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Welcome to Appetite for Discussion -- a Guns N' Roses fan forum!

Please feel free to look around the forum as a guest, I hope you will find something of interest. If you want to join the discussions or contribute in other ways then you need to become a member. We especially welcome anyone who wants to share documents for our archive or would be interested in translating or transcribing articles and interviews.

Registering is free and easy.


2018.03.08 - Appetite For Distortion - Interview with Rob Gardner

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2018.03.08 - Appetite For Distortion - Interview with Rob Gardner Empty 2018.03.08 - Appetite For Distortion - Interview with Rob Gardner

Post by Blackstar Mon Apr 23, 2018 10:59 pm

Full interview:

CLIPS: Rob Gardner & Tracii Guns leave GN'R

CLIPS: Does the original GN'R drummer have regrets?


Brando: I don't think Rob Gardner ever misspelled "Axl" - is that true?

Rob Gardner: Talking to me?

Brando: [laughs] That was my awkward segue into answering the phone. What's up, Rob?

RB: Hey, how are ya?

Brando: I'm great, man, great to hear from you.

John Miller: Hey Rob.

RG: And just to reiterate, I never spelled it wrong. And "Axl" with an E on the end is like, you know, goes on a car.

Brando: Right. So I was I was saying to John [?] and of course, you know, to talk to the star of the show, [?], like I respond to this one guy, it's like, "Axl, it's not only three letters, it's in the article and he's been famous for fucking decades, what's wrong with you, man?" and I'm like writing it just like as a jerk and it frustrates trolls. I don't know, I'm having fun with it. Anyway-

RG: Or I always think it like Axel Foley-

Brando: Beverly Hills Cop.

RG: I was gonna say Trading Places but it's the other one.

Brando: Eddie Murphy, you got that right, though.

RG: Eddie Murphy, I got it.

Brando: Well, Rob, hello, my name is Brando, nice to meet you.

RG: Hey Brando, nice to meet you man.

Brando: You and John, have you been texting?

JM: No, I reached out to him about seven years ago and I was down to my family's in Wilson, North Carolina, and I got a voicemail that said, "Hey John, it's Rob Gardner, the original Guns N' Roses drummer," you know, I'm like dropping the phone, like "Oh yes!" And then periodically I reached out to him like when his friend Michael died several years ago I called you up and I don't think you had my contact, you know, like, "Who is this?" Before I even like told you why I was calling.

RG: I remember that conversation.

JM: Yeah.

RG: Yeah, that was rough. Mike... and I had talked to him like probably a week or two before that, you know, he called me up and [?], and this and that and he was kind of reaching out and I didn't really, you know, I didn't think much of it. Of course I didn't think he was gonna die.

JM: Yeah, he didn't think so either.

RG: Yeah, you know, but he was going through a rough time. And I thought he was actually kind of coming out on the other end, I thought he was kind of getting it together, you know, with the job... he was getting a new job. And I thought he was falling through, you know, he's getting through this thing and next thing I know... yeah.

Brando: Well, I usually start off all my interviews either awkward or sad so I guess this is on par-

JM: You know who we're speaking about?

Brando: I do not.

JM: We're talking about Michael Jaegoz who is the the singer on the LA Guns EP and then he was the singer for Pyrrhus.

RG: Correct.

Brando: Yes, I remember you telling me this off the air and you're more learned of this era than I am. I learned a lot more with from Raz Cue. He helped set this up in addition, Rob. But I know the end result was you saying, "Yes," so thank you for your time - I really appreciate it.

RG: Absolutely, yeah. Glad to help you guys out or, you know, be on your show, that's cool.

Brando: And of course I want to, you know, help you out... or I don't know, "help you," I don't know your situation, that's what we're gonna learn today or just to give you a voice because there are a lot of fans out there who want to hear from you, when we put it out there, that know we're gonna speak to you today. A lot of excitement, a lot of excitement. I know it's been a while, of course, since you've been with the band but people still know who you are and people still care-

RG: My name is still floating around out there.

JM: Oh yeah.

Brando and JM: Absolutely.

JM: Damn right.

Brando: Absolutely. Where are you calling from today?

JM: I'm in LA, Hollywood.

Brando: Okay, alright, so not too bad I guess. Are you from there? Where you from initially?

RG: I'm from New York. You guys are in New York, right?

Brando: Yeah, yeah.

JM: Right, I remember you told me that.

Brando: Alright, where in New York?

RG: So I was born in Manhattan and then I lived in Long Island when I was we're really young up until about four, I lived in Huntington Long Island.

Brando: That's where I live now!

RG: You're kidding me!

Brando: No, I'm not. I live right near St. Anthony's high school in Huntington.

RG: Alright, funny.

Brando: Look at that. Really fucking small world, jesus christ.

RG: And then I moved to Westchester County like [?] that area.

Brando: A little bougie[?].

RG: Yeah, that's right, I got snobby.

Brando: Yeah.

RG: I'm just kidding.

Brando: Now I know I'm dealing with New York sense of humor so I don't have to use the word "hella" over and over again and try talking about in and out to try to relate.

RG: Yeah, "totally, dude".

Brando: "Radical, radical," yeah.

RG: "That's rad, Brad."

Brando: That's a word, right? Cuz Duff likes "radical" and when we had Brain on-

RG: "It's rad!"

Brando: -he said "rad" over and over again so I don't know if that's a token LA thing, "radical".

RG: I guess I it could be, yeah. You know, it's weird, I've been here so long I don't even notice it anymore. I've been here for over 30 years now, so.

Brando: All right. Well, you know, we have a lot to go through and we're in your time so whenever you need to bounce just let us know. But we'll try to be, you know, as contained and well organized as possible.

RG: Well, it was nice talking to you guys.


Brando: I guess I set myself up for that one.

JM: How old were you when you moved to LA?

RG: I actually did high school here, like, I finished high school here, that's when I met everyone.

Brando: So you met everyone in LA? Finishing high school in LA?

RG: Yeah, so I really moved to like in the middle of ninth grade kind of thing-

Brando: You know what this is... before you even get to that, this is like Rob and I are kindred spirits right now cuz I moved in the middle of ninth grade from Baldwin, Long Island, then to Dicks Hills, Long Island, talk about bougie, [?] by the way, so the Huntington connection the middle of [?] connection - I feel like I'm gonna relate to you more as this conversation continues, but-

RG: Alright, we'll see.


RG: So, anyway, moved in the middle of ninth grade and I went to Fairfax in 10th grade but I finished 9th grade in another school, that's where I met Mike, Mike Jagoez.

Brando: Okay.

RG: And then when I moved, when I went to Fairfax, that's when I met Tracii and Slash and Steven and those guys. At the end, Tracii played in a band - we decided to put a band together and then Slash and Steven had a band, had a rival bands, if you will. So then me and Tracii, we're looking for a singer and that's when I suggested Mike, I was like, "Well, Mike's really good." Here's another funny thing, Mike's brother Dave was a singer - and I think John knows about this - of this band called Shire and Izzy played for Shire.

Brando: Yes, we interviewed Alan Santalesa.

RG: Yeah, Alan, okay.

Brando: Yeah, a few episodes ago. Very cool that we're getting this the infancy stages of GN'R from a lot of different people and finally now, of course, we're getting to talk to you.

RG: Yeah, yeah. So that's how that came about. And I introduced Tracii and Mike and then it just went from there.

Brando: Right on. Before we get.. because actually, obviously, that's the big stuffs that everyone wants to know about meeting them for the first time, first impressions, but I really want to get to know you a little bit more because there's not much about you out there. Are there any interviews, like, John, didn't you say that you were looking for interviews with Rob? Like, when was the last you were properly interviewed?

RG: You know, I have done actually kind of quite a few. One of them was a Danish radio interview and they called me and I think they were doing something on Ole-

Brando: Okay

RG: -from what I remember. Anyway, it was kind of related to that. And then, you know, of course just the whole band history type thing and all that. But they asked me a lot of questions about Ole and stuff like that. And then I did another interview, more of like a video film type thing, where they interviewed me, video interviewed me, and I think that had to do with like LA Guns or like the Guns story, something like that. I'm not sure whatever it came about with that if it ever-

JM: Was that a few years ago?

RG: -I got to call the guy-

JM: That was a few years ago, wasn't it?

RG: That was a few years, yep.

Brando: It seems like there's not a lot, I guess, I didn't have the Danish radio station on that day, I mean, it doesn't matter because in today's world anything can go viral. But there's still not a lot out there. I mean, first I just want to get to know you a little bit. Before you moved to LA in high school and you're growing up in either Huntington or Westchester, like what kind of kid were you? Since I want to identify with you more, were you dorky, were you nerdy?

RG: Yep, a cool dork. [?] loafers and my jeans curled up from the bottom, you know, and with argyle socks - I'm just kidding.


Brando: You had me.

RG: I actually hung out with a pretty cool crowd over there and I grew up with the Dillon's, like Matt Dillon and Kevin Dillon and those guys, which is funny, they grew up in Mamaroneck and that's where I grew up and we're a bunch of tough kids, you know, just on the streets and partying and rock and roll. I mean, it was just really, it was always getting into mischief, you know, this and that. Hence the reason I moved because I was getting in trouble over there and, you know, things were kind of going haywire and stuff, but-

JM: Y'all moved because of your troubles?

RG: Well, no, just me personally. You know, I think my parents at the time had just made a decision... like, my dad lived here and my mom lived there so, I was living with my mom and my stepfather over there. My dad and my stepmom moved here in LA back in '72. They moved and I moved out later in, '79. But, anyway, yeah, it was just time for me to get out of there. Things were getting kind of created, the kids were getting wild and getting in trouble and it was probably better that I, you know, got out of there. And so I did, I came to beautiful sunny California, you know.

Brando: Did you make the decision yourself? Or your parents were, you know, kind of the Twisted Sister parents, like, "Get out of here, rock and roll-"

RG: "What are you gonna amount to?!"

Brando: So, I mean, was it your decision to move to LA? Did you know what you were moving out there for? Did you want to be in a band? You just wanted to be in the lifestyle?

JM: Yeah, when did you start playing drums?

