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1992.03.DD - MTV Rockline - Interview with Slash

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1992.03.DD - MTV Rockline - Interview with Slash Empty 1992.03.DD - MTV Rockline - Interview with Slash

Post by Blackstar on Fri Jan 04, 2019 5:14 am



TRANSCRIPTION:
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[Intro]
 
Martha Quinn: Welcome to Rockline on MTV, where you get to talk to your favorite artists live. Our toll-free number is 1-800-344-ROCK and that’s 344-7625. And if your call gets on the air, you’ll receive a box of 10 Sony UX Turbo audiotapes, designed to stand the heat of your car’s interior even on a hot sunny day. And it is only from Sony Recording Media. Our guest today in the studio is Slash.
 
[Titles]
 
[Clips from Slash interview of unknown date:
 
Slash: Basically, we just wanted to bring back, you know, whatever the rock ‘n’ roll element was. And it wasn’t even, like, a preconceived notion either, it was just that’s what we are doing. And, you know, it was cool to see it sort of happening. And as far as the danger goes, it’s not really so much the music, because there’s just the energy about it, you know, the energy level and the chaos and all that stuff.
......
Slash: Once you do a couple of videos, then you have an image, you know, whatever that may be.
......
Slash: We do what we think is cool, so it’s just us.]
 
Martha Quinn: Hi Slash!
 
Slash: Hi.
 
Martha Quinn: Welcome to Rockline!
 
Slash: Hi.
 
Martha Quinn: You just got a new snake?
 
Slash: Yeah. We just got her and she’s huge. She’s pregnant and so... That’s why I brought it up.
 
Martha Quinn: She’s 206 pounds?
 
Slash: 260.
 
What? How long is this snake?
 
Slash: She’s, like, 17 feet long. I don’t know, we haven’t really stretched her out (?)
 
Martha Quinn: You got it from where? It’s a long scale.
 
Slash: The guy who I bought her from said she was 260 pounds. And I wasn’t even there. One of the guys that works for us found her in some place in Redondo Beach or Hermosa Beach or something like that. And he calls me up it and he tells me about it. It’s an anaconda, and I was like, you know, check this snake out. So he did and he gave me all the information.
 
Martha Quinn: I hate to be ignorant, but don’t snakes lay eggs or something?
 
Slash: No, she doesn’t. Anacondas don’t.
 
Martha Quinn: Do they actually give birth?
 
Slash: Yeah.
 
Martha Quinn: Will you be there when she has the babies?
 
Slash: I don’t know.
 
Martha Quinn: Standing by?
 
Slash: It’s not one of the things, like, you know, it’s gonna happen on a particular day.
 
Martha Quinn: She doesn’t have a “do” day?
 
Slash: No one clocked it in at the first month (laughs).
 
Martha Quinn: Well, you’re on a tour break and there’s a lot that has been going on with the tour, with next leg and then over your summertime plans. I’m sure we’ll get to it and we have a whole lot of calls. So we’re gonna jump right into it, and our first phone call comes from Fort Wayne in Indiana. We have Star starting off this show today. Hi, Starr. What’s your question?
 
Starr: Hi. I was just wondering... I wanted to tell Slash I love him a lot. And I was wondering how does he feel about touring now compared to the last two tours?
 
Slash: The last two tours, what do you mean? Cuz we have different legs, so it’s hard to tell what you mean by last two tours.
 
Martha Quinn: Well, how has life on the road for Guns N’ Roses evolved (?)
 
Slash: It’s nice that we’re headlining now, you know. It’s not like we’re an opening band and we’re sort of at the mercy of the headlining band. So we, sort of like, have our own rules and we just travel around from city to city and take that with us.
 
Martha Quinn: Give me an example of the rules.
 
Slash: Well, we go on late (laughs).
 
Martha Quinn: Yeah, you go on late! What is that all about?
 
Slash: It’s just because we are a club band and we’ve never had to... I mean, we’ve always gone on, like, at 11:00 or midnight, you know. That’s where we come from. So as an opening band you had to cater to the headlining band and go on their schedule. But once we were on our own schedule, it was like, we didn’t really want to have to listen to the promoters per se, and we just thought it was cool to go on late at night, because it was cooler, you know?
 
Martha Quinn: And you don’t get in trouble with the unions?
 
Slash: Well, the unions don’t care, because they get paid it double time (?) so they’re happy. The unions love us, but the promoters got pissed off and some of the crowd, I think, was a little ticked off because they weren’t used to it. You know, they’re used to bands going on at 9:00.
 
Martha Quinn: In the Rolling Stone article that just came about Axl it kind of seemed like it was because of him you went on so late. Is that okay with you? That feels okay?
 
Slash: Well, it’s, you know, we just keep back in the dressing room. And like, we have these monitors, we have these cameras that shoot the crowd, so we watch different people in the crowd and stuff...
 
