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16. JANUARY-JULY 1993: THE SKIN N' BONES TOUR; END OF AN ERA

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16. JANUARY-JULY 1993: THE SKIN N' BONES TOUR; END OF AN ERA Empty 16. JANUARY-JULY 1993: THE SKIN N' BONES TOUR; END OF AN ERA

Post by Soulmonster on Sat 20 Jun 2020 - 5:39

CHAPTER INDEX

- JANUARY-FEBRUARY, 1993: TOURING JAPAN AND OCEANIA
-1993-1994: SLASH AND DRUGS
- JANUARY 1993: THE MUSIC VIDEO FOR 'GARDEN OF EDEN' IS RELEASED
- DEALING WITH AXL DURING THE 'USE YOUR ILLUSION' TOURING
- FEBRUARY 1993: EMBARKING ON THE SKIN N' BONES TOUR
- FEBRUARY 23-25, 1993: AXL BLOWS OUT HIS VOICE
- MARCH-NOVEMBER 1993: AXL AND STEPHANIE BREAK UP
- MARCH 6-APRIL 1, 1993: THE SKIN N' BONES TOUR
- APRIL 3, 1993: AXL TAKES ON METALLICA
- APRIL 3, 1993: DUFF FACES A BOTTLE
- JANUARY 1993-SEPTEMBER 1994: AXL AND SLASH
- APRIL 4-13, 1993: THE SKIN N' BONES TOUR CONTINUES
- APRIL 15, 1993: EVADING ATLANTA; GOING TO ROANOKE
- APRIL 21-28, 1993: THE SKIN N' BONES TOUR - MEXICO
- APRIL 29, 1993: GILBY BREAKS AN ARM
- MAY 1993: IZZY IS ASKED TO STEP IN FOR GILBY
- MAY 15, 1993: THE DRUNK FUX IS REVIVED FOR A CHARITY GIG
- MAY 1993: ROBERT JOHN RELEASES 'GUNS N' ROSES THE PHOTOGRAPHIC HISTORY'
- MAY 1993: DUFF TRIES TO SOBER UP AGAIN
- MAY 22-30, 1993: THE SKIN N' BONES TOUR, THE IZZY SHOWS
- HOW THE IZZY SHOWS AFFECTED HIS RELATIONSHIP WITH THE BAND
- AXL BUYS A HOUSE IN MALIBU AND WANTS TO CROON WITH SINATRA
- JUNE, 1993: GILBY BECOMES A DAD
- JUNE 2-19, 1993: THE SKIN N' BONES TOUR, EUROPEAN LEG
- JUNE 22, 1993: THE MAKIN' OF THE F@*!ING VIDEOS
- JUNE 1993: DIZZY CALMS DOWN
- JUNE 22-JULY 13, 1993: THE SKIN N' BONES TOUR, LAST PART OF THE EUROPEAN LEG
- 1991-1994: THE PRESS III
- JULY 16-17, 1993: THE END OF TOURING, THE END OF AN ERA
- LOOKING BACK AT THE 'SKIN N' BONES' TOUR
- LOOKING BACK AT THE TOURING 1991-1993
- THE FINANCIALS OF THE 'USE YOUR ILLUSION' TOURING


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Post by Soulmonster on Sat 20 Jun 2020 - 5:41

JANUARY-FEBRUARY 1993
TOURING JAPAN AND OCEANIA


The tour kept on rolling.

Well, we have to finish touring [before recording more music], because we’re doing South America and then we’re going to, I think, Japan and Australia. And then we’re gonna do the States some more, yeah (chuckles).



JANUARY 12-15: SHOWS IN JAPAN


The next shows would be on January 12, 14 and 15 at the Tokyo Dome in Tokyo, Japan. At the last show in Japan the band was joined onstage by Ronnie Wood for 'Knockin' on Heaven's Door' [Guns N' Roses Use Your Illusions Tour Diary, unknown author and date].

You know how Ronnie Plays like yeah yeah whatever you know, and we played with him once before in Tokyo, he got up and played Knocking of Heavens Door or something with us I forget what song it was...

He played all the wrong chords.

There’s key changes in Paradise City you know and all kinds of different stuff and I’m like Ronnie Ronnie it goes to a “D” here, and he’s like… a.. a.. yeah.. yeah.. right.. Ok, you know.



JANUARY 30-FEBRUARY 6: SHOWS IN AUSTRALIA AND NEW ZELAND


The band then turned towards Australia. A description of the stage would be presented in Guns N' Roses Tour Special:

72 feet wide and 64 feet deep - and the set (designed by Phil Ealy and the band) is a monstrous 75 feet high. The stage weighs 50 tons and the total weight of equipment transported to each show is 150 tons, which includes the steel scaffolding and the band's equipment, which weighs 7 tons alone" and the "show uses an incredible 250,000 watts of power, with 900 lights on stage and three massive video walls - one either side of the stage and one at the back. There are 60 microphones in use during the show. It takes three tractor trailers to transport the speaker cabinets. And let's not forget the giant inflatable monsters that are operated by four men in 'Welcome to The Jungle'.


For the Australian shows Tattoo Rose would be the opener, and Peter Wells, the guitarist of Rose Tattoo, would look back at the shows in 2000:

We made a couple of bucks, and spared no expense. [Guns 'n' Roses] were very rich. They spilt more champagne than they drank, dropped more cocaine on the floor than you could imagine.


Wells would also talk about GN'R members coming at their shows when they toured in USA:

[…] they used to turn up at gigs when we toured America. I don't know where they're from - Axl's from Butt-Fuck, Idaho or someplace - but he used to come to gigs and the guitar player used to come to gigs.


The first show in Australia was at The Eastern Creek Raceway in Sydney on January 30. As the name implies, this was a racetrack and it was expected that 70,000 to 80,000 would attend the show [The Sydney Morning Herald, January 29 and 30, 1993] and according to GN'R tour publicist Wendy Leister, it would be the largest concert in Australia [Australian Channel 5, January 30, 1993].

We played Sydney a month or so ago. We played the biggest gig ever played in the Southern Hemisphere. We were told that before the gig and you can’t think. You've got to put that out of your head. That’s pretty major, you know? And here we are, just a couple of lunkheads.

Yeah, it was so big that gig, in fact it was in a specific 8 month period where I don't remember a lot, but I do remember that gig and just kind of how overwhelming it was to have that many people at the gig.
Triple M, January 2013


While in Australia, the band would go on a tour of the Great Barrier Reef [The Age, January 29, 1993] and before the first show Dizzy and Gilby would meet with five seriously ill children [The Sydney Morning Herald, February 8, 1993].

The next show took place in Calder Park Raceway, Melbourne on February 1, with possibly an even larger crowd [Australian TV; February 1, 1993]. Due to heavy rain and urine the gig area became a "smelly swamp" and because of the conditions the show would later be referred to as the "worst concert ever staged in Australia" [9 News, September 7, 2016], which would later lead to an official inquiry [The Age, February 4, 1993].

I remember just seeing a fucking sea of people. It was a big huge gig, Rose Tattoo was on it, and that was a band that really meant a lot. I’d discovered them when Guns first came together.
Faster Louder, September 2012

You know, I guess I missed all of [the problems during the gig caused by heat, lack of water and poor amenities]. I never really heard any of that stuff. I remember it being really hot and that there was a lot of people needing water. [...] I was having all these crazy dreams about tornadoes and stuff and then we had to take a chopper out there, a helicopter, and there were some stormy skies. When we landed I remember some of the crew telling us there had been tornadoes, which was kind of weird. If I’d known they even had tornadoes down there I probably wouldn’t have got on the helicopter.
Faster Louder, February 2013


After Melbourne the band continued to New Zealand for a February 6 show at Mount Smart Stadium in Auckland.

Apparently, the plane flew into bad weather on the way to New Zealand:

[Discussing the scariest moment in his time with Guns N' Roses]: Flying to Auckland, New Zealand on the M.G.M. and hitting the worst storm you ever saw. We all thought for sure we were gonna die. I remember Gilby’s wife Daniela crying. We really thought it was the end. La Bamba style!
Metal Sludge, December 17, 2002; THIS INTERVIEW IS POSSIBLY FAKE


The show in New Zealand was on Axl's birthday and the "crew arrived on stage with a cake and everyone in the audience sang to him" [Stuff, August 26, 2016]. Apparently, this show was not very good, with Steve Braunias from RAW writing:

More impressively, [Slash] does his best in front of 45,000 fans the following night to save Guns N’ Roses from absolute disaster. As he stalks the stage in leather, Slash is everything you want in a Rock god.

There’s a great melodic solo on ‘November Rain’, a quick burst of Hendrix' ‘Voodoo Chile’, the deadly opening bars of 'Bad Obsession’ and a surreal, cosmic duet with Gilby Clarke on ‘Wild Horses’.

Meanwhile, Axl jogs and sings lyrics that most of the crowd can’t hear, Drift looks sick as a dog, and Matt Sorum sends hundreds of fans home early with a drum solo as dull as a month of wet Sundays....


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Post by Soulmonster on Sat 20 Jun 2020 - 5:42

1992-1994
SLASH AND DRUGS


In February, 1993, as the band was touring Australia, Slash would talk about staying at different hotels than Skid Row to avoid partying too hard:

Sebastian [Bach] is one of my best friends, but once we pair up, all hell breaks loose. So it’s a strategic thing to keep us apart. But I can’t smoke pot like he does. I just space out too hard. I like to be totally in control. […] You can be stoned and enjoy what you're doing, but it’s not conducive to responsibilities, and you get to the point where you’re inconsiderate about the people you’re working with and you alienate yourself.


After the tour was over, Slash was still not doing heroin but he was only "clean for the most part":

This is really the first time we’ve been home, off the road, and clean for the most part. I haven’t been shooting up or anything, so I’m using my time differently. It’s not some AA thing; I don’t care to be in that scene anymore. But it’s cool to be writing, and I’m having a cool time with the guys in the band.


In March 1994, Slash would talk about drinking and mention that his wife, Renee, would occasionally complain about his drinking [Kerrang! March 12, 1994].

When asked if he still did drugs, he would answer:

Uh… (pause)… I stopped doing what I was doing before.



COPING WITH STRESS THROUGH INTOXICATION?


In 2002 Axl would suggest that one of the reasons Slash had been intoxicated at shows were to deal with the stress of large shows:

And then the other guys had to be on so many substances to really be able to deal with that crowd. I mean, to his credit, Slash could play great guitar on a lot of drugs. You know? But there was a reason he would be that whacked out to get on stage and there was a lot of stress to deal with.


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Post by Soulmonster on Sat 20 Jun 2020 - 5:42

JANUARY 1993
THE MUSIC VIDEO FOR 'GARDEN OF EDEN' IS RELEASED


In January 1993, the band would release a VHS video single for Garden of Eden directed by Andy Morahan, called Garden of Eden: Strictly Limited Edition. The tape would include Garden of Eden, Dead Horse and Yesterdays (live from Las Vegas, USA; January 25, 1992).


Garden of Eden: Strictly Limited Edition


Which was in that same airplane, so we just said, “Let’s do Garden of Eden,” and then Andy Morahan, who directed the last few videos, had this idea of just doing it with one camera and in one take. And so that’s basically it. So we just did it. We just shook our heads like madmen for about two minutes. It was a hell of a lot of fun. That was it. […] Yeah, [Morahan and GN'R] communicate well together,  I don’t think he wanted to be a so called video entrepreneur type, trying to make huge videos that sell a lot of records, and depended technically and stuff. It’s just really to get the expression of the band across, and so he relates to that, which is really important.

So we had done the video shoot for Yesterdays - the video - and we had all the gear, and the crew, and the cameras and everything there. And we said, “What the hell,” – it was about 6:00 in the morning – “let’s shoot another video shoot for Garden of Eden.” And they used a single camera, fisheye lens, and we did the video in, like, two takes.

Yeah, we did about two takes early, early morning. Usually videos take, like, 14-16 hours to make. This one took about half an hour.


The band had released a promotional single of Garden of Eden earlier.


Garden of Eden, promotional single


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Post by Soulmonster on Sat 20 Jun 2020 - 5:44

DEALING WITH AXL DURING THE 'USE YOUR ILLUSION' TOURING


It's been said that you can't consider yourself fully acquainted with Axl Rose until you have at least once wanted to tell him to fuck off. Those who know him well, though, rarely do. Because it's apparent to anyone who spends any time with him that for all of Rose's seething rage and vicious wordplays, for all the time he spends lashing out at the rest of the world, he usually isn't fighting anyone but himself.

I'd say every one out of four shows, something happened where [Axl] would walk off stage and leave the five of us out there to fend for ourselves.

__________________________________________

[…] the band has always been tense, because this isn’t, like, a day job where most bands in the business nowadays just go up and they play the same; they do the show in their sleep, you know. We go up there, every night is different and we care about every single show. If something happens during one particular show, yeah, it’s tense, because the way we treat it is, you go out there and do the best possible job you can, and we do it in a way that it’s not premeditated. We just go up and just go for it right then and there.


A lot of that tension came from Axl's unpredictable behavior which meant that his band mates never knew what was going to happen and whether a show would go smoothly or turn into a riot:

There were certain times when Axl would leave the stage, but he was going through a phase where he was just so lost and confused that he couldn't help it. I'm not him, but it seems to me that he's gotten past all that now. I'm not going to say Ax was a dick for doing that, but it scared the shit out of me. I mean, I didn't know if he was coming back. What if some kid got hurt as a result of what we did?

[...] Axl was two people. You were truly left wondering what the fuck was going to happen next. When he was in a good mood, he was the sweetest guy, and when he forgot to take his medicine or decided to go off, he was kind of a freak. He was the last person I’ve ever seen, though, besides maybe Bill Clinton, that when he walked into a room every single person was drawn to him. That’s a rare thing.
Rolling Stone, September 2, 2004


The one that struggled the most with Axl's behavior seemed to have been Axl himself. It was obvious he was uncomfortable with some aspects of the touring [also see previous chapter about Axl and stage anxiety]:

I pretty much could do without touring in a lot of ways. I'm not a big fan of it.


And that it affected those around him. When asked what he would like to be better at:

Making road life a little bit smoother, so that everyone around me doesn't get so pissed off, 'cause I freak on them.


One way for the band to deal with the messy situation was to downplay its severity, at least to the press. Like when Slash dismissed a question about why the band so frequently stopped shows [Countdown, May 1992].

For quite a while, the band's approach to Axl had been to leave him alone rather than confront him. As one band member, who probably asked to be anonymous, was quoted as saying to VOX journalist Nick Kent:

"Nowadays we just let Axl do pretty much what he feels, 'cos he'll only do it anyway" [VOX, October 1991].

Kent would also write that Axl had insisted on the 'Use Your Illusion' albums being so long, had insisted that Skid Row should open on their tour (despite band members despising them), calling for the resignation of Alan Niven, and what music would be played over the PA before the shows [VOX, October 1991]. Though it must be said that Kent was fed information from Izzy at a time when the relationship between Axl and Izzy was strained. For instance does the accusation that the band didn't like Skid Row implausible. Many articles would also imply that the label was afraid of Axl and his temper and behavior and would rather accommodate him than put the foot down. Simply put, "Axl runs the group" [VOX, October 1991]. For more information on how Axl came into a position where he could make decisions on his own, see previous chapters.


