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

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Post by Soulmonster on Sat Jul 27, 2019 4:19 pm

THE GUNS N' ROSES PINBALL MACHINE


In early 1994 Slash would talk about a Guns N' Roses pinball machine that was slated for launch in the summer.

Slash: "It's almost done. I've been working... Actually, to tell you the truth, when the earthquake hit [on January 17, 1994], I'd already planned on going to Chicago to work with the Data East Company, who make awesome pinball games. And I came out to Chicago to work on the artwork for it. So, it's sort of like, my little project, that I'm working with them. And it should be out in the summer. […] there's like 13 songs on it" [97.7 HTZ_FM, January 1994].

Slash: "I like pinball because it’s physical and it’s definitely more rock ‘n’ roll. Video games are wimpy. I got really hooked at it, you know? And I thought, well, they haven’t done a rock ‘n’ roll machine in about 15 years. I think the last one was Ted Nugent. So I thought Guns could probably get away with making a machine at this point. […] It’s definitely a hip game. Plus, it’s the first game that’s ever had real guitars. It’s the loudest one made today. So I’m really proud of it" [MTV, October 1994].

The pinball game would feature unreleased music from GN'R:

Slash: "There’s a song called Ain’t Going Down, which we just never finished, and we have a chorus for it, so I figure we’d use that, you know, and finally get it out there. So now that we’ve done it we have to actually record it" [MTV, October 1994].


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Post by Soulmonster on Sun Jul 28, 2019 8:12 am

JANUARY 1994-FEBRUARY 1995 - GUNS N' ROSES AND HIGHLANDER III


In January 1994 it would be reported that Axl was playing the role of the villain's henchman in the Highlander III movie [The Daily Sentinel, January 7, 1994]. The villain was played by the actor Mario Van Peebles.

The same month it would be reported that Guns N' Roses would do the music for the movie, although Slash would say it wasn't decided yet:

Slash: "I didn’t even know that rumor had gotten out yet. […] Anyway, I’m gonna check out some footage, but we have no idea whether we’re gonna get involved in that, in all honesty" [Musique Plus, January 1994].

The movie was released in November 1994 in the UK and January 1995 in the US. Curiously, in February 1995 newspaper short notices would state that Axl featured in the movie [Press Democrat, February 5, 1995; Northwest Herald, February 10, 1995]. But the movie did not feature Axl.

Andy Morahan, who directed the movie and had directed the November Rain video, would later provide an explanation for why Axl dropped out of the cast, as told by Empire Magazine:

"Morahan had worked extensively with Guns N’ Roses, not least on the infamously overblown November Rain clip, and for a while it seemed that he had secured the coup of Axl Rose and co. providing the soundtrack. 'They loved that Queen had done the music on the first one and I had Axl ready to go,' says Morahan. But Rose suddenly revealed an unexplained dislike of Mario Van Peebles (on hand as cartoony main villain Kane) and refused to provide any songs if the actor remained in the film. 'So that screwed that one,' says Morahan. 'Miramax wouldn’t get rid of Mario. At the time I thought it was more important to have Guns N’ Roses!'" [Empire Magazine, July 2009].

The movie did also not feature music from Guns N' Roses.
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Post by Soulmonster on Sun Jul 28, 2019 8:33 am

SLASH'S WORK ETHICS


Slash: "I like being excited, which is why I have so much trouble when we have time off. When I get up in the morning, I need to have something to look forward to. I'm not very self-motivated; I'm not one of those guys that can get up and say, "I'm going to write a great song today." But if someone focuses me on something, I'll work my ass off. But usually someone or something else has to provide the impetus. I can be the laziest motherfucker in the world when there is nothing to focus on. I'll just watch TV and feel sorry for myself. [laughs]" [Guitar Player, November 1992].

One of the reason Slash was always busy working on different projects was to avoid getting back on drugs:

Slash: "If I don't keep busy, I go crazy. Considering the amount of hours I spend awake, I really find it hard to… Even if I'm laying there watching TV, I have to be thinking about something I'm gonna be doing. A phone call or a practicing or something. And it's just because I like to be active. If not, I might start to get stagnant, then I find things to keep me… stagnant. You know, something I can just… lay back and not care about anything. Which isn't really the pattern I'm using at this point, to keep myself moving on. So I hide myself in working all the time" [Swedish TV, June 13, 1993].
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Post by Soulmonster on Sun Jul 28, 2019 8:39 am

OUTSIDE FORCES TRYING TO SPLINTER THE BAND


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].

I think these days Axl even has somebody to open the beer can for him. I don't know, I'm joking of course, but it got a lot like that. Those guys, especially Slash and Axl, are being protected from the outside world now. Even if they wanted, the powers controlling the band wouldn't allow them to go grab a beer in a local bar [Hot Metal, November 1992].

An anonymous spokesman from Geffen Records would say: "I think [Axl]'s learned to enjoy being Axl Rose. He likes the idea that he can snap his fingers and make things happen. He can get away with it because once you get to know him he can be a very charming guy. He can drive you nuts one minute, then make you want to do anything he asks the next. That's part of his magic" [Hit Parader, July 1994].