Martha Quinn: Ah, so if you’re at a Guns N’ Roses show and they are late, they’re watching you.
 
Slash: And so we keep back in the dressing room, have a couple of drinks or whatever and watch what’s going on, and just basically getting into the frame of mind where you want to go up and play for three hours. And it’s like, it’s not a job, you know, so...
 
Martha Quinn: It’s an advantage.
 
Slash: I think we’re coming from a whole different mentality than the business is and so it did have its repercussions. And so we’ve, sort of like, tried to adapt; you know, try and find some middle ground. 
 
Martha Quinn: Thank you very much, Starr. And we’ll go...
 
Slash: It’s spelled S-T-A-R-R, I’m sure, right?
 
Martha Quinn: S-T-A-R-R, yeah. As in Ringo, I guess. Is that right? Yeah.
 
Slash: (Laughs)
 
Martha Quinn: (Laughs) We’ll go to West Hampstead in New York, where Chris is on the line. Hey, Chris, what’s up?
 
Chris: Hello. Guns N’ Roses is the best band, rock ‘n’ roll band, that ever will and be. Slash is, like, the greatest guitarist ever. I love Guns N’ Roses and my question was, what’s the next video you guys plan to release, and how many do you plan on to release altogether.
 
Slash: Well, we’re on a break right now. We’re shooting November Rain, right? And then we’ve got a few more, but I’m not gonna give away any secrets.
 
Martha Quinn: And you’re gonna be...
 
Slash: There’s gonna be a few more of them.
 
Martha Quinn: Sorry. You’re gonna be on a Michael Jackson video?
 
Slash: Yeah. I’m gonna do a song called Give It To Me that I played... it’s on that record and I played leads on the stuff, so it’s like the Michael Jackson highlight for me.
 
Martha Quinn: So you finally got to meet Michael, I guess.
 
Slash: Yeah, he was great, you know? I mean, I know a lot of people have... You, know, because he’s such a celebrity, a lot of people have... they think different things about what he is as a person. But, as far as I was concerned, he was just real sweet, and he works real hard and he was real down-to-earth, so we had a great time, you know. That’s why we’re gonna go in and do something else, and, like, finish the whole project out that we started on. I had a great time.
 
Martha Quinn: Well, that will be something to look forward to. Thanks, Chris.
 
Slash: I don’t think it’s gonna be any kind of an Egyptian, you know, kind of thing.
 
Martha Quinn: (Laughs) Well, you never know. You might have a little sort of outfit.
 
Slash: I doubt it. I seriously doubt it (laughs).
 
Martha Quinn: Let’s go to Riverside, California, a kind of a local call for us, where Matt is waiting on the line. Hey, Matt, what’s your question?
 
Slash: Is that our drummer Matt? No.
 
Matt: Hello. I want to say first that, Slash, you’re the most amazing guitarist.
 
Slash: Thank you.
 
Matt: And, you know, I play guitar and you’re such a big inspiration.
 
Slash: Wow.
 
Matt: And my question is about the punk EP you guys have been talking about?
 
Slash: Yeah?
 
Matt: And I would like to know, if you know when it’s coming out and the songs that are gonna be on it?
 
Slash: I don’t want to get into it, cuz it’s sort of detailed when it comes to releasing stuff, is a (?) for us. It’s like, we sort of keep everything under your hat, because when you go straight out and start talking about things you’re planning on doing, it makes it a little more complicated with the other people that you have to work with, as far as the record company and your managers and stuff, so we keep that stuff pretty cool.
 
Martha Quinn: Why did you go ahead and do the punk EP? I know, for instance, that you did a Dead Boys song and...
 
Slash: We’ve recorded a bunch of stuff and it was just songs that, you know, everybody in the band dug. Everybody sort of picked a song they wanted to do, and we just, when we were doing Illusions, you know, we recorded the whole thing basically in one day.
 
Martha Quinn: The whole EP?
 
Slash: Yeah. And so it’s...
 
Martha Quinn: As many of those albums I’m sure were.
 
Slash: Well, yeah, exactly. 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?
 
Martha Quinn: What comes next. We’re gonna take a quick break and we will be back. It’s a toll-free number, 1-800-344-ROCK, which is 344-7625. Our guest today is Slash. Do come back.
 
[Break]
 
Martha Quinn: Welcome back. It’s Rockline on MTV. My guest today is Slash. If you have a question, the number to call, and it’s toll-free, is 1-800-344-ROCK. Quick question before we jump into the many phone calls that we have. When you went and saw The Cult, and you thought, “Okay, Matt will be a great drummer,” what was Ian Astbury and Billy Duffy of The Cult’s reaction?
 
