Axl Rose, June 1992].


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Re: THE HISTORY OF GUNS N' ROSES - IN THEIR OWN WORDS

Post by Soulmonster on Sat Dec 29, 2018 6:52 am

MERCHANDISE AND SPONSORING

Duff, ever the punker, was not in favor of mechandise:

[…] there is this whole corporation now, this Guns N’ Roses industry with merchandising and concerts and tickets. […] I hated that when [Kiss] started selling folders and stuff like that[Hit Parader].

In Januar 1991 Slash was also asked about the topic and expressed similar sentiments:

I guess we’re doing [a sponsor for the 'Use Your Illusion' tour], but I don’t want to sell out. I don’t want to be the next Janet Jackson, M.C. Hammer, fucking Eric Clapton or whoever else. We’re doing a tour, and if they want to help pay for it, we’ll use their name — we’ll put banners up all over the gig, I don’t give a shit. If there’s free cigarettes and free beer and they help pay for the tour, I don’t care. But I’m not wearing a Budweiser T-shirt. I don’t care if we do our own photos and it says “Budweiser” or “Marlboro” on the bottom of the page, but I don’t want to do anything where I’m holding up something with a big smile on my face. […] I don’t think the fans will care. They all drink Budweiser and smoke Marlboros. I was worried about the parents and what they’d say about the cigarettes, but it’s like some of the most influential personalities in baseball, football, basketball and race-car driving do ads. I mean, I advertise smoking constantly anyway; I can’t help it. I don’t see why cigarettes are any worse than beer[Rolling Stone, January 1991].

But when asked if there was something he would be willing to sponsor individually, he made an exception for a vodka brand:

I’m willing to do it if there are no dumb ads and no dumb commercials. I want to do Black Death Vodka. Axl turned me on to it. I want Black Death Vodka to call me, because I’ll sponsor them. Just me personally[Rolling Stone, January 24, 1991].
And in March 1992 it was reported that Slash had signed a deal with Black Death Vodka to be their pitch man [New York Daily News, March 13, 1992]. Black Death spokesman Robert Plotkin said that Slash was "perfect for the market” and that he "was really the only one Black Death wanted" [New York Daily News, March 13, 1992].

Slash would admit it came about as a result of his comments to Rolling Stone in 1991:

Well, it stemmed from the interview, because - I don’t remember exactly when the first time I encountered it was, but they read the thing that I said in Rolling Stone about the only company that I would endorse. So I think they called the office or something they made, sort of like, an offer. And we got together and talked about it. And I was like, “Cool,” you know, “free cases of vodka? Yeah.” (laughs) So contrary to what anybody else is saying about me trying to influence teenage America with it, you know, it was just - the whole point was that the vodka is great and...[…] You know, I knew it was gonna come up and I haven’t given it much thought, because, from where I come from, it’s, sort of like, you make your own decisions. You know, that’s how I was brought up. So I didn’t really feel like I was constricted by how I was gonna influence the youth of America or international or whatever. So I just did it, you know, and whatever happens after that, basically I’m not gonna take it that personally. It’s something I did, it’s not for anybody else to judge me on it, you know?[MTV Rockline, March 1992].
The vodka was prohibited in the US markets due to the name [Associated Press, April 6, 1992; Entertainment Weekly, April 17, 1992], and as a result it was changed to Black Hat [The Baltimore Sun, May 13, 1992]. When asked about why he did ads for Black Death, Slash would say "just to get the vodka. […] It’s good vodka" and AP would say that Slash was compensated in form of "a little money, T-shirts and several cases of the product" [Associated Press, June 3, 1992].