RG: So yeah, well, I guess we have to back up a little bit. So in grammar school I had a buddy of mine who... I think his dad was a drum teacher with the marching band affiliated with the school, and I always just thought it was cool, "Hey, I want to do that." So I learned all the snare drums, like all the rudiments and stuff like that, and I marched, you know, all around New York State and stuff and I did, you know, parades, you know, with a marching band and stuff like that. And then probably did that for like two or three years and then I wanted to get further into it. I wanted to get a drum set, and my mom is like, "Well," you know, "if we get you a set," you know, "we get to spend all his money and then he just leave it, you never practice," I'm like, "Oh, don't worry, I'll practice." So every day after school I'd, you know, just go downstairs in the basement and all my friends were out playing and stuff and I was down there practicing all the time, you know-

JM: Sounds like a classic image.

RG: Yeah, I just stuck to my word and just started getting real good and stuff. And by the time I moved to LA I was good enough to, you know, do a whole band thing and whatever and that's what I did, me and Tracii put together a band.

JM: Was that your first band? I mean, were you in anything before that band with Tracii?

Brando: High school bands or...?

RG: No, I used to like jam, back in New York I jammed with friends and stuff like that. And like I said, just practicing everyday, learning cover songs, things like that.
Deep Purple, The Who, like all kinds of stuff, you know.

JM: Who were your main influences?

RG: So definitely like Keith Moon, John Bonham, Ginger Baker, [?], you know I was kind of the more the old-school, obviously, back then. You know, but Mitch Mitchell, Jimi Hendrix, you know. So yeah, those were definitely my big influences, all the old guys back then. And then, you know, I got into Rush, like the early early Rush, you know, like the first couple of albums, I liked, you know, so Neil Peart was a little bit of an influence but not so much as the other guys. I think John Bonham was probably one of my, like, one of my biggest, and Keith Moon and those guys, yeah.

Brando: I mean you really can't go wrong there. You could said Animal from the Muppets and that would have been okay.

RG: Exactly. Anyway, so where were we?

Brando: I guess now we're back-

JM: -back to high school, back to Fairfax.

RG: Back in high school-

Brando: Yeah, the Degrassi Junior High of Guns N' Roses, everyone went the Fairfax, it's just unbelievable.

RG: Is that crazy or what?

JM: Were you friends with Chris Weber?

RG: I know Chris Weber, yep, pretty well.

Brando: We spoke to him as well, thanks to John, you helped me out, set me up with that, right?

JM: Yeah.

Brando: All this "six degrees of Kevin Bacon," "GN'R Bacon," whatever, unbelievable. And the GN'R fans they know, I mean, yes, the average passerby fan will just say, "Axl, Slash, Duff," but when we get deeper, people know. And that has amazed me from doing this podcast, 50 episodes into it. So putting it out there and we'll pepper in questions that we got for you throughout. So unless I'm missing something for high school I just want to give this credits, was from Ronin on mygnrforum. So you mentioned that's the way you met Tracii, so what's to start there, what was your first impression working, or meeting I guess, Tracii Guns?

RB: Oh, yeah, that was interesting because when I met him he was more of like a punk rocker, you know, and his hair was short, you know, and it kind of just a little more punky, like skater kind of punky look, you know what I mean? But man, you know, we found out in the hour, you know, that we're both musicians and stuff, "Hey, let's jam some time!" you know. So his dad had a plumbing shop over in Studio City, over by Universal Studios over there, and he had a little room up there, we were able to bring our stuff up there. And then my dad's house, too, my room was like... my dad's got a good sized house and my room was like separate from the house, it was like an old like a butler's quarters or something like that, you know, built over the garage, it was really cool. We were able to jam up there, too. So between the two places, yeah, we'd always just jam after school and, yeah, we came up with all these songs and that's how Pyrrhus got formed.

Brando: Awesome.

RG: Really cool stuff. We used to play in the quad at Fairfax High School, there was like an outdoor amphitheater right in the middle of the school, it was outdoors, and they used to let us play there at lunchtime, it was pretty cool [laughs].

Brando: Wow.

RG: I don't know if I really see that happening these days. I mean, I obviously haven't been in high school for a long time. But it was cool, they were kicked back a bit, like they'd let us skip the period before lunch so we can go, you know, set up and, you know, all that. And then one time we even played at Hollywood High School. They let us go play over there, which was kind of like our rival high school, so we were all over that, like, "Oh, we're really gonna go over and go play?" you know. And we had a good crowd over there, so it was good. It was cool. We got good experience like that, especially in front of all, you know, all the other kids our age and stuff like that and just, you know, what the scene, you know, starting to develop, the Hollywood music scene and stuff like that really coming out and stuff so it was fun.

JM: And this is with... Michael's already singing at this point?

RG: Yeah, Mike was singing. And I don't even know how... like, he went to Fairfax kind of briefly from what I remember and a lot of it's a blur.

JM: It's all detailed in Raz's book, how he was-

RG: Yeah.

Brando: School was a blur for most of us and I'm the youngest one here so what does that [?]

JM: I have nightmares constantly-

RG: Waking up thinking I'm still at high school going, "Oh shit!"

Brando: Now I am depressed thinking about high school.

RG: Sorry.

Brando: Thanks, thanks guys! But now let's go back to high school, your a high school at least, what kind of stuff did you and Tracii play or work on? Because you said the scene was developing and, you know, you guys were, you know, became friends, you were new to the area, like what did you bond on? The writing process? The lyrics? What was the message you put in the lyrics? What was the message of, you know, the infancy of that band?

RG: Yeah, I think, like, Tracii's style was really unique back then. We had a close group of friends that would always come to our rehearsals or whatever or you know obviously shows and things like that and just knew us really well, and like Tracii, man, he just plays so differently, it was weird. He had his own thing going on, it was just different like his own thumbprint. And so yeah it was definitely more hard rock, you know, with a hard edge, you know. And a little bit of punk in there because of his punk style, you know. And not everything was super fast, it wasn't like thrash fast or anything like that. But definitely the energy, man, just a lot of energy, riff-y, you know, stuff like that. And then as far as the lyrics and all that, you know, neither of us were lyricist, me or Tracii, so we just named our songs, we just come up with like, you know, an oddball name for that song, so we'd know what song, you know, we were talking about, you know. So we just make up these random names for these things. But when Mike came in he started actually writing some lyrics, he's a pretty good lyricist, you know. Him and his brother Dave they were really known for their lyrical abilities, you know. Their the lyrical content was really deep, pretty good stuff. And they both had good voices and stuff. I'm just saying Mike being influenced from his brother, Dave was a little bit older, like a year or two. So yeah, Mike came up with, you know, lyrics and stuff like that for Pyrrhus, you know, for that stuff.

JM: Now, do these early songs, when they were, I guess, still developing in high school, did this carryover post high school or did some songs get tossed away? I mean, clearly-

RG: Yeah, yeah, a lot of those songs I guess kind of floated away, I guess. I was really a bummer because I remember we used to have all these cassettes back then and, you know, we just throw a tape recorder in the room and some of it a was actually recorded like really well but I don't know where those tapes are, I mean, that would be so cool. I always thought about that and I wonder if Tracii has them here or there, you know, he could, maybe he does. I mean, I know I lost mine over the years and they probably be all disintegrated by now [laughs] [?] cassette tapes.

JM: Maybe, you know, sometimes these things can be found, like, I don't know if you know anything about the band Rapidfire or not but that was the band that Axl first joined when he landed in LA in '83. Anyway, this cassette tape was just floating around in his lawyer's safe that he had had for like about ten years and he put it on and he heard, he hadn't heard it, and it survived from 1984 or 5 and, you know, he put it up, it's like a new EP.

RG: That's pretty cool.

Brando: You never know and that's gonna end up being one of the questions that I got for you, like, anything recorded from that time? And I obviously, you know, we can still talk about the infancy with Tracii but as we continue through your time with LA Guns and the beginning of GN'R so unless I'm, you know, missing something, so you met Tracii first and then - so who is next up as far.... I guess I would kind of want to go in order as far as who you were introduced to when your first impressions?

JM: Yeah, who played bass before Ole?

RG: So, well, with Pyrrhus it was this guy Dani, Dani Tull, and then Mike was singing and there was me and Tracii. So we just kept it a four-piece. And then the LA Guns thing, you know.... We met Raz and the whole LA Guns things started coming around, you know, changing the name from Pyrrhus to LA Guns and we had gone through a number of bass players and then when LA Guns was in full swing - I'm racking my brain here for timelines and stuff like that - but yeah, pretty much Ole was the bass player for that, for LA Guns. And so he came in... but Axl was singing, see, that was a weird transition to you because I used to play drums for Hollywood Rose. Axl and Izzy and Chris Weber, you know, did that whole thing and-

JM: Is that you in the video? There's a video, I just watched it today, I've seen it before, but they're playing Shadow Of Your Love, I think they're in, or Anything Goes, they're in like a shop or something, I always thought it was the Weber's family shop and I always wondered that was you who's playing drums in the background of that?

RG: You know, I'd have to see it to let you know for sure, but they had a few drummers too. And which is why... I never really joined that band as a member but I would just fill in because I needed the songs[?]. So they would say, "Hey, our drummer's like M.I.A., we can't find out where," whatever and, "Would you fill in?" I'm like, "Yes, sure." So I did shows with them, you know, and like that. And so that's how that kind of came into play. How I, you know, got to meet Axl and those. And
like I said I had already known Izzy, you know, before that so-

Brando: Let's start there.

RG: -from high school, from Fairfax. So we just all knew each other, it was like a circle of people that we all knew.

JM: Well, that, you know, I think about that part in Slash's book, he mentions both bands, how they sort of interchanged players, and that all kind of make sense. But then my own experience when I met Mike Jagosz, he took me to the studio behind his family's home and I saw the Shire banner still hanging on the wall and it's guarded by this junk that's been piled up in the over the decades. But then he said, you know, this is where Pyrrhus rehearsed, this is where Shire rehearsed, so I just imagine, you know, parties in the backyard where this little the garage opens up and you guys playing there. I don't know if that's even correct or not?

RG: Yeah, yeah.