Slash would imply that there were outside forces making it hard for them:

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 Sun Jul 28, 2019 8:45 am

MARCH 1994 - ERIN EVERLY SUES AXL


In March 1994 Erin Everly, Axl's former wife, sued him for assault and battery, sexual battery, false imprisonment and intentional infliction of emotional distress [Los Angeles Times, March 8, 1994; Associated Press/Albuquerque Journal, March 9, 1994; Detroit Free Press, March 9, 1994]. In the suit, Every would seek payment for injuries, pain and suffering and unspecified punitive damages [Los Angeles Times, March 8, 1994] from Axl punching her, slapping her, shoving her, kicking her, tying her up, gagging her, spitting on her and dragging her by the hair [Associated Press/Albuquerque Journal, March 9, 1994].

After one alleged beating, Every had been injected with cocaine and heroin resulting in her being hospitalized after suffering cardiac arrest [Associated Press/Albuquerque Journal, March 9, 1994]. The latter allegation likely refers to the Steven incident as described before.

Everly's suit would be connected to the upcoming May trial between Axl and Stephanie Seymour, for which Everly intended to deliver a deposition [Associated Press/Albuquerque Journal, March 9, 1994]. Everly had waited until now to file suit "because she feared for her safety" [Detroit Free Press, March 9, 1994].

The Seymour and Everly lawsuits would not be the first time Axl was accused of violence and domestic abuse. Gina Siler was an early girlfriend of Axl from Lafayette who moved with Axl to Hollywood and stayed with him there for some time. In an interview she did with Spin Magazine in 1991, she implied that Axl could get violent or at least threaten with violence:

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

As noted before, in September 1991, when the band was filming the video for 'Don't Cry' which featured featured a fight scene between Axl and Erin Everly, Stephanie Seymore, who played Everly, said the situation was wierd because she had never fought with Axl:

Seymore: "It certainly makes things a lot nicer [to do a scene with Axl]. I mean, I’m a lot happier when he’s around. I think he’s a lot happier when I’m around. […] No, I’ve never had to do a scene [with violence] before. But it was weird, because we’ve never fought. […] Never. I mean especially not physically, but never even verbally or – we’ve never had a disagreement" [Don't Cry: Makin' F@*!ing Videos Part I, June 22, 1993].

This scene was filmed before the Christmas party of 1992 when Seymour and Axl fought, indicating that in difference to the alleged violence with Everly, the relationship between Axl and Stephanie, bar one incident, had been peaceful.

In July 1994, People Magazine would publish an interview with Everly where she would go in detail on how it has been living with Axl and repeat the domestic violence charges from the lawsuit [People Magazine, July 18, 1994]. She would also claim that she had married Axl because he threatened to shoot himself if she didn't [People Magazine, July 18, 1994]. After they broke apart, Axl tried to reconcile with Everly and according to Everly, sent her "flowers, letters and even caged birds" [People Magazine, July 18, 1994]. The magazine would interview a female friend, unknown to whom, who would argue that it had been Everly who was the aggressor [People Magazine, July 18, 1994]. Another friend, this one a friend of Everly, would state she had witnessed Axl beating Everly and acted like "a rabid dog" [People Magazine, July 18, 1994]. Axl's former girlfriend, Gina Siler, would also be interviewed stating that Axl "could be kind and loving, and at other times he was violent and irrational" [People Magazine, July 18, 1994]. Axl would not give any statements to People Magazine, but his "camp" would state that Everly sued for monetary gains [People Magazine, July 18, 1994].


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Post by Soulmonster on Sun Jul 28, 2019 11:36 am

JANUARY-APRIL 1994 - SLASH, MATT AND GILBY WORKS ON SONGS FOR NEW RECORD


When 1994 came around the band had song ideas for the next record, most coming out of rehearsals at the 'Use Your Illusion' tour but also at least one song from Axl ('This I Love'). See earlier chapter for details.

On a joint radio interview in January 1994, Slash and Axl would talk about writing for the next record and Slash would say he had just sent his latest tape [likely containing song ideas] to Axl [Rockline, January 3, 1994].

The majority of things are done on the phone, until we actually get in the studio. A lot of things over the phone and sending tapes back and forth. And we've done this for years [Rockline, January 3, 1994].
In the same interview they would be asked about the musical direction of the next record:

Musical direction with the band really has to do with what the band… you know, what we do as a group or as an organization of people. You know, the six of us, constitutes. […] I mean, it's really simple and it's a lot less complicated than most of the public thinks. […] It'll be what we think is good at the present, that's all [Rockline, January 3, 1994].
How about it's like, compared to the "Illusions", the direction will be a shorter direction [laughs] [Rockline, January 3, 1994].
The same month Slash would talk about what they had done so far:

Everybody had their own things to do [after the tour that ended in July 1993], and everybody gets isolated because no one wants to deal with the pressure of being on the street; people coming up to you and recognising you and all this other crap. […] Then we started recording, writing new songs, and got happy. We forgot about the outside bullshit [Kerrang! January 8, 1994].
He would also say he had been recording 8 new songs in his home studio:

And I built a studio in my house, so I've been spending all my time in there, from 8pm to 10 in the morning, recording new material for the next record. It sounds awesome!. […] And now me, Axl, Duff, Matt and Gilby are writing some awesome tunes. We're eight songs into the next record already [Kerrang! January 8, 1994].
Since this interview was published on January 8, only 5 days after the Rockline interview where Axl talked about receiving a tape from Slash with song ideas, it is likely the Kerrang! interview took place before the Rockline interview and that the songs Slash talks about above, hadn't been heard by Axl at this point despite him claiming that Axl was part of the writing. More likely they were working separately, as indicated by previous quotes, and that Axl hadn't heard everything Slash had done.