Axl would express his thoughts on merchandise and sponsoring from the stage:

I wanna talk to you for a minute because I wanna get your opinion on something. And I’m real serious. You know, being a band in our position, you wander about cuz you’re interested in making some more money. And the offers get made and you go, well, you know, I drink the beer. So there’s all this talk of sponsorship. And I was pretty much undecided either way, since I drink Budweiser and I smoke Marlboro, then I couldn’t care less if they want to slap the sticker on you. Until today. I don’t have anything against the companies that sponsor and manage us here, except I’ve got a tattoo on this shoulder. It’s a tattoo of a Thin Lizzy album cover, you know? And since both my father and my stepfather were assholes, Phil Lynott kinda like took the place of dad for me when I was a kid. And I’m watching TV today and I see this Molson commercial with The Boys Are Back In Town on it. I mean, I heard the bassline and shit and I was like, what the fuck is this? And I’ve never been more pissed off and hurt in my life, you know, at least not in a long fucking time that I can think of. Because, I mean, whoever sold that to them, I hope they’re a big motherfucker, cuz if I find them anywhere, I’ll crack their skull. I mean, Phil’s gone. What do you think about our sponsorship? If you’re into it and hey yes, you know, yell “yes”, really loud. If you think it’s, like, selling out, let me hear you yelling “no”. [The crowd is rather yelling “yes”] Let’s put it down right in a ballot box (laughs)[Onstage, Toronto, June 7, 1991].

But merchandise presented a welcome source of revenues from the band in the beginning:

The last tour we did cost us two million dollars and we didn’t make a penny off the tour except for maybe the ‘T’-shirts that we sold[Raw Magazine, March 4, 1992].


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Re: THE HISTORY OF GUNS N' ROSES - IN THEIR OWN WORDS

Post by Soulmonster on Sat Dec 29, 2018 6:55 am

FEBRUARY 19-22 - TOURING 'USE YOUR ILLUSION', JAPAN, PT V.



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Re: THE HISTORY OF GUNS N' ROSES - IN THEIR OWN WORDS

Post by Soulmonster on Sat Dec 29, 2018 9:47 am

APRIL 1-9, 1992 - TOURING 'USE YOUR ILLUSION', "MAKE-UP" DATES

Slash being asked who will be the opener for the next leg of the tour:

Slash: "I don’t know who we are going out with. It’s just a small leg that we’re doing. We’re doing, sort of, what I would call “make-up dates” to, like, Detroit we had to postpone, so we’re gonna do that, and Chicago because of the Illinois incident we’re gonna go back and make that up. Then we’re doing some shows in Mexico and, I think, one in Oklahoma. But I don’t know who’s opening for us or not, to tell you the truth. […] I’m sure that we know, but it just hasn’t been my main concern at this point, because we’ve been doing so much stuff, there’s so many other things going on, and that hasn’t been my main focus" [MTV Rockline, March 1992].

The scheduled shows on April 10, 13 and 14, 1992, in Rosemont (April 10) and Auburn Hills (April 13 and 14) were cancelled when Axl feared he would be arrested and extradited to St. Louis if he continued to stay in the country [Chicago Tribune, April 11, 1992; Houston Chronicle, April 12, 1992; Chicago Sun-Times, April 16, 1992]. The first show can cancelled in the last minute, "leaving thousands of fans waiting outside" the venue [Chicago Sun-Times, April 12, 1992].

According to Bryn Bridenthal, "Rather than go to jail, Rose left the sheriff's jurisdiction" [Chicago Tribune, April 11, 1992] and "[Axl] wasn’t anxious to spend any time in jail without reason. […] To suddenly extradite him over a misdemeanor charge, there’s no cause" [The Northwest Herald, April 11, 1992]. Robert McCulloch, St. Louis County prosecuting attorney, would respond:

"[Axl] is easy to find. Wherever he goes, we’ll be waiting for him. If he wants to cancel his whole schedule, fine. If he leaves the country, we’ll notify Customs to get him when he comes back" [St. Louis Post-Dispatch, April 12, 1992].

The cancelled shows would cost the band with Bridenthal estimating they had generated $1.5 million in ticket sales [The St. Louis Post-Dispatch, April 15, 1992].