Brando: So did you... because you mentioned before, I want to make sure that we don't go over this, when you first met Izzy, that I want to make sure because it seems like everyone's impression seems to be he was the coolest guy in the room, so I want to see if you feel the same way?

RG: Yeah, yeah, Izzy was always real laid back, this cool guy, you know, just into the music and the scene and stuff. And, oh, he's just cool and stuff. A good player, just consistent, you know, definitely, mm-hmm.

JM: Do you remember where you first met him?

RG: The day I met him, probably in that garage you were talking about, I imagine. Just trying to remember... but yeah, I think it was probably there at one of their rehearsals.

Brando: Okay.

RG: One of Shire's rehearsals.

Brando: When you started connecting with Izzy and Tracy, what was your vision stars where you want to go? And did you want to be like you make this a life for yourself? Like how seriously were you taking it at that point? We could party, this is just fun, being part of the scene, or, "I could possibly make a living like this"? So what was your mindset when meeting these people and, I guess, are you taking it seriously at that time?

RG: Yeah, you know, I think, when you're just in it you kind of just roll with things and the group of people you're running with. And then, yes, sure, having fun playing this and that. And then, you know, you're still in high school so you're kind of.... I mean, you know, yeah, you have thoughts of becoming a rock star so to speak, you know what I mean like that? But, you know, at that time, you know, you're still at the bottom more or less, you know, you're just rehearsing or doing little shows, those backyard parties, things like that and whatever. But I think when I really first started getting a taste of really making it was, you know, from LA Guns and after that because, you know, you start getting a following and people are really, you know, you're getting offers here and there and you could just feel it starting to take off. Yeah, that's when I think I started taking a little more seriously at that point, yeah.

Brando: Who are you becoming closer with at the time when you started meeting these people and the band was somewhat forming with Tracii? And, I mean, personally I don't know too much about Ole, so what was your first impressions of him when you first met him?

RG: Ole was... he played with Merciful Faith and I guess they were a Danish band, but I had heard of them so before he even joined the band I already knew who they were. And when I, you know, I heard he was gonna be playing with us... I don't know how exactly, I don't remember exactly how he came in. Tracii must have found him or I don't know if we put an ad out or what. Maybe, I think we'd probably put an ad, I don't know if he was referred, but I think we would probably put an ad and he might have answered it and, you know, learned who he played with and then met us and, "He's a cool-looking guy," you know, "he kind of fits the part." You know, he was older than us so that was a little bit of a difference. You know, he was older but that was cool because he was still obviously young enough but he had the experience behind him and that's what was the cool thing, and we got in there and played and, yeah, I mean, he rocked, you know, he rocked it.

Brando: I love how you said he had the look and mentioning Izzy's look, the first impression when I got these pictures from Raz, the original photo of Guns N' Roses, you and your afro, there were many afros-

JM: That thing is wild.

Brando: I love it.

RG: You know, it's funny, when I look at old pictures of Slash when we were in high school we both kind of had a little bit of 'fros going on. And that was at the stage where you're just starting to grow... if you have curly hair like me and him do you have to wait till it really grows out and to get some weight on it to start pulling it down, it starts growing upwards before it starts going downwards where you want it, you know [laughs] but.

Brando: I love it.

RG: -that kind of fluffy, afro hair, yeah.

Brando: Mr. Kotter, you know, I like it.


Brando: Sorry.

RG: Good old Gabe Kaplan.

Brando: Yes. I was just watching it the other day, I love that show.

RG: I always liked Horshack.

Brando: Yes, I won't say you're Horshack, your more... what's Travolta's character in that? You know, since you're so cool you're more Freddie "Boom Boom" Washington, with that afro.

RG: Exactly right.

JM: Was there a period of time between Pyrrhus and its evolution into being called LA Guns, you know, when we know Raz brought in Axl? I assume you would heard Axl perform or seeing him in Hollywood Rose-

RG: Yeah, I played with them, yeah.

Brando: Before joining in the band, did you meet them?

JM: You played with Hollywood Rose before he started in LA Guns?

RG: Yeah, yeah, I knew them before that and during that time, you know what I'm saying? [?] one time frame right in there, so yeah, I knew him, knew of him, and played with him and this and that, and Izzy as well.

Brando: -what was your-

RG: I never played with Slash but I played with Izzy and Axl before, before, you know, the LA Guns kind of, Guns N' Roses thing.

Brando: That's cool, it's good to get the timeline. What were your first impressions of a young Axl? Because in those photos he wasn't as tattooed, so you knew him before.

RG: Yeah, yeah, no, we always got along me and Axl. He was a good... obviously great frontman, just on fire, man, just energy, and, yeah, he just had that fire going. He was real determined and real focused, too, you know what I mean? He just kind of knew he'd... you know, kind of anything in his way, "Get out of my way, this is what I'm doing, it's real." So yeah, he was real focused.

JM: How his departure from the band was documented from different people always seems a little muddy, like, I think Tracii had told some story years ago that he - and I assume you saw Raz the manager - they had an argument or a fight or something like that but they're all living together or something and so, you know, Axl's fired, but then, you know, you talk to Raz he's like, "No, I mean, Axl and I loved each other." How Axl's time in LA Guns ended and then later transitioned into Guns N' Roses has always seemed confusing.

RG: You know, I would have to say Raz would probably be the most accurate detail on that. You know, Raz and I talked about this kind of recently.

Brando: Is this Raz on the phone right now?

Raz Cue: Oh yeah, can you hear me?

Brando: Perfect timing, like we planned it. We're just in the middle of conversation, Raz, I mean you're just interrupting, what is this about?

RC: I don't know, man, you know my phone has a  mind of it's own, man, [?]

Brando: Just butt-dialed the AFD show. Yeah, I love it. Actually, this is really well timed because Rob was just telling us about what really went down when Axl left LA Guns. If Tracii's account of it was correct. John, you were saying?

JM: I feel like... I remember he told a story that you and Axl had difficulties or disagreements and so Axl was fired and, you know, he was living with you, with the both of you, and I know I've read the book and we talked about it but even today I can't get.... because my impression now is that you and Axl were great friend, you know?

RC: Well, you know, we had our moments.

RG: For sure.

JM: Sure.

RC: Yeah, Axl quit. I mean, you know, like, we got along great and, you know, we butt heads, you know, we were like young males with a little testosterone going so and we liked to drink, you know. Probably a lot of my friends if I wasn't in a wheelchair I would have gotten fist fights with the [?] you know.

Brando: You know, Raz, I've missed you first of all and welcome officially for coming on. And just the wheelchair comment, you know, often I say, "If you missed Raz Cue's episode, what the hell's wrong with you? At the AFD show and you haven't read his book, what is wrong," - with your books, I should say. But the handicapped reference already... because I often say that if I was 6'4" and not 5'6" and handicapped I would get into so many fights, so I'm with you, so thank you Raz so for... I mean, I thanked you before you came on for helping set up this conversation with Rob and obviously now thank you for joining in on the party.

RC: Hey man, thanks for helping me sell books, man. I like your show, though, it's cool.

Brando: Thank you. That should be a promo if I ever use this to sell. "I like your show."

JM: All right, Rob, what were you doing when Axl quit, in between Axl quitting and the formation of Guns N' Roses, what were you doing?

RG: Well, that's what I was saying, Raz' detail of that whole time is probably better than mine. I mean, you know, a lot of it's a blur, you know what I mean? But, yeah, we were just, you know, moving along, you know, doing our routine, doing our rehearsals, shows, this and that. But the account of exactly what... Raz was the manager, you know, I'm the drummer, I just leave it up to [?], "Who's gonna sing for us tomorrow?" you know-

Brando: Still the same excuses-

RG: I just let Raz handle those kind of things. But, you know, we were always, obviously, you know, on a daily basis just, you know, around, you know, with rehearsals and shows and what-have-you. But, you know, for a timeline detail, you know, yeah, it's hard to answer because, you know... Like the fact I had to ask Raz like, "Did Mike sing first or did Axl sing first in LA Guns?" [laughs]

JM: Oh, right, right.

RC: Yeah, I remember Rob got that blended together because Michael was the singer for Pyrrhus, you know, high school band, and it basically became LA Guns. So Mike was gone, yeah, so to Rob it's just like Tracii, Ole, Mike and them[?] were in a band and then Axl singing after that.

Brando: Gotcha. Well, I know Raz has been... we're gonna get into more of it, some things that you're releasing on your website and your upcoming projects, but I have again... if I asked you during your episode and this question lends itself to Rob, do you have any recordings from that time? Do you have any keepsakes from that time? Posters? Perhaps a napkin with the cocktail waitresses number on it from that time? Any memorabilia that you may have from your time with LA Guns?

RC: Any kids?


Brando: Ah, Raz with the zinger, thank you!

RG: So Razzie, you're gonna talk about anything like [?] you're gonna-

RC: I thought that was for you.

RG: I have some stuff and I know Raz has some stuff so I think eventually... it's kind of been kept, you know, in the suitcase in the closet, you know, for years, obviously. So soon to maybe, you know, come out and let everyone enjoy, you know what I'm saying?

Brando: Alright. "Soon is the world".

RC: Yeah, you know, I got a video up on YouTube, Rob, you gotta check it out. You remember, dude, back when like the GN'R first are, like the first couple weeks, before you guys even played the Troubadour show, the interview on KPFK in the middle of the night?

RG: Yes.

RC: Yeah, so I gotta put that out, man, Tracii's mom made a cassette back in the day, back in 1985, she made a cassette when you guys were on the radio and I just had it, you know. So I digitized it and throw it up there. I don't know if you heard it before.

RG: Yeah, I have it, you actually gave me a copy of it, yeah.

RC: Oh, there you go.

JM: Now is this.... alright, because you touched this in your book, this includes music, is this the only recording of the original lineup?

RG: You know, I've seen some... the original lineup of Guns N' Roses?

JM: Yeah.

RG: Oh yeah, pretty sure, yeah. I bet Marc Canter has something but he probably just has the Slash stuff.

JM: Yeah, he didn't mention going to the... nowhere in his book does he talk about going to the original lineup shows, unfortunately.

RC: Yeah, he went to the LA Guns shows with Axl singing and then... and he didn't go, I don't think he went to any of the shows where it was Tracii and Rob.

