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

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

Registering is free and easy.

Cheers!
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2011.MM.DD - Seattle Weekly - Reverb (Duff's column)

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Post by Blackstar Mon Dec 13, 2021 12:01 am

Prince Is Responsible For Helping Me Learn To Be Alone

By Duff McKagan Thu., Dec. 8 2011

A byproduct of the fact that I grew up in a very large family, and spent much of my teen years in group environments like bands and sports, is that I never had a chance to get comfortable with just being by myself. This caught up to me as I transitioned into adulthood.

In 1982, when I was 18, I went through a sea change in my life. I no longer lived at home, and my mom had sold my childhood home. I felt sort of un-rooted. And I could feel the beginnings of the breakup of my first real relationship with a serious girlfriend. There were also drugs cascading into Seattle, and I was “losing” a lot of close friends to the pull of narcotics. For the first time in my life . . . I felt alone.

I was a guy who played different instruments in different bands, and a friend of mine who was a big fan of Prince early on turned me onto Controversy and Dirty Mind. He thought I might relate to the genius multi-instrumentalist from Minneapolis. The records were groundbreaking and forward-thinking. I was hooked.

When 1999 came out later that year, I found a respite and safe haven between the grooves of this epic double album. It didn’t matter that the topics of “Little Red Corvette” and “Something in the Water” didn’t directly relate to me and my situations exactly; it was the intent and drama and impossibility of how good this record was that made me start to think that maybe ANYTHING was possible in my own life, too. I could rise and get through all this messy teenage young-adult stuff, with a little help from this record.

1999 became the soundtrack of my life through 1983, and when I decided to move to L.A. on my own, this record (by then on cassette), became my traveling companion and best friend. Since then, many records by different artists have become the soundtracks of different parts and eras of my life, but nothing since 1999 has had such an impact, and given me confidence and be-alone and stay-alone capabilities. I owe a lot to this record.

Thankfully, my need and training for being alone has passed. I am a happy family man nowadays, and find myself surrounded, all of the time, by my girls, dogs, and stinky rock bandmates. But Prince’s music remains a touchstone for me, and 1999 will always hold a special place in my soul. It gave me strength, and it gave me friendship. It made me work harder for the things I wanted to attain. It was the sturdy vessel that protected me in those choppy and scary waters of my coming-of-age sea change.
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Post by Blackstar Mon Dec 13, 2021 12:02 am

Hollywood, Class, and Kids in the Hall

By Duff McKagan Thu., Dec. 15 2011

So I played a gig last night in Hollywood that commemorated Dimebag Darrel and Ronnie James Dio. The gig, called "DimeBash," is a very public fundraiser that sells out annually and draws press from around the world. Last week, Guns N' Roses was given the "nod" for the Rock Hall of Fame. I now realize that I use the word "overwhelmed" much too often in my life.

Music to me has never been a competitive sport. We do what we do, and if you connect with an audience and write the songs that feel good to you in the process, that is reward enough. Getting a Grammy or an American Music Award seems a little bit weird in this whole context. I mean, are you BETTER than all those other bands? No. You are just doing YOUR thing, and they theirs. It's not a competition.

But it became very apparent to me that fans of GN'R felt very motivated for our band to "get into the Hall." All of those fans ARE very important to me, and thus getting this RRHOF nod was a victory for them. And so I am deeply honored and feel very good about this whole deal. Thank you all.

I spent a lot of time revisiting my past in the book I just wrote. Living in the past, or just revisiting it, is something I hadn't done until I was in the process of writing that book. The process became personally poignant in how much I appreciated and loved most of the characters in my past, especially the guys in that little band from Hollywood that we formed just after I moved there in 1984.

I've done my best to avoid doing any interviews that pertain to our induction, and maybe this column will serve as all I really need to say for now. I am a grown-up now, and hope that we can achieve some grace and class when that ceremony comes. But in the end, I am only responsible for myself.

At that Dimebag gig, I rode down with Jerry Cantrell from Alice in Chains. We were talking about old demos of theirs and how AIC got signed to Columbia back in 1988. I became good buddies with those guys shortly thereafter, and we've seen each other go through many ups and downs . . . remaining friends through all of it. I love hearing those old stories, and always try to put myself into what those surroundings must have felt like for a band when they were first starting.