With the police waiting the band fled to Europe for the Freddie Mercury benefit and the European leg of the tour.


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Re: THE HISTORY OF GUNS N' ROSES - IN THEIR OWN WORDS

Post by Soulmonster on Sun Dec 30, 2018 4:04 am

MATERIAL WEALTH

Slash: "The material side of it was never a thing with me. The bigger we got – not that I'm complaining because I'm not – the more of a pain in the ass money was. I was better off when I didn't have any money! I never carry cash anyway and I don't go shopping. I appreciate having money. I'm financially at a point where I can have room service without worrying! I can feed my cats, feed my snakes – I don't have to worry about little things like that. […] And I have one pair of jeans, and if they really do finally fall apart I can get another pair. These (his clothes) are the things which I've had since we did the last record! if they still work, I don't need any others." [Music Life, November 17, 1991].

Slash: "The last tour we did cost us two million dollars and we didn’t make a penny off the tour except for maybe the ‘T’-shirts that we sold. The truth is that I’m still watching my money. We put so much back into the group that we won’t really see anything until a long time down the line when we’ve sold records consistently. We haven’t even re-negotiated our contract so that might never happen. To me that means I still feel the same as I always have. I’m happy though, but it’s like that old Jimi Hendrix quote which goes ‘The more money have, the more Blues you can sing’. People like to see the glamour that surrounds bands. They like to think that that’s what it’s all about and it isn’t" [Raw Magazine, March 4, 1992].


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Re: THE HISTORY OF GUNS N' ROSES - IN THEIR OWN WORDS

Post by Soulmonster on Sun Dec 30, 2018 11:21 pm

APRIL 20, 1992 - THE FREDDIE MERCURY BENEFIT

Axl had wanted to play with Elton John for a long time and at some point they discussed some kind of collaboration:

Axl: "Well, we’ve been asked to do a pay-per-view show with [Elton John]. But with the Izzy thing, it kind of messed up rehearsals, so I don’t know if we will do that or not. But if we can, we’ve been asked to do some things. And, you know, fitting it into our schedule, we’re trying to do it. So, hopefully, something will happen at one point with Elton" [Rockline, November 27, 1991].

The chance came with the benefit concert in memory of Freddie Mercury on April 20, 1992:

Slash: "All in know is that we’re coming over to do this Freddy Mercury thing (a benefit gig which is set of Wembley Stadium on April 20 and also likely to feature Extreme and as well as Brian May, John Deacon and Roger Taylor) before we go off and do the rest of Europe. I know there’s talk of more shows but they’re all being switched around because Metallica have booked a tour and we don’t want to clash with them" [Raw Magazine, March 4, 1992].

Inviting Guns N' Roses to play at a tribute concert for an artist who died of AIDS was controversial, and the organization ACT UP did their best to stop it from happening:

"We will accept Guns N' Roses (on the bill) when they have a press conference and publicly denounce everything they've said about AIDS and homophobia. […] We want the words, 'We were wrong. We're sorry.' […] They've been responsible for misinformation about AIDS. Their homophobic attitude creates an atmosphere of ignorance and intolerance" [Los Angeles Times, March 13, 1992].

And if they don't apologize:

"We will ask artists to put pressure on the show's management to remove (Guns N' Roses) from the billing. […] If management refuses we won't ask anyone not to appear, but for Guns to be snubbed by the other artists, and we'll ask for people to boo the band off the stage" [Los Angeles Times, March 13, 1992].

A representative for Guns N' Roses management would respond:

"We're disgusted by ACT UP's lack of sensitivity in trying to politicize this tribute. […] Perhaps they should read Axl Rose's comments in the new issue of Rolling Stone for a more enlightened perspective. We refuse to be their pawn" [Los Angeles Times, March 13, 1992].

