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

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

Registering is free and easy.



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Post by Soulmonster Sun Jan 09, 2022 7:12 am

NOVEMBER 25-28, 2011

Tommy would be asked about the tour:

The touring aspect of it all is a whole other beast. Despite what anyone might think, it’s actually quite a bit of work putting on that large of a show. The travel is grueling and I miss my family. But at the end of the day, it’s a lot of fun to see all of the people out there go nuts for “Welcome To The Jungle.”

The tour continued with shows the DCU Center in Worchester on November 25, the Susquehanna Bank Center in Camden on November 26 before travelling to Canada for a show at the Copps Coliseum in Hamilton on November 28.

I’m still burnt from last night’s show. (Laughs.) It’s a marathon. But there’s a lot of music that the people want to hear from the old stuff, and there’s a lot of stuff we want to promote from “Chinese Democracy.’’ We never really promoted that record and neither did the record company.

For this run, we rehearsed for a few weeks, then started touring in South America and we’ve been at in the U.S. for a while now. All things considered, the shows have been going really well. We haven’t had any major malfunctions or anything.

Some nights we’ll get to certain songs, some nights you won’t. We’ve got about 40 songs in the deck — 40 songs we can play at any point, and Axl likes to shuffle the deck a little bit as we go along. See what works and what doesn’t, kinda mess around with stuff.

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Post by Soulmonster Sun Jan 09, 2022 7:12 am


Peter Katsis likely holds the record for the shortest time as manager of Guns N' Roses. He was hired at some point in October and let go at some point in December. Axl would mention him being with the band during the interview with That Metal Show, on November 11:

It's a combo of different things and it's trying to figure that out, we're working with new management and, you know, we'll be figuring out what we're doing with the label and, you know, kind of feeling things out in the US as we're going across the country.

By the time Axl did his next interview, with Los Angeles Times, on December 21, Katsis was gone. In the interview, Axl would bemoan managers who came in and wanted to reduce the size of the band's operations:

Every manager comes in and wants me to make things smaller.

Axl would also say, as paraphrased by Los Angeles Times, that "most managers want the same thing that nearly every rock 'n' roll fan of the past quarter-century wants, and the one thing he stubbornly refuses to do: reunite with Slash, Izzy, Duff and the rest of the classic GNR group for a tour" [Los Angeles Times, December 21, 2011].

All these managers, they all believe in one thing: sell a reunion tour and get their commission. It's just a phone call. It's a half a day's … work, or however long they want to keep the bidding war going. They get their commission and they don't care if it falls on its face.

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Post by Soulmonster Sun Jan 09, 2022 7:13 am


In his interview with the That Metal Show in 2011, Axl was asked about what the biggest misconception about him was, and suggest there was so many now because people had been talking about him since decades without him correcting the misconceptions:

There's too many things. There's too many things said. It's, you know, it's like two decades of people talking and most the time they're talking off things somebody who had a bias started or said. They could have said jokingly, you know, "Axl's a dictator," I know exactly where that started, that started with a woman named Beth... she didn't start it, Beth Nussbaum, this woman was interviewing us and Izzy called me the Ayatollah in an interview, and then it just rolled from there and I didn't... I wasn't... It just didn't hit me that I should, like, you know, I should nip this in the butt and confront it.

When it comes to the example Axl used about him being a dictator, it wasn't Izzy who called Axl the Ayatollah, but Slash, and it was in an interview by Karen Burch and not Beth Nussbaum [Music Connection, April 1986].

Dizzy would also suggest misconceptions were caused by Axl's decision to not do press:

[...] I think a lot of it has to do with, you know, he doesn't really... he stopped talking to the press a long time ago. I think he's just been misquoted and misportrayed over the years.

In 2011, Bumblefoot would be asked if "it hurts [Axl's] own cause by doing so little press":

I think, if you let people get to know him more, it certainly wouldn’t hurt him. We’re all human, we all have our light side and our dark side and everything in between. I know I sure as f*ck do. But, he just did That Metal Show, and if you watch it, that’s what it’s like to just hang out with him and talk. And we’ve hung out and talked for like 20 hours straight. It’s like a big episode of That Metal Show. I think that it wouldn’t hurt if... like me personally, I don’t mind connecting with people. And doing interviews and just hanging out and that kind of stuff. I know he’s in a different position, because at his level of fame, celebrity, notoriety, idolization, objectification, it’s so far beyond the scope of things I’ve ever dealt with. And you lose a lot of freedoms, because you can’t just say what you want because everything you say can and will get twisted, and it just gets to you. And you can’t hang out, because people just can’t handle it and start acting all weird and it gets uncomfortable and there’s always a problem with that kind of sh*t. So, it gets very tricky. And sometimes you just have to... it’s kind of like a doctor, where you may want to give your home number to your patients, but they might start to abuse it if you do.

On the other hand, Tommy would suggest Axl's silence had worked for him and that Axl had plans to do more press in the future:

I think his silence has worked for him. I think that over all the years you’ve had [former band members] going on about Axl this and Axl that, and he’s kept his mouth shut and is waiting for when he’s ready to spill the beans, according to him. That day is coming I think. I think he’s feeling more comfortable with the idea of talking publicly about some of this [stuff] and setting the record straight from his point of view.

Duff would also defend Axl against the media and single out Rolling Stone Magazine as a publication that had hurt Axl, and also suggest that Axl's decision to not speak to the press was to protect himself:

You don’t talk to the media... the media starts running a little crazy with things. There was a Rolling Stone story about [Axl] a few years ago that painted him as a Howard Hughes sort of figure. And everybody used that as the template to write about Axl. None of it is true.

You know, he’s just a guy caught up in events. He was the singer of that band. And that band got bigger than anybody could have imagined. And being the singer you are the focal point, rightly or wrongly. You are. There is nothing that can prepare you for that…. If you call it ‘reclusive’ — that’s one person’s angle on what it was. Or if you want to say, he saved himself, that’s another story.
The Irish Examiner, August 15, 2014; but quote from Duff from years before

In 2015, Goldstein would talk about how frustrating it had been to him that Axl never stuck up for himself:

But, you know, one of the things that's been frustrating for me, Mitch, and he does this with his own band members, Axl loves Slash and Duff and Matt. Izzy, obviously, because of growing up with him. He loves those guys. He doesn't really know how to communicate. So, you know, whenever we'd have some shit go down, the band was kind of left, not really understanding why things were happening. I would try and communicate Axl's position, but it's always been pretty frustrating to me that Axl refuses to stick up for himself in any situation.

In the interview with That Metal Show, Axl would also mention the dog rumour from 1987 [see previous chapter] as an example of crazy rumours about him:

You know, it was like, you know, I mean, they just say things. It's like, England wrote about how I ran over my dogs and then I ate them, you know. I mean, there's too many things said.

When asked if he takes things personally when attacked, Axl would admit he had and that it had taken him time to get over it :

I think I have, and then I have to work at getting over it, you know. It takes a really long time, I mean the stuff that happened coming out of Abu Dhabi just now, it's like, you know, we got way betrayed in, you know, in business and we had no idea, we didn't see it coming. Some really horrible things were said about people that did not deserve it for any reason. The whole band was turning against different people and then found out it was all a smoke screen, it was all nonsense, it was all lies.

And Tommy would also say Axl "read a little too much about what people say" about him:

[Axl and Paul Westerberg" are both very serious and maybe read a little too much about what people say about them and think about them. I think they both carry a significant amount of baggage and they could really improve their quality of life by just letting go of it.

That Axl struggled to not be affected by criticism, had been alluded to previously, too:

You have a front man who is a very serious and almost dogmatic type figure. Axl has a hard time taking it on the chin so to speak. Soul Asylum, Replacements, Guns; Good and bad they take it all home with them. They do focus on the negative too much at times. I had conversations with all three and heard all the crap. How can you sit there and blah blah blah and complain. Let’s stick with the positive.

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Post by Soulmonster Sun Jan 09, 2022 7:13 am


In 2011, Bumblefoot would work with Mexican artist Poc on her solo album.

Yeah, I started in the summer time, she came up to the studio and actually, yeah, she was the next thing that I worked on right after Mark [Tornillo, of Accept].

Explaining how the collaboration came to happen:

Someone contacted me last year to co-write and produce her album, we Skype’d some ideas and then she stayed at my studio for two months and did the album, did some shows… kept a Livestream going to have fans virtually be there, had fans Skype their backing vocals for the song ‘Rock N Roll Baby’, that was cool. Did a lot of playing off the vocal lines, had a real singer/guitarist team to the songs – album is called “Rise Above”, it was her debut album ( )

Describing the music:

I'd say it's like about as heavy as maybe, what would you say, like Nickelback and those kind of bands.

And Frank from Guns played all the drums on the album [plays a riff]. Like those kind of [mimics drums] Yeah, so it was like that kind of stuff. So it's a hard rock with really good Spanish female fronted vocals going on with it. And I did all the music, Frank Ferrer, Guns N' Roses, he did all the drums.

Bumblefoot's involvement had been quite extensive:

I did all the, you know, the engineering, the co-writing, the rewriting, the music parsing [?], you know, help with the arrangements of everything and the mixing and the mastering and now I'm also, you know, taking on the whole thing from a management standpoint as well. You know, working on merch and, you know, the album art and getting everything ready to have it available by early next year.

