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1995.01.26 - The Gazette - Slash Has A New Flame

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1995.01.26 - The Gazette - Slash Has A New Flame Empty 1995.01.26 - The Gazette - Slash Has A New Flame

Post by Blackstar on Thu Aug 22, 2019 6:02 am

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Transcript:
------------------

Slash has a new flame

But Guns N’Roses lead guitarist says he's being faithful - sort of

MARK LEPAGE

They’re still together, but after almost 10 years of wedded bliss, Guns N’ Roses are taking separate vacations.

Small wonder Slash is, given the full-time undertaking (not used lightly) that is his day job. While Guns N’ Psychosis exists in a limbo of inactivity (but exists, swears Slash), the lead guitarist is cheating.

The new flame is Slash’s Snakepit. a side-band that has a debut release, a planned tour and so much fun “they think we’re never gonna come back.”

In town this week, Slash and lead Snakepit singer Eric Dover sport the leather pants and relaxed demeanors of musicians in their element.

The album, It’s Five O’Clock Somewhere, hits stores next month. The band begins a club tour in the U.S. Midwest in April, and probably will hit Montreal. Everything is proceeding to plan. But this is GNR-related, so...
“We’re fine now. We're not fighting,” Slash says of the wife back home, and he doesn’t mean Mrs. Slash. Stories in the public press had Axl, the little woman, pulling out his strawberry-blond over a number of domestic issues, not the least of which was Slash’s rock’n’roll philandering.

Problems started with published items about the firing of GNR rhythm guitarist Gilby Clarke, who is also in the Snakepit. “That had nothing to do with me,” says Slash. “I want to sort of try to set the record straight.

“When this first came up, Gilby, Duff (McKagan, bassist), Matt (Sorum, drummer) and myself were rehearsing. It wasn’t a great rehearsal, I was just trying to get Guns together. I had weird thoughts about what was going on, and then I got a phone call from Axl (about) the fact that he didn’t wanna write with Gilby but we d keep him on as a side guy. He’s adamant.

"So I took Gilby to dinner and said this is what's going on; I just don’t want you to hear it from somebody else. Then Gilby had a conversation with Axl that didn’t turn out well, then there was a fight with Duff and the next thing you know everything was f***ed up."

They tried a few guitarists, “one in particular that's on the Sympathy for the Devil track (Interview With the Vampire sound track) that I cannot stand. I told Axl I refuse to play with this guy.’ That’s where a lot of the so-called fighting rumors that you’ve heard - which are blown way out of proportion - came from."

Clarke was never officially fired, and released his own solo album last year. GNR exists but is “on hiatus." And Slash, plainspoken, bull-shit-free, who bears the weight of explaining GNR to a breathless world full of conclusion-jumpers, now has to explain why he got heat for finding someone on the sly while the wife is in curlers.

“As far as Guns is concerned, they're just not used to me not being right there. At one point I was actually encouraged to do a solo record because this material was a little bit, as Axl put it, 'too retro.’ So I just took the material and said, 'It’s mine now.’

“He got pretty upset about that but he did say do a solo record.

"But then two weeks later it was done.”

Everybody in the room laughs. “That sorta blew his mind,” Slash adds without having to.

With GNR, of course, it takes longer. That comes with familiarity. It can also be one-sided.

“If nobody else is doing anything at home, when I get there, what, I’m supposed to start it?” he says with a laugh.

“I’m sorta hoping that Axl might start writing some material and for once have something for me to go and play as opposed to me having to initiate it all the time. It’s sorta like sex.”

The extramarital affair may seem like a quickie with all the talk of good times and sweaty clubs, but there is more. “I’d like to keep a band together for once,” Slash says, and there is an obvious camaraderie, even if Dover is a subordinate.

Dover was the 41st guy to audition, although the tryout stretches the meaning of the term. Dover showed up at the Earthquake’94 Snakepit, also known as Slash's place. The guitarist was not there.

"Adam, my guitar tech, would take them up to the house, put a tape in and go, ‘Sing.’ Eric wrote Beggars & Hangers-On to a piece of music that was just called Song in D. And I heard the tape the next day and was like, ‘OK, that’s the guy.’ ”

"A couple of cocktails helped,” Dover says.

"The track was so together it was easy to do. There were no egos or strange star trips.”

The very existence of Dover on this couch and in this band leads one to wonder if Slash himself ever thought of taking the mike.

“Nah.”

Initially, he and Guns/Pit drummer Matt Sorum were going to use singer-buddies from a variety of bands.

"But I thought if we make a record, we should tour. I don’t wanna put out a record and waste it. So we can’t obviously take all these guys on the road. So I thought I’ll sing and I took some vocal lessons. I just don’t have the personality for it. It’s hard enough for me to sit here and talk to you guys.”

Later, in the evening, Slash and Dover talk to many guys and girls in Le Swimming, the upmarket St. Laurent Blvd. pool joint. Flashbulbs pop as an endless series of pics are snapped.

The weight of rock stardom settles back on to Slash’s shoulders but hey, he’s married to it.
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