Slash would also comment on ACT UP:

Slash: "I never would have thought that we were gonna get that kind of flak. […] Gay activist groups that are a little bit appalled – I think it’s a good word for it coming from them about us playing it. And I just wasn’t expecting that kind of reaction. […] And we’re gonna play anyway, so they’re… […] They’re trying to get us off the bill or basically sabotage the gig. I don’t know exactly what they want to do, you know, or what they’re really shooting for it, cuz it sounds so screwy in the first place. I don’t think they really know what they wanna do, themselves. […] I know they’ll go to press with it and keep it up all the way until show day, but I don’t want to get into the whole subject. I mean, we’re doing it for – the reasons that we’re doing it was, you know, for Freddie Mercury and not... I don’t know how to explain it. We just wanted to play the gig and we were asked to do it, you know, by the Queen people, and we’ve been supported by all the other bands that are playing. So we’re gonna play it, yeah - if that answers the question. […] It’s just screwy stuff to have to deal with. It’s like, every single day it’s like, “Oh yeah, right, okay. We’re gonna deal with this now” [MTV Rockline, March 1992].

In an interview with MTV backstage at the tribute concert, Slash would say the following:

Slash: "Well, it’s an issue for me, it really cramps my style, the whole AIDS thing. It’s really not... (laughs). It’s not clicking with me, you know. But things come up and we were like, well, yeah, we’d like to get involved and try and do something to help it out. But then it turns around on us, right? And they got, like, all these gay activist groups and jumped on our case for being involved with this, to the point where there was a question as to whether or not was even safe for us to do this gig. And finally we just said, screw it, let’s just do it, you know. Whatever. I hope we don’t get shot or anything. […] I don’t know what they’re so uptight about. They were saying they were gonna do whatever they could to sabotage our part of the show and they totally attacked the whole Queen Organization for allowing us on the bill and all this stuff. And I’m like... It is never ending, you know? It’s always something, it’s, like, so ridiculous" [MTV, April 20, 1992].

Slash would also talk about Brian May, whom he had met when the band played at Wembley Stadium the year before [see earlier section]:

Slash: "And [May]’s, like, one of the sweetest guys. Really easy to get along with and really gracious, you know. There’s no pop star attitude and no errors going around" [MTV, April 20, 1992].


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Re: THE HISTORY OF GUNS N' ROSES - IN THEIR OWN WORDS

Post by Soulmonster on Tue Jan 01, 2019 12:44 am

THE BAND MEMBERS DESCRIBING PLAYING MUSIC TOGETHER

Slash: "We [=Izzy and Slash] don't work out our parts. If it's Izzy's song, I might turn the riff around a little bit and add something. But he'll play his part the way he wrote it—very loose, very Stonesy. When it comes to my tunes, I write riffs that are a lot more intricate—that's my style. So he just takes his style and adds it to my riff. Usually, for every five notes there's one chord on that side [points left and chuckles]. We don't consciously work out parts, whereas Glen Tipton and K.K. Downing probably get into that. […] [Duff and Matt fitting hand-in-glove] was an important factor in choosing Matt. It's different from the way, say, AC/DC works, where the guitars play together and the bass just keeps a line that goes straight through the song. Izzy plays really simple; me and Duff play all the intricate stuff—it's almost like one thick part. Duff takes whatever riffs he and I play and does them with the drums. And everything has to be in sync. So if Duff's playing with somebody who's not hip to what's going on, he knows in an instant" [Guitar Player, December 1991].

With Steven and Izzy gone, Slash talked about how that had affected their playing:

Slash: "Well, it’s been really refreshing just to get out there and be able to have a really solid band, because... I mean,  I said I don’t like to talk the other guys, as far as Steven and [Izzy] goes […] because it’s a real personal kind of relationship and it’s real emotional. But there was a point there, where, our aspirations as a band, as far as I was concerned and as far as Axl and Duff were concerned, that I don’t know where those guys were really coming from. So it started to be unenjoyable to play with them, you know? So it was real refreshing to get in and have people that were real eager to do it. So it’s been a lot of fun thus far, you know?" [MTV Rockline, March 1992].