I produced a Mexican artist named Poc, her album will be out soon, the drummer of Guns Frank Ferrer played drums on it, I did all the music, I co-wrote some of the stuff, some backing vocals, it's going to be a really cool album.

Poc is a female rock artist from Mexico. She flew up to to my studio in New Jersey and lived there for two months while we wrote, recorded, and kept a Livestream going to have fans watch, and participate – we had them Skype their backing vocals to us to include in the song “Rock N Roll Baby”, something I don't think has ever been done on an album. We'd spend hours late at night listening to the past 50 years of rock music, Janis Joplin, Led Zeppelin, Aerosmith, getting inspiration. And in the end you can hear that real singer/guitarist team in the songs, that duo of personalities, we captured that. I've never experienced so much making an album as I have with Poc. In those two months we had a heat wave, an earthquake, a hurricane, a flood that left 3 feet of water in the studio, and lots of personal challenges to deal with from family tragedies to extortion threats, all this while I was in rehabilitation from a car accident that had left me unable to play and in constant pain. It was one challenge after another. But instead of it stopping us, it added intensity and spirit to the album. That's where the album title came from – every time an obstacle would stand in our way, so we named the album “Rise Above”.

In February, the first single from the album would be released:

Rock N Roll Baby
February 2012

Looking back at having worked with Poc:

(Laughs) It was a crazy experience. She lived in my studio for 2 months. We worked every day and in those two months all the crazy things happened: we had a flood, an earthquake, we had crazy heat waves. It was a very intense time. Her old manager quit, he didn’t pay me, this after most of the work was already done. So, I had to be the producer, also the manager, the label and everything else.  But it’s hard to do when you’re on tour as a guitar player in a big band and doing all that stuff. I’ve been looking for opportunities for her and I’ve been looking for a team for her, because I should just be focusing on producing. It’s what I’m better at, and what I’m more passionate about. I‘m looking for a team of business people so that she can move on, and I can move on and keep producing and putting out my own music.

The album, 'Rise Above', was released in May:

Rise Above
May 2012

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Post by Soulmonster Sun Jan 09, 2022 7:13 am

DECEMBER 1-13, 2011

The tour then continued to The Palace of Auburn Hills in Detroit for a show on December 1.

Excerpts from review in The Oakland Press:

But when frontman Axl Rose and his latest incarnation of GNR does hit the stage, it's usually worth the wait -- as was the case on Thursday (and Friday morning) after a blistering two-hour and 50-minute romp through the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame-nominated group's small but impactful catalog.

As it happened, Rose and company hit the stage at a "reasonable" 10:52 p.m., following a solid hour-long set by the reunited D Generation.

GNR clearly came to play, too, with prodigious pyrotechnics accompanying whipsaw renditions of "Chinese Democracy," "Welcome to the Jungle," "It's So Easy" and "Mr. Brownstone." Fans will always pine for the original GNR lineup, but in this eight-member version of the band Rose showed off a corps that proved capable of capturing the raw, rough and tumble spirit of 1987's seminal "Appetite For Destruction" as well as the more sophisticated epics from the two "Use Your Illusion" albums and 2008's "Chinese Democracy."

In particular, guitarists DJ Ashba, Ron "Bumblefoot" Thal and Richard Fortus traded lead and rhythm parts with easy precision, while keyboardists Dizzy Reed and Chris Pitman provided the textures and sonic layers that were crucial to epics such as "Sorry," "Madagascar," "Estranged" and "November Rain."

And Rose himself was in fine form, performing vocal acrobatics and working the stage in dervish fashion -- while also hopping in and out of a booth located in one corner of the stage, where he changed coats, hats, sunglasses and shirts more than a dozen times. His swoops and upper-register howl -- including a falsetto during the bluesy "Sorry" -- was fully intact, and his screams competed with the pyrotechnic explosions during Wings' "Live and Let Die."

The next shows took place at the US Bank Arena in Cincinnati on December 2, before returning to Detroit for a show at the Bridgestone Arena on December 4. At this latter show, the band played Civil War for the first time since February 6, 1993.

Last night we pulled out 'Civil War' for the first time.

The next show planned for December 5 at the DeSoto Civic Center in Southaven, Mississippi, was cancelled because of "production issues" [Blabbermouth, December 4, 2011].

Then followed a show at the Covelli Centre in Youngstown (OH) on December 7 before a show at the Conseco Field House in Indianapolis on December 8.

Before the show in Indianapolis, Dizzy and DJ would comment on the progress of the tour:

No mishaps or riots. That's always a positive for me.

This tour is amazing. The production is killer and the band just sounds incredible. We are doing stuff from all three periods of G n' R. I don't think anybody's going home disappointed.

And Dizzy would talk about the audiences on the tour:

It's a good cross section. There are some older folks there that were probably around in the beginning and their kids, too. It's just what kind of happens when you stick around for a long time (laughs). But the crowds in general have been very receptive, and it's been a blast.

During the show in Indianapolis, the band would be joined by opener Zakk Wylde and his band Black Label Society on Whole Lotta Rosie.

Bumblefoot and Zakk Wylde
December 7, 2011

Before the tour, Wylde had talked about Axl and opening for Guns N' Roses:

Yeah, that'll be amazing, too. I've been friends with Axl for a long time. He's the last of the great frontmen. Seriously, who else is there? You had Elvis and Mick Jagger, then you had Jim Morrison and Freddie Mercury, Robert Plant, Ronnie Van Zandt, and of course you can't forget about Ozzy, David Lee Roth… After all them, Axl came out, and it was like, Wow! The ultimate frontman, you know?

You've gotta give it up for Axl. Amazing songs, amazing production - Appetite's one of the greatest records of all time. The guy's got the whole nine yards. As a frontman, nobody's come close to him since he busted out.
Music Radar, November 9, 2011

And during and after the tour, Wylde would talk about Guns N' Roses:

Yeah, catching up with the guys, and just having a laugh, laughing our balls off and just talking about goofy stuff. And getting up there and throwing down every night, and then getting a chance to watch Axl and the guys kick some ass. It’s just like the same thing with the Priest guys. We go up there and just watch the guys, and it’s awesome.
Live-Metal, December 9, 2011

It was awesome, man. The first time we were there, Axl was like, ‘Dude, you wanna get up and jam? Look at the setlist, pick out the songs, whatever.’ I said ‘Whole Lotta Rosie’ is pretty easy. Pretty much everyone all learns that one. So this way there didn’t have to be any band rehearsals, me sitting in with the band, you know. The GN’R songs are all already worked out, so I said why don’t I just get up there and jam out on ‘Whole Lotta Rosie’? And it was great, man. All the guys in the band are super-cool dudes, and I’ve known a bunch of them for a bunch of years. It was great seeing Axl again because I haven’t seen him since like 1995 when I was jamming with them. And he’s doing great. We had a couple of laughs talking about the same old ridiculous stuff about the music business, y’know. Music in general and just life in general. It was good catching up, and it was a blast playing on stage. And the crew guys were all super-cool dudes, so it was a good time, man., January 5, 2012

Excerpts from review in

"It's nice to be back home. Thank you for being so warm and welcoming."

These were the words from a kinder, gentler Axl Rose Thursday night at Conseco Fieldhouse in Indianapolis.

Almost 20 years ago, Rose venomously spewed unkind sentiment towards the Hoosier State at a show in Market Square Arena.

Now 49, Rose was a teddy bear compared to those tumultuous days in the early 1990s. However, he and his seven-piece showed no mercy during an incredible three-hour performance.

"It was good to be back home. Thank you very much," he said after a rousing rendition of "Paradise City" at the end of the night, er, morning. The show ended right before 2 a.m. It started at around 10:45 p.m. There was very little wait between openers Black Label Society and the headlining Guns N' Roses.


Rose's voice was amazing, especially in the second half. It got stronger as the night went on. Those early songs require impressive pipes. Sure, Rose in 1991 could have nailed some of the classics better but 20 years later, the singer still belted them out. The newer songs seem a bit easier on the vocal chords and Rose's performance helped them keep the near sold-out crowd's attention during these lesser known tracks.

The next shows took place at 1STBANK Center in Broomfield on December 11 and the Maverik Center in Salt Lake City on December 13.

Excerpts from review in Salt Lake Tribune:

Right before hard-rock band Guns N' Roses launched into its explosive cover of Paul McCartney's "Live and Let Die" about one hour into its show Wednesday night at the Maverik Center, West Valley City Mayor Mike Winder improbably stepped onstage and greeted the band's mercurial frontman Axl Rose.
Winder congratulated the band on this past week's announcement that the Los Angeles-based band had been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and presented Rose a key to the city.
"How long do you stay open?" Rose asked the mayor.
"All night for Guns N' Roses," the mayor replied.
The mayor had no idea how right he was, as the band played an epic, thrilling and utterly captivating three-hour set with more than 30 songs that only ended as the closing refrains of "Paradise City" were played just after 2 a.m.
The big question of the night was whether the backing band of Guns N' Roses was up to the task of accompanying Rose on some of the best rock songs of the latter part of the 20th century, or whether they — like Winder, who has been in the news lately because of writing news stories under a fake byline — were merely impostors.
The answer? The seven musicians, despite some missteps at the end of the long evening, made most in attendance forget the former band members of GNR, Those Who Shall Not Be Named.
The acoustics in the well-attended arena were superb as Axl and the Magnificent Seven led the crowd through a blistering set that included songs from the band's landmark 1987 debut "Appetite for Destruction" to 2008's "Chinese Democracy." After the concert began with the opening theme to the serial-killer TV show "Dexter," guitarist D.J. Ashba unleashed the memorable opening riffs of the title song to the the 2008 and the band was off to the races.
GNR has been legendary for its lateness for showing up on stage, but refreshingly the eight began their show at 11 p.m., a mere 45 minutes after opening act Black Label Society wrapped up its set.