MATT, THE MEDIATOR


In July 1991, Matt, who was nicknamed "the Mediator" in the media [The Indianapolis Star, July 21, 1992], would praise Axl's stubborness:

Axl's so fuckin' great. Anything he does or says, it's just because that's the way he really is. He's beyond real, ya know. I've never seen anyone dare to talk shit to him, ever. I love that.


Yet, only a month or so later, Matt would be the one that attempted to confront Axl when he refused to return to stage at the Maimarkthalle in Mannheim in August:

Matt Sorum tried a novel approach when Axl left; maybe to a "new" guy it was the obvious thing to do. He went to find Axl and confront him. He was turned away by Axl's security detail.
Duff's autobiography, "It's So Easy", 2011, p. 194

So Matt went down to Axl's van to rally him, but as he got down there, he ran into Axl, who had emerged to head back to the stage. Matt was so fired up, though, that he got in Axl's face regardless, to the degree that it almost got physical.

"What the fuck are you doing?" Matt yelled. "Get back onstage!"

I ran up and got between them, because it wasn't a good situation. Axl can get completely psycho when he decides to fight and Matt weighs twice as much as I do - and he plays the drums - so it wasn't exactly a good place for me to be. Axl went back to his van, and it didn't look like he was coming out again.
Slash's autobiography, p 343-344


And in late August, as the band visited England for their August 31 show at Wembley, it was rumored that unless Axl "continued to be difficult to work with", Matt would quit the band [Music Life, November 17, 1991]. See previous chapter on this.

Matt would later look back at this period:

I had very difficult moments with Axl, but he's extremely intelligent, he's a very emotive guy who writes great songs. Sometimes, I have the feeling he's a genius. […] He had very difficult moments, when we toured in stadiums, sold millions of albums, when everybody wanted to tell us how great we were. Axl, as the leader of the band, had a lot of responsibilities. I told him many times: "Relax Axl, don't take things to heart like that". But he can't. You can feel those difficulties in his music. What he's doing is eating him, he's living it too intensively.
hard Rock, September 1996; translated from French


Matt would also claim the other band members pussied out when it came to talking to Axl:

I would be like, “Come on, you guys, I mean, we gotta deal with this. Let’s be a band.” And every time I’d go out to deal with Axl, I’d turn around and they’d all gone the other way. I’m like, “Dudes, you said you were backing me up.”



IZZY, THE BALANCING FACTOR


Izzy would claim that while he was in the band he was balancing factor between Axl and the rest of the band:

I was always pretty quiet, and that band was pretty much....I don't know, I guess in some ways I was sort of a balancing factor between Axl and the rest of the guys at one point. I don't know how it evolved to where it is now. I don't know what goes on with them now.


Izzy was also likely the band member who had the most problems with Axl's behavior and would on a couple of occasions talk about trying to get his band mates to do something about it:

The shows were completely erratic. I never knew whether we'd be able to finish the show from day-to-day, cos [Axl] would walk off...[…] I said to Duff and Slash, we gotta learn a cover song or something, for when [Axl] leaves the stage. They were like, 'Ah, let's have another beer...' They didn't care.



SLASH, THE MEDIATOR


In early 1992, it was Slash who would describe himself getting labelled a mediator in the band due to his closeness with Axl:

Well, I know Axl real well and a hell of a lot better than anyone’s gonna know him from reading the press. I know where he’s coming from and I may be a little more level-headed so I guess I get labelled as the mediator at this point. With Axl though, a lot of it comes from just unbridled sincerity. Everything about him as a performer and a singer comes from his personality, so the shit that makes him crazy or the shit that he finds hard to deal with is, at the same time, what makes his talent, you know? […]Sure, shit goes down and I keep it together, but with me it’s pretty simple. It’s ‘Get the fuck up there and plug in that guitar and go!’. With him it isn’t that simple. There’s a lot going on part from the three hours that we spend up there and it’s that shit that affects him.


Later Slash would say he coped with Axl through his band mates:

I used to take solace in the other guys. The four of us had a simple approach that was a buffer for Axl's eccentric mentality.



DISCUSSING AXL


[Axl]’s a...he’s a good guy. Everybody’s got their own personality, but he’s basically . . . he’s down to earth.

Axl and I are both from the Midwest, and we probably have more in common musically than the other members of the band. We both grew up listening to all those same silly '70s songs. And be never rides me —maybe because he thinks if he's mean to me I'll leave.

He's not a guy that sits around and takes shit. If he has a problem with something he takes it upon himself to confront it.

I think I can speak for Axl on how he’s feeling about everything. I think he’s a totally changed person. […] Now he’s into playing, and everything’s pretty cool. […] [But Axl still has bad days] because a lot of stuff goes on with him... just basically being Axl Rose. […] I don’t know if I’d want to be him, to be honest with you. You’d have to think about that yourself: ‘Would I want to be Axl Rose?’ Yeah, millions of people would, but then you’d have to be in his shoes for a little while to see what it’s actually like. [...] I think he really enjoys being in a big band and all that, being a big rock star or whatever, but there’s times when he doesn’t, and that’s the times when he just doesn’t want to... do anything. […] It’s real interesting. After being in the band for almost three years now, I can understand the guy. For a while there I just couldn’t, and neither could millions of people.

I think he’s lonely. It’s so hard being the centre of attention. You try to have a normal life, and juggle that with being a rock star, although I hate that term; it’s just difficult. It’s real demanding, people just feed off you. It’s very draining. I mean, we sometimes go out for dinner and people come up to him screaming.

I know that he’s a good person. For whatever reason, he takes the grunt for anything. They love to say Axl, Axl, Axl, Axl, Axl, but the fact of the matter is, the band’s called Guns N’ Roses. But he takes all the responsibility. […] He felt really bad about a lot of (stuff) that's happened. He's not up there wanting to cause some riot. When that kind of stuff happens it blows everyone’s mind. All we are is a rock and roll band, just playing music.


Gilby would also explicitly say that it was Axl's band and that there was nothing he could do about Axl being late for concert starts or changing his behavior:

When he comes in late, sometimes I’ll ask, ‘What up?' He’ll say, something like ‘somebody didn’t wake me up’ or ‘the limo was late.’ When he tells me this, there’s not much I can say. It’s his band.

Axl is the way he is and nobody’s going to change him. But there’s a certain amount of respect among the guys in the band. If Axl’s in a bad mood, he’s not going to take it out on me. And if he starts throwing one of those tantrums onstage, I just walk off.

When the 90’s rolled around, Axl got really, really into the whole trip and became a more exaggerated version of someone I already knew.


Gilby would also say he had no idea why Axl had been late:

I mean, I was ready-- To tell you the truth, I didn't observe anything. I mean, you know, Axl had a separate dressing room. The band was in one dressing room, he was in a separate one. I have no idea what he was doing. We were ready to play.


And when asked why they didn't simply knock on his door:

Well, you know what -- I mean, as a band member-- I mean, you know, no -- you don't-- I, personally, wouldn't have done it, you know, and stuff.


As for what the band do when waiting for Axl:

We start drinking. The longer the wait, the tipsier we get.


In June 1993 Slash would be confronted with an interviewer who remarked that the live shows are better when Axl are in a good mood, to which Slash would say their strategy was just to not try to piss him off even more:

Well, that's probably just the way it is. If Axl's in a good mood, us others in the band don't have to think about what he's doing and why. But if he's in a worse mood, we have to spend a big part of the show at not making him more pissed off or irritated and therefore screw the show even more.
Metal Zone, December 1993; interview done in June 1993


When asked if paying customers doesn't deserve that one at least tries to pretend to be happy:

Not Axl. It's just not possible. He will absolutely not do anything he doesn't feel like and I respect that. Of course it happens that a show doesn't fully work due to his mood-swings. But he can't pretend. But the times we are good, then it feels really good. Then there is nothing better.
Metal Zone, December 1993; interview done in June 1993


In late 1993 Duff would claim the press exaggerated Axl:

Well, you know, [Axl is] my bro, and his personality doesn’t swing as much as it’s often publicized. He’s just a regular guy. He has good days and bad days, like everybody else. When he has bad days, he has really bad days, and I feel sorry that he has some of those problems. But it’s not like everybody thinks it is, he’s just more intense about it. If I thought about everything as hard as he does – you know, he lets everything kind of get to him.
Metal Express, December 1993; translated from French


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16. JANUARY-JULY 1993: THE SKIN N' BONES TOUR; END OF AN ERA Empty Re: 16. JANUARY-JULY 1993: THE SKIN N' BONES TOUR; END OF AN ERA

Post by Soulmonster on Sat 20 Jun 2020 - 5:44

FEBRUARY 1993
EMBARKING ON THE SKIN N' BONES TOUR


ADDITIONAL CHANGES FOR THE SKIN N' BONES TOUR


In addition to having scaled back to a six-piece band again (dropping Ted Andreadis, the horn players and the backup singers), Axl would also drop the many costume changes that he had been doing for the shows the previous year.

On this tour, what I wear on stage is pretty much what I wear every day. That will change when the tour is over, because then I can have the time to wear clothes again, and next it will be like the Chili Peppers and wear socks. Slash thinks that the greatest freedom will be to play naked. I personally don’t have a great desire to be on the same stage, but –

After doing [the large productions] for a year and half, the band was going, ‘Let’s be a rock band again.’ We stripped everything down. We got rid of the whole background section. […] The set is like a club stage; there’s just one level and a back line. And it’s cool. It’s just down to us. And we’re playing songs that we’ve never, ever played before — a lot of songs off the ‘Lies’ record and stuff off the ‘Illusion’ albums that we’ve never played. It’s kind of like a harder, faster tour.


The concerts would feature an acoustic set where the band played selected songs off a couch brought onto the stage. They would also be served beer by topless dancers and a pizza from a guy dressed in a Domino Pizza's uniform [Star Phoenix, March 29, 1993].


THE BRIAN MAY BAND


For the first dates of the Skin N' Bones tour the band had invited their good friend Brian May and his 'Brian May Band' to be the opener.

Guns N’ Roses did not need us to sell tickets. So you always feel slightly on trial.
Des Moines Register, March 14, 1993


After the touring with Guns N' Roses, May would only have positive things to say about the band and how they had treated him and his band:

I heard [Welcome to the Jungle] many, many a night because we toured with him all round the States and had a great time, and everyone goes, [whispery gruff voice] "Oh, was it really terrible? Are they complete bastards?" And I go: "No," because they treated us with the utmost respect and consideration and had some very good times. […] They were such a great live band, you know. Its one of those moments in time when everything happened in the right way. I think really the last kind of dangerous, magnificent rock and roll band really, so far.
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Post by Soulmonster on Sat 20 Jun 2020 - 5:45

FEBRUARY 23-25, 1993
AXL BLOWS OUT HIS VOICE


FEBRUARY 23, 1993: STARTING THE TOUR IN AUSTIN


On February 23, 1993, at the Frank Erwin Center in Austin, Texas, USA the band started its Skin N' Bones tour.

Axl would mention from stage that they hadn't planned the shows in detail:

There are those out there that, to them, it doesn’t matter what we do. They’ll always have a problem with us. And it seems that they like a lot of the bands in Seattle. And I like a lot of bands in Seattle, and I remember when a lot of these people, like Spin Magazine and shit, when they hated everybody else but they thought that we were cool. But when we didn’t want to suck their dick like they thought we would, then we weren’t cool anymore. Which means that right now in somebody’s eyes, “Axl Rose is throwing a tantrum.”[/i] [Makes a funny sound][i] Well, that’s what this little show is all about. Especially this tour. What you’re gonna see tonight is, some of the songs we’ve been doing in the summer and a lot of shit we’ve never played live anywhere. We’ll be doing – in the middle of the show we have a small [?] break where we’re gonna put together an acoustic set. We haven’t done something like that since on MTV [?] There’s a lot of bands that are going, “We don’t want to be like U2 or Guns N’ Roses, [?] .” Well, we just wanted to see if we could fuckin’ pull out the big show; that was all. And sorry, but we’re big like that because of you. So now we’re gonna have some fun trying a bit of a show that’s kind of hard work, since we just threw it together about two days ago. Even though it was planned and we sold tickets a long time ago, we still had no idea what we were doing until last night. So [?], we’ll try to have a good time tonight. And anybody who says we’re trying to rip you off or kiss ass or that it’s contrived, they can suck my dick and they’re nothing but a bunch of Double Talkin’ Jive motherfucker.



Review in Austin American Statesman
February 25, 1993



FEBRUARY 25, 1993: AXL BLOWS OUT HIS VOICE AND SHOWS ARE POSTPONED


The next show was on February 25 at the Birmingham-Jefferson Civic Center in Birmingham, Alabama. Here Axl would end the show early.

According to the Jefferson Civic Centre's assistant security director, Maureen Reagan:

Axl was on stage for 20 minutes and he got mad at their sound man, fired him and left the stage for 40 minutes while the band continued playing.
Star Phoenix, March 25, 1993


Apparently, the monitor issues caused Axl to blow out his voice and as a result they would cancel the next shows [The Boston Globe, March 12, 1993].

I don't blame Axl for that. I can blame him for other things, but not that.


The next three shows, in Cincinnati, Chapel Hill, N.C., and Providence, were cancelled [Hartford Courant, March 2, 1993], likely due to Axl having blown out his voice in Birmingham [The Boston Globe, March 12, 1993], due to Axl's emotional state after splitting with his long-time girlfriend Stephanie Seymore [The Atlanta Constitution, March 2, 1993; see next chapter], or due to "adverse weather conditions" [Guns N' Roses Use Your Illusion tour diary, unknown author and date].

Even Gilby seemed a bit at a loss to what the actual reason was:

I think we had some equipment problems or something. This is a brand new show we’re doing, and I don’t think they got it all together. […] It’s, like, wherever you were walking, you were not hearing anything. And Axl was just losing it. He just wasn’t hearing his vocals.
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MARCH-NOVEMBER 1993
AXL AND STEPHANIE BREAK UP


In late 1992 Axl would be asked if he was happy and answer from the perspective of his artistic ambitions:

Am I happy? Hmmmm. Yeah, but I won't really know how happy I am until the end of this tour in May. That's when I'll know if I achieved all my goals. I've achieved a lot of them, but I'm not in a place where I can sit back on my laurels and say "Hey, I did it." If i can kick back in June and feel a sense of accomplishment, then I'll be happy.
Hit Parader, June 1993; interview done in December 1992


This would obfuscate the personal problems Axl was going through in this period with Stephanie Seymour.

On March 1, 1993, Geffen Records released a statement saying that Stephanie Seymore and Axl was splitting [The Atlanta Constitution, March 2, 1993]. In the statement Axl would be quoted as saying, "It was fun; I wish Stephanie the best" [The Atlanta Constitution, March 2, 1993].

As implied by Beta Lebeis, former employee of Seymour and future manager to Guns N' Roses, the decision to end the relationship was Seymour's and Axl had been trying to save it:

Let's just say that when they were about to break up, he went to her house begging, dressed in a white suit, riding a horse and carrying flowers... I’m telling you, the things he did for her I’ve only read in history books. They don’t exist in real life.
Bolsa de Mulher, January 22, 2001; translated from Portuguese


It would also be reported that Axl was seeing another woman, but that they had not been romantically involved before the break-up with Seymore [The Daily Journal, March 5, 1993], and that this woman was from "a small Southern town and is (surprise) not a model" [Salt Lake Tribune, April 2, 1993].


