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

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Post by Soulmonster on Fri Jan 18, 2019 9:59 pm

JULY 17-29, 1992 - TOURING WITH METALLICA

Finally in July 1992 the long-awaited tour with Metallica and Faith No More started. The new element to the live shows was the inclusion of pyro:

If anything, [the stage show] just got bigger. The stage is just a little bit different and it’s a little bit more dynamic, you know. There’s some pyro stuff, some explosions that go off, and we’ve been having a good time with it. And we can just throw in any song whenever we feel like it[MTV, July 20, 1992].
Matt would say the band had gotten better because of the extensive touring they had done:

After touring Europe twice and going around the United States a couple of times, we’re much more of a unit than we were. We’re definitely a serious band now. Then. I think we were feeling out what songs were working. When you come out this time, you’ll see the difference[The Indianapolis Star, July 21, 1992].
The first show of the summer tour co-billed with Metallica took place at RKF Stadium in Washington DC on July 17, 1992. Before this show the band rehearsed for one day:

We stayed on the road, we had two weeks off and we had one day of rehearsal in Washington before the show in Washington. That was basically it. And we don’t even get soundchecks anymore, you know? So we all have our own ways of warming up before every gig. We’ve been playing the songs long enough, to the point where I don’t think we necessarily have to rehearse on, you know – except for the old stuff that we haven’t played [MTV, July 20, 1992].
When being asked if Axl participated in rehearsals, Slash responded:

Well, ever since the band started we’ve never really rehearsed with vocals, cuz we were too loud. […] Well, I mean, obviously there would be a preference if we could all play together. I mean, we all feel that way, Axl included. But because we won’t sacrifice the band’s actual sound - we have to play that loud - there’s no rehearsal PA that can handle it. So we rehearse sometimes, like, you know, at Axl’s place or my place or Duff’s place if we want to get parts together, and then we just go and wing it at the shows. […] [Axl] couldn’t hear himself [if he rehearsed with them using the rehearsal PA], which is worse than anything because it’s bad on his vocals, his vocal cords [MTV, July 20, 1992].
Slash was awed by the huge production:

I mean, all things considered, walking into a production of that size after being off the road for two weeks, not really knowing how it was gonna feel like or look like, walking into the building and just having that, sort of like, slow perspective of how big it got as you’re walking down the halls all opening up and you finally get outside to where the actual stage is, seeing 100 and, God knows, how many people putting up this fortress so that you can go out and play, it was a little overwhelming. And considering we didn’t plan ahead for any kind of show - you know, same way we’ve always done it. […] We just went in and we rehearsed some tunes that we haven’t played in a while in case they came up. And that was basically it, and then we just started the first show in Washington, and just said, okay, click, click, click and you’re on. And we just – you know, what we’re gonna play first...[MTV, July 20, 1992].
Going into this thing, none of us really knew what it was going to be like. We just sort of went in blind. But there’s a certain kind of feeling when you’re walking down the hallway from outside the venue and then the whole stadium opens up to you as you get farther down the hall. The actual doorway opens to this huge stadium and there’s this stage that’s set up — I mean the scaffolding alone is amazing — and it’s a little overwhelming because a hundred some-odd people are putting this together and all of a sudden you feel really humbled by the size of the event. As an individual, as a band member, you feel really puny. It’s hard to see that you’re that significant and this amount of work should be going on in your honor[Boston Globe, July 30, 1992].
At some point after their first show, Kirk Hammett, lead guitarist of Metallica, was asked to talk about Guns N' Roses:

Hammett: "We get along. I mean, there’s no rivalry. Any sort of competition would be friendly. It’s been a long time since we’ve toured with another band, so, you know, this just sort of gives us a big kick to have another act out there on the same stage. And we have to squeeze 150 percent out just to make sure that we leave the right impression on people. We’re going to be playing in front of their fans and they’re going to be playing in front of our fans" [The Boston Globe, July 30, 1992].

The second show was at Giants stadium in East Rutherford on July 18. Slash would claim they tried to reduce the late starts but that the stage change after the Metallica set made it hard:

We’re trying to be a little bit more considerate about [the late starts], especially because of the heat. You know, the day is long enough for the people who are going. It starts, like – the doors open at 2:00. […] You know, Faith No More goes on for 45 minutes to an hour, Metallica’s on for 2 h and, sometimes, 2 h 15 minutes. And then, you know, the set change between us and Metallica is 1 hour 15 min, because they’re both big productions and so, turning the stage around like most bands do, we have to take down Metallica’s stuff and put our stuff up, and it takes a long time. So by the time we get on, unfortunately most of the kids are burnt out (laughs). But then, you know, we play for 2.5 hours, 2 h 45, something like that. So we try and get on as soon as possible. For the first time at Giants Stadium we were actually ready to go and the stage wasn’t up yet. [...] All of us were standing around. You know, it was an unprecedented event[MTVs, July 20, 1992].
After this they travelled to Pontiac for a show at the Pontiac Silverdome on July 21. This was close to Detroit and Axl apologized to the audience for having cancelled two previous shows in Detroit [The Detroit Free Press, July 22, 1992]. Backstage the band had a beach party with a "champagne fountain, pinball machines and a pool table" [The Detroit Free Press, July 22, 1992].

The next show was at the Hoosier Dome in Indianapolis on July 22. After the show, music critic Marc D. Allan, writing for the Indianapolis Star, criticized Axl for wasting the time on stage with rants that displayed an "arrogance and petulance that may be cute on the gossip pages but have no place in a concert setting" [The Indianapolis Star, July 22, 1992]. In response, Axl penned a letter to Allan which Allan would later make public:

MARK D. ALLAN, (USED TO BE THE NAME OF OUR TRAVEL AGENT, WE FIRED THEM)

You don't get it... Wait that's too easy... Maybe you don't want to get it - or you'd have to face yourself and oh my God that's just too scary. Maybe It's impossible and it's too late for you - you know, have someone stick a fork in your ass and turn you over you're done. Indiana needs to wake up and hey if that takes a little taunting and 2 and half hours of music + a fireworks show + cartoon for a total of 2 hours and 50 minutes to wake up maybe 5% of a 48,000 plus crowd then so be it. I can also suffer your redneck, blind, narrow minded refuse about ranting - you nor anyone will ever dictate my actions, attitudes, comments, oratation, and musical performances on stage. Don't kid yourself and act above, better than, or even comparable to me or G N' R. If that were true there'd be no reason to censor my language in your basic Indiana attempt at journalism.

I came here to enrage... Thank you, you have helped me know I succeeded. I've made my inquires. I am your Rock N' Roll nightmare. And you... You're just gonna sit on your wanna be ass and watch me. born a Hoosier, grow larger than you could ever imagine or ever be able to stop. That's not to say I didn't appreciate your anger, hostility and general ignorance. It shows me my so called "RANTS" are a much needed, missing piece in our puzzle of society.

stay away from microwaves-

Love Axl

P.S, Oh, and it was never a battle O' the bands. I imagined this thing, and everyone wins, as long as I show up to my own dream, that is!!!
[Letter to Marc D. Allan, July 24, 1992].
Some shows into the tour the newspaper Star Tribune did interviews with Duff and James Hetfield where they separately were asked the same questions. One of the questions was how the tour was going:

Excellent. Everybody is getting along great. Everything is running really smoothly. All the bands are going on [stage] on time, believe it or not. I'm waiting for something to happen. I'm used to it not running smoothly [Star Tribune, August 4, 1992]
Hetfield's answer was slightly more reserved:

Hetfield: "Not bad. It started a little rough, but it's getting better as far as working out the stage (starting) times and all the piddly crap that certain bands like to blow out of proportion — little things like ego ramps [used by GNR] and stuff we don’t care about. We're there to play music" [Star Tribune, August 4, 1992].