JM: Maybe he was being oiled to Slash or something.

RC: Or maybe nobody even told him, you know. He worked pretty hard, you know. Axl might have invited him and it might not have been that big of a deal or, you know-

JM: He didn't get the Facebook message.

RC: He might even just been there, you know, it's just like so... I bet he was probably at least, you know, one or two because I don't think he has any animosity, or ever had in the animosity, towards Tracii.

JM: I've never heard of any.

Brando: John just played that recording for me, just a little bit, before we hit the air and it's quite astounding - just a little bit that I heard - just to have Izzy kind of be the mouthpiece of the band [?] and, you know, having these future legends be in front of you and just the confused jocks of just, "Who is this right now?" you know, "this band," you know. I can't wait to listen to the whole thing. And you say, Raz, you have put it up?

RC: Yeah. [?] or just you know look on Youtube [?] and it'll come up. Yeah, just go to my website, it'll be right there, you can click on a little Youtube link.

Brando: And I'm glad once when Raz you gave John and I permission to share the photos, as I mentioned before of the early LA  Guns days and that first photo of Guns N' Roses. And I tagged Tracii in them - and I know, you know, if you go back and listen to the episode starring Raz Cue, you know, your opinion of Tracii is funny-

JM: Colorful.

Brando: Yeah, he first took the photo that which includes Rob and young Axl in the back and just cropped out everything it seemed, but however, after all that-

JM: Someone dit it-

Brando: Yeah, I don't know, yeah, you're right. So it was up there. But then after the fact I saw [?] the and retweeted us and it was obviously photos he has either never seen or he hadn't seen in a long time, so if that's coming from somebody in the band obviously fans-

JM: People shared them from the Rapidfire page to his page.

Brando: Well, I like to think I did it, cuz he shared it as soon as I tagged him on Twitter, well, who gives a shit-

JM: "I did it!!"


Brando: It's Raz' pictures. So it's just cool that, you know, those are the only pictures, point being those are only pictures and now we have an actual radio interview. I can only imagine... [?]

JM: It's gold for fans. These are kids, this is when Guns N' Roses were a bunch of kids in a studio like this kind of situation, sitting around, you know, trying to be professional, trying to be cool, I love it, I absolutely love it.

RB: Yeah, yeah, I was thinking the same thing, Raz, just one reaction from one picture that people hadn't seen compared to what's up there right now, probably blowing up oh.

JM: Oh god-

Brando: It absolutely is.

RC: I hadn't seen that one, either, until you said it to me, I'm like, "Wow!" You know, the picture with the part that was cropped out [?] Tracii, I kind of thought he did it at first but sometimes you know Instagram gives you a crop-

Brando: You're right.

RC: Because he posted my other picture with my website on there so, you know, it might just have you been an Instagram crop. Ole's bass got cropped out of it, man, I loved that bass, that bass was Ole to me, so.

JM: He also remarked on and it was from 1983, that's not possible, right? I mean I would guess it's '84.

RC: Summer of '84, right.

JM: Okay.

Brando: I was one and a half.


Brando: So sorry, guys. So unless-

RC: Yeah, and that was at that Gardner's studio where there's like the guys are sitting on couch with the LA Guns banner behind them-

JM: Cool, I didn't know where that was.

Brando: Is that what you called it, the Gardner's studio?

JM: Yeah, because I think when everyone first heard about it in Slash's [?] called it the Sunset and Gardner villas-

Brando: Okay.

JM: It's this little, like, storage facility unit in a parking garage, parking lot, behind Guitar Center.

Brando: Okay.

RC: We called it that because that's where always Robbie Gardner was passed out at.


RB: Exactly.

JM: It was quite an easy coincidence.  [?] cuz, Rob, you had mentioned to me... I guess my impression as a fan was that that place started once the Appetite lineup came together but then I learned, "No, this was like... "Raz, you started that place.

RC: Yeah, it was an hourly but I talked them to do it in lockout.

JM: And then Rob told me that he lived there as well I'm like, "How does this work out with the timeline?"

RC: You know what's funny about that studio is it didn't have any windows so, like, I go over there like 2 in the afternoon and I'd honk my horn for the people to come out, because maybe I didn't wanna get up, and they would come out and the sun would hit them, [?] look at people face's and, you know, it's pitch black, open then door and "Nooooo!" [?] The vampires are coming out.

JM: I mean, no plumbing, no air, I mean, it sounds like the absolute most miserable kind of circumstance to live-

RG: There's an outhouse, like basically, you know, with a toilet and the sink in there and that's where we took showers.


JM: I mean Rob, you lived in Hollywood then, your family was there, why did you choose to live... was it just more fun to live in the studio?

RG: You know, yeah, I don't know if "fun" is the word but, you know, just being independent at the time, you know, you're trying to just get out there and just make it on your own and do your own thing and you're in the music scene out there and, you know, so you just gotta rough it sometimes, you know.

JM: What were you, 19-20 at the time?

RG: Yeah, mmm. I was a kid, man.

JM: What were you doing-

RG: We were all kids.

JM: Yeah.

RG: Axl and Izzy were a little older than us, what Raz, by a couple of years, two, three years maybe, something like that?

RC: Yeah, I think three or four, something like that.

JM: They're born in '62.

RG: Oh yeah, so three.

JM: I mean, I think that's what I wanted to ask you guys, the idea, I mean, I forgot that you were from New York, Rob, but as guys living in LA and you get these guys coming in from Lafayette, Indiana, they're like aliens coming into your world, you know, like I don't know if you've ever been to Lafayette or not, or having the impressions of it, but, you know, these kids are coming in from a completely different world-

Brando: And you're from New York, you're kind of used to the big city and, you know, people come to backstab you, but no, they're innocent people from the Midwest and welcomes to the jungle and, you know, you probably were a little bit more well prepared for that lifestyle, no?

RG: Yeah, I think though those guys, like Axl and Izzy really had definitely a sense of style and knew what they wanted, came out here and fit right in, man, because they just... I think, maybe coming from a place like that it was more of like, "Wow, this is the land of opportunity," so if you're gonna be a rock star this was a place to be, you know, kind of thing. Whereas from New York, you know, that exists [?]. But not that I didn't appreciate it, I mean, because the scene was awesome, like, better than New York's scene, you know, at the time, I guess. New York had a great music scene but, you know, for the time, in the time period and what was going on at that time stuff this was it.

JM: Sure, but back then was it the kind of thing that you were aware of, like, "These guys are new to this town, they're from this Midwestern country, little city, and they're coming into our big-time Los Angeles world."? Where you aware that they're coming from such a different place? Was it-

RG: Yeah, you know, what's funny is that one of my other really good friends that I played in a band with for years, my friend Jason, he was from a little town in Wisconsin, like Appleton, Wisconsin, but he knew everything that was going on here in LA, like on the Sunset Strip. I mean, they would get the magazines and see what bands are playing on... they knew more of what was going on here than we practically did. It's kind of funny, yeah, because the scene was so hot that it was like it was just well known and if you were interested in that sort of thing they just knew a lot about it, what was happening here and stuff. So don't be surprised, like, just because it's a little small town like Lafayette, Indiana, or something like that, it's not like that they don't know what's going on. Which is hence is why they came here in the first place. You know, and they had the style and, you know, the drive and all that. And boom, look what happened.

RC: In LA we're just so used to everybody coming from everywhere anyway.

RB: Exactly.

RC: It's just a draw of talent, you know.

Brando: That's true. I mean, everyone goes there to LA to-

JM: -be a star.

Brando: To be a star but everyone also just goes to Florida to retire, so just because there's an influx of people from other areas doesn't mean there's gonna be a scene.

RC: We get a bunch of hot chicks [?]

Brando: Do you remember at all those those first gigs before LA Guns happened when you first started playing with Axl when you were filling in with Hollywood Rose? Do you remember any of those first shows?

RG: Oh yeah, absolutely. And they were-

Brando: -you can tell us about them, of course.

RG: I just remembered the fire, like the energy of that band. I just remember coming offstage going, "Wow, that was...." you know, people were digging it, man. And there were like, you know, little mosh pits forming, you know, like yeah, like, mini mosh pits, I was like, "Whoa!" You could just tell something was buzzing here, something's going on, you know.

Brando: Were you then - and Raz can, you know, of course help us out with the timeline - when LA Guns was transitioning to or morphing into whatever you want to phrase it, into Guns N' Roses, where were you? Where were you as far as creatively, songwriting wise? Like how did that transition come about with your involvement in it because we would hear crazy... Raz told us so - I want to hear you as far as the transition from LA Guns to the beginning of Guns N' Roses.

RG: Yeah, so, you know, I think for me - and I think I can speak for Tracii also a little bit, I mean, being the fact that he and I both left the band, obviously - but I think at that point in time - and I think Raz, too, I think he can relate to this, too - it's just that, you know, we had brought LA Guns up to such a point and really gained a, you know, notoriety on the Strip and we were headlining shows and things like that, and we had really built this thing up to this point with that name and that logo, thanks to Raz, you know, putting the money in and doing all the promoting and the phone calls and this and that, and booking shows, and what-have-you. It just got to a certain point and to have that change, like, just overnight was, you know, and this idea came about, with the Guns N' Roses thing, okay, Hollywood Rose, LA Guns, that was cool and everything but, you know, LA Guns is no more, really, you know what I mean? It's like, boom, that's going to go away and we're going to call it this now. So what happens to all that work that you did, you know, to build that name? You know what I'm saying? And then there's other egos coming in and personalities coming into play now and different, you know.... So, you know, it's a big change, it was a big change.

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2018.03.08 - Appetite For Distortion - Interview with Rob Gardner Empty Re: 2018.03.08 - Appetite For Distortion - Interview with Rob Gardner

Post by Soulmonster Mon Jan 08, 2024 3:47 am

Brando: Were you initially not comfortable with it since LA Guns was something and you were-

RG: Yeah, at first I think I was, I was a little kind of hesitant. I was like, "Uhm, this is a cool idea, but..." At the same time it was an awesome band. I mean, I remember, you know, doing the shows and like, "Wow!", so it was the same kind of feeling of, like, when you finish the show you're like, "Wow, there is something here," you know what I mean? But there's a lot of other stuff that was, you know, coming into play as well, you know, at the same time as far as the, I guess, the image and the, you know, the mystery surrounding the band and this or that. The things that we're going on and stuff were, you know, changing and stuff but yeah.