Later, sometime in January after the 17th, Slash was up to 14-15 songs:

Anyway, so ['The Spaghetti Incident?'] was set and done and I built the studio in my house. And started recording material for the next record. So we got about 14 or 15 songs for the next record. […] we've got 14 songs done, at this point and as soon as I get back to LA from Canada, I'm gonna rent a place to live next to the rehearsal studio and then we'll just go in there and start jamming [97.7 HTZ_FM, January 1994].
I’ve been working on the Gunners record ever since I got home after The Spaghetti Incident? was finished. I’ve built a studio in my house that the band can use and so far we’ve done 14 songs.

The Use Your Illusion records, if you really knew, if anybody knew the whole story of what we were going through, they’d realize how important those records are to us and why they took so long — but you had to be there. When you read the lyrics, it starts to come out. It was a real period of turmoil. This time around everybody’s more stable.

I mean, we had every reason to split up before those albums turned out as far as the obstacles we had to face. So as far as being able to pull off that tour and Izzy leaving in the middle of it and this, that and the other thing and being able to go back into the studio and do The Spaghetti Incident? . . . well, we just wanted to go straight back to work and do something else. So, it shouldn’t take as long (for the next album to come out)
[The Calgary Herald, January 29, 1994].
Talking about the direction of the new music: […] it’s gonna be like, well, we have a new fusion jazz approach. We’ve been listening to Yes a lot lately [laughing]. No, it’ll be rock ’n’ roll [The Calgary Herald, January 29, 1994].
I’m hoping we’ll be out before next year. But the best laid plans with Guns, as you know... [Winnipeg Free Press, January 29, 1994].
In the same month he would also say that the aking of the next record was progressing quickly:

[…] we’re working on it, yeah. And it’s going very fast, considering we got off the road six months ago, put out “The Spaghetti Incident” and already started on the next record. It’ll be out sooner than usual, you know? […] I’d like to have it out this summer [Musique Plus, January 1994].
In a Q Magazine interview published in March 1994, Slash would talk more about the songs he was making and indicate they had nine songs done, compared to the 14-15 he had mentioned previously:

I instantly went back into the studio and started working on the next record, so we're about nine songs into it. In a perfect world, we'd have the record out in the summe [Q Magazine, March 1994].
In a Kerrang! interview also published in March, he would shed more light on the new music:

Most of it's really sort of slinky groove things, but real mean. They're cool. […] They're sort of like dirty sex, and there are some that are just fast and hard. There's a lot of really brash stuff that we've finished already that's really killer [Kerrang! March 12, 1994].
He would also suggest getting the record done quickly:

What I want to do, as opposed to last time with all the distractions and shit, is get between eight and 12 songs done, get in and record them real simply and quick. […] Because of all the work we've been doing up here, when we go into pre-production and were sitting in a room with a stack of amps and a real drum kit, it should be that much better. I can't wait! [Kerrang! March 12, 1994].
And that there would be no covers or left-overs:

Some written on the road, some since we've been off. No covers - 'The Spaghetti Incident?' took care of that one - and no left-overs; anything even vaguely resembling an earlier-era song was squashed onto one of the two ....Illusion's. […] It's really important not to look back. When we did the '...Illusion' records we cleaned our whole slate. We did all the songs that Izzy ever wrote - because Izzy was really on the way out at the beginning of that; he started to phase out and we grabbed a bunch of his old songs, some of the ones that we were currently doing, some old songs from before Guns N' Roses, so we'd never have to think about it again. This is all just new stuff. […] You know how a lot of bands go, 'This is our best stuff'? It's such a cliche, so I hate saying it, but I'm really happy with this, so let's just see what happens [Kerrang! March 12, 1994].
Slash would also say that he and Mike Clink was supposed to enter pre-production by now, but that the January 17 earthquake in Los Angeles and Slash's subsequent evacuation to a hotel, had postponed this [Kerrang! March 12, 1994].


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Post by Soulmonster on Sun Jul 28, 2019 1:22 pm

1994 - THE BAND TAKES AN EXTENDED BREAK


Slash: "I think we're all looking forward to a long break. We love being on the road and playing for the fans. But after almost two straight years out there you've got to get back in touch with reality. I think we'll all be dong that, but we won't be far from music. I know Axl has some ideas that he wants to try out, and that's great. Let him get 'em out of his system. When the time is right, I'm sure we'll all get back together again" [Hit Parader, July 1994].

Axl: "Whatever I may do in my free time, there will always be a Guns N' Roses. As long as Slash and I stay interested and motivated the band will be here, and there's no question about that. Where the band will go in the years ahead is anyone's guess, but I'm as anxious as anyone to see where that might be" [Hit Parader, July 1994].

Gilby: "The band will be together again at some point, just – The band has not broken up. We’re just taking a break" [Argentinian TV, June 1994].
______________________________________________________________________

After a dramatic tour that had held the band together through a collective goal, the band started to fall apart upon returning to Los Angeles in the second half of 1993.

Slash would refer to this in March 1994 when he would say that he was "trying to keep the band together as a cohesive unit so we don't splinter off" [Kerrang! March 12, 1994]. It didn't work. In May Matt would indicate that the band had fallen apart, but that it would get back together "when the feeling is right" [The Windsor Star, May 20, 1994].