With Jerry's story still ruminating in my head, he and I took the stage at the Key Club in Hollywood. I avoided the press people who were there, and simply wanted to play my songs and "get in and get out."

VH1's Eddie Trunk was the MC for the night, and he introduced all the different players who were playing throughout the night. When he got to me, he said, "And recent inductee to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Duff McKagan." I was suddenly a tad overwhelmed. It was a first. Jerry looked at me and gave me a nod of "FUCK, yeah!" The crowd there went nuts. I sheepishly waved, and then kind of awkwardly looked at the ground and pretended that I had to tune my bass or something.

My band Loaded has been asked to play a couple of shows with Axl this weekend in Seattle and Vancouver. I was somehow reluctant at first to do this. I love that dude, but wanted to sort of stay out of the fray, especially after that whirlwind tour of the world we had just done. AND that damn book tour.

But this fray is only a fray if I let it be. And now I am actually pretty excited to see my old pal. His band is the nicest bunch of fellas, and I will be home after all. The KeyArena will be rocking tomorrow night . . . and I hope you all show up.

After all, it is just some dudes doing what they know how to do best: connect with the audience, that fan-ship that has honored us with their presence for so damn long. And THAT, my friends . . . is overwhelming.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to you all.

--Duff

https://web.archive.org/web/20120108024428/http://blogs.seattleweekly.com/reverb/2011/12/hollywood_class_and_kids_in_th.php
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Post by Blackstar Mon Dec 13, 2021 12:10 am

Hey, If You've Never Heard Rock and Roll...Start With These 10 Records

By Duff McKagan Thu., Dec. 22 2011

I've never been real good with the question of "What are your favorite 10 "desert-island" records". But, you know, if you're a resident of one of the Earth-like planets astronomers just discovered and are wondering what this rock and roll thing is all about, well ... here are 10 places to start.

Aerosmith, Aerosmith: With scrappy songs like "Make It" showing the earthiness of this band, the majestic track "Dream On" seems just so much bigger and more genius. From tip-to-stern, a kick-ass rock record.

Iggy and the Stooges, Raw Power: How can you lose here? "Search and Destroy" and "Raw Power" are two of the most dangerous rock songs of all time. This record sets a good tone for a new rocker. It'll shake out all of that bad taste in rock music. This record should act as a barometer.

Killing Joke, Killing Joke: Ah yes. Before there was a label attached to electronic music, Killing Joke just straight-up invented a genre and mastered it in the same breath. And yes, this IS a breathless record.

Queens Of The Stone Age, Rated R: If you are me, this record single-handedly saved rock and roll in the early 2000s. This record would have stood up against most in any era, but the timeliness of Rated R was a welcome relief from the drag and hum of the crap that was going on then.

Led Zeppelin, The Complete Led Zeppelin: Why mess around with just one of Led Zeppelin's records when you can get the whole deal in one go? This multi-disc musical tome includes live recordings that you'll be glad you have once you go completely Zeppelin-crazy!

Alice In Chains, Dirt: When four dudes from Seattle discovered a new thing of their own, they just simply began writing classic rock rocks songs right out of the starting gate. This first record completely annihilated everything else that was around then, and Dirt has stood the test of time very well indeed.

Prince, 1999: This was the one for me that made every other rock record at the time, seem small and almost obsolete and amateurish. There are so many different moods and grooves and "feels" on this record, that it can't ever possibly get old or be outdone.

Black Flag, My War: The punk rock bible.

Motorhead, Ace Of Spades: When this record came out, it blew everyone's minds. Whether you were into punk, metal, ska, or jazz-fusion, Motorhead arrived and united everything.

Queen, Sheer Heart Attack: If "Stone Cold Crazy were the whole make-up of this record, it'd still make this list. But every song of this record is an epic effort of song-craftsmanship and musical talent combined.

Rolling Stones, It's Only Rock and Roll: This record set the tone for what "cool" should sound like. "Short and Curlies"? Yeah. She got chu by the balls.

N.W.A., Straight Outta Compton: There are few timeless rap records from this era, but N.W.A. were more than just a band for the time. They had a message and found the sound to carry it forth. Bad as all hell.