RC: You know what's funny, Rob, like all these years later, I never knew you had any trepidation about when it first began. To me, LA Guns was already over after Mike was out of the band. Like that was [?], you know so.

RB: Yeah, that's true. I mean-

RC: -it was like logical that a new band started but I never realized... I didn't see how you all mashed together in your head because you probably just figured, like, "Okay, either Mike or Axl is going to come back and we're gonna play the next show and now it's gonna be LA Guns."

RG: Yeah, I think I just had that whole faith, you know, if you will, like inside you, that, "LA Guns, man, this is it," you know, and you realize things are starting to take off, you know, with that whole LA Guns aura, you know, going on. And then to change it, you know, change the name, it was almost like starting at the bottom again, it's weird. I mean, yes and no. I mean, and if you know the people, you know, what they're capable of, you know, everyone, you know-

RC: Yeah, yeah.

Brando: But it's a branding thing and that's a lot of what we spoke about with Raz and of course other episodes with Guns N' Roses keeping the name during lineup changes, LA Guns keeping the name during lineup changes, it's the branding of it and, you know, Raz spending his own money working his ass off to build up that name and things changing. It is very cool that you didn't know that after all these years there was some trepidation. But that totally makes sense though, it's not like you knew Guns N' Roses would be anything and I mean LA Guns still become, you know, something anyway. That's still fascinating. Another-

RG: Here's a question for Raz actually, was it actually so what... Me and Tracii leaving, one of us left first or was it kind of at the same time? I know it was only within a matter of like a week or something like that, wasn't it?

RC: Yeah, I think like Tracii, okay, I say Tracii got fired but he says different but whatever. So then like a couple days later, like, they said, "Hey," they just assumed you were gonna still be in the band or whatever, you know, and then I think you thought you were out, you and Tracii was gone, I was like there was a miscommunication, so like two days later you're like, "Wait, we're done, man."

RG: Yeah...

Brando: Wait, so you like quit by accident or they just assumed because Tracii was gone? You were a package deal with him and you were already gone, also?  

RG: I thought, yeah, like me and Tracii we're pretty much, you know-

RC: They were a team, yeah, yeah.

RG: Yeah, we were a team so I think whether I left first or whether he left first and then I followed him or he followed me or whatever... but then we never worked again after that, so that was kind of the weird thing. Like we just kind of threw all that shit up in the air and said, "Fuck," you know. You know, I went on to do something else and he went on to do, you know, to just put LA Guns back together. Yeah, at that point I think we were both just kind of frustrated with, you know, the situation and each other or whatever and just never just worked again together after that.

Brando: Peppering in a lot of the questions that we got for you. This is also coming from, from Derek, "Do you remember that first official Guns N' Roses gig under that name? When the name officially changed from LA Guns?"

RG: Are you asking me or Raz?

Brando: Oh Rob, I'm asking you Rob, you're the drummer, you're the star of the show.

RG: Oh yeah, yeah, of course.

Brando: Well, can you regale, tell us that tale? Can you take us through... do you have any... what are your memories? Do you have any, you know, pictures from that day, you know, again, any souvenirs? Take us through the first Guns N' Roses show, you know, you're the first drummer. I don't know you... I don't know what it's like being there you, you do.

RG: Yeah, I mean, you know, to me when you're in the band rolling in that whole scene, it's just - like I said before, I mean, the energy, you know, the reaction of the audience, was awesome. And, you know, there's definitely something going on, you know. You could feel it, you could feel the buzz going on, you know. So yeah, it was exciting, definitely.

JM: I have a similar question from [?], he wants to know-

Brando: -from in Germany.

JM: From Germany. He wants to know your favorite moments from the GN'R gigs between March and April '85. I guess it's more specific or just being more specific about the last answer I guess, I don't know.

RG: You know....sure, I mean, the show is a show, really, right? You just go through your set as a player in the band, you know, you're just kind of going through your set,  you have your little setlist in front of you or whatever and you just kind of just go through it. You know, it was a long time ago and and to remember like every song in detail, let's say okay... So many gigs, you know, hundreds so, you know, to actually, you know, to remember one particular show, yeah, I mean-

RC: Robbie? Robbie, do you remember what you had for lunch back then?


Brando: It doesn't have to be that show, it could have been like one show-

RG: - I think it was All American Burger right there across from the street.

RC: Ah, yeah.


Brando: That's funny. [?]

RG: Sunset Grill.

Brando: Well, it could have been a show where something crazy happened. Of course, crazy is a loose term, you know. I mean, of course whatever you would be comfortable sharing or whatever you remember-

RG: - you know, I do remember that Axl wearing the G-string with the chaps.

JM: Always looks so uncomfortable.

RG: I mean, it wasn't really exciting for me but I remember my sister was there, my older sister was there, so funny.

Brando: You had the worst view!

RG: Yeah, I remember that.

Brando: You had the worst view because he's obviously... ass is to the drums the entire time.

RG: I think my cymbals were in the way.


JM: Was that his idea? Did he come up with that on his own and when did that start happening?

RC: Okay, so, I got this one.

RB: Yeah, I was gonna say, "Raz, take it away."

RC: We were at his place called The Pleasure Chest and he was looking for some chaps or whatever and he [?] "actually should wear a G-string with this," and me and Chris kinda egged him on, I thought he was joking and then, you know, he picked out a couple of G-strings, some chaps. And yes it was like, "Man, he actually came out on stage with that stuff." And I remember Marc Canter, didn't want... there's a set of pictures that he took from that LA Guns show.

JM: Yeah.

RC: Marc Canter. And he gave us... there was only like one picture of Axl's ass but he just couldn't like...

JM: -couldn't do it.

RC: Can you imagine if Canter would had got like 20 of them shots, man?


RG: Yeah, the Pleasure Chest was kind of a frequented place back then.

RC: It's still there!


Brando: That's too funny.

JM: In terms of the material you guys played as Guns N' Roses, besides the songs that were carried on into the Appetite album and beyond, were you guys just playing Hollywood Rose songs and LA Guns songs or anything else or is that obvious?

RG: There's a couple of cover songs and, yeah, some Hollywood Rose stuff and some LA Guns stuff and then and then some original stuff as well, that newer stuff, you know, like Think About You and stuff that was just coming out, yeah.

Brando: Were you there for the songwriting process? The things that did eventually make it on to Appetite?

RG: Yeah, so as far as the writing process, you know, I never really contributed anything lyrically - I've never been a poet of any type or any kind of lyricist - but as far as arranging goes, I go, "Hey," you know, "how about that," "let's try this," or, "let's build it this way," or, "do it this way," so the arrangement process - yeah, I had taken a part in. As far as the actual writing, you know, I fumbled around with guitar but, you know, not enough to really, you know, "Hey, let's try this," you know, "that B chord," or, "a D chord," or anything like that. But the arrangement process - yes.

Brando: Well, I'm curios about the EP, if you can remember-

RG: I remember writing Think About You, I remember that. I clearly remember that at Willie studio, I remember, like, working on that, "Okay, now we're gonna do this," and, you know, I just remember that particular song. And yeah-

Brando: Any of the new songs, again that would be Appetite, that you felt was different or, you know, yeah, I can't think of a better word than 'different' right now, than what you were previously working on with Tracii in LA Guns? Like, "Hey, this is...." Again these songs are just a different quality than-

RG: -yes.

Brando: Oh, so you did feel that, okay.

RG: I did feel that La Guns had a different vibe, more of like a heavy metal vibe, definitely.

RC: Yeah. [?] on metal.

RG: And then it started transitioning into, you know, what it became. And, yeah, definitely noticeable difference.

JM: Was that because of the different styles of the lead guitarist?

RG: Yeah, I think that had a definite effect on it. But it was just the songwriting in general, too, was just different. Izzy had, you know, a big influence on the songwriting and the vibe and the style and obviously Axl and, you know.

RC: But you know what, your style of drumming too was more metal, you had double bass and Tracii was more of a metal guy, too, you know, so.

RG: Yes.

RC: Steven had even that double bass for like the first two months or whatever when he joined but then, you know, it just went begin went to a single kick after that and that changed the sound like night to day.

RG: Yeah, for sure, because double bass was more affiliated with like heavy metal type, [humming double bass], you know, it's like more driving.

RC: [humming another drum pattern] I love that shit, dude.


RG: Raz, I always think about you with that kind of style of music is, like, when we were living in your apartment over there on Highland, it would be like 7:00 in the morning, everyone's like passed out, like hungover, sleeping, snoring and Raz gets up and just blasts the frigging stereo up. [?]


RG: -wake everyone up.

Brando: That's the way to do it. What did you blast? Cuz I know that segues into another question from [?] StrangerInThisTown, did you blast Welcome To The Jungle? If not-

RC: Welcome To The Jungle didn't exist yet.

Brando: I know, that was my weird segue into the first time you heard that song, but what did you blast?

RC: I thought I was the only one who liked Metallica back then [?] too bad these guys are-

Brando: You blasted Metallica?


RG: You were blasting Accept.

JM: Nice.

RC: Yeah, yeah. [?] And Manowar.

Brando: Manowar, that's an alarm clock, jeez.

RG: It was hilarious.

JM: Guys, I'm curious about the the EP, the Collector's Edition Number One. Was that recorded in in early '85 - that was that was obviously before GN'R... what's that?

RC: '84.

JM: Okay, and, you know, I mean, I love the songs on them, my favorite song is Don't Love Me and I love how it starts out with your drums, Rob. Mike said there was something particular about the drums you got to use, did you use your own drums or something in the studio that you got to use? There was like some other artist's drum or something or... I don't know...

RG: No, they were my drums. They were these big concert style toms, meaning they have just one head instead of two, and so their concert style. And they were just loud and just like canons. The guy who recorded that - who was that, Chuck? Chuck Rosa?

RC: Yep.