ALLEGATIONS OF INFIDELITY


Beta Lebeis would later claim Seymour had been unfaithful and that this was the cause of the break-up:

They broke up because she cheated on Axl with many people and he finally found out.
Bolsa de Mulher, January 22, 2001; translated from Portuguese



AUGUST 1993: STEPHANIE AND AXL STARTS FIGHTING


In August it would be reported that Axl and Stephanie were not on friendly terms. According to the Star-Gazette, Axl was considering suing Stephanie to receive gifts he had given her, and for "assault and mental and emotional abuse" [Star-Gazette, August 27, 1993]. Allegedly, the threat to sue Stephanie came after she sent a "missives that she’ll publish a picture of herself with a black eye if he doesn’t stop asking" to have the gits returned [Star-Gazette, August 27, 1993]. According to Axl, Stephanie had attacked him at a Christmas party, leading him to defend himself, and there were supposedly many witnesses [Star-Gazette, August 27, 1993].
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MARCH 6-APRIL 1, 1993
THE SKIN N' BONES TOUR


After a short break with three cancelled shows followed shows on March 6 at New Haven Coliseum, in New Haven, March 8 at Cumberland Civic Center in Portland, March 9 at Hartford Civic Center in Hartford, March 12 at Copps Coliseum in Hamilton and March 16 at Augusta Civic Center in Augusta.

The next show was on March 17 at Boston Garden in Boston. Before the show Duff would be interviewed by Boston Globe and talk about the massive touring they had done:

We started the tour the day the Iraq War broke out. That's when we played the Rock in Rio concert. And we won't end until July 15. We're going back to Europe soon for the fifth time on the tour - and we're going to play Moscow and Tel Aviv. […] But I've given up on itineraries and stuff. I just get on the plane and go. All I know is that we're going to be in Boston on St. Pattie's Day.


Duff would also talk about the Skin N' Bones tour:

It's just the basic band again, playing on a small stage. It's great, man. Right on, we're a punk- rock band again. We're doing a lot of the early hard core stuff, like 'Nice Boys' and 'Reckless Life.' It's really sparked energy in the band. We'd be pretty dragged down by now if we were still doing the big production thing, because that really started to get strenuous.


And on their acoustic set:

It's kind of like what Led Zeppelin used to do. Not comparing us to Zeppelin or anything, but Slash will sit out front with a 12-string guitar; and we got a grand piano that's rolled out for Axl. We do songs like 'Crazy,' 'Used to Love Her,' 'You Ain't the First,' 'Patience' and 'November Rain.' We're having fun with it.


Before the Boston show Slash would also talk about the differences to the sets on the Skin N Bones tour:

That's… that's cool, I mean, I would do more, you know, it's like: I would more and more often. Um, because pulling out new stuff, just makes it really fresh. I love turning the corners on everybody. And going, you know, and showing the fact that aah… We're just that kind of band, you know, that can do that. I mean, it's like, it's one thing to play "Jungle," you know. I mean, we can do "Jungle," you know, whatever… However "Jungle" is supposed to sound like, we can do that. But when you turn around and play something like "The Garden," and having it totally be as heavy as that song is, and pull it off live, and just fucking blow everybody's minds with it. 'Cause they're not expecting it. That's pretty much the joy of, of continuing touring. To keep pulling the stops, you know.


And about which songs that intimidate him:

"Live And Let Die." Especially with that new double-neck that I've been playing. [laughs] You know, 'cause I have to make sure I switch the buttons right. Sometimes it used to be the intros to "Paradise City," before I go into the actual song. Or definitely having to do the fucking guitar-solo, because I never have that mapped out, you know. Let's see… the end of "Double Talkin' Jive" always intimidates me. I'm intimidated by a lot of stuff that we're playing, you know, I tell you. You know, it depends on the guitar sound, and how the rest of the guys in the band are feeling, or how they're playing, you know, you know. Where Axl's at, I mean. Like I was saying earlier, it's like, it depends on a given night for that given song, you know.


And whether he was tired after two years of touring:

I think that the only times that I'm not tired is when I'm walking up the stairs. And about to get on the stage. And you hear the crowd and you're about to break in to the first tune. And then there's some sort of like revitalizing energy that get, you know, that comes out of nowhere and it carries you around for two hours. [laughs] You know, the rest of it is just… it's just fucking hell, I mean, you know. And especially for doing it for, as long as two years, with and, and having, and having all those other dates looking at you, you know. I usually go: "Ok, that's gig, that's gig 450 and we have 60 more coming," you know. [laughs] I mean, it's a little, it's a little nerve-racking. But playing actually… I can't say I'm tired from playing.


The Boston show was stopped and the band left the stage after someone threw a beer bottle onto the stage [Boston Globe, March 18, 1993]. This prompted the audience to chant "bullshit" [Boston Globe, March 18, 1993]. When the band returned after 10 minutes they started with "Attitude" with Slash uttering, "Not that this city needs any" [Boston Globe, March 18, 1993].

This was followed by shows on March 20 show at the Carver-Hawkeye Arena in Iowa City, March 21 at the Fargo Dome in Fargo, and March 24 at Winnipeg Arena in Winnipeg.


Review and report in the Iowa City Press-Citizen
March 22, 1993


Review in The Bismarck Tribune
March 29, 1993


After the show in Winnipeg, Duff would comment on going from a large production to a small:

When we started (the Use Your Illusion tour) it was just the band, and then we decided we wanted to get the horns and the backup singers, and do something big. And we did it. We did all the stadiums. Every night it was between 80,000 and 145,000 people. […] I don’t think we would have survived much longer doing all those big shows. It was too big, man. Check it out OK? Here’s the deal. We had 140 people working for us. Nineteen semis. Nineteen buses. Two 747s to take the (equipment), OK? And another plane for the band. It was too big It was every day. […] And when it comes down to it it’s myself, Axl and Slash who have to take care of all the financial (details) because we started the band and all that. So here we are being businessmen, and trying to get out and rock every night, and you know, you’ve still got faxes falling out of your pockets when you’re up on stage. […] It’s like, this ain't happening, man. It was cool for a while, but it just got too much. And you’ve got the backup singers and the horn players screaming that they want bigger rooms — it just goes on and on. So we’re back to square one, and it’s great. […] It was a cool thing to do, but we got it out of our system and we re back to what we are, which is a rock band. Now we’ve got an acoustic set in the middle, and a small stage, and we’re playing smaller places, arenas, and it's really cool. It’s just good to have that band feeling back and not like this obscene huge circus going around the world. We’re coming back to prove what we are — Guns N’ Roses, a few guys on stage trying to play what they like to play.


Duff would also comment on a review of the Winnipeg show:

Axl and I are on the cover, and it’s a really horrible picture of me. I’ve got like 15 double chins. Really nice. But it was a good review and was a good show last night, really good, although we went on a bit late. Which is par for the course, I guess.


The next show happened on March 26 at Saskatchewan Place in Saskatoon, Canada. After the show Slash, Matt and Dizzy would hang out at the local var Ryly's where Slash and Matt would jam with the local band Robin's Trip [The Star Phoenix, March 29, 1993].

Then followed shows on March 28 at Northlands Coliseum in Edmonton, Canada, March 30 at British Columbia Place in Vancouver, Canada and April 1 at Portland Coliseum in Portland, USA.

Before the show in Vancouver, Gilby would be asked his thoughts on the Skin N' Bones tour:

I’m really happy with this because this is what I thought I was joining but that was just when they were going to do the shows with the big band. I had no idea, so when they told me we were going to do this, I said great.



Review and after show report in The Edmonton Journal
March 29, 1993


Review in The Vancouver Sun
March 31, 1993
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Post by Soulmonster on Sat 20 Jun 2020 - 5:46

APRIL 3, 1993
AXL TAKES ON METALLICA


METALLICA MOCKS GUNS N' ROSES


As discussed in the chapters about GN'R and Metallica touring together in 1992, the band didn't see eye to eye on everything, or much. Right before the tour, Jason Newstead had said the following:

We go out, take care of business and we’re done. We get on the stage when we say we’re gonna get on the stage, we play what we say we’re gonna play.


And when describing why there are no drama surrounding Metallica:

The people that we have working for us are the same people who have worked for us for many, many years — from stage carpenters to our guys that work on our guitars to our management. Metallica is a very fine-tuned machine. When we say we’re going to go do something, we go do it . . . We stick to our contracts and we fulfill them. […] And the music is much different. I’d say Metallica fans are a bit more loyal and a bit more rabid than Guns N’ Roses fans. I’m sure there are Guns N’ Roses fans that go crazy, but I don’t think they have the unity and the touch we have with our people. […] Our plan is to go out and play for a couple of hours and Just pummel. There’s not going to be too much talking or long solos. We plan on going out, song-to-song-to-song, and just crush. That’ll be that. Take care of business and get off stage and then they can do what they want to do.


Especially James Hetfield ripped on Axl on a few occasions. One of these were Metallica's "A Year and A Half in the Life of Metallica" home video in which Hetfield made fun of Axl's tour rider:

Axl Pose dressing-room requirements - absolutely no substitutions. One cup of cubed ham. Not [beep], you know, it’s gotta be cubed [beep] right, so it can get down his little neck. (Laughter) One rib-eye steak dinner, [?] to look like a [beep] ‘vegemetarian.’ One gourmet cheese tray. Pepperoni pizza – fresh.” I think that’s for throwing around. Cans of assorted Pringles chips. You know, the greasy shit that he uses to [?] his hair back. Bee honey, that makes you (does screechy voice) sing like that.
MTV, April 1993


Another was in an interview with Rolling Stone published on April 13, 1993:

[Guns N' Roses]’re a different type of band – and I use the word band loosely. It’s a guy and some other guys. We were out to show people that there was something a little more progressive and hardcore than Guns n’ Roses. And to go about it our way. But it was hard going on, dealing with Axl and his attitude. It’s not something we’d want to do again.
Rolling Stone, April 13, 1993


In it, Hetfield would also comment on the tour rider dig:

Metallica humor. It didn’t really matter what the hell was on [the rider]. Just the fact that Axl had his own rider was funny. It’s hard to grasp. When we saw he had his own dressing room, I just didn’t understand that.
Rolling Stone, April 13, 1993


And would criticize Axl for what happened in Montreal:

He was pissed off at the monitors or whatever. For some reason, he didn’t get enough volume, strained his voice, and it wasn’t working for him. He threw a fit, and that was that. I was so disappointed in him. Because he could have won so many people over by continuing the show. And he went the exact opposite way and made things ten times worse and jeopardized people’s lives. There was a lot of unnecessary violence because of his attitude. He could have turned it into a great evening.
Rolling Stone, April 13, 1993



APRIL 3, 1993: ARCO ARENA, AXL ON THE OFFENSIVE


At the April 3, 1993 show at ARCO Arena in Sacramento, CA, USA, Axl would viciously lash back at Metallica:

So we’re kinda like around the Bay Area, right? Good. So it’s kinda like we’re here on somebody else’s turf in a way. Some people we used to like to think that we were homeboys or something. I wanna talk about – maybe your good friends, I don’t know – Metallica for a minute. Let me tell you a couple of things about Metallica. First off, they do a lot of bitching for a band that got paid about 20 to 30% more than fucking what they deserved at a show, because they didn’t bring that much.

“Ooh, Axl’s talking now, well, listen to that, who does he think he is?” I’ll tell you who I think I am. I thought I was friends with these people. I don’t know how long they were on the road, but there was nobody in their crew that ever got a bonus or paid anything extra for working their fucking ass off and slaving for that band. I pretty much watched a lot of people being treated like shit, and it wasn’t very enjoyable.

I watched the man named James prove that - you know, since I’m supposed to be the “rock racist,” cuz I used a word once? I watched the man show me that he was a motherfucking racist. He got a real big problem with Ice-T and any black man, actually. “Oh, rap is really terrible. Black men [?]” I watched him be really shitty at black people who worked with us. That wasn’t very enjoyable.

I watched him diss on other people, like Sebastian and shit, people that, like, love this fucking band. They love Metallica. They would, like, fucking do anything for that band. But Metallica don’t give a shit. Lars don’t give a shit. The motherfucker calls me at 4:00 in the morning trying to kiss my ass and stuff. And it’s like, but I can’t trust the little fucker. They’re gonna take it and figure how they’ll go make some more money. Like the time that we sat around writing a video for Don’t Cry, and we talked about being under water and showing all these things, and then Lars would [?] a video. And the cool thing about it is, he cocked to it, yeah, “I was ripping you guys off.”

I’m gonna dedicate this to these people who like to run a fucking little video for people saying, “Fuck you, this ain’t the Guns N’ Roses tour. This is Metallica.” Who say things like, “Oh, it was just a joke because we are friends.” You ain’t no fucking friend of mine, you fucking stupid little [?] cocksucker. This is for you, Lars, and you, James. This is called Double Talkin’ Jive motherfucker!


Duff seems to have agreed with Axl because when confronted with Hetfield's comments to Rolling Stone magazine, he would reply:

I don’t give a shit about Metallica. They’re not honest guys. They’re liars.



1994-1996: SLASH TAKES METALLICA'S SIDE


Slash would later shed some light about the relationship between the two bands:

The Metallica tour was the hardest thing we ever did. It turned into such a conflict of interests between the two bands that we're no longer friends any more. I'm not gonna put blame on anybody, or any of that shit, it just turned into something that maybe wasn't such a great idea.


By early 1995, Slash was back at hanging out with Metallica and would say he was okay with them attacking Axl but not Guns N' Roses:

I told Lars [Ulrich], like, 'Just don't fucking talk shit about Guns, because that means me. We're good friends, and if you talk about Guns I have to defend my band. You can talk about Axl all you want, I know the situation there. But when you say Guns N' Roses' it's a whole, and you're talking about me and the guys who make the fucking tour happen.' We really did our best to keep it together. So I just got in his face and we worked it out.

I love James [Hetfield]. James hates Axl, but he doesn't hate me. You never see me talking about them. It was always them talking about us. And if there was a problem with me, fine. But there wasn't. It was only tour situations that were Axl-related. They were talking about the whole band when they could have just said Axl. Everyone knows who Axl is. Don't say Guns, because that's me.


In 1996 Slash would even state that the problems between the band wasn't Metallica's fault:

It wasn't [Metallica's] fault. It was ours. The whole thing was so over the top, we didn't make a dime. That's embarrassingly senseless. Everyone was trying to keep up with the Rolling Stones. I can see naked girls in a G-string for free - I don't have to pay 20 grand to have 600 of them coming over!
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APRIL 3, 1993
DUFF FACES A BOTTLE


Later in the April 3 show, after Axl had ranted against Metallica and at about 90 minutes into the show, Duff was hit by a water-filled plastic bottle and knocked unconscious [Sacramento Bee, April 5, 1993]. The band had to end the show while Duff received treatment [Sacramento Bee, April 5, 1993]. As the band left the stage, Axl would utter, "If you find the a-----, kill him" [Sacramento Bee, April 5, 1993].