Axl would also talk positively about the changes:

Axl: "One night when I was bummed, Matt came around and put his hand on me: "It's all right, man." Those little things are really special. With the new band and the new people, it's the first time I've really felt at home. It used to be just the five of us against the world. Now we've brought some of the outside world into the band. The first night we played with the new band, I was sitting at the piano during "November Rain," just looking at this and feeling really glad that I was a part of this thing" [Rolling Stone, April 2, 1992].


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Re: THE HISTORY OF GUNS N' ROSES - IN THEIR OWN WORDS

Post by Soulmonster on Tue Jan 01, 2019 1:21 am

Placeholder


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Re: THE HISTORY OF GUNS N' ROSES - IN THEIR OWN WORDS

Post by Soulmonster on Tue Jan 01, 2019 5:41 am

ACCOLADES

Another chapter I haven't really decided where to place. It's about the musical skills of the band members. I mean, GN'R was popular because of their songs, but individually, band members have been praised as musicians, especially Axl and Slash. So this chapter will deal with that, praise from others (non-band members) and their own words.

Axl

I’ve been singing since I was five years old. I sang in church from the age of five until I was 15. It was a Pentecostal holy roller church, eight miles out in the country. I played the piano in church [Spin, January 1988].[/i]
I grew up as a kid listening to Elvis Presley and gospel records, you know, and then when I got older I got into greatest hits in the 70s and all that stuff, and I played piano for years so I was really into anything to do with piano, Elton John and Billy Joel and stuff like that. But then when I started singing, you know, hardcore rock and roll I was really into Dan McCafferty of Nazareth [Unknown UK source, June 1987].[/i]
Despite this, according to Spin in May 1988, Axl never wanted to be a singer "because he didn't like his voice" [Spin, May 1988].

I'm like a second baritone, and I just worked on widening my range, to get a high range. And so then I just try to find the way to use it. Use the whole thing rather than limit myself [Headbanger's Ball, May 1988].
One of Axl's great strengths as a singer is his versatility:

[…] it was a challenge to write a song that I could use the low voice in. Because sometimes we'd write a song and when I started singing it in the lower voice, it was like we'd stop and say "That's out. It's not going to sound right." Eventually, we came up with "It's So Easy," and it just happened to sound right. It reminded me of Iggy Pop and stuff. So that's how that came about. And Mr. Brownstone" reminded me of the Stones, and I always liked making fun of Mick Jagger in the studio and playing around with it and stuff - and people seemed to like it. So it was like "Whoa OK, I'll work on this." So I worked on the vocal awhile until I was happy with it [Cream, September 1989].
Slash

For me, it's like certain compliments come from different sources and I take them in different ways... Like, getting Best Guitarist in Kerrangl- that right there is one of the all-time greatest compliments, right? […] And then not only does t happen, but I find out Gibson's putting out a Slash model Les Paul... And this is all completely fuckin' amazing stuff that I would never have dreamed of happening to me when I was a kid! […] But instead of letting it go to my head, the way I honestly feel about it is, like; really don't see my playing as being truly worth that, y'know? I tend to put it down to record sales and 'cause it's hip to like Guns N' Roses right now. […] I mean, it would be a real joke if I was to start thinking of myself as the world's best guitarist, because that's just not true, and I should know... […] I mean, God, I would hope I'm twice the guitarist now than I was when we recorded the first album. But in another way, it gives me the energy and motivation to really play my ass off on this next record, so I can at least prove myself of being even just a little bit worthy of all the praise and attention I've had and the band's had this last year or so. […] It's fatal to believe in your own hype... I've seen it happen to people in other bands - they win some poll and immediately they start walking around thinking they're the fuckin' greatest! Believing too much in your own image - it's instant brain death [Kerrang! April 1989].[/i]
You know, I've been voted 'Best Guitarist' in the polls conducted by a number of magazines across the world. But this doesn't mean I'm the best in the world. It's simply that my band is really popular [RAW Magazine, May 1989].[/i]
We were never really thought of as a band that was musically gifted. We were just another one of those loud rock ’n’ roll bands that fall over on stage and they’re funny. At this point in time, I think we’ve gotten past those hurdles, where we can express ourselves and people are actually listening. […]I’m no longer just the guy that said f— on TV. I’m a guy who can actually play [St. Petersburg Times, December 27, 1991].[/i]