RG: And I remember he called that whole EP, called that my demo tape, it's like, "This is Robbie's demo tape," [laughs] because the drums were freaking huge.

JM: They are.

RG: Just like cannons, man, that was great. So yeah, that was fun. And I've got another quick funny story about that - Raz, I think you'll appreciate that - so I did some work for this one guy and he was like a producer guy, he actually... there was a band called Pablo Cruz back in the 70s, I don't know if you guys remember, I don't know if you Raz remember that or not? Pablo Cruz, they had a couple of hit songs. Anyway, the keyboard-

RC: Yeah..

RG: Yeah, the singer and keyboard player bought the studio that we recorded, it was Westlake Studios out in Westlake Village, and he bought that studio, man, it was so funny, so years and years later, obviously, you know, 20 years later, 30 years later, whatever, I go and I'm working in the studio I'm like, "Wait a minute, I've been here before," [laughs] and sure enough I'm like, "Holy shit, man! I recorded the EP here, the LA Guns EP here," it is hilarious. So funny. And I told him, he started to crack up, he couldn't believe it.

Brando: That's crazy.

RG: Funny story.

RC: That's funny, man, we started out over there at Hitman Studio, like a little hole in the wall. Chuck Rosa bought[?] us, basically for the same price, he got a spec deal[?]. we went to this million dollar studio out in Westlake Village, you know, and you're moving like - what was it? [?] a pieces drums out of the way to [?] your drums up and-

RG: Right, right.

RC: It's like, "Man-"

JM: -I wish that-

RC: Go ahead.

JM: Isn't that where Axl recorded Heartbreak Hotel?

RC: No, that was up on Mohawn[?] near Valley Circle, that was the second place we went to. I got it in my book, I can't remember the name of the place now.

RG: Yeah, it was off of... It was called Preferred Sound.

RC: There you go, yeah, yeah.

Brando: Alright.

RC: And it was off of... it was my Mulholland and like between Topanga and something like that.

RC: Yeah, Valley Circle Drive.

Brando: I always get excited when Topanga's name is mentioned, I have never been there, I just know it from Boy Meets World, I get excited and I make it awkward speaking of... I guess, awkward isn't [?] We got a lot of questions for you, Rob. People were afraid to ask about, like, why you Guns N' Roses and they said, "Is there a way to ask him that," you know, "How does he feel about-"

RG: I'm gonna cry. [laughs]


Brando: Yeah.

JM: Hey, this is the Oprah Show-

RG: Don't be scared, man, ask all questions.

Brando: We've developed - and I can tell by your sense of humor now so I feel comfortable in this moment - but just to know [?] the fans had, like, "Do you think you can ask this?" you know. So the fans have respect before for you, anyway.

JM: I think it's because... I personally don't know where you went on afterwards, I don't know-

Brando: -And I want to know that and I guess a lot of people are asking, I get it, and we spoke about it in Raz' little, you know, he knows my story a little bit and yes, I'm geeking out about Guns N' Roses, we talk about serious stuff, Raz and I talked about depression, what it's like to be handicapped, and how there revolves around Guns N' Roses, so people were, you know, asking, "Hey, can you ask Rob Gardner, does he have any regrets", you know, "how does he feel?" And, you know, yes, these are natural questions but there are people who may not want to talk about it so I just wanted to know and just let, you know, the fans are respectful of your feelings even though they wanted to know these questions either way-

RG: Definitely a valid question and it's the most common question that I get.

Brando: Sure. And unless I'm missing something-

RG: Anyone who knows that I played with those guys are like, "Wow, man! Are you bummed? Did you regret it?" I always get that question. My thing is that I always, you know... you got to keep just a positive outlook on it and the fact that, "Hey, man," you know, "that was part of my life, part of my history," you know, "just as a musician," or whatever and that,  "Hey, yeah, I got to play with them and and I was part of it and the whole scene like that," and so, you know, in that aspect, yeah, I don't regret it. I think that over the years and hearing, you know, the stories of what went on with that band once they got really big and all that, and what happened to some of the people, there's no regrets there, either, you know-

RC: Hey, how much-

RG: -I'm glad I didn't become[?] a drug addict or anything like.

RC: Hey Robbie, if you would have stayed in the band, how much coke do you think you would have been able to do?


RG: That's what I was saying, I'm glad I didn't become a heroin addict, I'm still alive. I'm here to talk to you guys and tell you this story.

Brando: Does that lend itself to why you left?

RG: Yeah. It does actually. I think in part. Because there obviously were a lot of drugs and a lot of stuff going around at that time and I think I kind of explained earlier, I think, you know, when we were talking about when Tracii and I had left the band and for those reasons I think that was part of it, was the different personalities that started coming into play, you know, from, you know, the transition from LA Guns to Guns N' Roses, I think that was part of it. And, you know, there's a lot of heavy stuff, you know, some people have more the skin for it, some do and some don't, you know, and I think... There is just a number of factors, you know, but that led up to it. Some of the stuff I'd rather not talk about, you know-

RC: Hehehe.

Brando: Whatever you're comfortable with. That's what I tell every person.

RG: I'm just giving you the outline of really... you know just the general feeling I had at that time and like that and, like I said, it's just a bunch of stuff going on that I wasn't, you know, agreeing with, I guess you could say or whatever. But no, there's no hard feelings or anything like that. I don't really have any, you know... If I see those guys around, I see Slash, "Hey, what's up? How you doing?" you know. I've been [?] shows, backstage, just like that, hanging out, stuff like that - it's all good, you know. I don't have any... I haven't seen... Duff, I've seen around here and there, you know, and that's all cool. I haven't seen Axl, I think.... I bumped into him at the Rainbow or something like that here and there after they started taking off but other than that I haven't really seen or talked to him very much. But anyway, no, like I said, no hard feelings or anything like that and I don't know if they have any about me or whatever, I wouldn't hope not. I mean, you know-

Brandi: I don't see why.

RG: -what they are and, you know, time goes on and, you know, obviously.

JM: Yeah and I mean, you weren't fired, you know, you left on your own accord.

RG: Yeah, yeah.

Brando: What was that conversation? Who did you speak to about t that final decision? Was it Axl? Was it the manager at the time? Who did you say, "No, this isn't for me anymore"?

RG: I think I just generally let everyone know at rehearsal, you know, one night and it's like, "You know what, I'm not doing this anymore," kind of thing. I came to grab my drums or whatever and, yeah, yeah...

JM: Your drums, where were they? At the Gardener studio?

RG: No, I think we were out in the Valley at that point, we were at... What was it called? Wilpower Studios, Raz?

RC: Yeah, Wilpower Studios.

RG: Yeah, Willie, our friend Willie, ran the place.

Brando: Okay.

RC: Willie Basse.

RG: Black Sheep.

RC: Yep.

JM: Willie's not doing too well these days.

RG: No, I was just gonna add, I was gonna mention that, you know, he's got melanoma pretty bad, he's struggling really bad right now.

RC: But he's hanging in there, man.

JM: He really does. That guy's-

RG: Prayers for Willie, there.

JM: Extremely positive nature.

RG: Yes.

Brando: Well, I want to know... well, we obviously know what GN'R has gone on to be and become, but we, at least I don't know what you've been up to since, and obviously you're alive, you've been doing things because you've been alive every day since.

RG: Yes [laughs].

Brando: So after that decision, you know, leaving, where were you? Like, where did you, you know, did you join another band? Did you move back to Huntington? You know... so you joined another band? Okay.

RG: I wasn't moving back to New York for an effing.

Brando: No, I was just using that as a flippin example, but like what was the plan after Guns N' Roses?

RG: Yeah, so I just went on to do other projects, you know, other band projects and did fairly well, actually. You know,  headlining, you know, Strip shows and this and that and the other, and got a spec deal with another band that was real like kind of like an Aerosmith, kind of Faces, Rolling Stones kind of vibe. So I went more back to my roots, more older style, got more of a GN'R kind of style, if you will. You know, blues-based rock, you know, like that. So it's cool. Yeah, I did a bunch of stuff and then, yeah, I just... I'm not really doing anything now, you know, I'm not doing a band thing right now, I haven't been for a long time. But I still play and I still jam and stuff like that, you know. It's not like I don't play, I've been doing some writing, I'm playing more guitar, some keyboards, and just writing stuff like that.

RC: Hey Robbie you still got that same kit? That Atomic[?] kit that you played on the LA Guns record?

RG: No, I don't have that anymore.

RC: Ah, man, I thought you still, that sucks.

RG: No.

RC: What happened? You got tired of it after 30 years, you just said, "Forget it"?

RG: You know, I ended up selling it and I got...

RC: What did you get?

RG: I got another one, I got another Tama after that one. It was white, it was all white, and I had that for some years.

RC: Birch?

RG: Right. Now I'm getting.. I'm playing a Gretch. A Gretch set.

RC: Oh, that's cool. Awesome, I love Gretch.

RG: Yeah, Gretsch are good drums. [?]

Brando: I love hearing you guys reminisce and catch up, I really do, it's a nice time capsule.

RG: Yeah, I was out in Vegas not too long ago, [?] Raz-

RG: [?]

Brando: We won't ask about Vegas because well we know the rest of that statement.

RG: [laughs] Exactly.

Brando: Did you follow, you know, whether it was just when Appetite came out, or, you know, the Chinese Democracy era or now, I mean, do you keep up with the band at all? I mean, yes, I mean, sometimes just you go into Facebook or Twitter things are in your face, you're aware of it, but did you find yourself maybe purposely going out of your way to keep tabs? I mean, just to see, you know, "Hey, these were my friends, let me see what they're up to," kind of thing. Did you go to any Guns N' Roses shows after you were officially out as well?

RG: Yeah, I went to some. Much more early on, though, like, you know, I remember they did the Street Scene, downtown LA, and that's no longer, but they used to close off a section of downtown LA and it's usually on like a Sunday or whatever, or the whole weekend thing, Saturday and Sunday or whatever, but yeah, they blocked off this whole area, it's called the Street Scene, and all these bands were playing there at all these different stages. And Chili Peppers played, I mean GN'R played, and lots of cool bands would play as and you can get beer, they had like beer tents and it's pretty wild, man actually.