RIP Magazine would later recount the incident:

The concert in Sacramento was going exceptionally well. Guns N' Roses, in their only California appearance on the Skin N' Bones leg of their world tour, had just finished "November Rain," which usually comes two-thirds of the way through the show. As the band was preparing to go into the next song, a full bottle of Evian was thrown from the upper mezzanine and struck bassist Duff McKagan square in the face. McKagan dropped to the floor, writhing in agony. He was rushed off the stage, and the rest of the band followed. Slash came out a bit later to explain to the confused audience that, unfortunately, the show couldn't continue without Duff. What's the moral of this story?

It only takes one asshole in a crowd of 12,000 to ruin everyone's night.

Duff was taken to the hospital, x-rayed and treated. Although sore, he made the band's next scheduled appearance, wearing a T-shirt printed with a large target and the words 'Don't Even Think About It'.
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JANUARY 1993-SEPTEMBER 1994
AXL AND SLASH


As 1993 came along it seems like the relationship between Axl and Slash was worsening:

My relationship with Axl is really, really personal. So, I don't know if I would like to talk about it that much. Because it's been so blown under proportion, in a negative way, that I'm scared to say anything anywhere about it. You know, a little gun-shy. Um, it's real sensitive, kind of… I don't know , like a partnership kind of thing. And I don't like it being tanned, you know, and thrown out of whack, because of the press or the media or whatever. So I'm a little shy, you know, to say anything.


In May Slash would respond to being asked if the Axl-Slash relationship was anything like the Lennon-McCartney phenomenon:

You know, I never even think about stuff like that, and I would never try and compare myself to a combo as overwhelmingly great as that; just I wouldn’t even bother. I mean, I have a lot of admiration for what it is that Axl and I, if you want to call us a team - it’s really a band, but for what we do as composers or writers and what we come out with. But, I mean, the people that I grew up with that I really admired - you know, the influences that helped shape how I turned out – I would never even try to compare us to them.


Later in the year Slash would claim the triumvirate of him, Duff and Axl had only grown tighter and tighter since Izzy left in late 1991:

After [the fight in late 1989], when we started working again, there was so much other shit going on with the other guys - Izzy and Steven - that in order to focus on our primary goal, which was to continue as a band, Axl, Duff and I got really tight. And it continued from there.

We managed to keep going, and things got tighter and tighter, to the point that if we don’t understand everything that’s going on with this band, we’ll lose control over what Guns N’ Roses is. So it’s made us a real family more than ever.


In January 1994 they would do an interview on Rockline together, something they hadn't done in "a couple of years" [Rockline, January 3, 1994]. During the interview Slash and Axl would talk about writing songs over the phone together, and not working on the songs while being physically together until they started rehearsing them in the studio [Rockline, January 3, 1994].

The same month Slash would be asked "do you still say: "Hi Axl. Do you wanna go rent a video?" Are you friends, or is gotten to be business associates? Do you see so much of each other on the road, you don't wanna see each other?" and replied:

That's what I was trying to get out. That's the only thing that keeps us from being completely whacked out, is that we're all still really close friends.


Slash is here talking about the entire band and not him and Axl, which is even more clear from what he says next:

We just jam a lot, you know. We just get together and play and all our musical roots and all that kinda shit are still intact. You know what I mean. So, like... We've been working on songs for the next record and all we do is like, jam up at my house.
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Post by Soulmonster on Sat 20 Jun 2020 - 5:49

APRIL 4-13, 1993
THE SKIN N' BONES TOUR CONTINUES


Despite Duff being knocked out by a bottle on last night's show, the band was on again on for April 4 for their show at Lawler Events Center in Reno, Nevada, April 7 at Delta Center in Salt Lake City, Utah and April 9 at the Rushmore Plaza Civic Center in Rapid City, South Dakota.


Review in the Rapid City Journal
April 10, 1993


Review in The Lincoln Journal Star
April 12, 1993


For this last show Blind Melon had taken over opening duties after Brian May [Rapid City Journal, April 10, 1993].

The band's practice of encouraging girls to show their breasts on camera also continued, and, as usual, received quite a bit of controversy in local press:

Kevin Buntrock said he would have stopped a giant-screen video display of topless women during the Guns N’ Roses rock concert Friday — if he had realized what was happening. Buntrock is manager of Rushmore Plaza Civic Center here.

The incident apparently was partly spontaneous.

During the long break between the warm-up band, Blind Melon, and Guns N’ Roses, a video cameraman onstage panned the crowd.

Several young women pulled up their shirts for the camera, which projected their images by closed-circuit television onto two large television screens.

The cameraman was with Guns N’ Roses. The large screens were used during the concert to give the audience a better view of the band.

But witnesses said the cameraman encouraged and even urged women to bare their breasts. One witness counted 20 women on camera, although not all of them pulled their shirts up.

Ben Eicher, a Rapid City attorney who reviewed the concert for the Rapid City Journal, said he was surprised that the display was allowed to continue for so long - possibly as long as 45 minutes.

Buntrock said he was aware that two or three women had exposed their breasts, but he said he was not in the main arena at the time. He said he did not know the extent of the display until after it happened.

"That’s not acceptable behavior in most markets," he said.

Assistant City Attorney Kent Hagg said the women could have been cited for indecent exposure. Hagg also said the cameraman might have been cited for "inciting" or "soliciting" the behavior, but he said it would be difficult to prosecute such a case.

None of the flashers was cited.

Rapid City Police Capt. Doug Noyes said it would have been impractical and possibly dangerous to wade through the tightly packed crowd on the floor of the arena to write a ticket for indecent exposure.

“You have to be realistic,” Noyes said. "I do not think it would be prudent to enter that crowd for an arrest of this type.


After this show the band played April 10 in Omaha Civic Auditorium in Omaha, Nebraska and April 13 at The Palace Of Auburn Hills, Auburn Hills, Michigan.

According to Earl Gabbidon, Axl's security detail, Duff got into problems at the show at the Palace of Auburn Hills:

Palace at Auburn hills, getting a $25,000 bill from the promoter because Duff got fucked up and trashed a dressing room and catering room!
Metal Sludge, December 17, 2002; THIS INTERVIEW IS POSSIBLY FAKE


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Post by Soulmonster on Sat 20 Jun 2020 - 5:49

APRIL 15, 1993
EVADING ATLANTA; GOING TO ROANOKE


On April 15, 1993, the band was originally intended to return to the Omni in Atlanta for their first time since November 22, 1987, when Axl had famously stage-dived to fight security guards and the police.

For the return show, the concert promoters thought it would be a good idea if Axl was handed a key to the city, or at least an apology the mayor [The Atlanta Constitution, April 1, 1993; Herald and Review, March 3, 1993]. But "official city image protector", Joel Babbit disagreed:

I don’t think it’s appropriate that you give a key to the city to a guy who hits a policeman on his last visit here. I think he ought to be the one giving something to us — maybe 1,000 bulletproof vests for police. Plus, I don't like his music.

We’d love to play there. After all, they have great strip bars.


But Axl didn't want to revisit Atlanta:

I suppose the mayor will say I’m some [bleep] who doesn’t care for his fans... but I'm not willing to be a sitting duck for the police.


Regardless of the reasons, the city and venue was changed to Roanoke Civic Center in Roanoke, North Carolina.

Slash would mention this in his book:

We canceled a show in Atlanta both to let Duff recover and because Axl had been arrested there during the Appetite tour for kicking in the head a security guard whom he’d supposedly seen roughing up audience members. Doug didn’t trust either Axl or the venue’s security and he was probably right on both counts.
Slash with A. Bozza, Slash, 2007


Axl would also reference his previous concert in Atlanta from stage in 2011 when they did finish a show in Atlanta:

That's a better start than the last time I was here. I'm not in jail yet!


After Roanoke the band played a show on April 16 at Dean Smith Center in Chapel Hill, North Carolina.
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Post by Soulmonster on Sat 20 Jun 2020 - 5:50

APRIL 21-28, 1993
THE SKIN N' BONES TOUR - MEXICO


After a few days break the band then travelled to Mexico for five shows. The first show took place at Estadio Jalisco, Guadalajara (April 21), then followed two shows at the Palacio De Los Deportes, Mexico City (April 23 and 24.) and two shows at Estadio Universitario, Monterrey (April 27 and 28).
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Post by Soulmonster on Sat 20 Jun 2020 - 5:50

APRIL 29, 1993
GILBY BREAKS HIS ARM


After returning from Mexico the band had some downtime before travelling to Europe to continue the Skin N' Bones tour. At the very first day after their last show in Mexico, April 29, Gilby crashed on a motocross bike and broke a wrist while preparing for a celebrity race [The San Bernandino County, May 18, 1993]. The bike belonged to MTV's Riki Rachtman [MTV Headbanger's Ball, May 1993].

We were sitting like way back, you know. It happened, I think, on a triple jam. I was going up, I was doing three spins and something on the way died.


The injury required surgery and a metal plate and screws had to be inserted [The San Bernandino County, May 18, 1993].

I’m just gonna miss a couple of dates in Europe and then I’ll be back. […] I’m gonna miss, like, five dates of Europe then we’re going out in the middle of this month.

Yes, the accident came like a serious chock for me. It happened on a day-off and I was in a fucking hospital with a broken wrist when we were going the next day! The whole Europe leg was left and it included a lot of important places that we hadn't visited yet. All the arrangements were done and there was no way that we could reschedule the tour.
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Post by Soulmonster on Sat 20 Jun 2020 - 5:51

MAY 1993
IZZY IS ASKED TO STEP IN FOR GILBY


Izzy and I grew up together and we're like a family in a lot of ways - including having our differences.
Guns N' Roses Use Your Illusion tour diary, unknown author and date

_________________________________________

"WHY NOT IZZY?"


In May it would be reported that Izzy had been asked to step in for Gilby for shows in "Israel, Greece, Turkey and the United Kingdom" later in May [The San Bernandino County, May 18, 1993].

Someone wondered "how will we find a replacer? Are we going to do it without Gilby?" and someone else came up with the idea "we'll ask Izzy, he knows all the songs". I went totally… "What? Can't you get someone else but Izzy? I have several pals that can learn the songs in no-time". […] It was a shock. To be totally honest I was so gone due to all the analgesic medicine that I took, so I wasn't thinking entirely clear. That's why it didn't take me so hard then.


It had been Slash's idea to call Izzy:

It was my idea to call Izzy; I thought It would be interesting. I didn't know he hadn't picked up his guitar in the last f"kIng year!


But it was Axl who picked up the phone and actually called Izzy:

Well Axl was the one who called me and asked if I would do it. I was home working on my bikes when I got the call. I thought about it for a couple of days, and then said that I'd do it for those five dates. Why did I go back? Well, I just saw it as a free holiday, really. I got to go to countries like Israel and Greece where I'd never been before.

It's simple. I was back in Indiana, I was living my life and one day, Axl called me. He asked me if, indeed, I could help them with a few shows. I asked where those shows were and he said Istanbul, Athens, London... You think I hesitated (laughs)? I like to travel and see new countries!


Asked if he was freaked out when he heard Izzy would be stepping in to replace him, Gilby would respond:

A little bit. But I was so drugged up I didn't really notice it! […] Yeah, it was really strange, but when it first came up I was literally still in a hospital bed. I'd just gotten my wrist reset. And that's when they brought it up. 'Well, we can't cancel the tour. Who are we gonna get to play guitar?'. And I'm like, 'Wait a minute...'. And so they came up with the Izzy idea. In the back of my head I was going, 'Well, I don't think that's a very good idea', because what if Axl goes, 'Hey, this is kinda cool, let's just get Izzy back.'



DOING IT FOR THE MONEY


Izzy would admit the main reason he did it was because of the money, and that he would use the situation as leverage to pressure the band for money:

Part of the reason [for doing these five shows] was that I had time off in Indiana, I wasn't really doing anything important, just working on bikes, motorcycles, and, yeah, "maybe it's fun". They played Turkey, they played Greece, they played Israel, so maybe it's cool to go see those places since I've never been there. And I knew all the music so it wasn't like I had to study or practise much, just take a guitar and go over. But the main reason was that for a year and a half since I left them they had never paid me all the money that I was owed, because there was a dispute about what was. So I told them, "look, tell your people to call my people and write up some paperwork and pay me my fucking money, and I'll gladly come over and help you guys out". Because they were kinda in a position where they didn't do these shows they would have lost, like, a lot of money.

It was weird. We toured Greece, Istanbul, London – I liked that side of it, seeing some places I’d never seen. […] [i] a big shit load of money sitting somewhere [for me] and they weren’t paying me [it]. I don’t know the deal was, some kind of legal bullshit. […] Money was a big sore point. I did the dates just for salary. I mean, I helped start this band…

Moreover, Alan Niven, my manager - who also was Guns N' Roses' manager when we started, told me that the band still owed me money. He advised me to accept the invitation in order to get what they owed me. It's only after that that I found out Alan would get 20% of that money (laughs)!
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Post by Soulmonster on Sat 20 Jun 2020 - 5:51

MAY 15, 1993
THE DRUNK FUX IS REVIVED FOR A CHARITY GIG


On May 15, 1993, the Drunk Fux would be resurrected for a charity gig at the Hollywood Palladium [MTV, May 21, 1993]. The charity was to raise money for a popular local tour manager called Fred Saunders who had suffered massive injuries from a motorcycle accident [MTV, May 21, 1993]. For the occasion the Drunk Fux included Slash, Duff, Gilby (just singing due to his cast), Matt as well as Lemmy and others [MTV News, May 21, 1993].

Of course [Saunders] didn’t have any medical insurance or money for, you know, in general. So, you know, he’s gonna be okay, but this is the outfit for his medical bills.

Now that we are all here we sort of talked about what songs we can play, which ones we remember since none of us got together and practiced any of it.


The show raised $ 40,000 [MTV News, May 21, 1993].
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Post by Soulmonster on Sat 20 Jun 2020 - 5:52

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


I remember when [GN'R] were going over to England [in June 1987], Axl and Izzy asked me if I wanted to go. I said yes, but that I would have to quit my job. That was it. I never went back to a nine-to-five job ever from that point on because Guns N' Roses hit. As soon as we went over to England, that was the beginning, at least for me. It opened up a lot of doors. Axl helped me out tremendously with my career, because as doors got opened for him, he made them available for me. I totally appreciate that to this day and thank him for that. I didn't realize how big they became because I was touring with them and it wasn't until I stepped back that I saw it. These guys got huge. We went from watching this band that drew thirty-five people at the Troubadour to this.
Marc Canter, "Reckless Road", 2007



Guns N' Roses: The Photographic History
by Robert John, May 1993


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

My personal likes are a little bit of motion blur - you know, to show what the person’s doing. Seeing a guitarist standing perfectly still, with the guitar in his hands, is really boring. I like seeing a lot of movement, like when Slash is on stage and he starts jumping around on one foot, and things like that. Those usually turn out to be really good photos.

As far as my book goes, yeah. I’m very proud of it, because it’s weird – you know, people look at the book and they see the history of a band, and I look at the book and I see my progression on photography. I’m still not technically the best, but I see a progression of my own work.