Another of the questions was for Hetfield and duff to say something nice about the other band:

I like their integrity and how they relate with the crowd. When they did Monsters of Rock two years ago, they blew away every other band just because they relate to the kids so well. Of course, I love their music and the guys. It's really cool because it's like a big family on the road [Star Tribune, August 4, 1992]
Hetfield: "I'm still trying to figure out how many people are in the band. At different points of the set, there's different people up there. I like the fact they're really loose and they just play any song at any time. […] They get loose onstage guitarwise and just kind of jam, which I really like. I like Slash's guitar playing. Matt is a great drummer. I'm into that [Lynyrd] Skynyrd vibe, and it kind of reminds me of that a little bit. The fact that they do have other instruments up there — piano, harmonica, horn section — is really cool. They've got no limits on what they're doing musically, which I like. Oh, I like Axl's shorts; they're really cute" [Star Tribune, August 4, 1992].

After Indianapolis the next show was at Rich Stadium in Orchard Park on July 25, then Three Rivers Stadium in Pittsburgh on July 26, before returning to Giants Stadium in East Rutherford on July 29.

Before the concert Slash would be asked whether there was a "battle of the bands" competition and if he felt the pressure of touring with Metallica:

No, and I mean that. I just want the fans to think that it was a great day--like going to the circus or the zoo, where you remember loving the day and not just one thing about it. It's not like we are out there to kick Metallica's ass or vice versa. […] There is pressure, but the way I deal with it is just having our band be as good as we can be every single night. I don't even go to the gig until right before we go on. I haven't seen Metallica since we started touring because I don't want to be intimidated or influenced even subconsciously [Los Angeles, August 9, 1992]

Close to the ending of the set at Giants Stadium, with about 2 songs or 10 minutes left to play, during 'Knockin' On Heaven's Door', Axl "stormed off" the stage [Los Angeles Times, August 1, 1992]. The band continued playing for another five minutes before Duff announced that Axl had left after being hit in the groin by a lighter and that the show was over [Los Angeles Times, August 1, 1992; Hartford Courant, July 31, 1992]. A band spokesperson would claim the in addition to being hit, Axl suffered from a sore throat and because of this the next three shows would be cancelled [Los Angeles Times, August 1, 1992]. Axl's bad throat would be confirmed by Slash in his autobiography:

At the Giants Stadium show at the end of July, Axl barely made it through the set due to the state of his voice. He was adviced by his doctor to rest it for a week, so we cancelled the next three dates [Slash's autobiography, "Slash", 2007, p. 358]
The three cancelled shows, to be rescheduled, were in Minneapolis, Foxboro near Boston and Columbia, S.C. [St. Cloud Times, July 31, 1992].

After the show at Giants Stadium, Guns N' Roses and Faith No More, with their crews, totaling 160 people had dinner at Old Homestead in New York, Axl's favorite NY restaurant [New York Daily News, July 30, 1992]. One of their waiters revealed to Axl he would miss class next day due to the long party, to which Axl wrote a note to his teacher:

"Dear Mr. Sacco, I’m so sorry Randy was absent from school as he was working hard to feed starving heathens. Please excuse him, as with any luck it will happen again. Sincerely. W. Axl Rose" [New York Daily News, July 30, 1992].


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Post by Soulmonster on Sat Jan 19, 2019 2:14 am

GOING SOLO

Band members quickly realized that they had musical ambitions that went beyond the confinements of "Guns N' Roses".

In 1988, Axl would say a solo record was unlikely, but that if he wasn't satisfied after the release he might explore, like movies:

I hope I'll be really satisfied after [releasing the follow-up to Appetite]. I don't want to go solo, but there are areas I'd like to explore - maybe movies - where I might not be able to stay in the band to do it[Musician, December 1988].
But in 1989 the tune had changed:

I want to do five records in two years[RAW Magazine, May 1989].
And those five records were, as written by Raw Magazine, "the next studio one (possibly a double), the live one, 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].

He would further elaborate on a solo record in 1990:

I can imagine finding people that play really good that I want to do songs with and see about possibly putting a solo project together at some point, but not getting the same effect. But I can't really see trying to duplicate what Guns N’ Roses is, because Guns N’ Roses is so much more than we ever thought it really would be[MTV Famous Last Words, August 1990].

In mid-1992 sources from the camp of Guns N' Roses allegedly said that Axl wanted to star in a movie and that they were "looking at a script a week" [The Akron Beacon Journal, August 23, 1992]. Allegedly, Axl had gotten a taste of acting after the November rain and Don't Cry music videos.

In addition it was reported that Axl had "been saving songs since at least the Use Your Illusion recording session" and wanted to release a solo record after the Illusion touring [The Akron Beacon Journal, August 23, 1992].

Slash would also entertain the possibility of doing a solo record:

I plan on doing one one day. I'm sure [Axl] does as well[Circus Magazine, May 1989].
By August 1991, Slash would state that he intended to do a record with another band if Guns N' Roses experienced a long downtime:

But if we take a long hiatus again, I'd like to put out, not really a solo record, but something with another band—a temporary thing that I'd control. It would be geared towards an almost heavy metal funk-rock concept—music with killer rock and roll vocals and the most awesome riffs. Almost like "Jungle," only a little bit tighter and heavier. A long time ago, Aerosmith got close; Beck has a couple of magic moments too. But I don't want it to be a guitar record where I'm off on some solo trip, 'cause I think that's really boring[Guitar Player, December 1991].
In early 1992 he was asked about a solo record again:

Ha! As far as me doing my own thing, I haven’t given it much thought because I’ve been too busy concentrating on Guns. It’s kept me pretty occupied and I can’t really look at anything other than day by day, that way I don’t get any nasty surprises when things fuck up![Raw Magazine, March 4, 1992].
When asked again in July 1992 Slash would say that other than Duff's solo record there were no other in planning [Rockling, July 13, 1992].

The first one out was Duff. In 1991, he had started working on his solo record. As reported by The Seattle Times: "While here next week, McKagan will spend a day recording a song dedicated to Wood at a local studio, working with local musicians. It's for a solo album he hopes to release later this year. Lenny Kravitz and Sebastian Bach have already recorded tunes with him, and he's asked Prince to join him in L.A. in two weeks to complete the project" [The Seattle Times, July 1991]. In October 1991, it was reported that Duff had "already signed the deal with Geffen, has got Lenny Kravitz involved and says Prince might sing on several tracks" [VOX, October 1991].

I have Slash playing, Lenny Kravitz is singing on one song, Sebastian is gonna sing. I sing on the rest. It’s something I’ve always wanted to do. Nothing selfish or anything. It’s just, you know, I’ve had all these songs and I wanted to get it out, and that was the best way to do it. I was supposed to get another drummer come in, but I could play drums, and who would be better to play it than myself. They’re my songs, right?[Finnish TV, August 1991].
I got Lenny Kravitz, he’s singing one song. And Sebastian from Skid Row, he’s going to sing on another song. Slash is putting some leads on here and there. And Prince, hopefully he wants to do it. He’s like an inspiration to me as far as songwriting goes, big time. It’s turning out pretty cool. I’ve got eight tracks done, all my tunes[Circus Magazine, November 1991].
In February 1992, Duff would say the record was coming out in the summer and that it was on Geffen [Video Interview, February 1992]. The same month, Slash was asked about Duff' solo record:

[…] it’s not so much a solo record as a record [Duff] did working with all kinds of different people. It’s one of those records which came from the fact that he had a load of songs hanging around. He started recording it when me and Axl were doing guitar and vocals on the last album and he had dead time. He was just keeping busy. It’s gonna come out after the tour’s over. It sounds pretty good some of it although I haven’t heard the whole thing. There’s a song on there that I have to play on. It’s got to get finished[Raw Magazine, March 4, 1992].
It's basically something I wanted to do since I started playing guitar. We had some down time last spring, before we hit the road, so me and [producer/engineer] Jim Mitchell started cutting tracks. I play drums, bass and rhythm guitars. Slash plays some lead, I play some lead and Snake [Dave Sabo, from Skid Row] plays some lead. Sebastian [Bach] sings one song. It's working out very cool. We're recording it here and there, no big rush. The working title of the record is Believe in Me. It's different from a Guns N' Roses record, because it's stuff that I've written all on my own, a lot of times when I was alone. There's a lot of heavy Duff-isms. […] This is something I've always wanted to do. And it's not to differentiate myself from Guns N' Roses. I've wanted to do this since before Guns, but now I have the opportunity and the resources. Hey, I'm not trying to depart from GN'R - everyone knows that - it's just my own little trip. You know, I've been touring since I was 15, and I'm 27 now. The time is right[RIP Magazine, March 1992].
For the April issue of Guitar for the Practising Musician, Duff would discuss his solo record and say he intended to release it in the summer or fall because he wanted to tour it together with Slash:

I got a solo deal with Geffen. The record's called Believe in Me. I recorded the majority of it while we were on the road, which kept it pretty fresh. I've been recording all over the place, from London to Seattle. I did some drum and piano tracks in Dallas for a song called "Lonely Tonight," where I went in after we played three hours. It was four in the morning and I recorded till one or two in the afternoon. […] At first I was going, 'Okay, we'll try doing it this way.' Jim, who engineered the Guns N' Roses record, is co-producing it with me. I didn't know if it would work or not, or if you'd be able to tell by the tracks that I was tired. But you get a second, third or fourth wind, and it puts you in this state of mind. I don't know how to explain it, but it's great. Matt played drums on one song. Rob Affuso from Skid Row did drums on one song. I did drums on the rest of them. Bas sang on one song when we were in London, and Rob played drums in Denver and Snake played guitar on one song. I pulled some real bluesy stuff out of him that he didn't realize he had. I turned off all the lights and lit some candles. It's piano, bass, and just a kick and a snare. It's real bluesy, low, subtle. We just got him in the mood. It took a wile but he just let go. I said to him, just pretend you're on a porch somewhere. […] I'm almost done recording, but I'm not going to release it till late summer or early fall, because I'm going to tour on it. I'll play rhythm guitar and sing, Slash is going to play lead, Mac will play drums, and this guy London McDaniel is going to play bass. Teddy, who plays with us now, is gonna play keyboards, sax and harmonica[Guitar for the Practising Musician, April 1992].
This has been a dream of mine, since I was 15, to do something myself. I was always a big Prince fan, especially of the early stuff, like Dirty Mind, that he did by himself. Now I'm afforded the chance to do it. Some of the songs are bits and pieces of stuff I've written years ago. I have an 8-track up at my house, and I've got 40 or 45 complete songs[Guitar for the Practising Musician, April 1992].
In April Duff would comment on what instruments he plays on the record:

I play drums on most of the tracks. Matt played on one track. And I played bass, obviously, and I play guitar, and I sing, sort of[From April 20, 1992 but shown in MTV Special, July 17, 1992].
He’s got a rock tune with a rap in the middle. And it’s - you gotta hear it. It’s different, man. It’s definitely Duff[From April 20, 1992 but shown in MTV Special, July 17, 1992].


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Post by Soulmonster on Sat Jan 19, 2019 2:17 am

GUNS N' ROSES AND NIRVANA

At the same time as the two 'Use Your Illusion' albums were released and the band started to tour in support of them, an underground musical movement was happening that in many ways, at least superficially, was contrary to Guns N' Roses who had become established and mainstream. Fronting this movement was the band Nirvana.

Despite this, Guns N' Roses admired Nirvana and wanted to tour with them. Slash talking about the rumored tour with Metallica and the possibility of Skid Row being part of it:

Well, I don’t think the Skids are gonna be on it. We’re talking about doing it with Nirvana but we need to see where those guys are at. Metallica, Nirvana and us sounds pretty good to me. I went and saw Nirvana last night and they’re pretty good friends of mine so hopefully that’ll help even though we’re very different bands [Raw Magazine, March 4, 1992].
In March 1992 (published in June 1992], Axl was asked about Nirvana joining for the Metallica tour:

It's back and forth. I just think that they're having a lot of problems with who they are and who they want to be and trying to hold onto it at the same time. At least Kurt is. I'd like to be as supportive as I can, but I don't know how much he will allow support. To write a song like "Smells Like Teen Spirit" making fun of your songwriting and then have it used as an anthem has got to be a complete mindfuck. The man definitely has a mountain to rise above. I think there is a part of him that has the strength and desire to do it. I just don't know if he's able to get in touch with it. I had an advance copy of that record and it became my favorite. I would put it on repeatedly. Nirvana has helped me do my job. I think that the world has gotten really bored, really fed up and really pent up with frustration, and that comes through in Nirvana. I think a lot of people were aware of that feeling and he happened to find the song that touched it and was able to let that feeling out in people. And I'd like to do anything I can to support it. That's why we want them to play with us [Musician, June 1992].
Slash would be asked about Nirvana:

[…] I don't think Nirvana's attitude about, "Now that we've got here, it's fucked, and we're not gonna do anything" makes sense. That's copping out to some sort of - I'm sorry to say it - but pathetic, "It was easy to do what we started out with; now we have to deal with something [Musician, June 1992].
And whether he was saying this just because Nirvana wouldn't tour with Guns N' Roses because of some of their lyrics:

No, it has nothing to do with that, they just don't want to work. Axl and I are supposed to go over to the singer's house and talk with him. I don't know him personally. They don't want to go out, and the vibe, from my point of view, is just because they don't wanna fuckin' deal with "mainstream," which… there's no such thing as mainstream if you don't want it to be that way. I love their record, but I can't stand the fuckin' attitude. Because we spent our entire career as a band doing what we wanted to do in the way that we wanted to do it, going totally against the mainstream and getting to where we are now, which is great. If you have something important to say, you don't give up and flake out. [laughs] Because once you get there, it paves the way for other bands. We're in the mainstream only because the mainstream has become part of us. They've adapted to what we do [Musician, June 1992].


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Post by Soulmonster on Sat Jan 19, 2019 2:21 am

1991-1992 - SLASH AND BLACK DEATH VODKA

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].
Well, I ran into this vodka in Europe called Black Death, and on the bottle was a top hat and a skull, which is sort of my moniker anyway. It tasted great, so I drank it for a couple of days and that was it. I did an interview where I said, "We don't do endorsements for cigarettes or beer or what have you. The only thing I would endorse would be Black Death vodka." A couple of weeks later I get a call saying, "Black Death was interested in you doing that," and I said, "Okay! Cool!"[Musician, June 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].

It was just in Europe at the time [when Slash publicly said he's like to endorse it]. Now that it's stateside, I'm getting all kinds of flak from people saying I'm influencing the youth of America. Fuck 'em, the vodka's great. Everybody's supposed to be smart enough to make their own decisions, you know? […] I can understand where people can be pissed off because I'm endorsing something that is not necessarily healthy, and maybe I have some influence on younger kids, but at the same time, the way I grew up, and where I come from, I've done it for myself. As far as influencing kids goes, I didn't know that was my fuckin' job, ya know?[Musician, June 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].