In May rumours would spread that Gilby had been fired. When asked about this, Gilby evaded the question [Kerrang! May 14, 1994].

Gilby: "Nothing's happening right now. We're not gonna do anything. We were gonna do a lot of shows, but we're not gonna do 'em now. Nobody's really getting along right now. Everybody just called everything off, and we'll work on it when everybody feels like doing it again" [Kerrang! May 14, 1994].

Gilby: "It's really strange, because the band is like two separate things. There's the guys, everybody except for Axl, and then there's the band with Axl. […] When we're on the road, we're always together. We hang out together, just like a band. But that's not including Axl. And then there's the band with Axl. He just kinda comes in and does what he does, puts the vocals on and all that kind of stuff. So when we're in the studio, it's cool" [Kerrang! May 14, 1994].

As for being fired, that had apparently happened many times to Gilby:

Gilby: "I've heard so many reports that I got fired - and, you know, I've been in the band for two-and-a-half years, and I've been fired a few times. All kinds of people have been fired! […] For real. I've seen more than just me being fired. I've seen other people quit, I've seen other people fired, you know, whatever. It's not that big a deal. […] I don't know what's going to happen. From the day I got the job, I didn't know if I'd be there for a week, a year, whatever. […] I have been fired a few times, and it was for nothing that I did. That was another reason for me making my album - you don't know what's going to happen in GN'R. I don't know if I'm going to be around for the next album. I don't know who's going to be around!" [Kerrang! May 14, 1994].

Gilby: "Axl and Slash call most of the shots. The rest of us just kinda go with the flow. You just never know, cos it's not our call. You're relying on Axl, and he changes his mind quite a bit" [Kerrang! May 14, 1994].

In June Gilby would again talk about the future of the band and imply nothing was expected to happen until the end of the year, and reiterate that he would focus on his own solo record:

Gilby: "I don't know! We did the Spaghetti Incident to hopefully buy us some time and shit and I think towards the end of the year we might like re-group and see what's gonna happen. But right now I don't think anybody's in the right state of mind to make a Guns N' Roses record. And I gave them my notice as to the next six months and I said, So, wait!' That doesn't mean they're gonna wait, you know, but I made a commitment to myself and my record company and people I play with. I think GNR is something that will be around for a long time so if I take a little break for now, I think it's OK" [UG Rock Chronicles, June 13, 1994].

Gilby: "Guys, you know what? There’s always rumors [about GN'R breaking up] (laughs). What happens is, when we’re on downtime like this, a lot of rumors fly because nothing’s happened. So people just kind of – you know, they – […] They have to write something. Look, as far as GN’R is, the band has always been in that situation where we always knew that it could be there one day and it could not be there the next day. It’s a very volatile situation. We don’t know what’s gonna happen. Right now we’re off time. Nothing’s happening. Everybody’s just gonna take – a lot of people haven’t even seen each other in a while. It’ll probably be another six to eight months before we even get back together to work on some stuff" [Argentinian TV, June 1994].

In July, Los Angeles Times would write an article about the problems within the band, writing "reports are that the volatile rock band Guns N' Roses has divided into two feuding camps, with singer Axl Rose and guitarist Slash at war" [Los Angeles Times, July 17, 1994], and this story would be repeated in many newspapers [The Winnipeg Free Press, July 27, 1994; Star Tribune, July 30, 1994]. The main problem was the divide in the band between Axl and Duff on one side and Slash, Matt and Gilby on the other, with different perspectives on the musical direction of the band resulting in Slash starting a new band, 'SVO Snakepit' [Los Angeles Times, July 17, 1994] more on this in later chapter. Axl and Duff was also said to start a separate project [Los Angeles Times, July 17, 1994].

Tom Zutaut would be asked about the rumors Gilby had been fired:

Zutaut: "Those stories go round and round constantly, I don't think we'll really know who's (in the band) until they start recording. . . . I've learned with Guns N' Roses since 1986 that you never really know what's going to come out until it's finished" [Los Angeles Times, July 17, 1994].

A spokesman for the band's management would also deny that the band had broken up but were officially on hiatus for the moment but intended to start pre-production for the next record shortly [Los Angeles Times, July 17, 1994]. Zutaut would confirm that GN'R, or "some part thereof", was supposed to start working on the next record "this weekend" [Los Angeles Times, July 17, 1994].

Around the same time, Gilby would say the band was on a long break:

Gilby: "We made a band agreement that we’d take a long time off until the next record" [The Boston Globe, July 22, 1994].

The Times would also raise the point that the public didn't really care any more about GN'R, and quote Bryan Schock, program director of L.A. hard-rock radio station KNAC-FM: "When Guns first came out it was fresh and exciting. But now Alice in Chains, Soundgarden, Stone Temple Pilots and Pearl Jam are the exciting things. If Guns N' Roses puts together a solid record with an hour's worth of great material, sure, there's gonna be interest. But if they don't, this could be it" [Los Angeles Times, July 17, 1994].

At the same time as the Los Angeles Times' article was published, Kerrang! would shockingly report that Duff had been fired, after Gilby [Kerrang! July 16, 1994]. Although confirming that Gilby had been fired, Slash would strongly object to the rumors that Duff had been fired and that Dave Tregunna, former bassist with Sham 69, Lords Of The New Church and Kill City Dragons, had replaced him [Kerrang! July 16, 1994]:

Slash: "I’ve heard the Duff story myself over here in Los Angeles and I’m frankly really pissed off about it. It’s a nasty thing for anyone to spread around. That’s one of the worst rumours I’ve heard about us in a long time! […] Duff is an important member of this band - and nothing has happened to change that. As for this guy Dave Tregunna, who is he?! I’ve never heard of him before" [Kerrang! July 16, 1994].