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

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

It’s probably a better kind of a book for me to look at, just because I was there. You know, that kind of thing where – I mean, that shit really did happen, as they say. I suppose photo shoots where you all get together and anyone of a number of photographers gets you, it’s no real experience. This was even more than a day in a life. When I look back on it, I go, “Fuck.” You know, how nuts that day was, how stoned we were that day, when we were rehearsing and trying to get our shit together, and so on so forth. The thing is, it hasn’t changed much. And when it finally comes down to the wire and you start to feel like it’s all just too fucking difficult or things have changed, or anything like that, when you just start to get moody, I can look at that and go, “It’s always been fucking hard.”
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Post by Soulmonster on Sat 20 Jun 2020 - 6:09

MAY 1993
DUFF TRIES TO SOBER UP AGAIN


In September 1993, Duff would say he had quit drinking before the Tel Aviv show on May 22, 1993, and was going through detox as they flew to Israel [Rockline, September 1993]. In an interview from late June 1993 Duff would claim to continue to be sober [RIP Magazine, November 1993].

We've all done [drugs], and I'm done with all of that. It bores the f?!k out of me. Sure, I'll hang around the after the gig or whatever, but I'm trying to stay clean. I'm doing really good. How many times can someone party? I've been touring since I was 15 years old. I've seen more drugs and shit than most people. Not more than, say, the Rolling Stones, but probably more than most people my age. Even when I was drinking, though, I still always got my job done. There were a few times, like the first time we were in Europe, that I f?!ked up a lot, but no one really noticed. I think I was the first person that noticed, because you can't lie to yourself. I haven't had a drink since the U.S. leg of Skin N' Bones ended. I have a solo tour coming up, and I can't let drinking interfere. Shit, I go to bed these days at midnight.
RIP Magazine, November 1993; interview done in late June


But when the band played in Barcelona, Spain, in early July, he would allegedly ask the interviewer for coke connections [Popular 1, September 1993; translated from Spanish].

It was his bloated face that had jerked him into sobriety:

I had to go sober on the last third of the tour because drinking really catches up with you. […] On the road there’s always booze around and going from hotel to hotel you’re lonely and it catches up with you. I finally realised it when I saw pictures of myself and I looked bloated just from booze. I looked at the pictures and thought that wasn’t me so I quit altogether which was probably one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do in my life. […] At the end I got my second - or fourth or fifth or sixth or 19th - wind and I just sailed through the last leg which was three months.

I did the most stupidest thing. Just before GN’R did the last three and a half month leg, I woke up one day, looked at myself in the mirror and went: ‘Oh shit’!

I just got up one morning and looked at myself in the mirror, and went, 'Whoa - who is this guy?' I was like bloated sort of, and my face got puffy. I looked over, and I saw like three empty bottles of vodka. I was just so used to it - me and Slash don't even notice how much booze we go through. Plus, I get physicals all the time, and I'm like, 'Please tell me something's wrong with my liver. Please tell me something's wrong with something.' But nope, flying colours. So I'm like, well, cool. But so it was just me going, 'Fuck. I'm not looking good.' So I quit cold turkey on a flight to Israel from LA. We played the first three nights - you know Guns N' Roses [laughing], it takes about two weeks to play three nights - so the first three nights we did, I'm fucking just jonesing on stage. Oh god, just sweating and - bleugh! It was really horrible. It's harder to quit alcohol than it is anything else. Dope, anything. By far. Trust me.


Yet, when asked in September if he had quit drinking entirely, Duff would answer:

I’ll have a beer here and there, but when I go out on the road I’m not gonna drink at all.


When confronted with the statement that he has put on weight [as a result of the drinking]:

No. Somebody else said that, but that’s one thing - I’ve never put any weight on. It was just a bad shot, the one in Robert John’s book? […] t’s a real shitty picture - thanks Robert - looking up from right in front of the stage. I just take shitty photos!


In 2002 Duff would claim no one had said anything about him drinking himself to death and specifically how bloated he became:

But look at me. Look at pictures of me from '87 to '94. I started out as this thin rock dude, and by the end I looked like Elvis in his later years. Why didn't anybody say anything?


Looking back at this period, Gilby and Matt would describe the state of Duff:

Duff was in terrible shape. Terrible shape. He could barely speak.

I’d be on stage and I’d hear “brrrhh!” I’d look over and Duff would be laid down, his bass guitar on the stage and him passed out.


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Post by Soulmonster on Sat 20 Jun 2020 - 6:10

MAY 22-30, 1993
THE SKIN N' BONES TOUR, THE IZZY SHOWS


After a few weeks break the band continued its tour. This time they would return to Europe and Slash would explain why:

In all honesty, the reason that we're going back to Europe, is… most, 75 percent of the tour is focused on places we've never been. And the unfortunate thing about Europe is that… aah, like in the States we can play arenas, we can go anywhere from theatres to arenas to… to stadiums. And there's even in between venues, that you can play. And in Europe you have, little tiny clubs, theatres and stadiums. So, we have to play, you know, the gig that is gonna facilitate our show.

Which means that we're going back into stadiums again. And so in some of the countries that we want to play in, the only place we can play in is in the stadiums that we have played in already. But, uuh, everybody travels far and wide to those gigs from all over the country. It's a lot different then playing in the States. So if we wanted to make up a gig that we couldn't have done, because we couldn't have gone in to that particular little city. If we go to, you know, the main stadium in the country, then those people will commute to get there. So, you end up playing same country over and over again. So people keep travelling from different cities, if that makes any sense. It's basically just to reach a bunch of people that you haven't reached before.


For the first five shows Izzy was substituting Gilby who had suffered a broken wrist. Brian May was also back as the opener.

The first show took place on May 22, 1993 at Hayarkon Park in Tel Aviv, Israel. During the show the band would play a rendition of the Jewish celebrations song "Hava Nagila" and Axl would wear a t-shirt saying, "Guns N' Moses" [Guns N' Roses Use Your Illusion tour diary, unknown author and date].


"Guns N' Moses"


Curiously during a show in 2002, Axl would talk about how drugged out Izzy had been at shows resulting in his amps being turned down, and seemingly mention this show as an example:

You know, I read something somewhere. Someone was writing an article about my "other" friends, and they wrote this thing about how, “You know something, in the old days” – you know, “there was a lot of problems in the technical areas of the band. Izzy couldn’t hear himself”... (laughs) The reason that Izzy couldn’t hear himself – this isn’t being mean, this was... – is that our roadies would stand behind Izzy’s amps, cuz Izzy would be so whacked out of his mind that he would basically be playing a different song in a different key, and the only way we could do the songs was... Every time he would go to his amps, he would turn his amps up and he would turn around to the crowd. When he would turn around to the crowd, the roadies would reach around and turn his amps back down so that we could play the song. That worked especially well in Tel Aviv (laughs). Just a little tidbit there for your trivial pursuit.


There is no reason to believe that Izzy was under the influence while touring with Guns N' Roses in 1993, but many band members would claim he came unprepared for the tour and it is a possibility that he was so rusty they turned down his amps. It is also possible Axl mistakes this gig for another earlier in the band's history when Izzy was indeed using drugs.

The gig in Israel was great, but the press response was inaccurate about how important the gig was to us. they seemed to think we used that particular show as a rehersal but it was the second leg of our international tour and it was the first time that we had played with Izzy in two years. But we had a REALLY good time and we love the country.


While in Israel the band visited Jerusalem [MTV, May 1993].

The next show took place on May 24 at the Olympic Stadium in Athens, Greece.

[Talking about the crowd in Athens]: At first they were a bit (?). I guess a bunch of bands have cancelled for whatever reasons. So the fans were a bit (?) at first and apprehensive. But once we started on, the crowd really got into it. That was good and all.



Izzy and Slash
May 1993


Before the show members of the crew would be interviewed about the show production and Tom Mayhue, described as Axl’s "on stage health consultant", would talk about Axl using a tent with a humidifier during the show to moisturize his throat:

Basically we’ve got an oxygen rig with a humidifier, which puts moisture back in his throat during the show. Then later we’ll have assorted teas and things like that that he uses. It’s a make-up table with what-have-you - towels, mic stands, tea pot, you name it. We’ve got it all in here.


Slash would also be asked if he playing in front of so many people frightened him:

You know, we’re used to doing it. We’ve been it for a while, but I have to admit that the couple of hours before we get on stage are pretty tense, especially because we’re not what you’d call a very rehearsed band. So if we have a good night it totally depends on how we get on together on stage and the way the building sounds, or the venue sounds, and what the kids are like. So you never know exactly what it’s gonna be like every night.


And on how the tour has changed:

Well, right now we don’t have that big band that we were carrying around before, and we’re doing an acoustic set. That’s a big difference. The thing is, like, we did the show in Israel the other night and Izzy was playing with us because Gilby broke his wrist, so that was interesting in itself - I think we’re one of the first stadium bands who’s replaced their replacement with the original guitar player. And we went up there and we played pretty much like a club band. There was a small stage and we were loose, and Izzy hadn’t played with us in a long time, and, basically, had no idea what the set was like, and we didn’t know what he was gonna be like – and it was all pretty much spontaneous.


And the frustration of not being able to explore the places they visit:

When you get to go somewhere in a different country, because of the fact that you’re confined to a hotel most of the time, it’s actually a little frustrating. You know, because it’s exciting when you get into the airport, into an entirely different culture, and you go straight to the hotel. And that’s basically it until the gig, because the hysteria level is so high; which, you know, I’m not complaining or anything, but it does get to be a drag, cuz you can’t go out and experience it, except if you pick some time in between, say, tour dates and just gather maybe one or two people and just go on your own. When the whole entourage is in town, everybody knows; there’s no escaping it.


Slash and Dizzy would also talk about how the idea of having an acoustic set came:

I think it’s a blast. When we first started rehearsals to do that, I remember we brought out, like, all those stools, and we were sitting there doing (does gesture of playing guitar). And I remember Axl at the rehearsal is like, “No way, we can’t do this.” He’s like, “We need a couch - and a coffee table.” You know, and it just looks like your living room now, right? (?) And we brought the couch out there, and the table, and got the guy to serve the pizza. You know, it’s like sitting around in your house jamming. And that’s, basically, what you could do to get stuff started out. In some way we’re trying to portray that to the audience and make it more real. I think it’s a lot of fun for us and I think most of the people get into it in the same way.

A lot of diehards and, like, metalheads will be like, “Oh, man, they do, like, a 20-minute really boring acoustic set.” But we have a great time doing it and the songs are there. And, you know, we just do whatever we feel like, which makes it fun for us, and I think people can read that more than when they see a band that’s out there doing it extensively like a job and just doing the same ritual routine over and over and over again. I can name a lot of bands that I know that would actually flag me and name Guns N’ Roses, but I won’t name them. But there are bands out there doing it, and they’ve been doing it for a long time.


The next show  was on May 26 at Inönü Stadyumu in Istanbul, Turkey.

We have to go to Turkey tomorrow and, you know, we might never come back from there. So it’s like our last right to life, I say – something like that.

On our way to Istanbul (Turkey), we were wondering if the kids there knew who we were. We arrived at the stadium and there was 80,000 people. I wouldn't say that it’s the most rock 'n' roll city, but the environment was very special. There are a lot of metal fans in Asia.


During the show in Turkey, Axl would have to warn the audience:

If you don't stop throwing lit sparklers at each other, someone will get hurt and the band will be forced to leave the stadium.
Guns N' Roses Use Your Illusion tour diary, unknown author and date


Looking back at the show in Turkey:

You know, it hit me when we flew from Athens into Istanbul and I was looking out of the plane and it reminded me of like a Warner Brothers cartoon -- "There's Asia Minor," you know? The Iraq war was going on, the first one. We were about 120 kilometers outside of the no-fly zone and all that kind of stuff. And we'd fly into this Istanbul Airport, [the plane] comes up to the line, surrounded, soldiers, everything. And we just drove straight into the gate, and I said, "Is anybody going to know who we are here?"

But we get there and there's 80,000 brown-skinned people with leather jackets on, singing every song in English. It just blew my mind. And we got back in our cars, went straight back to the plane, and flew out of there.


They then headed to England for two shows on May 29 and 30 at the National Bowl in Milton Keynes. These would be the final shows with Izzy playing full sets. He would come back to play with various incarnations of Guns N' Roses later, but never for a full show.

For the second show at Milton Keynes Gilby had returned, although he didn't play and instead saw the show from backstage until he was called on to sing on 'Dead Flowers':

I came to Izzy's last gig in Milton Keynes in England and I sat by the side of the stage. I thought "but what's happening here. This is my part!". Even though it was Izzy's from the beginning. He used all my old equipment too, so it felt very weird. Then I went on-stage and sang a song with the band. I didn't notice I sang it on my own! We never rehearse and Axl came to me and said, "we do a cover of Rolling Stones. Izzy knows everything with Stones" and so we played "Dead Flowers". Axl said, "hit it!" and I thought we were gonna sing together. There I was in front of 50,000 people and sang [laughs].



Review in The Guardian
May 31, 1993


During the show, Ronnie Wood and Mike Michael Monroe would join the band on stage [Guns N' Roses Use Your Illusion tour diary, unknown author and date].


Izzy, Gilby and Ronnie Wood
Milton Keynes, May 1993


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16. JANUARY-JULY 1993: THE SKIN N' BONES TOUR; END OF AN ERA Empty Re: 16. JANUARY-JULY 1993: THE SKIN N' BONES TOUR; END OF AN ERA

Post by Soulmonster on Sat 20 Jun 2020 - 6:10

HOW THE IZZY SHOWS AFFECTED HIS RELATIONSHIP WITH THE BAND


IZZY COMES UNPREPARED


Slash was disappointed with Izzy's performances and what he would claim was a couldn't-care-less attitude:

I really looked forward to playing with him again and really hoped that he had changed. I booked a place before the first gigs in Tel Aviv to rehearse. But Izzy thought it was unnecessary, that it was just wasted time. He hadn't changed one bit and therefore the gigs turned out the way they did. [...] Izzy simply doesn't like playing rock at the level where we are right no. We understand it no and I'm personally very fucking disappointed at his previous behavior.

And we just recently played with Izzy and Izzy is just not interested in this business anymore.


Axl would lately corroborate on this when he mentioned they had to turn his amps down during shows:

You know, I read something somewhere. Someone was writing an article about my other friends. And they wrote this thing about how 'in the old days, you know, there were lots of problems and technical errors of the band and Izzy couldn't hear himself' [laughing] The reason that Izzy couldn't hear himself - this isn't being mean - is our roadies would stand behind Izzy's amp, 'cause Izzy would be so whacked out of his mind that he would basically be playing a different song in the wrong key, and the only way we could do the songs was that every time he would go to him amps, he would turn his amps up and turn around to the crowd. When he would turn around to the crowd the roadie would reach around and turn his amps back down so that we could play the song. That worked especially well in Tel Aviv [laughter] Just a full tippit there for your Trivia Pursuit.


This could be read as Axl implying that Izzy was back on drugs again, but this is likely a misunderstanding and Axl was talking about Izzy not remembering the songs or not playing them well enough.

Duff would also confirm that Izzy couldn't remember how to play all the song but that he was happy to have his friend back:

Myself, I've always been friends with Izzy, and so it’s really good, like, him stepping back in. It’s okay, I mean he’s forgotten to do the songs (laughs). But that’s alright, you know. People know that he hasn’t played with us for over two years, so they’re not gonna expect crystal clear, perfect sounds coming off the stage. Cuz they definitely are not. Not that I just think it’s Izzy, I mean everybody. We’ve never been perfect.