The Clash, The Clash: One of the best records to come out of the UK ever. Yes, some of the messages on this record have been eclipsed by the passage of time...but it is like a majestic time capsule in those moments.

Yes, I know there are more than 10 records here, but I couldn't seem to stop. And yes, I know I left out a LOT of stuff here. The Beatles? Nirvana? The Damned? Sly and the Family Stone? Black Sabbath? And etc.... Next time, okay?

Happy Holidays, everyone! Be cool. Be kind. Help that old person back out of that crowded grocery store parking lot today. Get your face out of that iPhone or whatever gadget you've got. Smile. We are here and CAN make a difference.

Besides, Santa Claus IS watching y'all.

Duff

https://web.archive.org/web/20120106111734/http://blogs.seattleweekly.com/reverb/2011/12/hey_if_youve_never_heard_rock.php
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Post by Blackstar Mon Dec 13, 2021 12:12 am

11 Things I Learned About Music, Books, and The Twitter In 2011

By Duff McKagan Thu., Dec. 29 2011

Sometimes, if you are lucky enough, you are in a place where you can learn from a particular event in your life. Sometimes those lessons are hard-won, or learned at a high expense to your own ego. Those seem to be the best ones for me.

Other times, pleasantly surprising things happen when you least expect it. Of course, those things are always welcome.

So here are just a few of those "things" and lessons I have gleaned from this past year.

1. If you write a book about yourself, just remember; a LOT of people will now know those things about you that you have shared.

Yes, that may sound like a no-brainer, right? But, I was so caught up in the literary process of writing, that I didn't think much BEYOND that process. I thought maybe it might be the same as when I share a bit about my personal stuff here at the Weekly. Turns out that there was much more in the book that my 1000 words.

2. The Seattle band The Chasers are KILLER! How can you lose when you have a bare-chested, white leather coat wearing guitar player nicknamed, the Ice Wizard! Well, if you like Muse, Queen, Maiden, Death Cab, and Zeke, all mixed into one, check out The Chasers. They are an original....really.

3. If you want something done right, you gotta do it yourself. No explanation needed here.

4. When your kids are ages 11 and 14, they no longer believe in Santa Claus. Even after I queried, "Well then WHO ate those cookies and drank the milk?" C'mon Dad. This is getting embarrassing....

5. Seattle is the best place on this earth. I didn't just learn this in 2011, but it still stands.

6. Seattle needs the NBA back. Again, I didn't learn this in 2011, but it still stands.

7. Cormac McCarthy first edition hardbacks are expensive and hard to find. I toured many bookstores this fall, and could only find a first edition Blood Meridian. It was $2000.00. Uh, nevermind.

8. I look terrible in cartoon form. Whoever the illustrator at the Seattle Weekly is, probably needs some glasses. I'm not THAT old looking. Geez, I am only 47, er...just about 48. Uh. Nevermind. Carry on.

9. Riding Harley's in Chile with my friends is pretty damn kick ass. Enough said.

10. This is a question actually: didn't we already pay a toll on the 520 Bridge? Seems like back in the day, until I was a late teenager (see #8), paying a toll at a toll-booth on that bridge. What are we paying for now?

11. Go out and see a local band and support your local scene. We are lucky here in Seattle, with all of our clubs and talent. And places like London, Sau Paolo, Glasgow and Buenos Aires are really taking off, too, with their local bands and rock scenes.

12. Okay, I know I said "11 things," but it IS just about 2012, so, um...yeah. If you are on the Twitter, beware of this thing I now call the "Tweet to follower ratio." If you have a, say 1000/1 Tweet ratio (that is, you've tweeted say 10,000 times, and you have 10 followers), you should consider backing off on the Twitter time. Conversely, if someone with a 1000/1 Tweet ratio actually Tweets you, you should think twice about replying. You are probably dealing with someone who might Twitter until the wheels come off. Just an observation.

And to that note of the Twitter. If you haven't followed @Johnroderick yet, do yourself the favor. I don't even try to be funny anymore over there. Roderick is the Michael Jordon of Twitter-humor.

https://web.archive.org/web/20120106110054/http://blogs.seattleweekly.com/reverb/2011/12/duff_mckagan_twitter_seattle.php
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