After the release of the 'Illusions', Slash would get a lot of praise in credible magazines like Guitar Player and Guitar World:

Being called "the father of the back-to-basic movement of guitar playing: I don't feel that way. I'm real proud of the work that went into these records, although most of the stuff was spontaneous. The guitar parts on Appetite were more worked out. With Illusion, I just did the guitar lines the day we recorded. In order to give each song its own unique quality, I'd do all the overdubs for one song before moving on to the next. And to this day I can't remember some of what I played. I can't duplicate it live. So I feel puny as a guitar player. I like what I do and I know where it comes from, and I'm proud of the fact that it is for real. But I'm way far removed from feeling like the father of anything [Guitar World, February 1992].[/i]


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Re: THE HISTORY OF GUNS N' ROSES - IN THEIR OWN WORDS

Post by Soulmonster on Tue Jan 01, 2019 5:42 am

ACCUSATIONS OF SEXISM AND MYSOGENY

The band had been accused of sexism since the release of 'Appetite' with its original rape-scene artwork and lyrics, especially to 'It's So Easy'.

With the release of 'Lies', the lyrics to 'Used To Love Her' added fuel to the accusations.

Axl: "[It's just a song. It was done very tongue-in-cheek, we never meant for anyone to take it seriously. It is just a fucking song." [Circus Magazine, May 1989].

Band members would vehemently defend themselves, but not always very efficiently:

Slash: "Well if the average person had to deal with the same kind of members of the fuckin' opposite sex that we have to deal with all the time, they'd probably think the same. Well, 75 per cent of the girls that hang out at the gigs, you can't tell me that most of them aren't sluts. […] They are very, very cheap. We're around it 24 hours a day. What the fuck do they want? […] Its very true. We never said anything bad against women in general and I mean everybody in the band has had girlfriends and shit that they cared about. Its nothing against women its just those occasional fuckin' tramps that hang out at every gig. They're the people were exposed to and so we write songs about that. And if the other people don't understand that then tell them not to buy the fuckin' record." [Juke, December 1988]

Slash: "There was a picture of a young woman lying on the ground obviously about to get raped by a robot. And just above, there's a hand which is about to crunch the robot up. That doesn't mean anything special. We liked the picture, that's all. But everyone came down on us and accused us of glorifying rape. […] We're an easy target for people who like to see the good guys on one side and the bad guys on the other. We look so much like the image they like to have of bad guys. We're not sexist, but that's no reason for the groupies who hang around backstage to start wanting respect. We treat them like shit because that's what they are. [Being accused of that statement being sexist] No, it's not. We're talking about groupies. not women in general. Anyway, one day one of those tramps is gonna catch AIDS from screwing some faggot and end up giving it to every group in town. That'll be the end of the rock scene in LA." [New Musical Express, April 1989].

And Slash would indicate that the 'Use Your Illusion' albums are a bit anti-feministic:

"Y'know, I detect a little bit of anti-feminism shit going on too, because the songs that are about women that are negative are like really f***ing hard. I can see girls going, 'What assholes!' But then, y'know, our angle is just like, ‘This is true you f***ing c***'. This is the way it was and we put it down on paper. But you know, these feminist groups will be like... d'you know what I'm saying?" [Melody Maker, August 1991].

Another things that drew criticism for the band was the practice of filming girls before shows and encouraging them to show their tits. The band would stop this after complaints from fans:

Bridenthal: "The key thing to them (stopping the practice) was that it wasn't parents complaining, but their own fans" [Los Angeles Times, August 1991].

