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2019.05.28 - Metro - Guns N’ Roses’ Duff McKagan on social media and rebelling against ‘the man’

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2019.05.28 - Metro - Guns N’ Roses’ Duff McKagan on social media and rebelling against ‘the man’ Empty 2019.05.28 - Metro - Guns N’ Roses’ Duff McKagan on social media and rebelling against ‘the man’

Post by Blackstar on Mon Jun 03, 2019 4:01 pm

Guns N’ Roses’ Duff McKagan on social media and rebelling against ‘the man’

Rishma Dosani

Duff McKagan is getting ready to release new album Tenderness, on 31 May.

And, despite the inspiration for the album coming from what he experienced while on the road with Guns N’ Roses, this is very different to anything we’ve heard the Don’t Look Behind You singer perform before.

But, in an exclusive chat with, the 55-year-old insisted he’s not worried about the reaction to his new sound.

‘I’m on a musical journey. And I have been since I was 11,’ he said. ‘I thought I’d be at this point when I was about 41, not 55. So I feel like I’m behind a little bit. And I hope to do things that are more challenging to me.

‘Because the only way you’re going to grow as an artist… It makes me a better player in Guns N’ Roses doing all of this stuff, it intermeshes and makes you a fuller player. Some fans will appreciate that, perhaps some will be like, “This isn’t loud enough!”

‘No record I’ve ever made, have I thought about, “we gotta write a hit song”. So this is another in that same train of thought. We didn’t write anything to be a hit record. I hope people will hear topics, so that’s why I kind of purposely made it a very quiet record. Like a good lecture… It’s like someone at a book signing, where they’re talking about the book, and you can’t really hear them, so everybody in the audience quietens down so you can hear what they’re saying. I hope this record has that same effect.’

Duff is set to kick off his Tenderness tour on 30 May, and has hinted at some surprised for the crowd.

He also vowed he has ‘nothing to be nervous about’ by getting back on the road without his Guns N’ Roses bandmates – after spending the last two years on stage with them.

‘I’m excited about it,’ he continued. ‘I mean, I’ve played every s***hole, every huge place and every place in between. All in the last 10 years. When I was with the Walking Papers and we played every s***hole, and played great gigs and played gigs somewhere nobody knew we were playing, so three people showed up.

‘It’s all about the show, and it doesn’t matter how you get there, how many people are there… Those three people that came to that show were f***ing stoked. And that’s all I’m really concerned about. You’re playing for those people. And I think this will do better than three people at the show, but I’m not nervous about that.

‘I’m not nervous about singing. I did that with Loaded for many years. I’ve got a really good band. And we’re going to figure out some cool cover songs to do. There might be Guns covers, and I’m thinking of a Clash cover I really want to do that fits in with the topic of this record.

Duff worked alongside Shooter Jennings on Tenderness, and through the album, the November Rain singer connected out with non-profit charities, to raise awareness for suicide prevention, homelessness and addiction issues.

His latest offering also includes a song touching on the #MeToo movement, and another on the Parkland shooting.

Discussing the meanings behind the album, he told us: ‘This record is not super political, these are social topics, it’s topical. But I think rock and roll always has been topical, and its nature is rebellion against the man, and this is kind of rebellion against the man a little bit.

‘I’m just highlighting topics and [trying to find] what we’re going to do together to help. So if we help each other one by one, we can maybe make a little bit of a difference, and a little bit of difference might start to cascade on top of itself.’

When asked if he believes it’s important to be vocal about things happening in politics or society, he continued: ‘I’ll think about it first… In America and in Britain, we are the ones who are supposed to be governing this thing, we’re supposed to be voting the people in and they’re supposed to be doing our f***ing bidding. That’s the way it’s set up.

‘So then you get… LeBron James will say something on social media that’s correct. And this guy is not only a good dude, he’s also like started schools and s*** with his money. It’s not some lame f***. And he will come out and say something in a political matter, social political. And he’ll get the “stay in your lane play basketball” [response]. Last I checked he’s got a voice, he’s got a right to say [his views].

‘Since when has what we do as a living defined our voice? I didn’t get that at all. That’s unAmerican to shout somebody down and saying, “You f***ing drive a truck. You don’t get a voice because you’re a truck driver. You play in a rock band, you don’t have a voice because you play in a rock band. You play basketball, so you don’t get a voice because you play basketball.” This could go all the way across the board.

‘I don’t know, this is social media, again, but if I get condemned for indeed saying something political, or social political. I don’t really care. What, I’m gonna lose some followers? I don’t really care.’

We should take a leaf out of Duff’s book.

Duff McKagan’s Tenderness is released on 31 May.

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