[Izzy] had his reasons for quitting and he is his own man; if he’s not happy then screw it. So him coming back was neat. He was really excited and it was like old times with him playing next to me and we just goofed off. He had nothing to lose: he could make all the mistakes he wanted!



HEALING THE WOUNDS?


After Izzy played with the band for five shows in May 1993, when stepping in for an injured Gilby, Slash would admit it was nice to see the guy again, and discuss the resentment he had from how Izzy quit the band:

And when [Izzy] finally quit it was, like, such short notice and so close to the next leg of the tour. And he didn’t call any of the guys in the band; he just called management and sent, like, a letter of resignation. So there was a lot of tension going on when all that finally came to light, that drift that was going on. And then having to find another guitar player and all that kind of stuff. And I think there was a bit of resentment for a while, and at this point – you know, I’ve known him for so long, I can’t be mad at the guy. And it was great to see him, so, yeah, it’s, like I said, water under the bridge.


Matt and Duff would concur:

It feels good, cuz, you know, when he left the band, it was a little weird. I mean, he had different reasons, he was feeling like he kind of wanted to do his own thing, and when we spilt we hadn’t really spoken with each other. I spoke with him a few times, Duff spoke with him a few times, but, you know, not like it used to be. So when he came back, at first when I saw him, it was a little strange. But once we got up on stage it feels like the old days. I look over at him now and it’s like, “Wow, there’s Izzy.” It’s kind of trippy.

It was fun, and Izzy had nothing to lose. The gigs were cool. I was sober, and he was sober, so we hung out a bit. Out of all of us, I still stayed in contact with Izzy, and I know how he is.

[Whether it would help to heal the wounds]: Yeah, I think so. I think it’s helped heal the wounds to a lot of other people too. A lot of people thought that we had a lot of conflict amongst us with Izzy and stuff. But it’s not true. And for him to come back is obviously – you know, it’s cool.

Oh, it was great [playing with Izzy again], I'm still friends with him. Izzy's problem was touring, he doesn’t like it at all.

And when [Izzy] did the 5 shows with us to replace Gilby, I said: "Wow, this guy is a part of the chemistry, when he plays, it sounds totally like Guns N' Roses."
Hard Rock, September 1996; translated from French



REOPENING THE WOUNDS


But Izzy was also not happy about the shows and would complain about the state of his bandmates:

I didn’t actually say ‘see you’ cos they were all fucked up. Duff and these guys, they didn’t even recognise me. It was really bizarre. It was like playing with zombies. Ah, man, it was just horrible. Nobody was laughing anymore…
Classic Rock, 2001

I did those shows and I didn't really have fun because Duff and Slash were still as wasted as before. I don't want to act like I was a saint, I also did everything, but when you're sober, there's nothing funny about seeing your friends like that. ; translated from French


And in November 1993 Slash would say scathing things about Izzy:

During Appetite..., Lies and Use Your... I had to put up with Izzy the whole time. I never liked playing with him. It was wonderful to escape him on this record. It sounds tighter and so much cooler than anything we've done before. I always got irritated over Izzy's way of playing. It didn't sound right. Before "Spaghetti", we erased his guitar and Gilby put on a new one. It sounded perfect!
[Okej, November 1993; translated from Swedish


This interview was originally in Swedish and we don't have access to the original to verify the translation. It could also be that Slash felt he could open up more at the time to a more obscure Swedish magazine.

Izzy's opinions of his former band mates had also not changed after the five dates:

We never talked about me returning full-time to GN'R. And, quite frankly, it wouldn't be something that I'd consider in the slightest. Honestly, nothing had changed. Going back into the band was a strange and uncomfortable experience on the whole. It was cool in a way to be able to step back into something I'd left behind and to judge whether anything had improved, but I just found that it hadn't. It made me realise why I was glad to get out in the first place.

The band's egos are way out of control. Axl and Slash had the same attitude towards me as they did before I left, and there is a feeling of unreality about them. They lead isolated lives and don't seem to be in touch anymore with the real world. I spent all my time hanging out with the roadies. You know how many times i saw any of the band offstage? Once, that was Slash in London!

But it was easier to get up onstage with GN'R and do a two-hour set than to do a two-hour stint with the Ju Ju Hounds. All I had to do with Guns was play guitar on a set of songs I knew already. With my own band, I have the added pressure of singing as well. But if you ask me which one I prefer, there's no contest - the Ju Jus have so much more fun!

[…]

The saddest thing about GN'R was that all those I met in the early days with the band, people who used to hang out with us, I came across on the Ju Ju Hounds tour everywhere we went, which was great, but I saw none of them when I did those few shows with Guns. It's as if the band don't wanna know them anymore, because they've become too important!

I didn't actually say 'see you' cos they were all fucked up. They didn't even recognize me. It was really bizarre. It was like playing with zombies. Ah man, it was just horrible. Nobody was laughing anymore...


And Gilby would now confirm that Izzy had not enjoyed the experience of playing with the band:

It was nice - as soon as I got home, Izzy called me and we talked for a while. He just did it to see the guys, cos he hadn't seen 'em in a while. And then it was funny because I had Izzy on one line going, `When are you coming back? I gotta get out of here!', and Slash was on the other line going, `When are you coming back. We gotta get him out of here!.' It was the funniest thing. [...] They did five shows without me, and I didn't get to go because I was in surgery. And then I got in for the last Milton Keynes show. We jammed. It was nice, because I hadn't seen Izzy in a long time. [...] What's kinda cool is they just kinda realised, `Oh, Gilby really is a part of the band and Izzy's not a part of the band any more'. It worked out the best for everybody, cos Izzy didn't want back in any more than they wanted him back in. But it was fun, it was kinda cool, and I think it was really special for anybody who got to see any of those shows.

After having rehearsed with Izzy for a week in Israel Slash called me and asked, "when will you come back? Are you sure you can't come a little earlier?" I think Izzy had fun during those weeks but it wasn't his thing really. They thought it was good that Izzy was there, but they didn't feel comfortable with him. I talked with Izzy on the phone all the time. I even played with him later on-stage in England. […] I came out of the hospital late after having went through a surgeon operation. Couldn't even look at the band, but had to stay in a hospital in USA. I came to Izzy's last gig in Milton Keynes in England and I sat by the side of the stage. I thought "but what's happening here. This is my part!". Even though it was Izzy's from the beginning. He used all my old equipment too, so it felt very weird.


After the five shows Axl would again start slamming Izzy from stage [Popular 1, September 1993], something Izzy would be asked to comment upon:

Yeah, it was the same old story with Axl. When he wants something from you he's on the phone being all nice and friendly. As soon as your usefulness has run out he turns on you. He's said some shit about me in the past, and right after I'd done those dates he was back in the media putting me down. He's an odd guy. But I'm not worried about GN'R anymore.


Izzy would also talk about the rumors that GN'R was falling apart:

People keep asking me if the band will split up; I don't know and I don't really care. Duff has just put out his own solo album. He sent me a copy and it's...okay. He's put a band together and will tour and I wish him luck. Will he be the next to jump ship? Who can tell anything with that band!

The only time that I've spoken to anyone from Guns since those dates was when I called Slash a couple of months ago. Steven Adler's law suit against the band has finally come to trial. I am not involved directly, but I called Slash to find out what was going on.


And when asked if he would be writing with GN'R again:

As for writing again with GN'R...Somehow I don't think so!


When interviewed together in January 1994, Slash and Axl would echo this when answering the question on whether there was any truth to rumors that Izzy would write with them:


None at all! […] Never again! No, not at all.

Especially not to help record things.



A FINANCIAL CONFLICT THE REASON FOR THE WORSENING RFELATIONSHIP?


Axl would also imply that there had been a financial conflict between Izzy and the band caused by Izzy replacing Gilby for the five shows in May/June 1993:

We brought Izzy back in Europe when Gilby had hurt his arm. And then we kinda got blackmailed and we haven't… We really don't wanna have anything to do with Izzy ever since then.

In all honesty, it was cool to get him back. When the idea came…

And it was cool when he went away! [laughs].

We thought it was a good idea to, you know, call him up and see if he wanted to come down and hang out and do a couple of gigs. And then it turned sour at the end so… It took us right back to square one.

It was nice while it lasted.


In the January 1994 issue of Guitar Player Slash would again say scathing things about Izzy:

['The Spaghetti Incident?'] was recorded the way I'd prefer to do any Guns N' Roses record. When we did Appetite and Use Your Illusion, I had to deal with Izzy. I never liked playing with Izzy the whole time I've been in this band. It was great not having to deal with him on this record. It sounds a lot tighter, or at least a little more cool than it sounded before. I always used to get bummed out about certain songs on Appetite that Izzy didn't play right. For this record, we took off all of Izzy's tracks and Gilby played them. I wasn't there when Gilby did it, but when I got the tapes back, it was a relief. It sounded perfect.


The explanation for Axl and Slash's again attacking Izzy from stage and in interviews might have been that Izzy demanded a large sum of money for playing the last show with the band:

It was really nice at first, because regardless of whatever animosity, it wasn't anything so deep-rooted that it didn't blow over. […] So, we hung out, we went shopping in London together, we had fun. Then right towards the end he turned around and did certain things that were so f**ked. Right towards the fifth date, because of his hand Gilby still wasn't sure it he was going to be able to play, and Izzy all of a sudden turned around and stabbed us in the back again, asked for an amazing amount of money to do one show - It's like, 'I can't believe this, go home. […] That's the last time we talked. I don't know what's going on in his head...

Since I couldn't play it was intended that Izzy was going to take my place for the first five shows and then stay if he was needed. We didn't know if I could play, because I held a guitar for the first time exactly before my "first" gig. Izzy had promised to stay with us, but after Milton Keynes he said, "I call to see if you need me" and went off. Axl was really pissed. […] This is not my opinion, but what the others have told me - there was a lot of bad blood between Axl and Izzy and when they then sat down and talked everything was cool. They had fun together but as soon as Izzy had made his money he left. And now there's bad blood again.


It is not entirely clear if they had negotiated four shows and then Izzy demanded unexpectedly much money for a fifth show that became necessary, or if they had negotiated five shows and then he demanded unexpectedly much money for a potential sixth that didn't happen.
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16. JANUARY-JULY 1993: THE SKIN N' BONES TOUR; END OF AN ERA Empty Re: 16. JANUARY-JULY 1993: THE SKIN N' BONES TOUR; END OF AN ERA

Post by Soulmonster on Sat 20 Jun 2020 - 6:11

AXL BUYS A HOUSE IN MALIBU AND WANTS TO CROON WITH SINATRA


In June 1993 it would be reported that Axl had bought a mansion in Malibu, CA [Hard Rock (France), June 1993]. The mansion, a 700 m2 home of 5 bedrooms, faced the Pacific Ocean and cost $3.9 million [Hard Rock (France), June 1993].

At the same time, it would be reported that Axl had refused to star in commercial for the Lipton Tea brand [Hard Rock (France), June 1993] although he had earlier been described to be "philosophically intrigued" by the prospect of becoming an actor [Entertainment Weekly, September 28, 1992]. He would, though, consider singing on Frank Sinatra's new album, "Duets", but nothing came of this [Newsweek, September 5, 1993].

In an interview published in various magazines Axl would talk about collecting antique crucifixes, and looking for such at antique shops in South America [Hit Parader, June 1993; RAW 1993]. He would also mention trying to get back in skateboarding as a hobby:

I just bought a skate board, and I was thinking of getting back into that. I can do that then because if I break my arm, I won't have to miss any tour dates because I won't be on tour anymore! I bought a new house, so I guess I'll try to set that up and get some stability in my life. I'll be happy doing some domestic things. Stephanie and I have worked very hard to try and have a personal life, but it's not easy. We've tried to stay in touch as much as possible, but our lives are such fast-moving things. Five months for us, are like five years for most people.
Hit Parader, June 1993; interview done in December 1992


In early 1994 Axl would be asked what he does in his spare time, and like Slash (see other chapter) say that business and personal life overlapped:

There's no real split between business and personal things, so it's still Guns N' Roses. I mean, I don't know when we'll go out again. We're aiming at '96 and we'll probably be doing a lot of recording, and trying to put a lot of things between now and then. But, we're still trying to move ahead as… And just keep this moving as hard as we can. So, there's not really a whole lot of free-time. I mean, now and then you kick back watching a movie or something. […] Other than that, it's just trying to keep your life together. And people from taking it away.


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16. JANUARY-JULY 1993: THE SKIN N' BONES TOUR; END OF AN ERA Empty Re: 16. JANUARY-JULY 1993: THE SKIN N' BONES TOUR; END OF AN ERA

Post by Soulmonster on Sat 20 Jun 2020 - 6:11

JUNE, 1993
GILBY BECOMES A DAD


Gilby had his first baby in June 1993:

I think everything's gonna change. It's gonna be strange because it's hard to say, but there's gonna be someone coming into my life who's gonna be the most important thing. […] It's gonna be weird, because me and Daniella just mess around a lot, but now there's gonna be someone who's gonna take everything from us. You know, all of our attention. Everything we do is gonna be for the baby.

I’m a papa. I have a little baby daughter, her name is Francesca. She’s a sweetheart. I’ve never thought of myself as a father figure (laughs). But she is such a sweetheart, and I don’t even look at it like, you know, “I’m your father.” It’s like, we’re like a new team, me, my wife and my daughter now.


When asked if Slash is going to be the godfather:

No. I wouldn't trust him with it - he wouldn't know what to do! No, he's a pretty good father. He's got a baby cougar - it's like having a kid, and he's been really good with it.


As for what has changed since joining GN'R:

As a person, I don't think I've changed at all. I don't think I've mellowed or gotten wilder. I think I'm pretty much the same. […] The only thing that's different is that financial things are more taken care of. But then, again they're not... You know, I have a house and I got more cars and motorcycles, but now I gotta work to pay for 'em! People always say, `Well, you have more money'... I say, `Maybe I have a couple more zeros, but my debts also have a couple more zeros'!

I mean, obviously, from the days of – you know your house is now paid for, I have cars that are paid for; and, you know, you get to buy a couple of toys here and there. So it’s alright
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16. JANUARY-JULY 1993: THE SKIN N' BONES TOUR; END OF AN ERA Empty Re: 16. JANUARY-JULY 1993: THE SKIN N' BONES TOUR; END OF AN ERA

Post by Soulmonster on Sat 20 Jun 2020 - 6:12

JUNE 2-19, 1993
THE SKIN N' BONES TOUR, EUROPEAN LEG


The first took place at June 2 at Praterstadion in Vienna, Austria. Gilby was now back in the band after his break due to a broken arm. He had flown out a hand specialist from the US to help him with his recovery and before, during and after the show, he packed his arm with ice to help reduce the swelling [Guns N' Roses Use Your Illusion tour diary, unknown author and date].

before heading to Netherlands for two shows on June 5 and 6 at the Stadspark De Goffert in Nijmegen. After the first show, band members with their wives would go see a live sex show [Guns N' Roses Use Your Illusion tour diary, unknown author and date]. The Cult opened for the second show, and Matt would join them on stage for their last song of the set [Guns N' Roses Use Your Illusion tour diary, unknown author and date].

Then followed a June 8 show at Gentofte Stadion in Copenhagen, Denmark.