West Valley Mayor Mike Winder would later comment on the key ceremony:

You know I’m a Guns N’ Roses fan and, of course, I have an eclectic mix - if you go to my iPod you’ll see Vivaldi and Handel, you’ll see the Tabernacle Choir, you’ll see Alan Jackson and Guns N’ Roses, so a pretty big variety. But yeah, they just named – last week they announced that Guns N’ Roses would be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. I thought, “Wow, here we are in West Valley City, we have a Rock and Roll Hall of famer coming.” We sent a note back to the band to see if they were interested in the honor and they said, “Absolutely. In fact, we want you to do it on stage” – I just thought it would be backstage, but… We give the key to the city to prominent dignitaries when they come through […]; when Hillary Clinton spoke to our Cultural Celebration Center a couple years ago she received a key to the city… So yeah, when prominent dignitaries come through we give them one; and hey, Axl Rose is coming to town and it’s just on the heels of his big announcement, so why not.

Bumblefoot would be asked about his favorite moment from the tour, and mention an episode after the show in Salt Lake City:

So we just played Salt Lake City and show ended everybody went back, I was staying behind, I had 2 friends with me we were just hanging out in the hospitality room and then one of them said, let's go up to the mountains and I was like you know what f**k it, let's do that. So it was about 5 in the morning when we left and we drove up to this 9000ft mountain up to the top and there was a spot up there and we got naked and we jumped in this big giant spa hot tub while the sun was coming up, snow was coming down on us, heat coming up and it was just these beautiful mountains around you and it was just a beautiful experience and from that point on I was like, it was just one of the changing things when I was like, you know what, as far as the tour goes, from this point on, all I'm going to have is a good f**king time and I've been doing that ever since.

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Post by Soulmonster Sun Jan 09, 2022 7:14 am


From what the band members were saying, it seems like things came together nicely for the North American tour in 2011:

[It is] the best version of Guns N' Roses that I've ever been in. I think everyone is just super-talented, and it's just great chemistry. Everyone is a lot of fun to be around and a lot of fun to play with, so to me it's definitely the best lineup we've had.

Well, we just started. We played our first U.S. dates in Orlando and Miami, Florida. Both shows went really well. We had a really good time playing them. From what I can tell, we’re set up for a pretty good run. It’s a big, loud, live rock show! You’re gonna get a little of the new, the old and, you know, we’re just gonna get up there and fucking play and have fun!

The good thing about his tour, more so than the others, is that it’s been consistent since we just did the European tour last year and this lineup right now is just key on having a blast! There’s a good camaraderie, Axl included, and we’re just having a good time. It’s like a “leave the baggage at the door” kind of thing. You know, just get up and fucking put on a rock show!

We just wanted it to go well and we're really, really happy that it did. The press was really good to us, which is nice, and I think the fans finally got to really see Axl's vision. When he put together this new lineup, he put together some solid players, some of the best players out there. And it's a true honor to share the stage with all of them.

[Axl] put together a supergroup in my opinion. Every guy is at the top of their game. There is not one bad player in the bunch. They all can play their asses off and it’s just a joy to be a part of that.

And Tommy, Dizzy and Richard would mention what a good addition DJ had been:

DJ is working out great. He's a great guy and is very easy to get along with. He's brought so much to the live show and has been really well received by the audiences.

D.J. made a good addition because he has fun with the gig and he doesn't take himself too seriously off the stage, which is important. You can't compete with each other. You can only do your own thing and have fun with it, and if you do that, you're ahead of the game.

[DJ]'s a good fit. Seems to be a good-natured kid. He doesn't take it too seriously.

[DJ] is fitting in well. He is a really great guy and really easy to work with. It has been a pleasure.

[...] we`re a real tight unit and I like to think that it shows too.  That`s not taking anything away from the guys that have come along more recently like DJ Ashba.

The main thing I see with that is that I think we have three of the best guitar players in the world.  It`s a treat for me to see them play and I know it`ll be a treat for those that come to the shows too. Everyone is in a cool place about it.  We are far enough along in our careers to see the big picture and we can leave our egos at the door and enjoy being in Guns n` Roses.  The guys work so hard to work together and that`s so important.  A lot of bands don`t see that when they are starting out but you do have to be a unit, you have to work together and this is a prime example of once you do that and you have that level of musicianship then it`s going to be better than everything else in the long run.  I appreciate the hard work that they`ve all put in. So what people will see are three of the greatest guitar players in the world in a great band playing great songs.

And specify why he was a better fit than Robin:

I think [DJ] fits in really well. Not to diss (former guitarist) Robin Finck or anything, but DJ’s a better fit because Axl and him really get along really well. The stage vibe is a lot lighter and more festive. It’s not like we’re grinding out a set. It’s more fun.

DJ would also talk about the internal camaraderie:

We oil spot each other a lot. Like when we stop at truck stops and we know somebody is in there, we purposely take off. It's always fun to do stuff like that. Just buying crazy stuff and planting them in people's bunks like just whatever -- dildos or funny stuff. I remember probably one of the funniest times, and Axl actually reminded me of this, is when I got so wasted one night on tour that I woke up in my closet in my suitcase, which was kind of funny. Not really. But I guess it's a prank I played on myself. It looked comfy at the time, I guess. We have a great time and it's a lot of fun being out here.

It feels like a family. We're all up there and we've all got each other's backs. And the musicianship is just incredible. There's nothing that these guys can't play. It's a lot of fun.

Bumblefoot would be asked how he felt about his current band mates:

They’re great. It’s funny because you’ve got eight guys in the band that are all on stage together. Of all the bands I’ve been in, when I look back on it, I’ve got to laugh because you would think that Guns n Roses and all, again, the bombardment and the intensity and everything that could just wear you down, we get along better than I have with anybody in any band. Like in any of my own bands or any other band I’ve played with.

Like, GnR, we all get along better, all of us. I think a lot of it is that because we don’t have time for little stupid, petty stuff, which those are the little things that escalate and make things stupid in a band.

So, actually, we all, the band members and our families and our crew and their friends, we all had a huge Thanksgiving dinner last night. It was just a big love-fest and, it’s always just hanging out together in little groups. Either me and Richard will be working out together or me and DJ will be just hanging out in Central Bar together. He’s having his Jager. I’m having my water. Yeah, I’m off Jager. I’m done, whatever it is. Me and Tommy talking about old, obscure 70s movies or whoever it is. Or me and Frank and Pitman just cracking up, just talking about stupid things and just laughing at our lives, whatever it is. Or, hanging with Axl for 20 hours straight just talking about all kinds of crazy stuff, whatever it is, yeah, just hanging out.

And Tommy would mention that they played like they didn't have anything to prove:

Compared to all our tours in the past 10-12 years, this one's gone pretty smoothly. I hate to say that because I don't want to jinx it, but we're near the end. I think everyone has a better mindset. The addition of DJ [Ashba] helps -- him and Axl have a pretty good relationship. All of us have pretty good relationships, actually. The shows tend not to be so bagged down with the baggage of the past. We don't give a shit, just go out and have fun and move on.


There was always an underlying thing of trying to compete with the past. I never really felt that, I never gave a crap. I joined this band because it sounded like a good idea. Whether it was Axl [competing with] it or whatever, I don't think it's there anymore. It's not like we need to compete anymore. We've been a band now longer than they were the old band.

As for Axl's motivation:

I think he wants to go out and put on a good show and have a good time. It's what you're supposed to do in the first place. Trying to compete with the old band -- fucking Slash, all that stuff -- is extraneous. Thousands of people will come see him every night because he's Axl Rose.

Axl would also praise the current lineup and how hard-working they were:

[...] these guys I’m working with right now, they work really hard and it’s hard work. [...] And these guys have been here a long time, whether the public knows it or not because we haven’t done the media like that. Tommy’s been on 14 years, Richard’s going on 11. That’s as long as Duff was in the band. Chris has been in going on 11, Dizzy’s on since "Illusion," Frank’s going on six, and so’s Bumble. These guys have been here. And DJ’s going on three.

Plus, we can have our differences, and everybody in the band can be like, ‘I don’t understand that guy’ and point at one of us, you know? But at the same time, we get along. I don’t have to tell these guys what to do onstage. I can suggest something at times, but that’s very little.

We have our own camaraderie of course and that’s different from other lineups that include different personalities, tastes, traits, senses of humour etc. We get along pretty well. I enjoy working with the band in any capacity.

When asked if he isn't the boss in the band, more so than with the UYI or AFD lineups:

With live, it’s not really any different, because there was never really a fight about leading it live, because for whatever reason they were fine with whatever song I was going to do next, singing.