JM: Raz, didn't you have like a life-threatening circumstance there and like a riot or something?

RG: Yes [laughs]

RC: Yeah, it wasn't that [?], I got trampled but just a little bit, though.

RG: So you were probably at that same show?

RC: Yeah, yeah. The Street Scene was fun, yeah, I love that thing.

JM: Sounds like fun.

Brando: It does.


JC: A little riot-y there near the end.

Brando: So you went to shows, I guess, initially after, I guess, what about recent years? Because one thing that did stick out to me, especially when we were trying to figure out who was gonna be in the Not In This Lifetime tour and who made guests, and of course the conversation when - and this was before I even had the podcast - when GN'R was inducted into the Hall of Fame, who would be there. I liked what Pearl Jam did, they had every drummer ever. Like, they put out that.... you know, Eddie Vedder said, "You're all a part of our history."

RC: Every drummer in the world? How did they get them all up there?


Brando: Raz! You know, we're both handicapped, I could fight you-

JM: -long show.


RC: I'm not very handy and I seldom wear a cap.

Brando: Shit, this fucking guy [laughs]. I love it.

JM: But I think that idea... I don't know what Axl's intentions were, right, I feel like he wanted to include especially the guys in the current lineup at the time of the Hall of Fame and I assume you would want everybody included and instead they wanted to focus just on specific-

Brando: Yeah, I mean, at that point it was really diversified between Axl and Slash and really, you know, everyone's kinda like an afterthought, really, but I'm now, you know, Adler showed up, who knows if Izzy's ever gonna show up at a soundcheck again. But you can get creative, I mean, there's still pockets of GNR fans, I mean, I would love to see Buckethead come on there but if you came on to play, you know, a song that you collaborated on, you know, I just think that would be-

JM: That would be killer.

Brando: -a really cool moment for GN'R fans. Like, do you think about that at all? Or, again, "I really appreciate the history that I was a part of this band. I don't need to be a part of it going forward," but now it just seems like this band has.... there's a lot of new life in it and history and it's going forward and... I don't know, it's going forward and we want to go back a little bit in the history.

RG: That band really has gone through a lot of changes obviously over the years, you know, starting from when, you know, when I was doing it. And then, if you look from back then to now, if you had a history of all the members that have been in a Guns N' Roses lineup, I mean, yeah, it's quite, it's long.

Brando: [?] Axl's really-

RG: People are like, "Do you think they're gonna add you?" Fuck no, they're not gonna ask me, you know what I mean?  But if they did, if they gave me a phone call and they said, "Yeah, do you want to do it?" I'd say, "Of course."

Brando: Okay.

RG: But, you know, I'd be stupid not to, but, for sure. But no, I think they were really sticking to, as far as the original band, I mean, they definitely had Steven come up...or [laughs]

Brando: Right.

RG: You know what I'm saying?


JM: "Even the original drummer says 'the original lineup'!"


RG: I meant the band from Appetite. But yes, Steven coming up there and doing that, I mean, it's definitely exciting for him and got to play in front of a huge crowd and-

RC: I got a question for you, Rob.

RG: -a lot of people. I think it was cool for a lot of fans to see Steven do that, I, you know, like what you're saying, you know, it's cool for really, you know, longtime fans to see Steven play, like that was really what they wanted, they wanted to see the original lineup, like the rea...l or the Appetite line-

JM: The classic one.

Brando: Raz had a question.

RC: Robbie, yeah, I got a question for you. So you and Steven you guys went to high school together, you guys never like jammed together, like just drummers dicking around?

RG: Mmm... Not really, no, I don't remember that really.

JM: But you guys are friendly?

RG: Oh yeah

RC: Everybody likes Steven.

RG: Yeah, he's a great guy. He's definitely cool. I met his his wife - was it Caroline? I think...

Brando: I don't know. I'm not that creepy to know the name of his wife. Only John Miller's like that-

JM: I don't know.

Brando: You're rattling on, like, where people were born and shit, I don't know that.

RG: Yeah, so anyway, we met a couple of times. But anyway we did... Marc Canter had the book signing at Guitar Center out in Northridge, I remember that, so Slash was there and Steven and... God everyone was there, Steve Darrow I think was there, Chris Weber, like all these people were there, it was cool.

Brando: Ron Schneider?

JM: Yeah, I think Steve Darrow's gonna be-

RG: -Ron Schneider was there, you know.

RC: That's another guy everybody loves, man, was Ronnie.

RG: Vicky Hamilton, all those people were there. Yes, it was cool.

Brando: Who do you still keep in touch with nowadays? As far as anyone, obviously Raz, you guys are BFFs forever, but as far as your current life and be able to connect to your past life, who do you still talk to? Or do you still run... or are you just randomly running into people like you mentioned before occasionally seeing Slash, you know, out and about?

RG: Yeah, Slash, yes, definitely just not like we talk on the phone or anything like that-

Brando: I'm not asking who you snap chat, I'm just saying-

RG: Yeah, yeah, yeah.

Brando: -if you ran into each other because, you know, I'm thinking, yes, it would be thinking outside the box if Axl said, you know, "The drummer before Steven, the original original," whatever way he wants to phrase it, "let me call you," unless you guys reconnected through a third party, I guess. But if you're still friendly with Steven, he's going on tour with Adler's Appetite, of course you're both drummers so I don't know if a dual drum thing is weird, but, you know, but Slash, you know, we learned from Todd Kerns that at some point they do want to do stuff with Myles Kennedy again and if you guys are still friendly, I mean, there are... Fans seem to appreciate that when it's an original singer or drummer or guitarist or just a guest appearance from somebody, I guess, would be a really cool moment. "Hey, here's the guy who initially arranged this song that you've been loving." So that's the behind the question, who just maybe connected with that perhaps in the future we may hear you perform with or see you perform with, if that's even a possibility.

RG: Yeah, I don't know. I mean, if I get asked then absolutely. But, like I said, man, Slash never... I don't think we ever even played together, I don't think ever even once. You know, we were just more of acquaintances and in different bands.

JM: That's interesting because he talks about it like you two played together, you rehearsed together - in his book.

RG: Oh?

JM: Maybe he just doesn't remember, yeah.

RG: I gotta read that. [laughs] Cuz I'd like to know. We did-

JM: I mean, because you told me that you didn't so I'm taking your word over...

RC: You know, I have inside info on this, I think Slash, like, sourced his book from Wikipedia.


Brando: Hey, our friend Anthony-

RC: I'm just kidding.

Brando: I know. Our friend Anthony Bozza wrote that and I trust him.

RC: Hey, there you go.

JM: I want to talk quickly about the whole term 'original' because I don't know if you're aware of this, Rob, but in the GN'R fan community that's a real strong area of contention about who was "original" and who is not, and a lot of people - this is why I'm glad that we're talking today is because I want people to hear from you and know more about you, and learn about you, because it's almost like, to some fans, to say that Appetite wasn't the original, that lineup wasn't the original, it's almost a sacrilege, they feel like I'm violating some weird faith of theirs or something. And I try to say, you know, "Look, Slash and Steven and Duff were not even original members," you know, and I don't even know if you're aware that this kind of thing happens in conversation. I mean, I even got into it with Steven Adler's brother, just writing back and forth, he did not like that I would question that his brother wasn't the original.

Brando: Yeah, I guess you are aware of the passion online of the community, the Guns N' Roses community, cuz obviously very, very passionate.

RG: Yeah, yeah. I'm aware of it, definitely, maybe not as much as from what you guys are saying, but I'm aware of it. I get a lot of friend requests on my Facebook for just, you know... and they're all Guns N' Roses fans or LA Guns fans, you know. So yeah, I'm aware of it and sometimes I get these messages, you know, that come in on Messenger and they're like, "Hey," you know, "I know you're the original member and blah blah blah," you know, and they ask me questions and stuff like that, so yeah, I know it's out there, for sure.

Brando: Right on.

JM: But do you feel - I don't know - any defensive feelings when there are people out there that will fight for these alternative facts that Adler was the original drummer, you know, versus, you know, clearly were?

Brando: I can understand that. Like, if it was something was mine then yeah, I want to be given credit for it, you know, I mean-

RG: Well, yeah. I think I went kind of as far as on - Raz mentioned Wikipedia - when I looked at my Wikipedia I'm like, "Wait a minute, this is all wrong," and it was wrong because, you know, they're saying that... you know, there's just different facts that weren't facts, you know, they were wrong. So I went in and corrected it. It's been a while but I should look at it again, sometimes they change on you. But anyway-

RC: Yeah, it's off.

RG: Yeah, yeah, yeah. So, you know, you want to [?] the correct things and whatever. And then, like these pictures that Raz is putting up, there's proof in the pudding right there of the original band, you know what I mean?

RC: [?] old KPFK interview.

RG: That KPFK stuff, yeah, that kind of puts that whole notion to rest. I think by you releasing that thing and, you know, putting those facts out there, more people will learn and know, you know. I think any [?]

RC: The Days of Guns N' Raz's, you know.

RG: Yeah, yeah. Anyone who's that much of a fan is going to know these things anyway, I mean, it's out there. It's just, you know, I guess it depends on how big a fan you are and how much you want to know, you know what I mean? And then people hear things in passing and, "Oh well, this is the original band," and that's what they just run with. But, you know, if they want to really research it and find out the facts, they can.

Brando: Exactly.

JM: I mean, these are the same people that even say that the lineup to record Chinese Democracy, and the lineup up until the Not In This Lifetime tour was not the real Guns N' Roses, which is just insane because of course it is Guns N' Roses, the members change like they always have.

Brando: Well, that's just trying to figure out what the word "real" means, I guess.

JM: "Real" means "real", I mean, "Guns N' Roses" is "Guns N' Roses", I mean and you could have-

Brando: Yeah, I think we compared it to or at least I used the analogy of like sports, you know, at the Yankees it's always gonna be the Yankees but the personnel changes and you might be a fan-

RG: You kinda stepped over a line there a little but [laughs].

Brando: [?] Yankee, oh.

RG: No, no, no.


RG: About the Chinese Democracy and that whole thing, you know. No, Axl's like, obviously, the voice of Guns N' Roses and he owns the rights and what-have-you and then it's, you know, definitely, you know, [?] not the real Guns N' Roses because none of the other members were there except for him on that version of it, you know what I mean?