[The Black Death Vodka conflict]’s not a thorn in my side, because that just gets me to the point – you know, when I got hassled for Black Death vodka, it just made me go, “Oh, cool, it must’ve screwed them around,” you know? So it’s like, people are gonna look at me as a public figure that’s influencing the youth of America; and I was like, no, that’s not it at all. It was just cool vodka and a great label, and I said I would endorse it. And I got hassled by the Surgeon General and all that kind of stuff, and I was in, like, the Wall Street Journal. And it’s like, how does some rock guitar player becomes so significant? You know, had it been Joe Blow on the street it wouldn’t matter, and people just, I think, go after us because of the fact that we’re as public as we are, or as visible as we are. So I was just like, yeah, well, the attitude that I’m gonna take is “screw you.” […]  But they were in Europe then, before. And Europe’s a lot less uptight about things like that than the States are. You know, everybody’s trying to make some, sort of like, moral rule as a standard, and try and have everybody abide by it. […] I’m not a role model at all. The other thing is, you know, Black Death, they’re trying to change the name or trying to make them change the name. And they’re still fighting it, and I’m like, “Cool.” So, you know, I’ll hang in there with them [MTV, July 20, 1992].


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Post by Soulmonster on Sat Jan 19, 2019 2:23 am

IZZY, AFTER GUNS N' ROSES

Around December 1991 Izzy would start writing music again [Kerrang! September 5, 1992].

Izzy: "From January [1992], the only thing I've really been doing is playing guitar. I put the bikes away because I found myself getting into music probably more than I ever have" [Kerrang! September 5, 1992].

And in July 1992 it was rumored that Izzy had a new band and was working on a record to be released and a following clubs and smaller concert halls tour [Journal and Courier, July 21, 1992]. In August it was reported he was putting the "finishing touches" on his "first solo album" [The Akron Beacon Journal, August 23, 1992], and this he did in Copenhagen, Denmark [Kerrang! September 5, 1992]. The solo record was to be called 'Ju Ju Hounds' and was scheduled for release in October 1992, preceded by an EP that would be our in September [Kerrang! September 5, 1992]. After the release he planned a European club tour with most of the musicians from the album and EP: guitarist Rick Richards (ex-Georgia Satellites), bassist Jimmy Ashurst (ex-Broken Homes) and drummer Charlie Quintana [Kerrang! September 5, 1992].

Slash would be asked about Izzy's music in July:

Slash: "I haven’t heard any of his new material. I know he does have a band and he’s got a record that’s gonna come out in November" [MTV, July 20, 1992].


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Post by Soulmonster on Sat Jan 19, 2019 6:47 pm

1991-1993 - BECOMING ESTRANGED - THE SPLINTERING OF THE GROUP

A chapter about how the band members would be further separated during the UYI touring in 1991-1993 and afterwards.

The separation of band members and fractionation of the band itself continued as the band started the UYI touring in 1991. As discussed previously, Izzy was keeping to himself [see previous chapter] and Axl was also reported to arrive to shows separately and seldom saw the rest of the band members [Melody Maker, August 10, 1991]. Slash would explain Axl's solitude on the press, saying, "it’s like everyone hates him and wants to dig the dirt on the poor guy" [The Liverpool Echo, June 8, 1992].

In August 1991, before Izzy had left, Slash would describe the overall situation but emphasize that the bond between the band members was still strong:

Slash: "F***, we don't live in the same building anymore or anything like that, but I only have so many friends and five of them are Guns. It's like family but, y'know, we have separate things — someone sleeps, someone's up, someone's drinking, someone's not... it's that kind of thing" [Melody Maker, August 10, 1991].

And Duff would claim they still hung out together:

Duff: "On our nights off, we still hang around together. We’ll call and say, ‘You wanna go to a strip club’ or a bar or whatever. It’s a lot more fun to tour with guys you get along with" [New York Daily News, July 29, 1992].

The horn player Lisa Maxwell was asked about the band:

Maxwell: "Nobody really has contact with [Axl] other than his close friends, his assistant, his chiropractor. He’s always been totally great with us, never dissed us in any way, gives us a lot of respect and jokes around when we pass him in the hall" [The Boston Globe, July 31, 1992].

Talking about how Izzy's departure affected the band:

Slash: "It made us all closer. I had always been close to Duff, but the changes made me and Axl a lot closer than we had been. We had always been friends, but there is really a bond there now" [Los Angeles Times, August 9, 1992].

From the stage in Montreal on August 8, 1992, a show that Axl would end early, Axl said, "In case anybody here is interested, this will be our last show for a long time" [The Montreal Gazette, August 8, 1992], implying things not being well. Later that same month it was reported about conflicts within the band. Axl was said to consider doing other things after the touring, including starring in movies and doing a solo record, after being "unhappy with his band mates" and being "disillusioned" [The Akron Beacon Journal, August 23, 1992].


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Post by Soulmonster on Sat Jan 19, 2019 6:49 pm

1991-1993 - THE LOST DOCUMENTARY

As described previously, the band had started thinking about a documentary from the early days. As the touring for 'Use Your Illusion' commenced the band would film every show [Fully Illustrated Book & Interview Disc, June 6, 1992; Journal and Courier, July 31, 1992]. When asked why, Slash would respond:

Slash: "Because we’re gonna do a documentary and so it’s just footage of what goes on. It’s gonna be like Christmas at the end of this whole thing, going through and try to edit all this stuff together, and remembering some of the stuff that has gone on, cuz it’s been pretty wild. […] I think a lot of stuff is gonna stay in the vault (laughs)" [MTV Headbanger's Ball, May 1992].

Duff: "We’re making a movie. I can’t really tell you too much about it because we’re kind of sworn to secrecy a little bit, but it’s a documentary, also videos will be intertwined. Okay... If you’ve noticed, some of our videos don’t really make sense. They will. For me to really tell you everything would really kind of spoil the fun of the anticipation" [MTV, June 1992].

Gilby: "Yeah, I just see the cameras all over and stuff, and, you know, after a while you just forget about them. I don’t know if it’s gonna be like the Madonna thing or anything (laughs). I hope not" [MTV, June 1992].

Slash: "I pray for the guys that have to edit it, because there’s a lot of stuff to take out, you know? (laughs). […] You know, stuff that we don’t want to have. Nothing bad, you know. Nothing as far as you know. Basically right now we’re just trying to do the shows. And then when it’s all said and done, we’ll get together and start going through the video stuff, and putting out the punk record and, you know, getting all that out of the way, and then concentrating on the next album" [MTV, June 1992].

Duff: "Like, our videos might not make sense right away, because they’re all part of one long story and only part has unfolded so far. That’s just how we wanted to do it" [New York Daily News, July 29, 1992].

In mid-1992, Geffen records would claim the label isn’t involved with any video project and that they aren't allowed to talk about a possible band-produced video [Journal and Courier, July 31, 1992] and that it would become a feature-film release [The Akron Beacon Journal, August 23, 1992].

Axl would briefly mention that it was unfortunate that the incident when he pushed a piano out his window and staying in the recording studio in December 1991, never was caught on film:

Axl: "Those were two major things that didn't get on film that should've. John Lennon wasn't nearly as selfconscious as I am. He could keep a camera rolling at all times" [RIP, September 1992].

It is hard to say whether the band wanted to both release a video with live recordings and a documentary with footage from their lives, or whether it was one project. It is also not clear how the elaborate music videos fitted into the plans.


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Post by Soulmonster on Wed Feb 06, 2019 2:06 am

THE BUSINESS SIDE OF THINGS II

Slash: "You know, as far the business side of things go we have to be able to get up in the morning and do shit, otherwise it just flies over your head and it’s too late. I’m constantly on top of it and Axl is too on a daily basis. It never stops. It’s cool because I’m in my element and I enjoy it. […] normally we wouldn’t talk about it, but since we’re getting picked apart so much we might as well tell people what goes on. It’s a huge contrast to when we’re on stage. It has nothing to do with music. I’ve always done business for the band ever since we started. It’s just the way I am. I dig the challenge of doing the business as much as I like to Rock out. I’ll take the latter over the former any day, but someone has to do. If you want something to be done you have to do it yourself. Our manager (Doug Goldstein) is great but you have to communicate what you want because his final decision may not be the right decision for what we do as a group. Financially it may be, but not as far as what you believe in as a Rock band" [Raw Magazine, March 4, 1992].

