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SoulMonster

1988.10.DD - Hit Parader (Slash, Duff)

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1988.10.DD - Hit Parader (Slash, Duff)

Post by Soulmonster on Sun Jun 05, 2011 1:48 am

Controversy and Guns N’ Roses seem to go hand in hand. Since the day this Los Angeles-based quintet first burst upon the rock scene last year with their Live Like A Suicide EP, rumors, innuendo and startling facts have swirled around the Guns boys like a tornado of trouble. It’s a difficult job separating fact from fiction when it comes to vocalist Axl Rose, guitarists lzzy Stradlin and Slash, bassist Duff McKagan and drummer Steven Adler. After all, if one were to believe every story floating around about the band’s high-stylin’ private lives and strange road behavior, one would think the group could never have had time to record their platinum-selling debut IP, Appetite For Destruction. In an effort to get to the bottom of all those nasty stories, we recently sat down with Slash and Duff and went looking for the truth.

Hit Parader: Over the last three months there’s been a constant stream of talk concerning the bands breaking up. What’s the story?

Duff McKagan: Look, there were some problems a while back, but those are more-or-less in the past now. This is the kind of band probably always have something strange going on in it. People don’t really understand us. They hear part of a story and they try and guess their own ending. The truth is that we had some problems with Axl. He started pulling some weird shit on everybody and we just didn’t dig that. But we’re pretty close, and we were able to sit down and work things out.

Slash: We’re not breaking up. if that’s what people want to know. Let’s just say that some of the talk people might have heard over the last few months is true and some of it isn’t. I really don’t want to get into it much deeper than that. Things are pretty cool within the band at the moment, and that’s the way we want to keep it.

HP: But didn’t Axl's unpredictable behavior cost the band tours with David Lee Roth, AC/DC and Iron Maiden?

Slash: Hey. I don’t think it’s fair to dump everything on Axl. We ended up getting the Aero­smith tour, so we probably got the best tour for us of the four. There were some problems with Roth because his people got wind of those rumors about Axl and that the band was breaking up. They really never bothered to confirm what they heard. If they had, I think we would have been able to patch everything up. But no loss - I’m sure Roth will be doing great business any­way, and we’re real happy to be with Aerosmith.

HP: Isn’t it a bit ironic that your good friends in Poison ended up as Roth’s opening act after you were dropped? We know, in reality, that you two bands don’t really like each other.

DM: I think we’ve gotten those problems pretty well worked out. We’re not denying that they fucked us over on the L.A. scene when we were starting out, but we’re not the kind of band to carry a grudge. (laughs) If they landed the Roth tour and are doing well, that’s great.

HP: Let’s get back to the band’s problems for a minute. How do you handle all the talk of rampant drug use in Guns N’ Roses?

Slash: We tell anyone who says that they’re full of shit. They obviously don’t know what they’re talking about. We’re not saying we’re angels in this band, because that would be a fucking lie. But we don’t use drugs, and we really never have. When you live in a place like L.A., you get to see what cocaine does to people every day. It’s not cool.

DM: We don’t do drugs - but we do drink a lot. A lot of the drug rumors about us started because we have a song called Cocaine Talking on the album. But that song’s not about us or our experiences with the drug. If you listen to the lyrics, it’s about how all these nice young girls in L.A. can’t do anything before they do their coke. The song’s definitely not a pro-cocaine song. It’s about how the shit really fucks up your head.

HP: You had incredible success with the video for Welcome To The Jungle, which made it to Number 1 in the Dial MTV show a few months back. Wasn’t there a lot of controversy about that clip in the beginning?

DM: Yeah, the people at MTV saw it and didn’t want anything to do with it. They thought it was lust too violent for them, which is really strange when you see some of the shit they play on that station. I mean, they protested about We/come To The Jungle because of the news clips we had in there showing all sorts of violent activity. But they played the shit out of Megadeth’s Peace Sells... But Who’s Buying clip, which pretty much did the same thing. They have some very weird standards.

Slash: The problem, from what we understand, is that new people took over MTV right about the time our first clip came out. They didn’t know anything about rock and roll, and their main concern was just not to offend anyone. And you know that when it comes to not offending people, you’re dealing with the wrong guys when you’re dealing with us. But once we did get the clip on the air, the response was incredible. Yeah, we flipped when it made it all the way to the top of their dial-in show. That proved the fans really were behind us.

HP: There’s been talk that your next album may be an all-acoustic LP. That’s a pretty radical departure from Appetite For Destruction.

Slash: We still haven’t decided exactly what to do next time, but we have thought about doing some acoustic stuff. For those fans who don’t know, we like to play acoustic sets every now and then when we get the chance. We do those when we have in-store record signings and things like that, and people really get off on it. Maybe it would be too radical a departure from what people now expect after Appetite For Destruction, but we kind of like keeping everyone a little off balance. If we can keep doing that, we’ll be around for a long, long time.
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