And Bumblefoot would be asked if the rest of the band were proper band members or hired musicians:

Somewhere in-between. We're hired, we're not business partners - but hired to be ourselves, to be who we are, to write and play and be who we are, with no "you must play this & wear this & say this...", none of that. Smile

In 2013, DJ and Bumblefoot would again talk about how well the lineup was doing:

We're a solid band now. Before that, members were coming and going and it was a different time. We've toured for four years almost constantly and we haven't missed one show since I've been in the band. All that stuff has come to an end and Axl is very inspired.

Axl handpicked every guy in this band. It's just it's, you know, I mean, they're the best at what they do and it's an honor to get on that stage with everybody is just so talented and it's just awesome.

It's a lot better. I mean, we've been stable and consistent, and when you have that, you can grow and develop more. When you're in the trenches for so many years with the same people - the same group - it solidifies. You get to know each other musically, personality-wise, and you start playing on that more. You know how it is when you play with someone for years, and you just know where they're gonna go musically, and you're on it with them - or you just know what accents they're gonna gravitate toward, and you just fall into this groove with them. Things like that. I feel that we have that a lot more now, and I hear it from people that go to shows. They say, “you guys are just so much more of a band now”.

In 2014, Frank would be asked whether the current lineup is Guns N' Roses or whether the "original [sic] five guys" were Guns N' Roses:

Well, I mean, I guess, you know, the listener's really the person that's gonna answer that question. As far as I'm concerned, personally, I look at Guns N' Roses as a legendary band and I'm playing with this legendary band. Now, like you said, like, the five original members, obviously, you know, the first record is one of the greatest debut records ever. I mean Steven's performance on that record is masterful, you know. I put that first record up against any band's first record ever. But that was also 20 some odd years ago, you know, everything changes, everything grows, you know. You add pieces and pieces fall off and it kind of changes and shifts, size and it gets smaller and bigger, but the nucleus is still there, you know. So I mean, I would still say that Guns N' Roses is still a band today, but yeah, it's a different band than it was 25 years ago, but I would still call it a band. [...] But each drummer has brought a special thing to this band, starting obviously with Steve and with Matt, with Josh Freese and with Brain. You know, every drummer has brought a special thing to the band. So again, I still consider it a band. And, you know, you make a dish and you add flavors, and, you know, you don't make the dish the same way every single time, you might add a little more salt in this version of the of the dish or more pepper the next time or more lime. You know, it's the same dish but with different flavors, you know?

And in 2015, as the lineup was disintegrating, Frank would also talk about how great they were together:

We all gel. It's amazing. We all find each other's pockets and we sit in it and it's amazing. It's a really, really good band. Dizzy Reed's piano playing is like... I mean, he's probably one of the most underrated piano players in the world because he's piano playing is insane. When we do Used To Love Her or stuff like that it's just like, "Ooh!" I mean, again, it's my wheelhouse. You know, what bands do I want to be in? I want to be in Rolling Stones and AC/DC, I want to be in groove bands, bands where the drummers just sit there and groove forever and that's what Guns do.

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Post by Soulmonster Sun Jan 09, 2022 7:14 am

DECEMBER 16 AND 17, 2011

Yeah, we're gonna do some shows with Duff, too.

Then followed two shows at KeyArena, Seattle on December 16 and Pacific Coliseum, Vancouver, Canada, on December 17. For both these shows, Duff's band, Loaded, would be the opener, and Duff would play with Guns N' Roses at their set. In Seattle Duff joined for You Could Be Mine and in Vancouver he joined for You Could be Mine and Civil War.

Duff would later be asked if it was strange being asked to open for Guns N' Roses:

I didn't really look at it like anything except it was a chance to play some gigs with my old buddy. One was in my hometown Seattle, and the other in Vancouver. It was a feel-good deal. It wasn't like Judas Priest calling [my band] Loaded to open some gigs for them. It felt totally different than that.

And in 2019 he would refer to this as an "olive branch":

And maybe a year later [after having joined the band on stage at the O2] my band Loaded played a couple of shows with GN’R. That was kind of an olive branch - showing the public, like, there’s somewhat of a healing going on.

In Seattle, Tommy replaced his usual My Generation or Sonic Reducer "solo spot" songs with his own Motivation from One Man Mutiny.

Axl and Duff
December 16, 2011

Excerpts from review of the Seattle show in Seattle Weekly:

There were shades of the Rose of yore, like the indulgent three-hour set the band played, but gone was the slithery frontman whose volatile temper caused him to attack concert goers and cancel gigs resulting in riots. In his place, a blinged-out, fedora'd, sunglasses-wearing elder statesman who seems to have finally simmered down a bit as he closes in on 50. He still commanded the stage like he always has, but Rose was a gracious ring leader, giving each of the band's seven members a moment in the spotlight and talking only briefly throughout the band's long set.


The show's highlight, however, didn't involve the band's current lineup, but it's classic one. Hometown hero and original Guns bassist Duff McKagan, whose current band Loaded opened the show, joined Axl on stage, marking the first time the pair have played together on American soil in 17 years. The duo had a similar reunion in London last year, but it didn't change the fact that the Seattle crowd felt like they were being treated to something special and rare.

"I'd like to bring out my friend and yours," Axl said, as he welcomed Duff to the stage for a rocking version of "You Could Be Mine." With his bleached hair, lanky frame and white Fender bass slung low, Duff looked remarkably close to his 1987 self as he sang backup vocals with the rest of the band. With GNR soon to be inducted into the Rock and Roll of Fame, the four-minute mini-reunion may serve as the closest thing to what many fans speculate will never happen: A full-blown reunion featuring the band's Appetite-era lineup. Regardless, the Key Arena crowd cheered enthusiastically for Duff's appearance then promptly took out their Smartphones en masse to capture the performance for an immediate upload to YouTube.

Near the end of the show in Vancouver, Axl apologized for the cancellation that resulted in a riot in 2002:

On behalf of the city I'd like to thank you for not tearing the place up. I apologize for my part in any past affairs.

Axl and Duff
December 17, 2011

During the show, Axl would also throw out an audience member:

Guns N' Roses frontman Axl Rose ejected an unruly fan during the band's headlining concert this past Saturday night (December 17) at Pacific Coliseum in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.

"Out, motherfucker! Out! Get the fuck out!" Rose announced over the microphone, mocking the fan who appeared to be confused as to why he was being asked to leave. "Yeah, you! See ya, you dumbass motherfucker."

As security walked the fan through the crowd, Rose and his fellow bandmates stood at the front of the stage waving, as Rose began singing 'Happy Trails.'

"That's the first person I've had thrown out for 100 shows," Rose said from the stage after the fan was removed, "like the good old days."

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Post by Soulmonster Sun Jan 09, 2022 7:14 am

DECEMBER 7, 2011

The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (RRHOF) is a museum in Cleveland, USA, that honors rock music. To be inducted into the RRHOF is considered a great honor among many musicians. A band can only be inducted based on achievements 25 years prior.

Already back in 2005 would Slash discuss the possibility of Guns N' Roses being inducted and suggest that Axl might not show up for the induction ceremony:

You know, like, it’s so fucked up. You have to either burned out or been around for so long or die to get into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Usually, they wait till you die and then they put you in there. But it’s like, I was thinking if Guns N’ Roses ever - you know, because we did make a pretty.... [...] record breaking kind of thing. If it was ever inducted in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Axl wouldn’t show up (laughs). You know, like, it’s just... (chuckles).

A few years later, Slash was asked if the band would reunite for the expected, upcoming RRHOF induction in 2012:

You know, in a perfect world, it would be nice. There's a lot of pressure on any sort of band that breaks up that is that popular, the Van Halen thing or the Police or whatever ..... I don't know whether the circumstances will permit us wanting to get together and play, but it would be a whole different spirit-of-the-moment thing. You never know what ends up happening over the next few years, how it develops.

Axl, on the other hand, seemed less interested in the RRHOF:

Not to offend anyone but personally I don’t have an interest and other than inducting Elton don’t quite get what it is exactly and who decides what. It seems to mean more to some than others and more so amongst fans. It’s nice to get recognition and have some form of acceptance but in regards to joining others the price is too high and just not worth it. It’s a ways away and seems a bit presumptuous to be contemplating being inducted now.

In 2010, Slash would talk about the RRHOF and be asked what had made Guns N' Roses so special:

I'm not sure what it was about the chemistry of the group or the songs that have resonated for so long. But there was something about the honesty of Axl Rose's lyrics and the energy of the music people related to. It was a phenomenon.

Slash would say he planned to attend if they were inducted but had no idea if the entire classical lineup would be there:

I have no idea how that's supposed to go. If Axl, Duff, Izzy and myself start communicating, it could go one way. If we don't, God knows.

The band would be eligible for entry in 2012:

I didn't realize it was so soon. First, we have to actually get inducted. I know we'll be eligible, but with the way that the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame is sort of hit or miss with rock bands, there is a possibility that we won't get nominated next year.

As for what they would do if they were inducted:

We'll cross that bridge when we get there. [...] If they're gonna pass you over, I don't think it's worth worrying about too much. But at the same time it's nice to be recognized by your peers, so yeah, everybody wants to be mentioned. But if they don't mention you, you can't take it too seriously because they miss a lot of really important people every year.