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].

Slash: "One of the few indulgences is getting drunk. Otherwise we’re always working. I get up in the morning, and I know this is gonna sound terrible, but I get on the fuckin’ phone to take care of business and get more dates, dealing with promoters and shit. Being on stage is great, the travelling is fine, but doing what we do is far from glamourous and I think people probably wouldn’t last five minutes doing what we do. I don’t mean that to sound bitter because it isn’t, but there’s times when we’re slaving away and we can’t even get jet-lag anymore because we just don’t sleep. At the same time people have paid to come and see us and they don’t give a shit and you’ve got to be able and deliver every night, whether you’re sick or not. There’s no work compensation in this business. I’m not knocking people who lead regular lives because that’s their choice and they probably complain in the same way as anyone else, but we ain’t just out here living an easy life" [Raw Magazine, March 4, 1992].

Slash: "I was real fortunate that I grew up in this business, so I watched a lot of people fuck up before I even started, you know (laughs)" [Videomusic, June 27, 1992].


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Post by Soulmonster on Wed Feb 06, 2019 9:21 am

AUGUST 8, 1992 - RIOT IN MONTREAL

At the August 8 show in Montreal, disaster struck again. It started during Metallica's set when James Hetfield by accident got burnt from pyrotechnics.

Metallica was halfway through that Montreal set when the flash pot blew up on him [Lakeland Ledger, August 1992]
Metallica went on, and midway through their set, James Hetfield caught on fire when a pyrotechnic malfunctioned. He sustained serious injuries to his arm and shoulder, and the band was forced to end their set immediately [Slash's autobiography, "Slash", 2007, p. 358]
Metallica front man James Hetfield inadvertently stepped into the plume of one of his band's pyrotechnics pots at the show and had to be rushed to the hospital with extensive burns. The other members of Metallica came back onstage after James had been whisked away, explained what had happened, and apologized for suspending the show. [Duff's autobiography, "It's So Easy", 2011, p. 206-207]
With Metallica having to cut their set short, Guns N' Roses was asked to step in early.

We were still back at the hotel, and they called us and told us that the fans would have to wait four hours if we came on at the time scheduled [Lakeland Ledger, August 1992].[/i]
That thing happened so fast. I mean, you're probably gonna get the same story from  absolutely everyone. We had gotten word -- you know, we were all just hanging out at the hotel -- and somebody said that there was a big accident. James had burned his arm, and their set got cut short. The audience is, you know, going a little crazy. It would be really great if we could go on early today. (Laughs) [Spin, June 1999]
We were still at our hotel when it happened, and we were asked to go on early - it was a noissue; of course we agreed to do so [Slash's autobiography, "Slash", 2007, p. 358].
We could have saved the day by going right on and playing a long set. It would have been a great gesture to the fans and to the guys in Metallica. It would have been the professional thing to do, the right thing to do. And we were capable of an epic set [Duff's autobiography, "It's So Easy", 2011, p. 206-207].
Unfortunately, they did not step up to the occasion:

So we rushed around, threw everything together and raced over to the stadium, only to find out that the whole P.A. system was screwed up. [...] We all tried, and Axl - whose voice had been bothering him - really tried, but the sound couldn't salvaged. The fans were getting this half Metallica set, a Guns N' Roses set they couldn't hear - they weren't getting their money's worth [Lakeland Ledger, August 1992].
So, basically, I was happening to, like, sing over 50 kilowatts of sound or something. I didn’t do major damage to my vocal cords, but I did enough that if I sang anymore under those conditions, I wouldn’t be singing. In order to hear myself, to see if I’m on key and tell how loud or how hard I need to push to sing a song properly, I have to try to sing all over the PA, which was impossible [MTV, September 9, 1992]
So we all got ready, and we got there, and we did. But the problem is, is because of all the frantic stuff that happened -- from, you know, Metallica's crew, our crew, all the things of, you know, everybody trying to do the right thing -- by the time we got onstage -- which was early -- it wasn't together. You know, the sound was just like -- it wasn't just bad, it was like almost unplayable. And I just remember Axl coming up to me and just going: You know, I can't hear myself -- I can't hear anything. What do we do? (Laughs) [Spin, June 1999]
The band headed to the venue right away and discussed what we'd play to fill up the remainder of Metallica's slot and ours as well. We had plenty of time to go over our options but it couldn't happen because Axl did not show up. Not only did we not go on early enough to fill the void left by Metallica, we went on three hours later than our own scheduled stage time. In the end, there was something like four hours between the time Metallica were forced to stop the show and the moment we took the stage [Slash's autobiography, "Slash", 2007, p. 358]
Slash is wrong in claiming it took four hours, contemporary reviews said it took about 2 hours [The Montreal Gazette, August 9, 1992: The Vancouver Sun, August 10, 1992],  Duff also disagrees with Slash in the quote below.

The same shit happened in Montreal as elsewhere, us going on late - more than two hours after Hetfield was rushed to the hospital - playing to pissed-off fans. Our own fans, pissed off at us. I sat backstage monitoring the sounds drifting in from the arena, drink in hand, and could feel the crowd's mood change. The rumble of tens of thousands of people beginning to get angry is a deep, low sound that penetrates walls and vibrates the fundaments of buildings, where dressing rooms are located. It's a horrible sound, and the panic and embarrassment and frustration in my own head was compounded by that rumble. After letting the crowd reach its boiling point, we finally went out and started playing [Duff's autobiography, "It's So Easy", 2011, p. 206-207].
Axl had obviously been agitated during the show and at one time said, "In case anybody here is interested this will be our last show for a long time" [The Montreal Gazette, August 9, 1992]. And not only that, Axl ended the show early 9 songs:

So we announced they'd get their money back and we'd play the date again. [Lakeland Ledger, August 1992]
You know, and the next thing you know, he left. And that was the end of it [Spin, June 1999]
And once we did [take the stage], Axl ended it early, after we'd done just ninety minutes out of a scheduled two hours. I am sure he had his reasons, but neither I nor the crowd, as far as I know, knew quite what they were. I can't say I was surprised when the audience started rioting [Slash's autobiography, "Slash", 2007, p. 358]
Then, forty-five minutes into our set, a microphone stand hit Axl in the mouth. He threw down the mic and left. This time the riot didn't start near the stage. We didn't even see it. The crowd blew up back at the concession areas and merchandise stands, and then spread outside into the streets. In fact, our crew did their normal teardown of the set, oblivious to the riot already raging out of view. Only when our buses pulled out of the parking enclosure did we see the full extent of the situation - cop cars turned over, vehicles on fire, lots of broken windows. Once again there looked to be lots of injuries. Once again I felt anguished and heartbroken. This time I also felt deeply embarrassed, a feeling that managed inexorably to worm its way into my vodka-numbed psyche. It didn't have to be like this [Duff's autobiography, "It's So Easy", 2011, p. 206-207]
Contemporary accounts said Axl left after 55 minutes [The Montreal Gazette, August 9, 1992: The Vancouver Sun, August 10, 1992].

Lars Ulrich would be gracious in describing what went down: "You know, Axl Rose is one of the most real people I've ever met. Okay, probably like one of the truest and more real people that I've ever met. When Axl is in the right mood and the right frame of mind, I mean, there's nobody that touches him as an artist and as a performer. But he's also the kind of person that it's sort of like if the monitors aren't 110%, then he can't deal with it. And then he just, instead of trying to find a way to deal with it, he chooses to walk off. And I'm sort of in a situation where I can sort of relate to both sides, because I think that there's a kind of purity in what he does. [...] It just so happens that that night, when James blew up onstage, and Guns N' Roses needed to come out and save the day, you know, Axl had one of his nights where he just wasn't really feeling it, and couldn't really pull it off. And that was the night where it really needed to happen -- do you know what I mean?" [Unknown source].