Slash would also claim the band was working on new music, but that nothing had been put down on tape yet:

Slash: "We’ve been busy on new material for some while. There’s actually nothing down on tape as yet, but the band is working together on a regular basis" [Kerrang! July 16, 1994].

Kerrang! would also speculate that with no official statement from the band about Gilby being fired, there was a possibility he was back in the band again [Kerrang! July 16, 1994].

In September The Gazette/Reuter would report that Bryn Bridenthal had issued a statement saying that all members of the band were now working on new music for the next record [The Gazette/Reuter, September 4, 1994] and they would quote from another, earlier interview where Gilby would comment upon the rumors he had been sacked:

Gilby: "I've been working with them all this time and I know the way things go. Axl is one of those people where it's just a lot easier if you don't figure him out because you'll never figure him out" [From The Gazette/Reuter, September 4, 1994, but original source unknown and earlier].

In October, while he was touring with his solo band, Gilby would be asked what was happening with GN'R and say they were still on a break:

Gilby: “We’re still just on a break we were taking a year ago. Nobody is ready to make another record yet. […] With GNR, it’s never like we have band meetings. Someone will just call you some day. There’s no schedule. Me, I stay in close contact with Slash and Matt” [Quad City Times, October 20, 1994].

But Gilby was wrong. Unknown to him the band had come together, or were coming together, to record a cover of 'Sympathy for the Devil' while Gilby was touring to support his solo record.

In October Slash would talk about the break and when they were going to start working on the next record:

Slash: "We’ve talking about it for the last year. We just haven’t really - you know, with the absence of Gilby there was a hole in the band. Then there was a new guy that came in, but we haven’t really all come to a cohesive decision as to what exactly we’re gonna do" [MTV, October 1994].

This "new guy" was likely either Paul Huge who came in to add guitars to Sympathy for the Devil or Zakk Wylde who jammed with the band for a few days. Since Slash doesn't talk negatively about the new guy, it might not have been Huge. In addition, Slash likely find out about Huge having added guitars to the song after it was released, implying it more likely was Wylde (or even someone else).

In November, after the recording of 'Sympathy', the official stand was that the band planned to reconvene in the second half of 1995, after Slash had toured in support of his album, to work on their next record [Raw Magazine, November 1994]. Still, the media was rife with rumors suggesting the band was breaking apart, including a rumor that Matt would join Led Zeppelin for their reunion tour [RAW Magazine, November 1994].

In November Gilby would also be asked "whether the real personalities of Slash and Rose are as difficult as their public personae":

Gilby: "I always just tell people that some of the guys are OK. In fact, some of them are my best friends in the world" [Los Angeles Times, November 25, 1994].

And when asked if he would "go so far as to leave arguably the biggest group in rock today to concentrate on a smaller but more rewarding solo career":

Gilby: "I'd do it in a heartbeat," he replied without hesitation. "I'm very serious about it. I've been touring since July, and we're booked through springtime, with a chance of being booked through next summer. I've already spoken to everybody in GNR and said, 'Look, I'm doing this until it's done, and if you need to make a record in between, you make a record without me'" [Los Angeles Times, November 25, 1994].


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Post by Soulmonster on Sun Jul 28, 2019 5:11 pm

MAY 1994 - THE NEW SONGS ARE REJECTED


Gilby: "There is no 'next GN'R album'!" [Kerrang! May 14, 1994].

____________________________________________________________________________

As previously noted Slash, Gilby and Matt had been busy working on new material for GN'R's next record.

Gilby: "Usually, I'm at Slash's every night. We work on new material and different things, whether it's my stuff, his stuff or whatever. He's got a studio in his house. We're working on some stuff right now - me, him and Matt" [Kerrang! May 14, 1994].

Gilby: "I've never written a note with Axl; I've written a lot with Slash. He has a studio at his house, so we got up to his house and me, him and Matt will get together, we fuck around, we write songs, record them […]" [UG Rock Chronicles, June 13, 1994].

In May 1994, though, Matt would say that the material was now intended for a "side project" after having been offered up to Guns N' Roses but rejected:

Matt: "They didn’t like it. We were working on it for eight months and they really didn’t dig it. […] It’s just heavy, solid rock ’n’ roll. No pianos, no ballads" [The Windsor Star, May 20, 1994].

Gilby would concur:

Gilby: "There is no 'next GN'R album'! […] I don't know about ever. For now. We started working on one, and it got canned. […] it's an Axl thing. He just wasn't into what we were doing, so he's kind of rethinking what he wants to do. He just kind of threw a wrench into everything that me, Slash and Matt had worked to. And then Duff came in. […] Duff and Axl have an idea what the album should be, and the rest of us have another idea. So right now, we're not gonna do anything. […] GN'R's not gonna do anything, so we just go up to Slash's place and work" [Kerrang! May 14, 1994].