RC: Yeah, man, agreed.

Brando: And that kind of lends itself what LA Guns did, when there were two versions [?].

RC: Oh my god.


RC: I remember like a couple weeks after Steven joining the band he said something that applies to all this, he said, "Guns N' Roses isn't a band, it's a way of life."

Brando: Yes, sounds like Spicoli[?]. [laughs]

RC: Yes, exactly, dude.

Brando: I don't want to keep you too much longer, Rob and Raz, but this all, I guess, lends itself to what I asked before about if you would accept a call or joining onstage and now we got into talking to Tracii, do you still talk to Tracii Guns?Because he seems to be really excited about those pictures that Raz released, so that would be kind of cool if it rekindled something. And, you know, if you don't go on stage, you know, with with Guns N' Roses maybe you'll go on stage with LA Guns. That can be cool or no.

RG: It would be. I haven't talked to Tracii in a long time.

Brando: All right.

RG: Not that I don't want to, just haven't, you know, I guess, and I think maybe it was a little miscommunication here and there, stuff like that.

Brando: But that's what I'm here for, [?] the distortion of it, you know, [?].

RC: That would be cool to see you and Tracii jam again.

RG: I would love that, that would be cool because, man, that was just because-

RC: Rick Mars to play bass.

JM: Well, Rick Mars, we had a brief... Brandon had a brief communication with him.

Brando: If you guys want to pick up because I obviously get help - oh, I wouldn't say obviously get help - getting guests, I mean, there are guests that I get myself and there were ones like John brings to me, and Raz, you bring to me like today with Rob Gardner. So I was given a message, I won't say from who, but I was given Rick Richards his phone number and I called it and I spoke to him and he agreed to an interview and I haven't been able to get in touch with him since.

JM: The guy's a phantom.

Brando: And I don't want to be a psycho and call him a million times so if you guys have any connections to him please invite him for me because I spoke to him a couple times on the phone. And I don't know, that happens. Like I said, I haven't spoken with Sebastian Bach per se but I've spoken to his management who told me yes twice and nothing happened so things like that happen. But if you guys are in contact and you can grease that wheel that would be great, and if you wanted to come on, Rob, to co-host that episode or in a future episode, by all means, cuz just like with John first time he was on the show he was a guest, then he's been a co-host. Now Raz, I think this is the first time he's been a co-host. So officially you're both co-hosts and guests. So next time we have if you want to come back on, Robbie, you're you're always welcome to, you can you can be my Robin Quivers.

JM: We're all bad apples.

Brando: Yes, we're all bad apples. I don't have that soundbite, so... I'm too engrossed in the conversation to press the button.

RC: Do you play the Osmunds[?] when you do that?


Brando: That was your joke the first time. The bad apples reference, right? Because that's what you know-

RC: "One bad apple won't spoil a whole bunch [?]"

Brando: You almost ruined GN'R's Bad Apples song for me because you made the point that it's an Osmund[?] song. So for the first [?] next few times that listen to Bad Apples I would hear fucking Donny Osmond, so thank you, Raz.

RC: [?]

Brando: It's not a bad song, it's just not what I want to think of when I think of Bad Apples. So Robin - oh, I said "Robin", I wanted to say "Rob and"-

JM: I miss Robin Quivers today.

Brando: Rob, I know you have a public profile and it's funny because we did ask a question from the guy Johan from Germany who - bless his heart - he shared Rob Gardner's personal Facebook and like a Guns N' Roses group and I'm like, I'm sure your hearts in the right place but I don't know if Rob wants you to share that, it's not like a fan page-

JM: He admired your profile pictures very much.

Brando: Yeah, he's like... you're probably right, I'm really sorry, he's a young kid, he doesn't know - sorry Johan!

RG: I know who he is. I think [?]


RC: Robbie's pretty.


RG: Raz had a worse comment than Johan did, I think.

Brando: We expect that from Raz nowadays, we do expect it. But is there a place where fans could - maybe it is Facebook - can reach out to you ask questions or keep up? I know you're not playing the drums like that anymore but if there is another project, like, I want to know, like, what current projects you do have going on in the future that we can keep track of, anything-

RG: In that case I would just promote it on probably on Mypage and then maybe just, you know, put up a website or something like that and just promote it that way at that point.

Brando: Right on. So what is your page? Where can we find you?

RG: Just on Facebook.

Brando: Okay.

RG: Rob Gardner, Rob Gardner.

Brando: Okay. I just wanted to make sure because, you know, Facebook is Facebook. I don't know, it's weird, I was able to contact and, you know.... nothing's confirmed so what happens, but I contacted Ernie C from Body Count on Facebook and that worked. But there are some times I have to go through the publisher, you know, their management and that's the way. I guess I just want to be respectful to your privacy's Mr. Gardner [?], Rob, do you go by-

RC: Rob, when you're on Facebook, you're public.

Brando: Oh yeah, I guess so.

JM: Rob, do you go by Robert, Rob or Robbie?

RG: Most people call me Robbie but my Facebook is Rob Gardner because that was, I guess, what I was going by back then.

JM: That was when Axl introduces you during some jam after some song, he said, "And drums, Mr. Robert Gardner."

RG: I know, yeah, I know. [?]

JM: He's real proper.

RG: There's other Rob Gardeners out there on Facebook and I'm not the... I think there's like a Catholic or a Christian, he's like a Christian music songwriter so-

JM: That's not you.

Brando: The other guy.

RG: And he wears like a cowboy hat. [?]

JM: Any chance of going back to the afro look?



Brando: I think I said it before Raz came on, he's got a little Epstein in him, you know, a little Gabe Kaplan. I'm bald now so I'm just jealous anyway.

RG: I don't use a 'fro comb anymore. Back then I did. I mean, I was able to like literally use a 'fro comb and like just puff my hair out, you know, cuz that was the style back in the 80s, you just wanted to like it was like aqua helmet, you know, like hair spray and, you know, [?]

RC: Do you still walk around with that little black power afro pick and his hair sticking out in the back?


Brando: First Raz, you are of course always welcome back to co-host or, you know, when you update us more in New York or your projects, so thank you, but, you know, Rob, being the center of this episode - Robbie, since we're buddies now, I can't thank you enough for the time and getting to, you know, meet you and, you know, the same invitation to Raz with to you, if you're ever in New York, in your hometown, please I would love to have you in studio and then meet you and, you know, find out more about you, I'm sure you have more stories to tell and just, yeah.


JM: We skipped, one thing. Can we add this? I was told to ask about Del James' stories in New York.

Brando: Yeah, before I, you know, am I missing anything. Go ahead.

RG: Yeah, that's a funny story, that's one of the funny stories, yeah. I knew Del back in New York, in Mamaroneck, it's so funny, and a couple of other friends of mine Randy and Ed - Ed's passed away since - but we were real good friends over there. And that whole group of people - and they knew the Dillons as well, I was telling you I grew up with Matt Dillon, Kevin Dillon, all those guys, and we all knew each other, you know. So it was kind of funny, like, you know, that we knew each other way back then. And then then this whole thing happens, you know, Guns N' Roses. So not only Del was involved but Randy and Eddie were involved too because, you know, they had drove out here from New York and I heard they were here in town, you know, one of my New York friend said, "Yeah, they're out there in LA, Randy and Ed, they are over there," you know, like, "Really?" And then I find out sure enough, I find out and they're living with Wes Arkeen, you know, and they worked with them - it's just so funny, like, just that everyone kind of got interwoven, really strange, yeah.

JM: What are the chances? Or just the way it was.

RG: Yeah, because it was kind of a small town in New York. They're not, you know, far from the city, only like 45 minutes from the city something like that, but yeah, it's 3,000 miles away, you know, LA, and then all the same people coming into play again. That's funny, yeah.

Brando: "Destiny!"

RG: Couldn't get rid of 'em!


Brando: Awesome. Thank you for asking that John before we... because I know there's a lot of stuff and we can keep him here forever but since I like to keep this somewhat in realish time as we're recording on a Sunday, in a few hours I have to do Keith Sweats[?] show, so from going from Guns N' Roses original member to Keith Sweat - I could talk to you for hours, I know you gotta go, I gotta go-

RG: Tell Keith I said "Hi".


Brando: I'll do that, maybe that'll be your next collaboration, Keith Sweat and Rob Gardner. That'll be the RV[?] version of Appetite for Destruction. Maybe that'll happen. I'll work on that. But again, this was really cool and, you know, you have that Raz Cue sense of humor, you know, and then, well, I learned more of it cuz you're from New York but it's just easy to talk to you. I know there's a lot more that we can get, good stories, I want to know your philosophies, I want to get to talk more about your, just, thought process of things, but these are just deeper conversations for a possible another time. So thank you Rob and Raz. I don't know if you have any parting words? I know you always have something very important to say.

RC: Yes, fuck off!


JM: I knew that was coming.

Brando: You do not disappoint.

RC: You set yourself up for that one.

Brando: Oh no, I knew what I was doing. I knew you were gonna say something, I fucking love you, Raz, you are hilarious. So thank you, Raz Cue, thank you, Rob Gardner, thank you, John Miller.

JM: Hey, my pleasure. More thanks to them for being able to do it.

Brando: The 50th episode of our Appetite for Distortion.

JM: Proud to be here.

RC: Talk to you guys later.

JM: See you, Raz! Rob, thanks a lot, man.

Brando: Yeah, thank you. Enjoy your Sunday, nice meeting you.

RG: Hey, you too and thanks for having me, man.

JM: Absolutely, this is totally awesome.
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2018.03.08 - Appetite For Distortion - Interview with Rob Gardner Empty Re: 2018.03.08 - Appetite For Distortion - Interview with Rob Gardner

Post by Soulmonster Fri Jan 19, 2024 9:49 am

Finished with this. I liked Rob, he wasn't exactly good at telling stories or very elaborate, but he came across as a good guy.
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2018.03.08 - Appetite For Distortion - Interview with Rob Gardner Empty Re: 2018.03.08 - Appetite For Distortion - Interview with Rob Gardner

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