Yet, during the US leg of the tour in December 1991 and January 1992, the crew would again film girls in the audience [numerous show reviews]

Slash: "Am I sexist? The answer is no" [Star Tribune, January 21, 1992].

After the release of 'Use Your Illusion', Axl was asked if he was a mysogenist:

Axl: "[…]'Back Off Bitch' is a ten-year-old song. I've been doing a lot of work and found out I've had a lot of hatred for women. Basically, I've been rejected by my mother since I was a baby. She's picked my stepfather over me ever since he was around and watched me get beaten by him. She stood back most of the time. Unless it got too bad, and then she'd come and hold you afterward. She wasn't there for me. My grandmother had a problem with men. I've gone back and done the work and found out I overheard my grandma going off on men when I was four. And I've had problems with my own masculinity because of that. I was pissed off at my grandmother for her problem with men and how it made me feel about being a man. So I wrote about my feelings in the songs. […] I've been hell on the women in my life, and the women in my life have been hell on me. And it really breaks me down to tears a lot of times when I think about how terribly we've treated each other. Erin (Everly, Rose's former wife) and I treated each other like shit. Sometimes we treated each other great, because the children in us were best friends. But then there were other times when we just fucked each other's lives completely up. And so you write about that in your frustration. The anger and the emotions and stuff scare people, and it's good that people recognize these things as dangerous. I don't think our music promotes that you should feel this way, and if people are getting that, that's not right. We're saying you're allowed to feel certain ways. Now, if you want to hold on to something that you know is bad, that's your problem. I don't want to. I've already left most of the lyrics behind. I'd already grown past a lot of the things by the time I started working on my therapy in February. […] But ... I love women. I remember the last time in ROLLING STONE, saying that I liked seeing two women together, and there were letters from lesbian organizations saying, "How disgusting." I can be as disgusting as the next person, but it wasn't meant to be disgusting. I think women are beautiful. I don't like to see people used. If I'm looking at a men's magazine and I just look at the surface, I might be able to enjoy it. But if I know that this person is really messed up and that person's messed up and they're being used by the person who set up the photo session, then it'll turn my stomach" [Rolling Stone, April 2, 1992].

Axl would also argue that his attitude towards women was shaped by experiences he had in his childhood when his father had been abusive towards his mother:

Axl: "I got a lot of violent, abusive thoughts toward women out of watching my mom with this man. I was two years old, very impressionable, and saw this. I figured that's how you treat a woman. And I basically put thoughts together about how sex is power and sex leaves you powerless, and picked up a lot of distorted views that I've had to live my life with. No matter what I was trying to be, there was this other thing telling me how it was, because of what I'd seen" [Rolling Stone, April 2, 1992].


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Re: THE HISTORY OF GUNS N' ROSES - IN THEIR OWN WORDS

Post by Soulmonster on Tue Jan 01, 2019 5:50 am

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Re: THE HISTORY OF GUNS N' ROSES - IN THEIR OWN WORDS

Post by Soulmonster on Wed Jan 02, 2019 5:37 am

A future topic about Duff and his education:

"McKagan's bull in a China shop manner gives the impression that he doesn't put much thought into anything but he'll surprise you. For starters he's not stoopid. McKagan was an honor student before he dropped out of highschool to tour with various punk bands, opening for acts like Black Flag and the Dead Kennedys; he says he intends someday to pick up where he left off. "I talked with a counselour, "McKagan says, "I have to take one year of junior college. But if I ace junior college, get up in the high threes or a four point figure, I can get into Harvard, because they like weird people at Harvard these days." McKagan says, he'd like study law; as hard as it is to picture him hobnobbing with the ivy leagers in his leather pants, it appears he's serious." [Rolling Stone, September 1991].
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Re: THE HISTORY OF GUNS N' ROSES - IN THEIR OWN WORDS