Gilby: "For a while there, I contributed a lot [to the writing]. But now, I don't know how much I'm going to contribute. Like I said, Axl pretty much threw a wrench into everything. He didn't like what we were all doing. […] It's Axl's band, and he runs it the way he wants. And whatever he wants to do is gonna happen. So we can work on songs all year long and come up with 20 songs, but when it comes down to it, if Axl writes 10 songs, he'll go, 'I want my 10 songs on the record'. And that's what's gonna happen" [Kerrang! May 14, 1994].
Gilby: "[…] Axl is of course the leader and after that comes Slash. It is true that the rest of us is contributing with material, but if you are a productive songwriter like myself it's impossible to give them all compositions" [Heavy Mental, June 1994].

And indicate the songs they had worked on might end up on a Slash solo record and that his own 15 songs would go to his solo record:

Gilby: "So as much as we work on 'em, it doesn't mean anything, because they may never get anywhere. Slash and I are working on some stuff right now together. It's stuff that we put together for the next GN'R record, stuff that isn't gonna make it now. So we're putting something together. We don't know if this is gonna be a Slash solo album or what it's gonna be" [Kerrang! May 14, 1994].

Gilby: "[…] I had a collection of songs, there's like 15 songs that I had, right? And knowing when we started working on the GNR stuff, they were gonna use no old stuff, it was all gonna be fresh new stuff. I had all these songs and I didn't want them to disappear or have to give them to somebody else to do [Kerrang! May 14, 1994].

Gilby: "I gathered all my songs and did it" [Heavy Mental, June 1994].

These songs would end up on Gilby's solo record, "Pawn Shop Guitars".

In June 1994, Gilby wasn't sure what would happen to the songs he and Slash had been working on but would reveal that Slash was now considering a solo album:

Gilby: "Me and Slash are working on some songs. It’s not for Guns N’ Roses, not for anything in general. […] It could be Slash’s album, this is what it could be, because Slash has been talking about making his own album. You know, because Duff did it, I did it, he can do it (laughs). He has some really, really good songs and, like I said, it’s gonna be a while before GN’R is gonna do a record, and this stuff isn’t really for GN’R, so he’s been talking about doing his own album. So he’s been working with me and Matt on it, you know, just trying to get it in together" [Argentinian TV, June 1994].


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Post by Soulmonster on Mon Jul 29, 2019 2:22 pm

JULY 1994 - SLASH'S SNAKEPIT


Slash: "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].

___________________________________________________________________________________________

With Duff and Axl rejecting the music that Slash, Matt and Gilby had been working on, Slash decided to use them in a side project. Gilby would first mention this in June 1994 when he was asked what would happen to the songs he and Slash had worked on:

Gilby: "It could be Slash’s album, this is what it could be, because Slash has been talking about making his own album. You know, because Duff did it, I did it, he can do it (laughs). He has some really, really good songs and, like I said, it’s gonna be a while before GN’R is gonna do a record, and this stuff isn’t really for GN’R, so he’s been talking about doing his own album. So he’s been working with me and Matt on it, you know, just trying to get it in together" [Argentinian TV, June 1994].

For Slash, this decision was likely fueled by a strong desire to get back o the road as soon as possible to avoid the lingering temptations of sedentary life in Los Angeles, but also frustration with not being able to see eye to eye with Axl on the direction of the band and wanting to do something with songs he felt was good and should be out there.

Originally, the name of Slash's solo record was "SVO Snakepit" [The Newcastle Journal, July 14, 1994] and he considered former Quire-boys vocalist Jonathan "Spike" Gray to sing on the record, along with 5 others [The Newcastle Journal, July 14, 1994; Kerrang! July 16, 1994].

Later it would be reported it was Slash's new band that would be called "SVO Snakepit", and that it also featured Matt and Gilby [Los Angeles Times, July 17, 1994].

Slash: "I have all the songs written now and I’m pushing on with recording the basic tracks, using Matt, Gilby and Mike (Inez - Alice In Chains’ bassist). But I still haven’t decided on the person to sing with me. I’ve narrowed down the choice to five guys. They’re all experienced and have had albums released. But I don’t want to name any of them at this stage. It would be unfair to raise anyone’s hopes, only to dash them. […] As far as my record’s concerned, I’m delighted with the way everything is going. It’s gonna sound heavy and ballsy, just wait and see!" [Kerrang! July 16, 1994].

By October 1994, the name had been reduced to just "Snakepit" with Slash explaining why he didn't want his name attached to the band name:

Slash: "The reason it’s called “Snakepit” and not “Slash” something or “Slash” in general, is it’s really a band, so we collaborated a lot, because, for one, we were forced to, and for two because none of us have really all worked together as a band. So we all had a lot of input to get the basic idea across as to what we all sound like together" [MTV, October 1994].

In November it would be reported that the name of the record would be, 'It's Five O' Clock Somewhere' [RAW Magazine, November 1994]. The press would also report that there was a big fight between Slash and Axl over Slash's solo plans, including a rumor that Axl had sued Slash over Slash's decision to use the songs he had worked on on a solo record  [RAW Magazine, November 1994]. RAW Magazine would deny that this rumor was true, but state that the conflict between the two band members was very real [RAW Magazine, November 1994]. Slash's plan was to release his record in February 1995 and then go on an "extensive" tour in support of it [RAW Magazine, November 1994].

By now Slash had chosen his singer, former Jellyfish sideman Eric Dover [RAW Magazine, November 1994]. It would also be reported that Gilby would play with them, and also open the shows with his solo band [RAW Magazine, November 1994].