And Dizzy would trivialize the event and be protective of Axl:

That was a bummer, obviously. [...] The way all went down, it wasn't really cool. I just remember that we were, you know, we wanted to come back in it and give them the full show and their money's worth because obviously Metallica couldn't finish their set [...] But some people didn't like that and eh, I am not sure exactly, I know that in a lot of cases, not all cases, but the press sort of blows up, blows out of proportion and likes to call it a riot. I know there was some bad things happening there... […] I do remember that we had full attention and just wanted to come back on for the full show [One on One with Mitch Lafon, July 2014].
The riot resulted in minor injuries to eight police officers and twelve arrests [Associated Press, August 1992].

In interviews not many days after the incident Duff and Gilby would bemoan that there were blamed:

The poor guy [=James Hetfield] got fried, but the audience didn’t know that. They speak French. They couldn’t understand what we were saying. They were all drunk, and they got French in them to begin with. It just escalated. […] But we get blamed for it [El Paso Beacon Journal, August 28, 1992, August 1992]
It's ironic, since we were trying to save the day. Oh, well [Lakeland Ledger, August 28, 1992]]


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Post by Soulmonster on Fri Feb 08, 2019 10:52 pm

AUGUST 25-OCTOBER 6, 1992 - TOURING WITH METALLICA

El Paso Times did an assement of the Metallica/Guns N' Roses in late August and concluded that since mid-July only 9 out of 19 scheduled shows had taken place due to band member injuries [El Paso Times, August 27, 1992].

Duff: "Things happen. All three bands are really disappointed, but it’s really nobody’s fault" [El Paso Times, August 27, 1992].

Axl, talking about the tour: "One of the big things I learned was that everybody had wanted this tour so bad and worked so hard to make it – to be able to do this tour. You know, Metallica through their touring and through our touring, to be able to do a stadium tour together, that we thought that when we got here it would just be “perfect!”, that it would be so cool. Well, it kind of turned out to be that, “Wait a minute, this is so cool, that why shouldn’t it be the hardest thing we’ve ever done?" [MTV, September 9, 1992].


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Post by Soulmonster on Fri Feb 08, 2019 10:57 pm

NOVEMBER 23, 1999 - THE RELEASE OF 'LIVE ERA'

Duff: "Yeah, we’ll doubtless record and video shows on the next tour. In fact, we’ve already done some dates in Japan that way" [Raw Magazine, July 1989].


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Post by Soulmonster on Sat Feb 09, 2019 8:55 pm

THE F@*!ING VIDEOS

A chapter about the music videos and what they meant.

In the March issue of RIP Magazine it was said that the band planned a documentary detailing the making of the music video for 'Don't Cry' that "will answer all the questions about the clip and what it all means" [RIP Magazine, March 1992]. It was also said that Axl "wants to experiment with music, film and video, and produce clips that will no doubt redefine the genre for the MTV generation" [RIP Magazine, March 1992].

Axl would talk about the music video for November Rain:

Axl: "This is, like, the first video of the miniseries that we are trying to create. So who knows, because, I mean, we paid for November Rain ourselves, because Geffen didn’t really know what to think of that kind of budget. So... […] [The budget] was like, 1.6. Two. It was two, okay. Two (chuckles). But it’s something we believe in and I think it ends up speaking for itself in this quality. And there’s – hopefully there will be four more that will explain the story with other songs on the album" [MTV, July 12, 1992].

And later he would talk about the story that inspired the videos for November Rain and Don't Cry:

Axl: "It was a fictional story that my friend Del wrote based off – you know, I inspired him to write this story, because we were a rock band and we were working on our first album - it wasn’t even out yet - and I was pretty much out of control and we were all into the rock ‘n’ roll lifestyle. And he wrote this story about this guy who just becomes bigger than life, and the troubles he has in his relationship and keeping that together; basically about this couple in this relationship, and trying to deal with this lifestyle, and what happens to them. And so, little by little, we think about it, figure out how the next part of the story and stuff – we talk about it and he’ll write a little bit more. And all of a sudden it was kind of like, we sold 8 million records, and all of a sudden I was becoming what he had written about. He called me really upset one day, going “I wrote my friend’s death.” It was like, we’re in that one video where I find my gravestone and stuff like that, and that really freaked him out and he’ll write two other stories. So it’s kind of like a fictional story which had autobiographical and based off things that happened in real life. And now it’s like, with Stephanie it’s a real trip because some things are based off my previous relationship, and some things are fictional, but I’m in relationship with her" [MTV, September 9, 1992].

In the videos Stephanie Seymour would play the roles partly inspired by Erin Everly [MTV, September 9, 1992]:

Axl: "It’s really strange, you know. It’s a bit difficult for her, but she gets into a part and understands what we’re doing. But sometimes it’s very surreal, like when we got married it was – I mean, Slash looked at me and said, 'Dude, I just watched you get married 9 times' " [MTV, September 9, 1992].

Gilby: "I have no idea what it means at all. I mean, just the obvious of what anybody that watches it gets, but, you know, when you’re doing it – […] I was on the inside and I’m still confused. I’m waiting for the movie to come out" [MTV, September 9, 1992].

Slash: "Both those videos, even if you don’t understand them or you can’t make any sense of them, they’re very compelling to watch, because you wanna try and figure it out, you know? I mean, I catch myself, like, flipping through channels and I hit the (?) and I see one of our songs, I’ll stop for a minute, you know, and look at it, and it means something new to me every time I see it" [MTV, September 9, 1992].

Axl: "I’m really proud of Don’t Cry and November Rain. I really like the writing of the story and putting all the scenes together. And “Why did she die?” “How did she die?” “What happened?” And it’s like, we’ll tell you later (chuckles)" [MTV, September 9, 1992].


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Post by Soulmonster on Sat Feb 09, 2019 11:44 pm

AXL'S SPIRITUALITY AND CONSOLING WITH PSYCHICS

Perhaps a chapter on Axl's spirituality and quakery, 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].

Axl: "I was brainwashed in a Pentecostal church. I'm not against churches or religion, but I do believe, like I said in "Garden of Eden," that most organized religions make a mockery of humanity. My particular church was filled with self-righteous hypocrites who were child abusers and child molesters. These were people who'd been damaged in their own childhoods and in their lives. These were people who were finding God but still living with their damage and inflicting it upon their children. I had to go to church anywhere from three to eight times a week. I even taught Bible school while I was being beaten and my sister was being molested" [RIP, November 1992].

Axl: "The Bible was shoved down my throat, and it really distorted my point of view. Dad's bringing home the fatted calf, but I was just hoping for two hamburgers from McDonald's. We were taught "You must fear God." I don't think that's healthy at all. I'll tell you, I don't know what God is or isn't, but I don't fear him or it" [RIP, November 1992].

In May 1992 it was reported that Axl was into homeopathy [Czechoslovakia TV, May 20, 1992] and in June 1992 it was rumored that the band would not play Minneapolis on the upcoming tour with Metallica because Axl had been advised by his psychic, who allegedly toured with the band, to avoid playing in cities that started with the letter M [Star Tribune, June 26, 1992]. Lars Ulrich, Chris Jones [from the band's management team], and Duff would deny these rumors [Star Tribune, June 26, 1992; Star Tribune August 4, 1992]. James Hetfield, on the other hand, would say he thought "it did have something to do with [Axl's] psychic, or his psychic’s assistant and he would mention that there were rumors about what "his psychic said" [Star Tribune, August 4, 1992].