Post by Soulmonster on Sat Jan 12, 2019 5:45 am

A future quote about the Paris show where they were supposed to play with Jeff Beck:

Slash: I'd love to jam with Jeff Beck [WNEW 102.7, September 1991].
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Re: THE HISTORY OF GUNS N' ROSES - IN THEIR OWN WORDS

Post by Soulmonster on Sat Jan 12, 2019 8:06 pm

AXL'S STAGE FRIGHT

Axl's perfectionism may also be related to his stage nerves and anxieties regarding their live shows:

I'm very stressed about the shows, which are the most important thing to me. Nothing ever really works right for this band [RIP, April 1989].
In September 1991, Spin reported that Axl was suffering from stage fright and that this caused the two hour late start at the Deer Creek Music Center show in Noblesville, Indiana [Spin, September 1991]. According to "sources back stage" Axl was "extremely nervous" to play for friends and family from his hometown of Lafayette, Indiana [Spin, September 1991].

When interviewed by Kim Neely for Rolling Stone in early 1992, Neely would mentioned that Axl had previously told him he "hate performing". When confronted with this statement Axl would say:

I just think it's a really weird job. I'm not saying it's a bad job, I'm not saying it's a great job. But you know, it's just the work that goes into being that athletic. I mean, do you want to go out every night and jump off, like, your car? And have to do that? It's like it becomes your job. That doesn't take away the sincerity or the honesty of it, but it is a job. And sometimes I'd rather be doing something else [Rolling Stone, April 2, 1992].


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Re: THE HISTORY OF GUNS N' ROSES - IN THEIR OWN WORDS

Post by Soulmonster on Sat Jan 12, 2019 8:54 pm

AXL AND DOMESTIC ABUSE ALLEGATIONS

Another chapter I might combine with another. This is about Axl's domestic abuse allegations, and his own admissions of domestic violence.

Gina Siler was an early girlfriend of Axl from Lafayette who moved with Axl to Hollywood and stayed with him there for some time. In an interview she did with Spin Magazine in 1991, she implied that Axl could get violent or at least threaten with violence:

"And I don’t think [Axl]’s even conscious of what he does, or how angry he gets. […] I always thought that there was something chemical that happened to him when he was angry. That image of him sitting in that electric chair in that video ‘Welcome to the Jungle’, looking crazed, says it all. That’s what he looks like when he’s pissed off. And when you see that coming at you from across a room, coming near you, it’s frightening as hell. And I’m not very big, and that made it even worse. I won’t go much into that" [Spin, September 1991].
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Re: THE HISTORY OF GUNS N' ROSES - IN THEIR OWN WORDS

Post by Soulmonster on Sun Jan 13, 2019 3:06 am

Perhaps a chapter on Axl's spirituality, since it can contain some of the stuff with Yoda etc.

Axl: "That experience with religion lasted for 10 years and I went to church 3, 2, 7 times a week, you know. And I had to study the Bible regularly for that 10 years. But, you know, the church was pretty hypocritical and they ended up helping to destroy each other’s lives. And it really distorted my view on God, and peace, and all kinds of things for a very long time. And it took a long time to get over, you know. And now I’m just, like, things are cool with God, I guess. “Jesus is just alright with me” (laughs). [Reference to a 60s gospel song that became known from its versions by the Byrds and the Doobie Brothers]" [Rockline, November 27, 1991]-


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Re: THE HISTORY OF GUNS N' ROSES - IN THEIR OWN WORDS

Post by Soulmonster on Tue Jan 15, 2019 2:24 am

1991-1995 - PROFESSIONAL CREW II

When the band started touring the 'Use Your Illusions', Slash's guitar tech was Adam Day [Guitar Player, December 1991], the same techie Slash had been using since the days of 'Appetite'.

Axl's bodyguard was Earl Gabbidon [Rolling Stone, April 2, 1992].

At some point Axl's sister, Amy Bailey, started working for Axl [Rolling Stone, April 2, 1992].


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