Axl
June 8, 1993


After the show Dizzy would spend the night playing pool at a new friend's bar before taking the owner and his wife Lisa, who was pregnant, our for breakfast in the morning [Guns N' Roses Use Your Illusion tour diary, unknown author and date].

The next show was on June 10 at Valle Hovin in Oslo, Norway. While in Oslo Duff would visit a dentist to have a tooth removed:

Yeah, I still have it! It’s a big ugly fuckin’ big-ass three fuckin’ rooted tooth! It doesn’t look human, man, It’s like this THING but it came out of my mouth and now I have this huge gap. They coulda saved it, but I didn’t have the time to undergo six weeks of root canal shit and it hurt so bad I just said, ‘Please, please get it out!!! And it was so big and ugly I had to keep it!



Norwegian flags adorning Matt's drum set
June 10, 1993


The band then travelled to Sweden for a show on June 12 at Stockholms Stadion in Stockholm:

[Talking about the show in Stockholm]: The only thing that was screwed was that it rained all day. The stage was completely soaked. I found it really hard to try to run around on stage, because it was so fucking wet. Otherwise it was great. The crowd was fucking awesome.


The next show as on June 16 show at Fussballstadion St. Jakob in Basel, Switzerland. For the Basel show, Blind Melon was back as the opener together with The Quireboys. And instead of the normal guy bringing the band pizza, it was a nude Shannon Hoon (the singer of Blind Melon) that came on stage. He proceeded to play congas with the band, still stark naked, before exiting the show and being immediately arrested by police waiting on the side of the stage [Craig Duswalt, Welcome To My Jungle, BenBella Books, May 2014].


Shannon Hoon serving pizza
June 16, 1993


Before the show the band would rehearse a new song, but it was not playing at the show [Guns N' Roses Use Your Illusion tour diary, unknown author and date].

The band then travelled to Weserstadion in Bremen, Germany for a show on June 18 and Müngersdorfer Stadion in Cologne, Germany on June 19.

During this European leg tattoo artist Kevin Quinn would travel with the band:

I did a few tattoos on the tour for Dizzy, Matt and Duff. But I was also shown Europe first class with private jets and through the eyes of the band itself.
The South Bend Tribune, March 1, 2001


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16. JANUARY-JULY 1993: THE SKIN N' BONES TOUR; END OF AN ERA Empty Re: 16. JANUARY-JULY 1993: THE SKIN N' BONES TOUR; END OF AN ERA

Post by Soulmonster on Sat 20 Jun 2020 - 6:12

JUNE 22, 1993
THE MAKIN' OF THE F@*!ING VIDEOS


In June 1993, the first two of three "the making of" videos would be released, trying to explain the stories behind the 'Don't Cry' (June 22, 1993), 'November Rain' (June 1993) and the forthcoming 'Estranged' video (1994), and documenting their filming.

Looking back at the three videos:

Don’t Cry, it’s like, personally I’m more proud of that than anything I’ve done as far as work-wise. November Rain, I’m really proud of and really happy with, but there was certain things that I wasn’t completely involved in, that I was in Don’t Cry and that made it more part of me. And, you know, November Rain was exactly what we wanted it to be, but it’s a more black-and-white video where you can tell what’s happening, while in Don’t Cry it was more surreal.

Those videos are hard to look at. I mean, the “Making of” those are hard to look at and hard to put out. [Making of] November Rain was very hard to put out. I mean, I was in the process of being fucked over when [Making of] November Rain was coming out, but I put it out anyway. But there was a period of time where I was going to buy the video from the band, which would have put me fucking flat broke at that time and probably owing money. I was gonna buy the video and put it in storage, and no one would’ve ever seen it. But I decided to rise to it and put it out.

You know, I’ve worked with Andy [Morahan] a lot, and there’s a lot of trust involved. And it’s ended up going way over the top and different scenes, but yet I know that, like, a feeling that we were trying to convey is still there.


With the music videos the band was accused of being indulgent:

Yeah, indulgent, right. It’s funny ‘cos I always thought music was indulgent in the first place. Putting out two double albums might be indulgent, but if you ask me we’re musicians doing exactly what the fuck we want to do and having the space to do it. We’ve never adhered to industry standards and I felt that going out there and playing those songs that no-one had heard in front of 20,000-60,000 people per night was pretty ballsy. I can’t see Bon Blow-me doing that, can you? Otherwise they’d be out there now. I don’t think we bored too many people and, in fact, as a live band I think we showed exactly where our confidence lies. No one told us to play bund of hits and I think we managed to crossover from being a band that people went to see to get fucked up to, to a band that people actually listen to, that’s cool, whatever anyone says.

[From the filming of the 'Don't Cry' music video]: It’s very self-indulgent. Extremely self-indulgent. So self-indulgent, that I’m gonna film three versions of myself tonight (laughs).


Axl's band mates didn't always fully understand the videos and stories, nor appreciate the effort:

I have no idea what it means at all. I mean, just the obvious of what anybody that watches it gets, but, you know, when you’re doing it – […] I was on the inside and I’m still confused. I’m waiting for the movie to come out.

Yeah well, you know what? Most of us don't know the meaning either! I have no idea what they mean (laughing). You know, it's so strange, 'cause you're doing all the parts and stuff, and you don't even think about that. And then you see the finished product and you go, ‘Wait a minute, she just died — Why?' (laughs) You know, I have no idea! […] supposedly we're doing a movie in which a lot of the questions from the other videos and stuff are gonna be answered. Ever since I've been in the group we've been filming and, at the end of this tour, we’re gonna put it together — basically, we're going to make it up later (laughs).

Both those videos, even if you don’t understand them or you can’t make any sense of them, they’re very compelling to watch, because you wanna try and figure it out, you know? I mean, I catch myself, like, flipping through channels and I hit the (?) and I see one of our songs, I’ll stop for a minute, you know, and look at it, and it means something new to me every time I see it.

I don’t really get into the video aspect of it that much. I come up with my idea for my guitar solo, and then Axl – you know, the big cinema graphic sequences that Axl gets into writing and all that. I’m just, you know, driving a car off the cliff, okay?

Those videos don’t have a lot to do with me, per se. I mean the playing on the songs that I do is serious, and then I just write my own part for my guitar solo. All the rest of it is Axl getting into the whole story and all that. So I’m not there for the whole thing. But even my own parts, I have to admit, are a bit of a pain in the ass.

Some of these video shoots go on forever, man. You know, they’ll start at, like, I don’t know, whatever hour of the day, noon, and go till 10:00 the next morning. I never realized or fathomed what goes into the making of such a video. It’s hard, I mean, just being around through the whole time. The waiting is the hardest part. So it’s a 24-hour thing, you know? Into the next day.

We do this all over and it gets to be 6:00 in the morning, you know, and it’s like, “Hey, you guys have enough shots of me, man” (laughs).

[Estranged] is the first video I’ve actually really shown up that much. November Rain just – I’m not in that video that much, because it drove me nuts making it.

I don’t know, I don’t know. I’ll be probably explaining this video for the next year, too, just like the last one – and not knowing what I’m talking about and just blabbering (laughs).

I think it’s cool that it’s not obvious what it’s all about. It’ll keep you guessing forever. I mean, nobody’s ever gonna actually come out and say, “This is exactly what this means here” and “Don’t you get it?” So it’s up to the viewer. I think that’s cool.

[Being asked if he knew what the trilogy was all about]: Only sort of in a voyeuristic kind of way. I didn't get involved in the content. I just wrote my own particular guitar solo and didn't have much to do with the rest of the video, which made it a bit more interesting and/or confusing. Trust me, if you talked to Axl, he'd know definitely what it was all about.


In fact, Slash had already in early 1989 indicated he wasn't very fond of making music videos:

It depends... We’ve done three videos already ['Welcome to the Jungle', 'Paradise City' and 'Sweet Child O' Mine'] - four now, with the new one we’ve just done for “Patience”. That was OK. Easy enough... I just sat in this bed playing with my snakes. It was kind of cool. There’s something about all our videos I like. I just don’t like the boring side of actually making them. I’d always rather be doing something else...
Mick Wall, GUNS N' ROSES: The Most Dangerous Band in the World, Sidgwick & Jackson, U.K. 1991, 1993; interview from March 1989


Although it wasn't all negative, and they would compliment the results:

Talking about whether the trilogy heralded anew time for the band]:The one cool thing about the [Estranged] video is that if you watch all three in a row, ‘Estranged’ is the only one where nobody dies at the end. That’s one thing. We’re done with all this bullshit negative stuff. […] ‘Estranged’ ended everything with ‘Use Your Illusion...’ that we went through, on an emotional level and everything about our existence in general. It ended it and lightened the whole thing up.

It’s tongue-in-cheek in some ways. It’s really funny, because I’d love to hear a person’s reaction, without them knowing I was listening, to what emotions seep out of that video for them and what their perceptions of the whole thing are - what it really means to them.

Yeah, I think it’s great to do it. I think it’s a great thing between radio and the concept of video, mixing the two together is great. Visuals are always great. But, you know, having to get down there, and be a musician and have to fake it sometimes - which, even if you’re playing live, sometimes you are having to do, you know, take one/take two/take three, and it’s not as natural as it could be. It just goes with the territory; you know, when you’re making movies you have to stop and start, and stop and start, this camera is not on, that camera is not on... But you can do a lot of things with it, and it has more toe to toe kind of relationship with your audience, because you can see something. I mean, it was never a bad idea, to put it that way.

When I first saw Don’t Cry - and I was not associated with the band in any way, and I saw it, I thought it was the coolest video that they’d done. I didn’t understand it at all, but I liked that. I thought it was really, really cool and interesting to see the band do something that different.

I understand it in my own way. And for me to give my explanation of the trilogy would be kind of ridiculous, because I’m sure Axl’s got his. I mean, I know what Axl’s thinking, and Slash, and – I think they’re three very beautiful videos and should be taken as that.

Oh, I think they’re great. They’re amazing. You know, I’m still trying to figure them out, but so it’s always fun when people ask you, “What does that mean?” “Hey, I don’t know.”


I 1995, with Slash and Axl not being on the best of terns, Slash would express more negative feelings about the videos:

What, the big epic ones with dolphins, oceans and stuff? […] I hate doing videos like that. I like to have a video that looks cool, where it’s just the band playing. That’s what I think a cool video is.

Oh God, this is one of the typical questions. To tell you the truth, no, I don’t enjoy it.  I usually just write the scene of my guitar solo, that’s all. But that thing in 'Estranged,' all that scene with me emerging out of the water playing the solo, I didn’t want to do it. I didn’t like it. It's a long story, Axl asked me to do it. I never have anything to do with the concept of the videos and with Axl’s reasons for filming all these scenes. (laughs).
Popular 1, February 1995; translated from Spanish

[Responding to interviewer saying that it seems like Slash spends the eternity of the November Rain video trying to sneak out of shot]: Uh, yeah. Well spotted. That wasn't a conscious thing, but I know what you mean. The concept videos I wasn't into. I wrote my own scenes. The car off the cliff, that was mine. Playing outside the church, that was me, because I wanted to get away from the wedding, ha ha. The only time I really lost a battle on a video was on 'Since I Don't Have You' where I came out of the water. That was something I had nothing to do with, but Axl refused to finish the video unless I did it. But those videos and all that stuff are Axl's way of expressing what's going on with him. I still look at Guns N' Roses as just being more or less a nasty rock'n'roll band, whereas he's got visions of grandeur I just don't relate to."


In February 1995, while doing promotion for the first Snakepit album and talking about the music video for the song Beggars and Hangers-On, Slash would jokingly quip:

There’s no dolphins in it (laughs).


And Duff would say they were all Axl's idea:

They were all Axl's ideas, but there are five guys in a band and everyone's got an opinion. At the time, I think the record company was afraid of telling us not to do them. They saw what was happening too, but when you are generating such big money no one's telling you what you have to do. Oh well, it's done and my take is, if it were for me we would never have done those videos. But it was not in my hands.

[…] all that shit about the limousine and that. C'mon man, don't show your fucking house and the limousine! You're going to alienate all your fans! The fans of our first record were rednecks, punks, and rockers. We were in this street level and suddenly everyone was bringing their parents to our shows. Like in "November Rain". I love the song, but the video. Beautiful people, we became beautiful people.


In 2004 Slash would talk about how the videos had separated the band:

That’s where we sort of completely separated. This group of guys is here and this other guy is on this page.


Last edited by Soulmonster on Mon 5 Oct 2020 - 7:11; edited 1 time in total
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16. JANUARY-JULY 1993: THE SKIN N' BONES TOUR; END OF AN ERA Empty Re: 16. JANUARY-JULY 1993: THE SKIN N' BONES TOUR; END OF AN ERA

Post by Soulmonster on Sat 20 Jun 2020 - 6:13

JUNE 1993
DIZZY CALMS DOWN


Dizzy continued to be a low-key member of the band, doing little press and generally operating under the radar. In mid-1993 he would do a rare interview and mention getting tired from the touring:

I feel worn out as we speak. We’ve been touring USA and Canada non-stop in the last two months. I miss my home, my wife, my kids, my dogs, my cats. […] I don’t have a problem with touring. What bothers me is the continuous travelling to be in a different city every night... You want to go to a club, you get into a taxi, the driver asks where you’re going, and you’re like, “I don’t know!” You don’t even know what hotel you’re staying at or which room. It’s weird. It isn’t natural. It isn’t normal!
Pop & Rock, June 1993; translated from Greek


The band had also slowed down the partying:

We still like to have a good time, but we don’t overindulge like we did in the past. It’s a bit difficult to resist when you become successful and you can find anything for free. It’s only when you start to lose friends that you realise what’s happening. You realise that the risk is too big and that you’re lucky to be alive!
Pop & Rock, June 1993; translated from Greek


For Dizzy's case, part of this could be the pregnancy of his wife Lisa and the expected fatherhood [Guns N' Roses Use Your Illusion tour diary, unknown author and date]. They had become parents to the girl Skye in 1992.


Axl and Skye
1990s


Liza, Dizzy and Skye
1990s
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16. JANUARY-JULY 1993: THE SKIN N' BONES TOUR; END OF AN ERA Empty Re: 16. JANUARY-JULY 1993: THE SKIN N' BONES TOUR; END OF AN ERA

Post by Soulmonster on Sat 20 Jun 2020 - 6:13

JUNE 22-JULY 13, 1993
THE SKIN N' BONES TOUR, LAST PART OF THE EUROPEAN LEG


The band then travelled tp Wildparkstadion in Karlsruhe, Germany for a show on June 22. Before this show Slash would record new music on his portable studio [Guns N' Roses Use Your Illusion tour diary, unknown author and date]. For the show, the support act Suicidal Tendencies failed to show up because they were double booked and currently in Italy [Guns N' Roses Use Your Illusion tour diary, unknown author and date]. Brian May played a longer set to compensate [Guns N' Roses Use Your Illusion tour diary, unknown author and date].

Then followed Waldstadion in Frankfurt, Germany, on June 25 and Olympiastadion in Munich, Germany, on June 26. At the show in Munich Axl would borrow the jacket from a Red Cross worker and wear it for the remainder of the show [Guns N' Roses Use Your Illusion tour diary, unknown author and date].