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Post by Soulmonster on Tue Jul 30, 2019 8:09 am

OCTOBER 1994 - SYMPATHY FOR THE DEVIL


In October 1994 it would reported that the band had recorded a cover of Rolling Stones' 'Sympathy for the Devil' [MTV, October 1994] intended for release on January 2, 1995 [Raw Magazine, November 1994]. The song would be featured on the soundtrack for the movie 'Interview with a Vampire [Raw Magazine, November 1994].

Slash would say he had thought it was a good idea to just to get the band together again:

Slash: "It was an offer that I thought it was a great plot to get Guns more or less together and just start working as a unit. But I think we pulled it off really well, compared to a lot of other bands that would have been offered to do it, that I don’t think could have gotten to the vibe as well" [MTV, October 1994].

Gilby probably realized that he was definitely out of the band when they recorded the song in October 1994, recording sessions for which Gilby had not been invited. Although the song would not be released until December 1994, radio stations would already be playing advance copies and Geffen would claim to not know who actually played on the song, except that it was "Guns N' Roses" [Detroit Free Press, November 25, 1994].

What later would be revealed was that the song would feature new guitarist Paul Huge, who was now thought to have replaced Gilby:

"Huge, Clarke's (temporary?) replacement, is an unheard of musician who has known Axl Rose from the years when the pair lived in Indiana. Axl is thought to be keen for Huge to combine with GN'R on a permanent basis, following a spate of successful rehearsals and the new man's tasty playing on 'Sympathy...', where his guitar lines twist together perfectly with Slash's [Raw Magazine, November 1994].


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Post by Soulmonster on Tue Jul 30, 2019 10:32 am

OCTOBER-NOVEMBER 1994 - AXL AND SLASH FIGHTS


In October and November the press would report that there was a big fight between Slash and Axl over Slash's solo plans, including a rumor that Axl intended to sue Slash over Slash's decision to use the songs he had worked on on a solo record [Kerrang!, November 5, 1994: RAW Magazine, November 1994]. According to the rumor, Axl didn't want Slash to release the songs that Slash, Matt and Gilby had been writing, on Slash' solo record, but instead keep them for Guns N' Roses [Kerrang! November 5, 1994]. This is perplexing considering earlier reports that Axl and Duff had rejected the material. Perhaps there was a misunderstanding, or perhaps Axl wanted them for a future release.

RAW Magazine would later deny that the litigation rumor was true, but state that the conflict between the two band members was very real [RAW Magazine, November 1994]. Slash's plan was to release his record in February 1995 and then go on an "extensive" tour in support of it [RAW Magazine, November 1994].

It would also be speculated that Axl owed the band name and logo and could in theory continue the band with a new lineup [Kerrang! November 5, 1994; RAW Magazine, November 1994].


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Post by Soulmonster on Tue Jul 30, 2019 10:40 am

"SHATTERED ILLUSIONS" - THE LOST BOOK


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].

This friend was likely Del James, because in the November 1992 issue of RIP Magazine, 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].

In January 1994, Axl would say more about the book, and indicate it was a biography of the band and not just Axl:

We've been working on a book since we started as Guns N' Roses, with Del James. We've been doing interviews for this book for a very, very long time, to try to get an accurate picture with all our own personal mistakes and our own personal nightmares. And actually it's very exposing. But, we wanna show, like, an accurate picture of who we are and where we've been. It's not necessarily favorable for us in some places. It's a lot of times: "I said that? What an idiot! I can't believe I said that." But we're gonna put it all out [Rockline, January 3, 1994].

In July 1994 Kerrang! would report that the book was destined to be released by DEL Books in 1995, that it was written by Del James and contained photos by Robert John [Kerrang! July 16, 1994].

In November 1994 the book's title would be revealed as "Shattered Illusions" and was "understood to be the inside story of the band with a great deal of input from the vocalist's side" [RAW Magazine, November 1994].
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Post by Soulmonster on Tue Jul 30, 2019 10:42 am

1993-1994 - D-F-R


After returning to Los Angeles after the massive 'Use Your Illusion' touring in July 1993, Dizzy would start playing occasional shows at LA clubs under the moniker "D-F-R" ("Dizzy Fuckin' Reed") [Kerrang! March 12, 1994].

Dizzy would also work on a solo record, to which Slash would contribute:

Slash: "I've just been recording two of Dizzy's songs. I'll play you one. It's only piano and acoustic guitar. I heard it when we were on the road. […] It's really pretty" [Kerrang! March 12, 1994].
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Post by Soulmonster on Tue Jul 30, 2019 10:49 am

NOVEMBER 1994 - UZI SUICIDE IS RESURRECTED


In November 1994 Axl would ne reported to intend to revive the label Uzi Suicide which Guns N' Roses had used to launch their first EP back in 1986 [Kerrang! November 4, 1994; RAW Magazine, November 1994]. With distribution lined up via Geffen, Axl organized a showcase gig for Geffen executives on October featuring four of the bands he was interested in: Soul, Davy's Farm, Salt Of The Earth and The Assassins [RAW Magazine, November 1994].

The Assassins featured Axl's brother Stuart Bailey on guitar. Bailey was previously best-known as a vocalist with Dr. Whiskey. The Assassins' music, which Bailey has a hand in writing, is in the currently hot Southern Rock vein being pursued by the likes of Pride & Glory and Blind Melon [RAW Magazine, November 1994].