And alternative medicine:

I want to learn more and start helping people. Freddie Mercury's death is a marker in my life that says there's no turning back, and I'm going to do whatever I can to inform the public about certain things. We can't sit idly and hope someone will change things and hope things will be alright. There are alternative forms of medicine that are having high success rates in treating AIDS victims. There's things like vibrational medicine, oxygen-ozone therapy, there's homeopathic medicines, there are Chinese medicines and different forms of vitamins. The government is denying the public this information. That's because the government, the FDA and the pharmaceutical companies are making billions of dollars off of people dying. The FDA invests money in companies they've supposed to be regulating - that makes no sense. Over the last 50 years there have been different cures for different illnesses that have been kept from us. Freddie Mercury's death made me want to fight for people to have the right to know about these alternative treatments. Everyone has got a God-given right to health, and it's being denied by power-hungry, greedy people who want control.[RIP, September 1992].


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Post by Soulmonster on Sun Feb 10, 2019 4:46 am

THE UNRELEASED ALBUM

We really have only just begun. We’ve only have what we have - what, four records out. We’re still babies, you know. We’ve got a lot to achieve [From unknown date in 1992, shown in MTV Special, July 17, 1992].
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

After the release of 'The Spaghetti Incident!?' in 1993, Guns N' Roses would not release a new album until 'Chinese Democracy' in 2008. But the band hoped to work on new, original music already in 1991:

We’re already starting to work on new material now with an 8-track on the road, and hopefully we can fire something out by the end of this, rather than wait forever [MTV, May 1991].
Yeah, we were talking about getting right in the studio [after the release of the Illusions] and doing another one. Just eight or nine, ten songs, you know? [RAW, October 1991].
In addition, the band would claim they had many songs and song ideas not used after releasing the 'Use Your Illusion' albums:

But also, we had so much material built up when we went into the studios, we decided.... “Well we got all this material; let’s record until we’re burnt out”. If we can only do one record, we’ll only do one record. But we never burnt out. We just kept goin’ and it turned out that we recorded over forty tunes. I mean there is another record in the can [Hit Parader, June 1992].
If Duff is accurate with his "over forty tunes" comment, it means that there were 10 songs recorded but not featured on the two Illusion albums. Six were punk covers intended for the upcoming punk EP (which would evolve into a full covers album). In addition comes 'Ain't Goin' Down' which was intended for the punk record but never was released. This still leaves a few songs. Axl, though, says it was only "parts and stuff" and implies that Slash had more songs ready but that these might be used outside of Guns N' Roses:

No, we started with 56 songs… […] ... you know, and we cut it down to 30. And we decided which ones were important out of that, and kind of put different things on the side, on the shelf, that we weren’t really into, and recorded the most important ones now. And we kinda wanted to get things - we wanted to clean the closet, you know. Because when we set out to make Appetite, we had some of these songs already then, and we wanted to get rid of all those songs so that we could have - be fresh to start, and whatever we do next time is brand new for us. […] I have no idea [what we are going to do with them]. There’s just parts and stuff. And we kinda like took the best things from those. Slash is, though, one who really has a backlog of some material, and I don’t know what he plans to do with that [Rockline, November 27, 1991].
Axl talking about how he has changed through therapy:

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 [Rolling Stone, April 2, 1992].
Working on the new record while touring:

Well, we do that when there’s a chance in soundcheck. We usually try to, like, just jam, you know, come up with riffs. So we’ve got some good stuff going in. We tell the sound man to hit the tape player. And then, later on, we’ll compile some of it and maybe we’ll have another Guns N’ Roses album in... five years (laughs) [MTV, June 1992].
We haven’t gotten together as a band per se and, like, started to put songs together, although we’ve been jamming a lot. You know, cuz we always jam. And so I sit around and, you know, come up with ideas and I just keep it in my head. And when, you know, everything is over with, we’ll probably get together and start trying to complete some of the ideas [MTV, June 1992].
By July 1992, Duff would indicate that the work on a new record had progressed and even hinted that the new material sounded more like 'Appetite', somewhat in contrast to Slash above:

We have enough material now. It’s more like ‘Appetite for Destruction’ than ‘Illusion’ — songs that are right in your face [New York Daily News, July 29, 1992].
While Slash would say a new record was not on his mind when asked when he thought the next album would be out:

I don't know. We still feel there is a lot we want to do with the "Illusion" material. […] I'm not even thinking about the next record until we finish all that. When the time does come to begin work on it, we'll take however long is necessary. We've never been the kind of band that rushes in and forces things--like one of those album-a-year type bands [Los Angeles Times, August 9, 1992].

In the October 1992 issue of RIP Magazine, Axl would talk about what he wanted to do on the next album:

What's next is, I would like to have a cleaner, more focused expression. We've pretty much stayed within the parameters of rock 'n' roll music as we know it. I'd like to see if we could add anything to GN'R, possibly bring in a new element that hasn't been there before. Guns N' Roses is not just me. There are other members in this band, and everyone's growing. There was a certain focus we all wanted to keep for Illusion I and II, but when I did "My World," everyone dug it and wanted it on the record. By the next record I think we can branch out a lot further. I would like to move in a direction where I'm more in touch with life and love but still remain as strong in terms of exposing ourselves as GN'R has always been. I don't feel now like I did when I wrote "Estranged." I'm not as bummed out as I was then. I've grown past that [RIP, October 1992].


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Post by Soulmonster on Sun Feb 10, 2019 5:02 am

NOVEMBER 23, 1993 - THE RELEASE OF 'THE SPAGHETTI INCIDENT!?'

Axl talking about why they wanted to release a punk rock cover record:

Axl: You know, I’ve got made fun of for liking The Ramones. And then, you know, eight years go by and then everybody that was making fun of me is sitting around watching Rock ‘N’ Roll High School - and loving it. And I want a lot of these people to hear songs that they didn’t hear. I mean, there’s selected cuts that you can’t really find the original recordings that they’re on, and B-sides and stuff of songs we think really rocked and way, way influenced us. And we also do a tribute to Steve Bators. We did Ain’t It Fun with Mike Monroe, and it was really strange because when we did it, you know, both of us in certain places, without even trying I ended up sounding a bit like Steve, you know. Candles would flicker and bells would ring for no reason, and we’re like, “Steve’s here.” (Chuckles) [MTV, May 1991].
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Post by Soulmonster on Fri Feb 15, 2019 7:31 pm

I will just archive this quote for the future, probably where I will discuss Slash alleged objection to change in musical style:

Slash: "I love playing ballads, I have to admit. It gives me a chance to express a bit more of the subtle and slower side of my playing" [Guitar for the Practising Musician, April 1992].
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Post by Soulmonster on Sat Feb 16, 2019 9:41 pm

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]
[…] I’m pretty humble about that kind of stuff. You know, it’s like, Guns N’ Roses to me is the coolest thing I could possibly be involved in. But as far as going, “It is the best rock ‘n’ roll band around”, I don’t even think in those terms, you know. We just keep doing what we’re doing [Countdown, May 1992].[/i]


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Post by Soulmonster on Tue Feb 19, 2019 6:05 am

BIOGRAPHIES

In 1992 Axl talked about writing an autobiography:

Axl: "I've been working with a friend on putting information together and stuff. More truth and reality is going to come out if l talk with him than if l talk with someone who doesn't know what's up. I've always believed that the truth about what's going on in Guns N' Roses' lives is just as exciting and just as dangerous and just as heavy and just as real as people thought the hype scene to be" [Interview Magazine, May 1992].

In the November 1992 issue of RIP Magazine, Del James would talk about writing a biography on Guns N' Roses:

Del James: "[…] this summer I'll begin writing an authorized Guns N' Roses biography, which will come out when the time is right" [RIP, November 1992].