The band then travelled to Italy for two shows at Modena Stadio in Modena, Italy on June 29 and 30. After the first Modena show, as Axl was being brought back to his hotel with his entourage of Earl the bodyguard and Axl's two assistents, their limo was swarmed by fans who wanted to get to Axl. Despite "protocol" Axl decided to exit the limo and try to get into the hotel by himself. This led to a scuffle as Axl's entourage tried to free him from all the fans who wanted to grab and touch him. Axl's two assistants got in a fight with paparazzi who had bumped into Axl and knocked him over. The situation was resolved when a police man fired his gun in the air, causing everybody to pause long enough for Axl and his crew to quickly dart into the hotel [Craig Duswalt, Welcome To My Jungle, BenBella Books, May 2014.].

During the second show, three members of the band's security team brought out Axl's assistant, Robert Finkelstein, bound with his hands behind his back and his legs tied together [Guns N' Roses Use Your Illusion tour diary, unknown author and date]. They dump him in front of the stage, where he remains throughout the entire acoustic set [Guns N' Roses Use Your Illusion tour diary, unknown author and date].

The band then travelled to Spain for a show on July 5 at Estadi Olimpic in Barcelona. For this gig it was Del James who would don the pizza uniform, and then join the band on congas [Guns N' Roses Use Your Illusion tour diary, unknown author and date].

[Talking about the show in Barcelona]: Yeah, it was solid, it was pretty solid.
Popular 1, September 1993; translated from Spanish


Then followed a show on July 6 at Vicente Calderon Stadium in Madrid. Matt and Duff would swap instruments for 'Knockin' on Heaven's Door' [Guns N' Roses Use Your Illusion tour diary, unknown author and date].

Then to France for a show at Zenith de Nancy, Nancy (July 8), where Skid Row drummer Rob Affuso would be the designated pizza delivery boy and play with the band on congas [Guns N' Roses Use Your Illusion tour diary, unknown author and date].

At the following show at the Halle Tony Garnier in Lyon on July 9 tour manager Bill Greer playing congas on 'Used To Love Her' [Guns N' Roses Use Your Illusion tour diary, unknown author and date].

The last two shows of this leg took place at the Werchter Festival Ground in Werchter on July 11 and back to France for a show at the Palais Omnisports de Bercy in Paris on July 13.

This concluded the European leg of the Skin N' Bones tour.

After the tour, Soul Asylum's guitarist Dan Murphy would look back at opening for Guns N' Roses:

Now that was a band that was decidedly full of themselves. There was a real separation of church and state on that tour. A lot of, ‘Don’t get too close to that dressing room.'
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16. JANUARY-JULY 1993: THE SKIN N' BONES TOUR; END OF AN ERA Empty Re: 16. JANUARY-JULY 1993: THE SKIN N' BONES TOUR; END OF AN ERA

Post by Soulmonster on Sat 20 Jun 2020 - 6:14

1991-1994
THE PRESS III


I don't even think [the press] expect us to be nice any more. I think they now see us as their puppets. It's really just sensationalism, like if there's nothing to write about let's talk about Guns N' Roses' s latest antics. When you actually meet them face to face, some of them are a little paranoid, like I'm going to smash a bottle in their face or something. Some of them want you to! [laughs] I haven't been able to figure out the psychology behind that! And if there's nothing they can say they make it up. Those are the press people we're pissed off at, in 'Get In The Ring', the ones who make it up. Because what I'd been hoping would happen at some point in our career is that our musical ability – going out there as a rock band and kicking ass – would somehow surpass the hype some day.

The press tends to really jump on the wrong things. They twist words around and just make things up about you when they want to. I have no use for that. It angers me when the fans read something about me or the band that they believe but that we know is not really true. But I've also come to realize that you either fight with the press or you try to cooperate the best you can.

_______________________________________________


In August 1991 the band would refuse to do any of the planned interviews with UK magazines as the band visited England to play at Wembley in London (August 31, 1991], although Slash did at least talk to RAW Magazine:

At some unGodly hour [Axl] called his publicist and decided that all the press Guns n' Roses were gonna do in the UK was just gonna have to be undone. Consequently there's a horde of TV crews and assorted press people standing around looking a little dismayed at the fact that despite all the assurances, there are no members of Guns n' Roses in the building.


In November 1991 Axl would indicate that he had learnt from his dealings with the press:

That you have to just deal with it. Just take the time to understand it, and go over where you feel you didn't get your point across so well before. And just being aware of the interviewers' motivations, how your interviews are being used, how much money different people are making by running articles on you or comments by you.


And in early 1992 Axl would say the following:

I’d like you to know something: unless I’m publicly somewhere saying I did this interview, half the shit you read I said, I’ve never fuckin’ said. I haven’t done an interview with a lot of magazines in three to four years.


In July 1991 (although published in August) Slash would confirm that many of the earlier press stories had been grounded in the truth and that they had been behaving outrageous with little regard to how they came across:

I’m more concerned about it now after reading some of the stuff, or watching some of the stuff that we did when we weren’t at all conscious of what we are doing. Not that we were incoherent, just that we didn’t care. Then you read it back and go, ‘This is just f**kin’ ridiculous, you know'. So I think, as we grew up a little bit, not as a band but just as individuals […]


In April 1992, Rolling Stone would publish a heavy discussion between Lonn M. Friend and Axl that talked in detail about Axl's therapy and what he had discovered about himself and his childhood. Apparently, Axl had been nervous about how the article would come out, but was so happy about the end product or its reception that he immediately made himself available to new interviews [New York Magazine, April 6, 1992].

This seems to have been short-lived though, because in an interview in May 1992, to be published in June in the Liverpool Echo, Slash would say that Axl "gets a bit worked up sometimes and things get to him" and the newspaper would imply that because of this Slash was now taking over all dealing with the press [The Liverpool Echo, June 8, 1992].

In June 1992 Slash would talk about all the articles that were written about them:

Well, you know, certain things come out, people makes you aware of certain articles or, I go to get some cigarettes. You know, from a newsstand, and I see a cover with my face on, and go "ok." Then you feel like a real idiot, 'cause the guy selling you the cigarettes is looking at you looking at yourself in a magazine. I mean, he knew who you were when you were walking up there to get the cigarettes. Which you try and walk in like you're just anybody. And you'll flip through it. But I've never do anything but look at the pictures. [laughs] I mean, who's got time to sit there and read like a page of garbage, on some band, you know. The Guitar Player ones I'll read. That's it. Axl's Rolling Stone cover, because I knew what a big deal that was. That was something I read. Every so often that you have a series article that you do… an interview that you do that you vent out a lot of stuff, personal stuff. So you gonna see how that come out. But for the most part, no, I don't read anything.


Also in June 1992 Hit Parader would publish an interview with Duff where they would discuss bad experiences with the press:

There has been things said about us.. .ya know.. .We’ve been there for the interview and like trusted the guy.. .ya know....because we were always good to them. And you think this guy’s cool....give him a beer or whatever and hang out with him and you do the interview. And then this totally slanderous interview comes out two months later. Ya know....like I thought this guy was my friend. […] It happens more than you can imagine....or happened I will say now.


In August 1992, Duff and Slash would discuss the press:

The journalists, I would think, they would practice it to more – you know, the rainforest thing that’s going on down there, and Yugoslavia and all that. I think they, sometimes, get their morals or their...[…] focus a little screwed up. Yeah, focus. Exactly. And we’re not that big of a deal, you know. We’re just a rock ‘n’ roll band. We’re touring and that’s what we’re doing.

Yeah. One of the things that we’ve been doing is, like, just doing more press - and especially doing it on camera - so that we can actually speak our minds about stuff, instead of letting other people do it for us. Because it just gets out of hand. And it’s just like, the tabloids and stuff kind of attitude, where they’re just feeding off of personality, and it gets to the point where it gets so negative. It’s like, what you’re trying to concentrate on, what you’re trying to communicate with the readers. You know, and the people who are interested in what “entertainers” –as they would call it- are doing, at least they should be told the truth. Otherwise, it’s like, this whole big facade is built up, and when you go out and play in front of people, they have no idea what you’re all about.


Dizzy would talk about the press in general:

I'll tell you how I see it: When journalists see a movie or a band they don’t like, they present it in a way that makes you want to check it out too! Many of them just make stuff up, and that’s a shame. That's why I tell people that they shouldn’t always believe what they read. Publicity isn’t always beneficial, so I don’t agree with the old motto that goes, ‘Any publicity is good publicity.’ We have personal lives, too, and we don’t like getting slandered in the press. That’s why we’re all wary. Of course, a way to show ourselves as we really are is to give interviews to the right people – like you. […] Many journalists are honest and trustworthy. But others make up their own stories and print them. Sometimes they make us laugh; but, in general, we take them seriously and get pissed off.
Pop & Rock, June 1993; translated from Greek


As before, the press was most interested in Axl and Slash. When this came up in an interview, Duff would respond:

They deserve what they get. And to tell you the truth I really wouldn't want to be that prominent in the public eye. I like the position I have, the role that I play. The guys in the band know what I do and respect it, so that's fine with me.

Axl and Slash are more the public face of GN’R than I am and that’s fine with me. I don’t envy the guys at all because they’re constantly hounded and I’m not. It’s really become a pain in the ass. I didn’t get into rock’n’roll to be on the cover of Rolling Stone or to be gawked at; I did it for the music. As far as being a household name goes - I'd rather not be, thank you very much.

I think Axl's image has really never matched the guy. I’ve known him a long time, and when I read about him in the papers or the magazines, it just doesn't make sense. He's a very strong willed guy who will fight for whatever he thinks is right. I think that's a very noble quality. That some portions of the media have made him into some kind of a scapegoat is really amazing. They don't understand him at all. He's a very complex individual.


In early 1994 Axl and Slash would be asked what it would be the would choose to change if they could change one myth about GN'R:

When Use Your Illusions came out, I actually read a review that said we should have titled the albums "Our Hitler", meaning me, or something. And I would like to change the myth that we want to control the media, and control people. That's not… You know, there's some people that believe that, or something. It's like, I don't wanna control the media, I just want things to be accurate. It's the only control that we want, is that it's accurate and the things that we say and do are there as we say and do them. Not changed around or taken out of context or distorted. A lot of times we don't get an opportunity, or chance to rectify things without having to go through a whole lot of trouble that opens up a whole new can of ones.

What I've been seeing since we've been off the road is… The simple fact that the media is the one that's really backwards and very twisted. And I think it's actually sicker what they do than anything they even try to make us out to be. And it's a drag because when it comes down to it… We've been together for a long time and I know these people and it's like… be taken that seriously for one and then, from a completely wrong direction is just… you know, it's a drag and you don't have any control over it. After a while you have to take a….


To dispel the myths the band had planned a book:

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


In March 1994, Slash would say he had stopped reading the press:

But at this point I really don't care. I've had too much flak for too long. That's why I just ignore everything. I don't even read the press anymore. I don't read magazine articles. I probably won't read this when it comes out (laughs).
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16. JANUARY-JULY 1993: THE SKIN N' BONES TOUR; END OF AN ERA Empty Re: 16. JANUARY-JULY 1993: THE SKIN N' BONES TOUR; END OF AN ERA

Post by Soulmonster on Sat 20 Jun 2020 - 6:14

JULY 16-17, 1993
THE END OF TOURING, THE END OF AN ERA


South America so far is the going favorite audience to play live for. Why? Because they are insanely passionate about their music!

___________________________________

JULY 16 AND 17, 1993: RIVER PLATE, ARGENTINA


The band would now travel to South America for two shows at the Estadio River Plate in Buenos Aires, Argentina, on July 16 and July 17.

While in Argentina, the band was accused of having bought 50 g of cocaine from drug dealers in the hotel, and for indecent exposure after Slash showed his ass from the balcony of his hotel room [The Windsor Star, July 19, 1993]. A judge quickly ordered their rooms searched but no drugs were found [The Windsor Star, July 19, 1993] and both charges were dropped after Slash agreed in writing to not expose himself again, allowing the shows to take place [The Windsor Star, July 1993].

In October 1993 it was reported that the accuser, former state intelligence agent Juan Imbessi, had been motivated by unspecified "anguish and erotic exasperation" and had "sought to cancel the show" [Gainesville Sun, October 21, 1993].

Gilby, looking back at the incident:

It was a joke. […] What it is, it’s a complete joke and it’s really inconvenient, too. But I don’t know if you remember when it happened – […] It was really funny, because they came and we were all like – I mean, we were all around laughing at this, like, “Go for it.” I mean, come on. It’s really, really silly, you know? They make all these accusations and stuff and it’s like, come on, don’t insult our intelligence, first of all. “We’re carrying drugs because you ain’t gonna find them” (laughs). But we don’t do that, you know? We’re not stupid. We don’t want to go to a country, get kicked out and never come back.


Craig Duswalt would recount the incident in his biography:

At approximately 5 p.m., a group of about fifty police officers from the city’s narcotics division descended on the hotel. They were looking for a large amount of cocaine, which had allegedly been stashed in one of the band member’s rooms. They forced their way onto our secure floor and were met by our security team and Doug. I heard on my walkie-talkie that something was going down, and it didn’t sound good. I came out of my hotel room, and there, by the elevators, were a ton of armed policemen talking to Doug and a few others. I took position in front of Axl’s door. At that point he had no idea what was going on. He was eating dinner inside his room, while Steve was taping his ankles for the show. The chief of police was demanding to see Axl’s room. […] But before they went in any of the rooms, Doug did something very smart. He negotiated with them that we have an American representative go in the rooms with their team of policemen while the rooms were searched. We were all afraid of drugs being planted in our rooms. […]Eventually the American representative showed up, and the chief of police and his posse started searching the rooms. Of course, they wanted to start with Axl’s room. And because we now had an American representative, we showed them which room was Axl’s.[…] No cocaine. After all that, the chief of police and his team were about to leave Axl’s room, when the chief turned to Axl and asked for his autograph. […] Axl had Doug and I set up an impromptu press conference and within minutes we had a meeting room, and a room full of reporters, and television crews. Axl released a live statement of what had just occurred, adding that no drugs were found in any of our rooms. It was fed live to all local television stations. Only an hour and a half later, Guns N’ Roses hit the stage and put on another amazing show.
Craig Duswalt, Welcome To My Jungle, BenBella Books, May 2014



THE END OF AN ERA


These were the last shows with Matt and Gilby, and the last shows with both Duff and Slash until April 2016. The band would not play any more shows until January 1, 2001, but then with a radically different lineup wit only Axl and Dizzy remaining.

Matt and Gilby would recount returning to Los Angeles:

The tour was awesome, though. We did two and a half years, we had our private jet, and we flew home in '93. We landed on our own private air strip in LA, and the limos pulled up. There were thirty-five people in the entourage on the airplane - the bodyguards, an accountant, a masseuse, a chiropractor, two private photographers, and a publicist. We got off the airplane and Axl looked over at me and said, "Hey Matt, I'll see you in a couple of years." So it was like, okay, we're going to take a break. I got into my own private limo, and everyone drove off in their separate directions. After that was when things got kinda bad.

Nobody wanted to come home. You know, nobody really wanted it to end, because I think everybody in the back of them thought it was gonna be over.


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16. JANUARY-JULY 1993: THE SKIN N' BONES TOUR; END OF AN ERA Empty Re: 16. JANUARY-JULY 1993: THE SKIN N' BONES TOUR; END OF AN ERA

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