Uzi Suicide obtained the rights to Hanoi Rocks' back catalogue in 1990 [Kerrang! November 5, 1994] and re-released it all in the US in 1993 [RAW Magazine, November 1994].


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Post by Soulmonster on Tue Jul 30, 2019 1:38 pm

MAY 1993 - ROBERT JOHN RELEASES 'GUNS N' ROSES THE PHOTOGRAPHIC HISTORY'


Robert John: "Me and Axl used to talk about, you know, someday I was gonna put out a book on the band, and I thought they’d be huge. So he kept pushing me into it, and finally I said okay. Hopefully, it’s gonna do well. I really hope that people look at the book and feel that’s a real photo history, because I started working with the band in 1985, and from my very first photo shoot up until 1992. That’s what’s in the book" ["Guns N' Roses: The Photographic History" Documentary, June 19, 1994].

Robert John: "My personal likes are a little bit of motion blur - you know, to show what the person’s doing. Seeing a guitarist standing perfectly still, with the guitar in his hands, is really boring. I like seeing a lot of movement, like when Slash is on stage and he starts jumping around on one foot, and things like that. Those usually turn out to be really good photos" ["Guns N' Roses: The Photographic History" Documentary, June 19, 1994].

Robert John: "As far as my book goes, yeah. I’m very proud of it, because it’s weird – you know, people look at the book and they see the history of a band, and I look at the book and I see my progression on photography. I’m still not technically the best, but I see a progression of my own work" ["Guns N' Roses: The Photographic History" Documentary, June 19, 1994].

Slash: "I couldn’t pinpoint which photo I like the most that Robert shot. He has a great sense of timing. So, say he gives me a slide sheet from a few dates out of the tour to approve, I usually just approve all of it; or, if there’s something I definitely don’t like, it’s like one out of ten that, you know, I’m adamant about. But, otherwise, he’s got a great sense of timing. And, since he’s been with us so long, he’s one of the only guys that knows how to catch us at the right moment. You know, I grew up fucking reading rock ‘n’ roll magazines, and I knew what cool looked like as far as I was concerned. So, obviously, growing up you’re influenced by that, and when you see pictures of yourself, you’d like to be able – you know, if you’re lucky - to compare them to the cool shit that you grew up with. So he’s great for capturing that cooler-than-though kind of image" ["Guns N' Roses: The Photographic History" Documentary, June 19, 1994].

Axl: "In ways, Robert has been another member of the band, because he’s been there since the beginning; and is someone who is coming from the same headspace and attitude in ways about their craft and about the band that we were. So I’ve really liked supporting the loyalty in myself to Robert. And it’s something that’s had to be fought for at different times. You know, like when we were getting signed, there were pretty much, like, four photographers who had a monopoly over rock photos and the rock magazines; and I was like, “Well, I’m not signing unless you’re gonna guarantee me that Robert comes with us,” because I wasn’t gonna sign a deal and then have to go to Robert and go, “Well, now that we’re signed we got to shoot with these guys and can’t shoot with you anymore.” And I could feel that starting to happen. I mean, now I think that there’s a lot of different photographers in the rock ‘n’ roll magazines of different bands, but that wasn’t the case when we were signed"  ["Guns N' Roses: The Photographic History" Documentary, June 19, 1994].

Slash: "It’s probably a better kind of a book for me to look at, just because I was there. You know, that kind of thing where – I mean, that shit really did happen, as they say. I suppose photo shoots where you all get together and anyone of a number of photographers gets you, it’s no real experience. This was even more than a day in a life. When I look back on it, I go, “Fuck.” You know, how nuts that day was, how stoned we were that day, when we were rehearsing and trying to get our shit together, and so on so forth. The thing is, it hasn’t changed much. And when it finally comes down to the wire and you start to feel like it’s all just too fucking difficult or things have changed, or anything like that, when you just start to get moody, I can look at that and go, “It’s always been fucking hard” ["Guns N' Roses: The Photographic History" Documentary, June 19, 1994].
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Post by Soulmonster on Thu Aug 15, 2019 3:02 pm

NOVEMBER 1994 - GILBY IS OUT OF THE BAND


Rumours about Gilby's being out of the band had circulated throughout 1994 [insert sources], among rumours that the band was breaking up [insert sources]. In November they rumours were spreading again [Orange County Register, November 25, 1994].

Gilby would still not explicitly state he was out of the band, but indicate that if the band wanted him again he would be there:

Gilby: "The most important thing is that Guns N' Roses won't ever, ever go away. Guns N' Roses is pretty much Axl, Slash and Duff. It's what and when they decide to make an album, the rest of us have to work around that album. Some of the members will change over the years. But as long as Axl, Slash and Duff want to make a record together, it'll continue.

I'm really at their mercy as to when they decide they want to do things. It could be a year, and I just don't think it's very productive to sit around and wait [Orange County Register, November 25, 1994].

Yet, in late November it would be reported that Gilby was no longer a members of GN'R when he "finally decided this fall that there wasn't a place for him in the band" [Arizona Daily Star, November 25, 1994].

The realization that he was out of the band probably came with the song 'Sympathy for the Devil' which was recorded in October 1994, recording sessions for which Gilby had not been invited. Although the song would not be released until December 1994, radio stations would already be playing advance copies and Geffen would refuse to answer who played on the song [Detroit Free Press, November 25, 1994].
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