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Post by Soulmonster on Fri Feb 22, 2019 8:35 pm

A chapter on other artists talking about Guns N' Roses. I will likely move these quotes elsewhere at some point, so just a temporary thing.

Lars Ulrich (Metallica): "The thing about Guns N’ Roses, which is quite funny, is that a lot of things that happen to them happens to a lot of other bands, but, because it’s Guns N’ Roses, everybody talks about it, “Oh my God, it’s happening to Guns N’ Roses.” This is one of the phenomena in Guns N’ Roses that you can’t really explain, but every time Axl Rose goes to the bathroom, people talk about it" [Rapido, September 1991].

Richie Sambora (Bon Jovi): "It’s really hard when an artist comes from nowhere and all of a sudden their first record – they sell 10 million records. There’s a huge responsibility to that people don’t really see. Young bands that come from nothing to everything, it’s – I think it’s a very tough transition to make. I hope that they’re gonna have a decent time of it, because, as you can see, their drummer is not in the band anymore, and they have drug problems and things like that. So, obviously, this business is taking its toll" [Rapido, September 1991].

Grace Slick (Jefferson Airplane): "I love Guns N’ Roses’ music. Axl Rose, as a human being, I think is probably a jerk. But he’ll figure that out, sooner or later. He will have to figure it out or die. But they are angry, they are confused, and that’s what they’re saying. And that’s what they should be saying. They are representing a generation of people who are angry and confused, and can’t figure out why everything is so scattered" [Rapido, September 1991].

John Cougar Mellencamp: "I like their music. I like their attitude. You know, they’ve got a rock ‘n’ roll spirit, a rock ‘n’ roll heart. But whether they self-destruct or not, who knows" [Rapido, September 1991].

Steven Tyler (Aerosmith): "Axl Rose is a great singer - and he’s got a rock ’n’ roll heart" [The Boston Globe, July 31, 1992].


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Post by Soulmonster on Mon Feb 25, 2019 6:40 am

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Post by Soulmonster on Mon Feb 25, 2019 7:25 pm

A future chapter about Zakk Wilde playing with the band.

Slash, talking about guitarists that he like:

Slash: "Zakk Wylde is cool" [Countdown, May 1992].
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Post by Soulmonster on Mon Mar 04, 2019 9:24 pm

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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Post by Soulmonster on Thu Mar 07, 2019 8:49 pm

THE FINANCIALS OF THE 'USE YOUR ILLUSION' TOURING

Despite the huge commercial success of the extensive touring in 1991-1993, the band did not make much of a profit.

Slash: "It’s not because of the money [we play the long sets]. We go over time so much and have in the past, to the point where we didn’t make a dime, you know. And it doesn’t really matter to us" [MTV, July 20, 1992].

Explaining why:

Slash: "Well, union stuff, and promoters, and, you know, different things (laughs)" [MTV, July 20, 1992].

Touring with Metallica might also not have made much sense financially. The double-bill certainly increased the market, but finding large enough stadiums that were willing to take them on became a problem [see discussion in previous chapter]. As discussed in Los Angeles Times:

"The rule of thumb in rock is that a headliner receives about 60% of the gate at a stadium show. If you figure a gross of $1.2 million for a stadium date, Guns N' Roses or Metallica would walk away with about $720,000 if they headlined their own shows. […] But production costs escalate on a twin-headline event, so the headliners on a Guns/Metallica-type bill will walk away with $500,000--or about $250,000 each, according to one insider's estimate. That's a handsome $6 million when multiplied by 24, but far less than the potential $17.2 million from a solo stadium tour. […] On that basis, Guns N' Roses and Metallica are doing the stadium shows for about the same money each receives for a successful show in a much smaller arena" [Los Angeles Times, August 9, 1992].

Doug Goldstein would also admit they didn't try to cut costs: "We could have cut a lot of corners--and saved a lot of money--if each band did shorter sets and used the same (staging), but the whole idea was to make this tour unique. The only reason it's happening at all is that the bands wanted to put on the kind of show that they loved when they were teen-agers themselves " [Los Angeles Times, August 9, 1992].

During the touring in 1991-1993 the band would also spend lots of money on lavish parties:

James Hetfield: "They blow big money on parties after the show. I think they could use that money somewhere else" [Star Tribune, August 4, 1992].


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Post by Soulmonster on Sat Mar 09, 2019 9:01 am

A chapter about how people around the band would try to control the band or split them up, something they would talk more about after the "reunion" in 2016:

Slash: "The bigger it gets the harder it is, because the pressures get worse, the amount of time that you can spend being creative is limited, you have to deal with a lot of the business end of it and money, which is something, I don’t know, I don’t think anybody wants to deal with; you know, money and the hardships that go along with it. So it can be a drag. I mean, there’s a lot of bullshit that goes on and there’s a lot of, you know, people outside our organization, the record companies or in the press and so on, that just fuck with us all the time. And it makes life difficult, you have to get really tough. And the bigger you get, the tougher you have to get" [Videomusic, June 27, 1992].
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Post by Soulmonster on Sat Mar 09, 2019 8:21 pm

KISS-ASS SYCOPHANTS

The lyrics to the song 'Garden of Eden' from 'Use Your Illusion I' would mention "kiss-ass sycophants" that are "throwing penance at your feet." As the band splintered and grew bigger, different groups, or "camps", could be glimpsed among the band and its organization. Axl, who spent more and more time away from his band mates during the touring in 1990s, and more and more time with his friends and entourage, were asked if he had people around him who would disagree with him, to which Axl replied:

Axl: "Yeah. I have some close friends in the band and in our organization. That's why I'm friends with them. We pretty much lay things on the line with each other" [Musician, June 1992].

Lisa Maxwell: "Nobody really has contact with [Axl] other than his close friends, his assistant, his chiropractor" [The Boston Globe, July 31, 1992].

James Hetfield: "[Axl]’s got a lot of yes men, which doesn't help him mentally […]" [Star Tribune, August 4, 1992].

Del James: "I proudly consider [Axl] a friend, but I'm not afraid to tell him what I feel or when I think he's being a jerk" [RIP, September 1992].


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Post by Soulmonster on Sat Mar 09, 2019 8:28 pm

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Post by Soulmonster on Sun Mar 10, 2019 12:21 am

And a quote for the future about Axl/GN'R and Versace:

Axl: "Versace is a huge Guns N’ Roses-head. […] He loves Guns N’ Roses. His fashion shows, the majority of music is Guns N’ Roses. He’s just really, really into Guns N’ Roses. And I went to an Elton John show there with him, and we got along great. He wants me to do a fashion show (laughs). […] I think [I am going to do it], I don’t know. […] We’ll see what happens. He wants to make me clothes to wear, so it could be fun" [MTV, July 12, 1992].
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Post by Soulmonster on Sun Mar 10, 2019 12:32 am

NOVEMBER 25-DECEMBER 13, 1992 - TOURING 'USE YOUR ILLUSIONS', SOUTH AMERICAN LEG

In July 1992, Axl and Matt would discuss ambitious plans for continued touring:

Axl: "Hopefully we’ll go off and on till about next May. Because, you know, hopefully in December and stuff we will be doing South America and things like that, and then we’d like to try to do some really strange places like, we’re working on China, so who knows. […] I’d like to play China, I’d like to play Israel, I’d like to play Moscow..." [MTV, July 12, 1992].

Matt: "The future is very hard to say. We’ve got this tour going on right now and we’re gonna, you know, probably go out again in January and do Japan and South America and Australia. You know, you never know what’s gonna happen with this band. I pretty much – I wake up in the morning, turn on MTV and, you know, I find out (chuckles)" [MTV, July 13, 1992].


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