Velvet Revolver was the band that played instead of [David Lee Roth with] Van Halen. It was really awkward for us, but I don’t know. You just presented me with a lot of ifs. All I know is hopefully I can make the right decision if that comes up. I don’t know what the right thing to do is. I really don’t.

And who would hold the speech:

I'd be lying if I said I haven't thought about the Hall of Fame. But I haven't thought about that. I'm not sure what the deal is with the Hall of Fame. Is it like sports? A lot of great artists haven't been inducted. GnR played when they inducted Van Halen. We were supposed to play with David Lee Roth and he didn't show up. But then Keith Richards showed up and he added some real weight. So that made it fun. And Patti Smith have a great speech that year. How about Bozo the Clown? That would be fun. I really don't know. Haven't thought about it. Iggy? That would be amazing.

Whether they would show up:

[...] But with this Hall Of Fame thing…I'd be lying to you if I said I didn't know it was coming. I've been made aware of it. I don't sit around and do the calculations: 'Oh yeah, the Rock And Roll Hall of Fame, that's where I gotta be…'

So yeah, I guess we could be eligible. But I think it's a real 'cross-that-bridge-when-you-come-to-it' kind of thing. I haven't done any thorough thinking about it or reaching out to anyone about it.

My only experience with the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame was when VR played it and we were inducting Van Halen. That whole band was supposed to be there, including David Lee Roth - we were going to do a song with him. It all started falling apart in the two weeks leading up to the gig. It was sad to watch…

We were just the innocent band that was there to play Van Halen songs, and we saw their whole thing crumble. To see Michael Anthony and Sammy Hagar show up, when it was supposed to be everybody... Michael and Sammy were really cool guys and good sports about it, but they took all the heat over the situation. A lot of heat.

I don't know if I want to set myself up for heat. It's going to be a debacle, isn't it? A press debacle. I just don't know what else to say about it, Joe. I have to come up with some good quotes! [laughs]

Steven was...excited about the possibility of an induction:

We're not eligible! We're getting in there. It's all about us, it's all about me and my brothers and we are going to be there and I'm not going to hear another fucking word about it.


On September 2011, the band was formally nominated, as expected.

It's a great honor. The band deserves it. It was a long time coming.

I don’t really know what to make of that yet. That’s quite an honor and we will see what happens. I woke up very early on the West Coast and I got a couple texts from the East Coast ... ‘Congratulations, congratulations.’

[...] it’s weird, you know? I’ve never striven to get into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Never in my life have I thought, “man, I gotta get a Grammy.” In sports you try to win it all, but music’s a different deal. So the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame was never on my radar. As a matter of fact, I don’t know how we got roped into it, but when we (Velvet Revolver) inducted Van Halen, it went south. I don’t know if you remember that. It just went south. The band (Van Halen) was fighting, and the only ones to show up were Michael Anthony and Sammy Hagar, and it was like, “Ohhh, boy…”

So when we (GNR) got announced, that’s what I remembered. But I do understand that for the fans, it’s important. It’s important to the people who buy your records and come to your gigs and connect with some lyric that you wrote or a groove or something. I mean, I’m part of social media — I write a couple of columns online, and people comment on those. I have Twitter and I’m on Facebook and I read people’s comments about how they feel about us being inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, so then it’s important to me. Only then. And I’ve learned to just say, “thank you.”

It’s become very prestigious over the years, and it’s become a huge honor for anybody to be inducted into it — or even nominated, for that matter. It’s a cool accolade, I suppose. Obviously we’re in really, really great company.

That news must've came out when we were in South America. You can get pretty disconnected down there. I don't feel one way or another about it.

Obviously there's a lot of great, great people that I respect and grew up admiring and idolizing who are in and part of that institution. So just to be mentioned in the same breath as them, I take it as an honor. [...] I don't know what's going to happen or how all that goes down, but it's definitely something to feel good about, I think.

No one has said anything to me about it. I’ve just heard about it because people have asked me about it. Of course it would be an honor because of the other people that are there. I don’t know anything about the whole process and how it’s going down.

I was utterly surprised and a bit overwhelmed last week when I woke up in the early morning to my BlackBerry beeping without end. Guns N' Roses, a band I co-founded, was nominated for the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame. I am very grateful for all of the well-wishes I have received here at ESPN, and everywhere else. Thank you.

But we in that band are relatively young dudes, and I was astonished to see just who hadn't yet made that Hall of Fame. Older artists who have paid their dues in full and have changed how we approach and look at music. Faces? Motorhead? It's a big list. Look it up.

It was unclear which band members would be enshrined if the band was indeed inducted:

I was a fan of the band even before I joined, so I'd love to see the original five guys play a song. That was always one of the great things about the band -- you never knew what to expect. . . . I'm not speaking for Axl, but I think in his eyes, everything is fine and the band is carrying on. But I think the public would like to see the people [at the inductions] who made the most popular albums. There's unfinished business within the band, certainly.

If they were going to play live at the ceremony:

Oh, I don’t know (laughing). I guess I have to start preparing myself for these questions.

Dizzy and DJ would suggest a reunion for the induction was unlikely:

At this point, I would say no, it won't happen. But that's just my opinion, based on what I know.

I get asked that a lot and my honest opinion is that I don’t ever foresee that happening, to be honest just from what I know. But I would be the first person in line to buy a ticket, that’s for sure. So I have no problem with it whatsoever.

Being asked what he think will happen:

I can’t. I can’t picture it. Your guess is as good as mine. There is no picture. It’s bound to happen but I’d love to call the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, whoever they are, and say, “Hey guys, why don’t you put this off for another ten years? Thank you! Thanks for nominating us — it’s great, but how about you put it off for ten years?”

Of course, you have those thoughts of how it might work in case it does happen, but with Guns ‘N Roses, there’s really no guessing exactly how it will go. I suppose if it happens, everybody will get some sort of ducks in order. But I think the first thing to do is wait and see if we actually get inducted, because you know how unpredictable that is.

And Bumblefoot would be asked what he thought would happen if the old lineup reunited:

Ha. I don’t know, I’ve never been in a room with all the original guys. So I think only the guys who have been in the room with the original guys would really know for sure. I’ve hung with Izzy, I’ve hung with Duff, I’ve hung with Axl, I did hang with Adler once. I think that there would definitely be a... strange vibe in the air. I can only guess, and say that there might be an air of tension if they all got together. But that’s just me speculating.

DJ would be excited on behalf of the band:

I just pulled Axl aside the other night and congratulated him. I think it's a huge honor for him. I'm really happy for Axl. There's nobody out there who deserves it more. I'm talking me stepping away from the band and looking at it for what it is -- I think anybody who gets nominated, it's a massive honor. I wish him nothing but the best.

And Tommy would suggest Axl was happy for it:

Axl probably appreciates it. I don't really give a [expletive]. Honestly, the Grammys or the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, all that stuff has never been on my radar, as far as anything that matters.

In November 2011, Axl would for the first time discuss the nomination and suggest it was an honor and that it seemed to be important to the fans:

Elton asked me to induct him and so I took it upon myself to go on stage and induct him and Bernie. You know, I was pretty proud of that still. I don't know what it means in terms of me with the old band and the old lineup. I don't know what if we were to be invited what they would ask of me or not. I don't know. That's still all up in the air. It's an honor, you know, to be on the, whatever, the nomination or whatever, and I know that there's definitely an element of the fans that really like that, you know, and so for them I think it's a great thing.

In early December, Matt would be asked if the classic lineup would reunite for the occasion:

You never know. Usually the way it works with Guns N' Roses is that it's gotta be about Slash and Axl first, which has been a little bit of a problem. Duff played with Axl and actually Duff (and his band Loaded) was gonna go out on tour with Axl. [...] I haven't seen Axl for about six years.


On December 7, it was announced that the band would be inducted [BBC News, December 7, 2011] in the "Performer Category" [Press Release from the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, December 7, 2011].

Guns N’ Roses may have began as just another long-haired band trying to make it on the L.A. Sunset Strip club scene, but when they unleashed their debut LP Appetite For Destruction on the world in 1987 they instantly established themselves as one the most dynamic and explosive hard rock bands in history. In many ways, they became the Rolling Stones for a new generation. While their peers produced glossy songs that romanticized the party atmosphere of mid-1980s Los Angeles, frontman Axl Rose, guitarist Slash, drummer Steven Adler, rhythm guitarist Izzy Stradlin and bassist Duff McKagan wrote about the gritty realities of the scene, most memorably on their masterpiece “Welcome To The Jungle.” The massive single “Sweet Child O’ Mine” showed their gentler side, while “Mr. Brownstone” was a brilliant cautionary tale about the dangers of heroin. In 1991, inspired by Queen and Elton John, they released the highly ambitious Use Your Illusion albums on the same day. Epic singles “November Rain” and “Civil War” proved how quickly the band had evolved in a few short years, and they were soon packing stadiums all across the globe. When the tour wrapped in late 1993, the band paid tribute to their 1970s hard rock, punk and glam heroes by recording an album of covers called The Spaghetti Incident.