Slash: Actually, I just ran into them, like, two days ago. They were really cool about it, because... Of course I called Matt on the sly, you know (chuckles). I didn’t call Ian and say, “Can I steal your drummer?” But I called Matt and said, “Well, do you wanna do the album?” you know. I didn’t really tell him I was stealing him for the whole tour and everything. So he was like, “Well, The Cult’s off tour and the record is done” and so on, and so, “Yeah, I’ll come down.” And we clicked, you know, in the first five minutes. So then it was like, obviously we’re not gonna replace him, and we did the whole record and everything. So we made him an offer of such... You know, right?
 
Martha Quinn: That he couldn’t refuse.
 
Slash: I didn’t say that, you did (chuckles)
 
Martha Quinn: (Laughs)
 
Slash: And so, as far as Ian and Billy were concerned, that was Matt’s deal, really, to confront them with it. And then, as time went by, running into Billy and Ian... I mean, Ian was great about it. I didn’t really talk to Billy about it, you know, but Ian was like, “Whatever, it’s cool.” Yeah, so it was amicable.
 
Martha Quinn: Good. Okay, we have, as I mentioned earlier, a whole bunch of phone calls. We’re just gonna plow right through them. Jennifer is on the line. She’s calling from Carlisle, Illinois today. Hey, Jennifer, how are you?
 
Jennifer: Pretty good, how are you?
 
Martha Quinn: Good. What’s your question?
 
Jennifer: Okay. I wanted to ask Slash if, since two of the band members of the original band are not in the band anymore, does it feel more like working with business partners instead of friends?
 
Slash: No. The most important thing is – I’m glad that you asked that, because that’s a good question. One of the most important things for us in finding people to replace Steven and to replace Izzy was finding somebody that we could hang out with and feel like family still. Because Guns N’ Roses is one of those things that we were real tight, you know? And we don’t let any kind of outside people influence us, and we don’t take on any kind of, like, what you’d call session players or anything like that. So it’s got to be a really cool hangout situation. And it was sort of a godsend for Matt and Gilby, because they fit in so quickly, and it was such a stressful period for Duff and Axl and I to have to deal with. So, you know, for it to come down the way it did, and for us to feel so comfortable and finish this record, really said a lot about the whole organization as it was. And so, yeah, it’s an important thing; and no, we don’t take on any so-called business partners. Yeah.
 
Martha Quinn: Thank you, Jennifer. That was a good question. And we’ll move over to Paul, who is waiting on the line in Sacramento, California. Hey, Paul, what’s your question today?
 
Paul: Hey, Slash.
 
Slash: Hey.
 
Paul: I was asking, how you got involved with Black Death vodka and did it stem from an interview in Rolling Stone about a year ago?
 
Slash: 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...
 
Martha Quinn: But what do you think about that, do you think...
 
Slash: 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?
 
Martha Quinn: Okay. Thanks, Paul. Corpus Christi, Texas is where we go to now, where Isabel is waiting to talk to Slash. Hey, Isabel, what’s your question?
 
Isabel: Um, hi, Slash.
 
Slash: Hi.
 
Isabel: I love Guns N’ Roses.
 
Slash: Thanks.
 
Isabel: Are you guys going back on tour soon?
 
Slash: Yeah, we’re back out, I think – I don’t know when the first date is, but it’s, like, the 30th of this month or the 1st of April, something like that.
 
Isabel: Where to?
 
Slash: Shit, I don’t know (laughs). At this point, actually...
 
Martha Quinn: Do you know about any opening acts?
 
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.
 
Martha Quinn: It might be a good time to start working that out (laughs)
 
Slash: No, 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.
 
Martha Quinn: Are you going to London to do the show at Wembley, the Freddie Mercury...?
 
Slash: We’re doing, yeah, the Queen thing.
 
Martha Quinn: That’s kind of a controversial date, huh?
 
Slash: It turns out that way. I never would have thought that we were gonna get that kind of flak.
 
Martha Quinn: Maybe I should explain it really quickly. You’re doing a show in London, a tribute to Freddie Mercury for AIDS awareness.
 
Slash: Right.
 
Martha Quinn: And there are some...
 
Slash: 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.
 
Martha Quinn: They’re trying...
 
Slash: And we’re gonna play anyway, so they’re...
 
Martha Quinn: They’re trying to get other artists out to not play or to convince the audience to boo, have you heard this?
 
Slash: 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.
 
Martha Quinn: Well, that’ll be interesting.
 
Slash: 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.
 
Martha Quinn: Yeah, it’s just interesting, that’s it. A whole (?) of activity in the Guns N’ Roses camp.
 
Slash: 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.”
 
Martha Quinn: You guys are a magnet for that, it seems.
 
Slash: Well, yeah, we don’t ask for it. At least we don’t purposely go out and ask for it, you know. It comes up and it’s just like, you’re not expecting it.
 
Martha Quinn: Let’s take a break. We’ll come back with one more segment to find out a little bit more about what’s been going on with these guys. Slash is here in the studio. Do come back with us.
 