Following the induction, former and current band members would immediately respond:

I'd like to thank the Rock N' Roll Hall of Fame and our fans. This is your victory.
Twitter, December 8, 2011

Thanks for all the R&RHF mentions, It’s quite an honor to be inducted. Cheers! lii|; )'
Twitter, December 7, 2011

Thanks 2 all of u for overwhelming # of 'congratulations' that I have received 2day. Rock and Roll Hall of Fame? Life is good! Killer! Duff
Twitter, December 7, 2011

Thank you all for your support in making this happen. It really means a lot to me. I am happy and excited to be a part of this!
Twitter, December 2011

I have waited up to this point to see what would become of the GNR induction into RRHOF. I would like to say THANK YOU and GRACIAS to RRHOF for the acknowledgement of our works over the years as a band. BIG THANKS to all my bandmates who helped get us to where we are today. And, of course, THANK YOU to all of the people on this planet (including, but not limited to, the entire universe and beyond, etc., etc., etc.) who have supported Guns N' Roses from day one. Adios, Amigos!

Izzy Stradlin


Guns N' Roses official Facebook page would also comment:

So close yet still far away from the Rock N' Roll Hall of Fame. Congratulations to all the 2012 inductees and our sincerest thanks to the Hall's organizers, committee members and voting delegates who supported the GN'R induction - it's a humbling honor to be recognized on this first ballot.

While it's so easy to get hyped up on awards and recognition of the now, let's never forget the soldiers who fight for the freedom we enjoy. ESPECIALLY on this day 70 years ago at Pearl Harbor, the lagoon in Hawaii where the ultimate price was paid. REMEMBER December 7th is the day to commemorate the Japanese attack that drew the United States into World War II.

Facebook, December 8, 2011

The band members to be inducted were assumed to be Axl, Slash, Duff, Steven, Izzy, Dizzy and Matt. Gilby, who was not to be inducted posted the following response on Twitter:

it was cool the last couple months to be a part of 2 bands that were nominated. now, i'm bummed for heart... happy for gnr !
Twitter, December 7, 2011

DJ and Bumblefoot seemed to take the non-inclusion in good spirits:

25 years of great music, great shows, and great fans Smile Thanks to all who made it happen...!
Facebook, December 7, 2011

IT'S OFFICIAL: Guns N' Roses WILL be inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in April 2012. My sincerest congratulations to Axl Rose and everyone else who has been apart of this bands history. Time To Deck The Halls With Destruction!
Facebook, December 7, 2011

It's 30 years of something [Axl] created. It's a massive honor for him.

Steven was interviewed in Rolling Stone and talk about how he always knew they would be successful:

Of course, excitement and joy. I always knew it was going to happen, just like when the band first started. I always knew that we were going to be successful and accomplish and succeed at our dreams. There was never a doubt in my mind. When we were recording Appetite For Destruction, we all knew. I've been blessed. I grew up and played and worked and created with the Freddie Mercury, the Jimi Hendrix, the Keith Richards, the John Paul Jones of my generation. I love those guys, no matter what happened. Everything was meant to happen the way it happened. I always knew that we were going to succeed.

He was also thrilled about the upcoming induction ceremony:

I've been working on my speech for the last three weeks, since I found out we were on the ballot. I've got a tent and a sleeping bag, so I'm going to be there the week before.

But as far as everyone showing up, Steven was certain Axl wouldn't be there:

But, as far as I know, there is a God and a higher power, and it's possible. Unfortunately, I don't foresee it. You figure that time could heal all wounds, but some people just REALLY hold a crazy grudge. [...] [Axl] should be cool with Slash! The real shame about the ending of the Guns N' Roses when I got kicked out wasn't just that I got kicked out, but Slash and Axl stopped working together. They are the Keith Richards and the Mick Jagger! The Steven Tyler and Joe Perry! For twenty years, because of some STUPID grudge, which I guarantee you that neither of them could even tell you what it was. They don't even know! I just had lunch with Slash two days ago. He loves Axl. He holds no grudges towards him. Twenty years of great music wasn't created because of some stupid grudge. That's a shame.

And part of the reason why Steven was so certain, was how Axl had discussed the RRHOF in his interview with That Metal Show:

Then, when he talked about the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame…that's why I don't think he'll show up. He seemed to have such a grudge! He didn't even answer. Eddie asked him, and he did not give a straight answer. He said, "blah blah blah blah." Then he said something about, "I don't know what they're expecting of me and expecting of the old band."  What do you mean what they're expecting? Can't we just be fucking people who played music and accomplished a huge goal in their life and just play a couple songs? It's only rock and roll, my god! It's not rocket science.

Steven would continue talking about how much it meant to him that Axl showed up and it is clear Steven saw this as a great opportunity to finally reunite the band, a dream he had had for many years (see previous chapter):

It would mean so much to me if he did. Izzy too. I know that Duff and Slash will show up. They're basically normal human beings. Izzy is a gypsy. He's happy doing his own thing and he lives life to the fullest. Izzy is one of my heroes. I look up to him more than anybody. Steven Tyler and Izzy are the two coolest people that I've ever met or ever wanted to be influenced by. But Axl…it would mean so much to me. I personally just want to finish what I started with those jack-offs. We started off something, let's end the career playing together, at least once. I'd love to do a whole tour of the world. I personally, and I know that Slash and Duff feel the same way, we owe it to the fans to do a tour around the world. We haven't performed for over 20 years and they've stuck by us and believe in us. I get Tweets every day from people around the world saying how much they love the original band.

When it comes to after I left, I do believe that Matt Sorum and Dizzy Reed both have every right to be inducted too. Dizzy did play on Use Your Illusion, and he's been with Axl longer than anybody. He deserves it. Matt Sorum also played on Use Your Illusion. I think that the seven of us deserve it. I was just texting Matt Sorum in Australia. I'm going to play with him at The Roxy next week with Camp Freddy. He invited me to come down and play. He's a great guy.


[The RRHOF] is a highlight [of my career], but the highlight would really be if the five of us could perform together again. That would be the highlight. Yes, this is very huge. Of course. Eric Clapton, John Lennon…I'm getting inducted. Those are going to be my brothers. But the real thing would be if we could perform together. If Axl and the other guys will consider doing it, it would be a dream come true for me. As I said, I would like to finish what I started with them.

Matt and Duff would also provide longer commentaries:

Congratulations to myself, I guess. It's just amazing that we're still here, and still alive. We had such wild times and we're still here to tell the tale. And all the boys are healthy. [...] We'll see how it goes. It's in the springtime and we've been inducted with Red Hot Chili Peppers and Faces and some other greats, so it's good company. [...] I'm in a band called Velvet Revolver with Slash and Duff McKagan — we were all original Guns N' Roses members — and so we still have a band. And then Axl is doing his thing; we're split up right now. So everyone's hope for the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame is that we get on stage together. [...] I just spoke to the original drummer, Steven Adler, last night, who I replaced in 1990, and then came over here to Australia and did the biggest concert in the southern hemisphere at the time — at Eastern Creek; it was 100,000 people. So Steven and me are talking, and we're all gonna go, hopefully, and have a good time.

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.

When asked if he thought Axl and Slash would reunite for the ceremony, Matt would decline to comment on whether the relationship between the two was easing up a bit:

I just don’t have an answer. That’s the thing: I’m not the guy. I wish I knew, but I’d be the last guy to hear about it, probably. You’d know about it before I would. My grandmother would call me to let me know [laughs]. I’d be a rich man if for every time I got asked that question I got handed a dollar bill. I’d be a wealthy, wealthy man.


You know, I don’t want to say, because then this will be all over the internet and I’ll just get a bunch of shit for it. The problem is that a lot of the fans don’t even take what I have to say with a grain of salt. I’d rather if Slash had that conversation. And Slash is the quiet one; that’s the problem. He’s not like me. I’m just like a guy who’s a little bit more off the cuff – I kinda say what I’m feeling. Slash will just not say anything and that’s the way he likes it. And then I’ll open my big ol’ mouth and the next thing you know I’m getting slapped around the internet by all the jackasses on their blog sites – you know what I mean?

So it’s better if I just go, “I don’t know shit.” Which is the absolute truth [laughs]. They could be in a room right now having a coup around a bonfire, eating samoras, and talking about the resurrection of the Holy Grail. Seriously, like the Illuminati or some shit [laughs], and I wouldn’t be invited, you know what I’m saying?

Later in December, Joel Peresman, President and CEO of the RRHOF, would confirm the inductees:

Who will be invited, obviously, is the original five [that made ‘Appetite For Destruction’] and [keyboardist] Dizzy [Reed] and [drummer] Matt [Sorum].

Peresman would also state that everyone had said they would be coming, including Axl and that except for Dizzy and Matt, the RRHOF had been in contact will all inductees [Hennemusic/Eddie Trunk Live, December 20, 2011].

Slash would be quick to emphasize that he had not confirmed he would be attending:

For the record, I didn’t RSVP, or in any way commit to attending the RRHF. I don’t appreciate people putting words in my mouth.

Around the same time, Axl was asked who would perform during the ceremony and express his ambivalence towards the induction, with on one hand obviously not being eager to attend while on the other hand not wanting to spoil it for the fans:

I’ve got mixed emotions about what the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame actually really is, but at the same time, there’s a lot of people — the fans — that it just means something to them, and they’re happy. It’s like you won the Heisman or something. I have people of all ages — in Indiana, I hadn’t been there in 18 years, and you’ve got elderly TSA guys, a hundred pounds overweight, come up and they’re happy. So I don’t want to take that away from them.

I think about it in terms of ... when Michael Moore got up at the Academy Awards and said whatever about George Bush. People don’t want that associated with their awards shows, even if you have a big audience. In one way it might be right, but it usually backfires on whoever does it. So I really don’t want to spoil it for everybody else — and take the beating. [Laughs]

It is kind of a mixed blessing.

It’s a lot of people making money. Why do they get to decide? But it’s the same with Grammys or Academy Awards, who wins.

He would also emphasize that his focus was on the current band:

There is no plan yet. There really is no plan. We're still busy with this lineup. We're gonna be busy — we're gonna be busy all next year. We'll be putting out new stuff as soon as we can figure out what our deal is with labels, blah blah blah.

And mention that the RRHOF had wanted them in for a long time:

[Rolling Stone co-founder publisher and rock hall co-founder] Jann Wenner was excited about it 11 years ago. So I was pretty sure he wanted it, because he was very excited in — when did I do the Elton John thing, was that '93 or '94? He was excited then. And he’s always been a fan, and at the same time Rolling Stone has done some of the worst damage ever.


At the end of the year, Dizzy was still uncertain on what would happen:

I haven’t received any sort of schedule or itinerary yet, and I really don’t know much about the whole process, but I’ll do whatever, man. I always say that I’m always the last to know. I could be in Tahiti or something and get a phone call, who knows?

Matt tried to figure out Axl's stance by talking to Sebastian Bach:

[Steven] says, 'Congratulations.' I said, 'What?' He was the first one to tell me about Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame. I had no idea. It's kind of a weird thing. It's like, what's gonna happen? Who knows? I don't know. I've been hearing a few things, a little bit, through Sebastian Bach, 'cause he hangs around with Axl. Hopefully everyone's just sort of… before I get too old, let bygones be bygones. But the problem is it's not me. I'm just the guy that played drums; I'm not the dude that was in the mix of all the other drama. I was there for the drama, [laughs] and maybe I caused a little bit, but there was nothing I could say about it.

In February 2012, Dizzy would say that everyone would be there:

I know that all the original band is going to be there. I don't know exactly what's going to go down. It's one of those things I'm sure will all come together and be really cool. I'm just going to go in with a good attitude and a clear head and a grateful heart.

I think [the RRHOS inclusion is] a great thing. It’s really cool for all the people who have supported the band over the years. And I try not to think about it because I don’t want to get too freaked out [...]. And when that day comes and gets closer, then I’ll start thinking about it a little more.

Slash would be asked if this was correct:

I know that there's a lot of rumor about it, as always when it comes to GN'R, out there on the Internet and stuff. But as it stands right this second, I have no idea what's going on.

But on whether they would play together:

Honestly, [Axl and I] haven't spoken about it. I don't know when or why or how to bring it up. It's not an every day sort of thing. So we haven't really talked about it -- but I'm sure we'll have to at some point.

Matt would also not know what was going to happen, but would take the opportunity to talk kindly of Steven, his new friend [see earlier chapter]:

People keep asking me about the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame, and I’m really like the last guy to ask. I was the guy that joined Guns N’ Roses and I was lucky to get the gig. And I was sort of there to be of service to the rest of the band. And the band is Axl Rose, Slash, Duff McKagan and Izzy Stradlin. Yeah, was I in the band? Sure. But when it comes down to making the decisions, I was the last guy to hear about it. So when people ask me [about Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame], I go, ‘To be honest with you, I really don’t know what’s gonna happen.’ I just don’t know. Will I be there and be available for whatever happens? Yeah.

And at the same time, I would like to see [original Guns N' Roses drummer] Steven Adler up there. . . We are getting along now, which is great, because there was a lot of years where, I think — and I’ve said this in the press before — I was sort of like the guy who was having sex with his ex-girlfriend, you know what I mean?! It’s like, you don’t like the guy at all if you don’t know him, but it still pisses you off. It’s like, ‘He’s with my old lady’ kind of thing. But I think once he got to know me, he realized that I wasn’t there to [screw] him over or whatever, and if it wouldn’t have been me, it would have been some other guy. It’s like he was out of the band. I think people maybe that are GN’R fans of the original lineup have to kind of look at it that way.

Guns N’ Roses would have either imploded completely after Steven, or someone would have come and replaced him. There was about three or four guys they tried out before me, and luckily, I was the guy that sort of stepped into that position. After a lot of years and a lot of healing for Steven, he was able to accept the fact that that was the situation. And I have always supported him in the fact that, I said in the press a few times, if Guns N’ Roses ever got back together, it would be cool if I played the ‘Use Your Illusion’ stuff and he played the ‘Appetite’ stuff, and if he was healthy enough to do that, I would support him on that. To me, it’s not about the money, ’cause if it does come down, which, I don’t wanna tell you what the offers have been, but I know they’re in the multi-, multi-million-dollar range. Yeah, if I was asked, what would I say? Probably yes. But Steven’s in line for that before I am.

As far as GN’R and the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame, me and him are gonna go there together; I said I’d meet him there. It’s part of our lives, it’s part of what we’ve done and what we accomplished. And he was there for the beginning and I was the guy that came in and, basically, went out there and helped send the GN’R message to the rest of the world.

DJ would again talk about the event and be asked if he knew if all the guys would show up:

There’s been zero talk about it. Personally speaking - I hope so. I hope  everybody can put aside their differences for one night. This is a huge thing for the original five. This is a lifetime achievement thing and a big honor for Axl and the rest of the guys. So, I would love to see it happen. It would be great for the fans. It’s not my call, but I’d like to see it happen because I know how much it means to the fans. It would be a cool thing.

And Dizzy would talk more about how this wasn't as important to him as it was for the fans:

Obviously, some amazing artists have been inducted and I’m sure there be will more in the future. In that regard, to be a part of that, obviously, I have to look it as special. Many of the people that I grew up listening to are huge influences on me. I don’t know what goes into the whole process of that. I’ve never been a big fan of the awards and what not, but you can’t really deny it. I think the main thing is that it’s a tribute to the fan. For all the fans that have always been there, it’s for them. They’re the one who are gonna go, ‘Fuck yeah! G n’ R is in the fuckin’ hall of fame.’ At the end of the day, they’re the ones that you have to ask if you think anyone should really be in there. If they say yes, than yeah, sure, really it’s for them. That’s the coolest thing. I try not to think about it a lot too cause I don’t want to get all freaked out.

Around the same time, Duff would still have no idea what would happen but also echo that the induction wasn't important to him but to the fans:

I don't. I know I'm going to go. I can't, at all, speak for anybody else. And won't. I'll be there with bells on. Is the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame that important to me? No. Is it something I've aspired towards? No. It's not sports. You get into the Baseball Hall of Fame, that's bad ass. But that's a competitive sport. You have stats. Look, we were a good band – but there were a lot of good bands. A lot of people liked our band, eventually. And that's kick ass.

What I found out when we got nominated is that there's just a shit ton of fans around the world who are really psyched. In that case, it's more about them and the people that believed in us and bought our records and came and saw us. Imagine that? All those people believing in our band – a thing we created out of thin air. That part of it is an honor. The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as an institution? I really don't know much about it.

Slash would echo Duff's bewilderment but suggest that he would just "go down there" and "see what happens":

It's definitely an honor and I have no idea what's going to happen on that day. So it’s something that’s… it's hard for me to even… you know, I'm not really necessarily anticipating anything in particular. It's just on the 14th and I'll go down there and see what happens. With all this, sort of, lack of unity on the subject, it's hard to really look forward to it, because I don't know what to anticipate. So it's more like going into it with blinders on and just see what happens.

Being asked if he would the band was going to reunite and play:

I think it would be killer. Do I hope to? That's a tricky question. It would be awesome. You have those day dreams like, "We'll go up and play 'Nightrain' and 'Brownstone' and throw down the microphone and drop off! That'll be killer!' But I doubt that'll happen. [...] There's been no communication about anyone playing. There was probably a day in the mid-1990s where I would have tried to gather the troops, but I'm just not that guy anymore. It's too frustrating to change anyone else…I'm not even sure I'd want to change how anyone else sees a situation. But I'm going.

As for whether Izzy would be there:

I don't know. You'd have to ask him. It would be great if Izzy went, but I don't really know. I don't know if he's into that whole kind of thing with cameras and all that stuff.

In March, DJ would say he didn't understand why the inductees weren't talking about the ceremony and that he wanted to see them all put their "differences aside and just give the fans what they want":

The one thing I don't understand about the Hall Of Fame is nobody's fucking talking, nobody's talking about it. I just don't, I don't get it. In my opinion, I think it's a huge honor. I think it would be awesome to see, you know, everybody get up on stage and put all the differences aside for one night and just give the fans what they want. To me, that makes the most sense. But I have no idea what's gonna go down, because there has been zero talk about it so far. I wish I could tell you more. Whatever happens, that night's gonna be exciting. I'm anxious to see what happens.

The same month, Slash would talk more about the event:

Slash would also emphasize they would not play at the ceremony:

And we’re not playing. I would imagine that they asked us to play but I know that we’re not playing.