[Break]
 
Martha Quinn: ...Rockline on MTV. If you have a question, there’s a little bit more time left. Our toll-free number is 1-800-344-ROCK and that’s 344-7625. If your call gets on the air, you’ll receive a box of 10 Sony UX Turbo audiotapes, designed to stand the heat of your car’s interior even on a hot summer day. Only from Sony Recording Media. So, we were just talking about something interesting, I don’t remember what it was.
 
Slash: We were talking about...
 
Martha Quinn: Oh, I know what it was to ask you about really quick. Spinal Tap.
 
Slash: Yeah.
 
Martha Quinn: Do you play on their record?
 
Slash: Yeah.
 
Martha Quinn: How was that?
 
Slash: It was great. Let’s see, it was after a really bad rehearsal that we had one day. I was really pissed off and I was in a bad mood. So I knew I had a session that night, so I got in the car and just, like, cruised over the studio. And for the mood I was in and the state of mind I was in, it was very Spinal Tap, so... (laughs) And I walked in...
 
Martha Quinn: Have you had experiences out on the road where you flashed a little bit?
 
Slash: Spinal Tap, we watched it before a show one day, one night right before a gig, and I was just like watching it going - cuz as our career is going on, it’s, like, all of a sudden becoming more and more significant, that movie, cuz it’s just really classic stuff that does happen. So I watched it before a show and it just screwed up my whole life (laughs).
 
Martha Quinn: I’ve heard a lot of musicians say, you know, that wasn’t that funny.
 
Slash: Yeah, it’s not.
 
Martha Quinn: It’s a little too real.
 
Slash: It’s funny, like, if you’re on a tour bus and you have two days off, you know. But especially before a show, it’s like, you go out there and the first thing is just like trip on a shoelace or something (chuckles).
 
Martha Quinn: Well, they’re gonna be our guests next week, so we’ll get the (?) on you.
 
Slash: They were great guys, though. And I just went in, plugged in, and did it in, like, one take. And then it was just, you know, nice to meeting you and split. But they were really cool. 
 
Martha Quinn: So we have one last segment of calls, so we have Nick on the line from Washington DC. Nick, pose your question.
 
Nick: How is it going, Slash?
 
Slash: Hey, Nick. It’s alright.
 
Nick: My question is about Izzy and the songwriting. On the two latest albums Izzy contributed quite a lot, and I was wondering how you plan to fill that void in the future, when it comes to recording again. I mean, would you record with him again or will someone else just move in and fill that space?
 
Slash: 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...
 
Martha Quinn: Are you still in contact with him just on a friendly basis?
 
Slash: 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.
 
Martha Quinn: Okay. We have Brian who’s calling from upstate New York; Kingston, to be specific. Brian, what is your question for Slash today?
 
Brian: Hey, dude, what’s up?
 
Slash: Hey.
 
Brian: I’d like to know, with all the things that are going on, how does that affect you and your playing?
 
Slash: With everything that’s going on?
 
Brian: On the tour, how it does affect your playing?
 
Slash: Um, we’re used to...
 
Martha Quinn: Hmm... What are you thinking about, Brian, specifically? For example?
 
Brian: Like, personally, what goes through your mind when you’re playing with other people, like the new drummer and people who replaced Izzy.
 
Slash: Okay, I see what you’re saying. Okay. 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 Gilby goes – I mean, not Gilby, Izzy – 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?
 
Martha Quinn: Steven is a guy who, you know, you went to school with and you’ve known forever and ever...
 
Slash: Yeah, I’ve known Steven a long...
 
Martha Quinn: Are you still in contact with him?
 
Slash: No. He’s on my... bad list (laughs).
 
Martha Quinn: Your bad list!
 
Slash: Admittedly so, you know. I’ll leave it at that.
 
Martha Quinn: Okay. Hmm, that’s too bad. Are you sad about that? Just cuz he’s someone you’ve known for so long.
 
Slash: Well, when the whole breakup thing happened, there was a whole – I’d say, like - six months to a year where that developed, and we hung in there with him. And now he’s turned around and started attacking us. And there’s a lot of falsities going on coming from his side of the camp.
 
Martha Quinn: Okay. Well, there’s two reasons we don’t have to get into this. One, cuz you probably don’t want to; and two, because we’re about to be pulled off the satellite. So thank you very much. We’ll look for you in the Michael Jackson video, amongst others.
 
Slash: Well, we’ve got ours too coming out, you know.
 
Martha Quinn: November Rain is coming out. I guess they’re done Carnegie Hall, the whole orchestra and everything. And that’s it for this edition of Rockline on MTV. As you already know, next week brace yourselves for Nigel Tufnell, David St. Hubbins and Derek Smalls of Spinal Tap. We’ll see you then.
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