As for whether Axl would attend:

And around the same time, Matt would also say he had no idea what would happen:

And Steven would insist he would be playing, no matter what:

Around the same time, Matt would talk about wanting to play, if necessary with fellow inductee Donovan:

Well, I don't expect really anything to happen. I think we're gonna go and accept the award, is what it's looking like. If anything, I might play drums with [fellow inductee] Donovan. I offered my services to Donovan because I played with him one time before and 'Hurdy Gurdy Man' was a song he recorded that John Bonham played drums on and Jimmy Page was the guitar player and I offered Donovan that me and Slash could play that maybe, but I haven't heard back if he wants us to do it or not.

Later, Marc Canter would talk about Slash's reactions to being nominated and suggest he had not been entirely truthful in his reactions:

In April, Duff would talk about only doing it for the fans:

The one reason that I am going to Cleveland this weekend is not to savor in some polite accolade or because an award show is that important to me. I am going because I have realized how important this is all to those many, many fans that supported us and believed in us, and showed up for us in droves.

Music is not like sports, and hence, a Hall of Fame in music is almost a false pedestal to sit upon. There are no statistics in music and art. No band or artist is "better" than another. Music comes from a primal place. Thin air. Dreams. And a lot of really hard damn work.

No one worked harder than us back then, and we were very fortunate to have met each other in those dirty back alleys of Hollywood sometime in 1984. We meshed and wrote, created thunder and beauty, and parlayed our real-life experience into an album that somehow related to a whole angsty world that felt just like us right then and there. It was a brilliant time.

I, too, now hope that we can just play a couple of songs there, and just sort of throw the microphone down on the stage and walk off. The rock-and-roll world would be set ablaze once again ... and we could make a bunch of fans happy and sated to some degree.

But alas, I am only responsible for me, and can only speak for me. I have forgiven and forgotten. I have grown up and manned up. Part of me growing has been to realize I am powerless over others.

This whole deal, I hope, goes off without a hitch. I do hope we can achieve some grace in our acceptance. And I hope this grace, is enough, in the end, for the best rock and roll fans in the world. The Guns N' (f---ing) Roses fans.

Last edited by Soulmonster on Fri Aug 12, 2022 7:03 pm; edited 5 times in total
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Post by Soulmonster Tue Feb 22, 2022 7:36 am

DECEMBER 21-31, 2011

The next show took place at The Forum, Los Angeles, on December 21.

Before the show, Tommy would talk about the band's travelling arrangement:

We actually have three buses. Axl's got his bus, with his managers, and I hang out with Dizzy Reed, Richard Fortus, Del James -- the guys on my bus.

And Axl would talk about returning to Los Angeles:

Well, LA will be interesting. I’m looking forward to it. We had a great time in ’06. We did three nights at the Gibson. But this year was very weird because the industry was trying to force us into a smaller show — just one, and then make it two. But the real thing about it is that the sound’s not that good at the Palladium — and why are we going down, when we can draw more? So we’re doing the Forum, but it really wasn’t done right. We had to fight for that. [Rose goes into a long tirade about specific industry executives.]

This whole tour is part of — it’s not like there’s a lot of money going to Live Nation or anything, but it’s part of how we worked out the settlement [with former manager and Live Nation exec Irving Azoff]. And I could have gone on to court, but that was going to block other things, so Live Nation's not getting paid, we’re not getting paid, but we’re putting it out of the way, so we did this tour. Then we get on the tour and find out that everything that was supposed to be done wasn’t done, and managers and agents are selling a show that was supposed to go on at 8 o’clock. They knew I was never going to do that.

Originally the idea had been to do two shows:

Well, we were talking about it, but I got different numbers at different times from different people, and some of those came from our latest former manager, and they were ..., so we basically decided that we’re going to wait until later to do it right and deal with L.A., because I want to deal with L.A. There’s places I want to play. I want to play some of the clubs, some of the nightclubs, different places for fun, and I want to play different venues like we’ve done in New York.

And I know we can do it in L.A., but what happens is people are really good at saying what you want to hear. So you go, yes, yes, yes, yes, and then they do something completely different. "That’s awesome. That’s a great idea!" And then they do everything they can to block it and make sure it doesn’t happen. That really happens. To me, they can’t ... do anything and they don’t want to do anything unless they feel that they’re getting away with a scam. They can’t feel they’re doing something that’s legitimate, and feel that kind of pride, they have to feel like, I got it, I ... them over, da da da. And that’s their victory.

Excerpts from review in Metal Assault:

Guns N’ Roses hit the stage at the scheduled time of 11 PM. Yes, it’s completely true, and you can ask anyone who was at the show. If you were waiting to read about how late Axl and the gang showed up, you can put all those expectations to rest right about now. The band took the stage on time, and looked and sounded ready, right from the word go. I was thinking perhaps Axl would take a couple of songs to really get his voice ‘in the zone’, but surprisingly that wasn’t the case. He was nailing it straight from the outset, and was very well complemented by his band mates. Even though they started out with “Chinese Democracy”, they wasted no time in going old school by following it up with the classics “Welcome To The Jungle”, “It’s So Easy” and “Mr. Brownstone”. The band’s overall sound on these tunes was nothing short of pure gold. [...]p.

The set list was incredibly long, and all the Guns N’ Roses songs any fan would want to hear were packed into this one show. There is absolutely no chance that anyone left this show disappointed with the song selection. I was actually a little taken aback by how good the Chinese Democracy material sounded. I feel that people, myself included, approached that album with the wrong mindset when it released in 2008, expecting another “Appetite”, obviously not helped by the 15-year gap. But upon hearing these songs live purely as individual tunes, they now come across to me as excellent pieces of music, and succeed in having the sort of impact they failed to create through the studio album. In particular, the performance of “Sorry” was definitely one of the highlights of the entire show.


The production was gigantic, to say the least. There were three giant screens directly behind the drum kit, in addition to two screens perched high up either side of the stage, for the benefit of people seated in the upper sections. Plenty of pyrotechnics was also employed at opportune moments. Even though the show was much longer than what people are generally used to from rock bands, the majority of the crowd stayed till the end, which was great to see. [...]

If I had to pick my favorite song from the show, it would certainly be “November Rain”. Axl was simply mind-blowing on this one, and while he crooned the chorus words, the rain of fireworks behind the drum kit to go along with it was a sight to behold. You know how you sometimes dream of one of your favorite bands playing literally everything you want them to play, and they keep on playing forever? This show was like one of those dreams. They sounded perfect, and they kept on playing, and playing, and playing.

As I said a couple of times already, Axl’s vocals sounded absolutely great, and I simply fail to understand why people go on and on about how much he ‘sucks’, or that he ‘can’t sing’. I would encourage people to stop judging him based on a few low-quality YouTube videos, and I’m sure people would have a completely different opinion of Axl if they bothered to go see the band live. But for those of you who are going to any of the upcoming GNR songs, rest assured, your money is well spent, and you’re in for the time of your life.

Overall, I would sum up this Guns N’ Roses show as a hugely rewarding treat for the faithful fans, and an equally huge slap in the faces of haters and so-called critics. It was a marathon of sorts, and a very, very memorable one at that.

Rating: 10/10

Vicky Hamilton was present at the show and would compare it do the band's shows in the beginning:

I wouldn’t say sloppy was the word maybe raw but even in the very beginning they were brilliant.  Everyone knew that you were watching a trainwreck but you couldn’t take your eyes off of it.  It was RAW.  It felt a little dangerous and there was just so much magic and brilliance in that original lineup.  Those five guys together were the magic ingredient.  It’s hard…’s hard to really describe what that band was like but it was amazing and it was pure magic.  Noone can take that away from them.  I went to go see Axl’s hired guns at the Forum this January.  All those guys in Axl’s band are technically great musicians but that magic and fire is gone, it’s just….dead and gone.  There was no fire.  It’s not what GNR was when they were young and living.  That was like real life to them, those songs were their lives, it wasn’t just a bunch of good musicians playing a show, it was REAL.

Then came a show at the Comerica Theatre in Phoenix on December 27 before the band travelled to Las Vegas for two shows at The Joint at the Hard Rock Cafe on December 30 and 31.

Before the shows in Las Vegas, Dizzy would talk about what fans could expect:

Lots of kick ass rock ‘n’ roll music from the past, the present and maybe even the future.

As for if they planned anything special for the New Year's Eve show:

“I would say drinking a lot, but since we have to perform, probably not as much as I would like to drink on New Year’s Eve. We’ve played Vegas on New Year’s a couple of times, and it’s usually quite festive. So, I expect it to be equally as or more so this year.

And what he would like people to know about the band:

If you get to know us, we’re a bunch of funny mother f****** man. That’s what I always want people to know. It’s hard when you sing songs that sound serious. We can have intellectual discussions about music and politics and we do occasionally, but we have a good time. We laugh our asses off at a lot of stuff.

Excerpts from review of the December 31 show in The Las Vegas Sun:

Rose’s appearance, at least from a distance, is largely unchanged from the band’s peak more than 20 years ago. At nearly 50 years old (he hits that mark Feb. 6), Rose still dresses as a young punk, donning the bandana, the sunglasses, the multi-zippered black jacket with matching hat and the trimmed mustache. He sill performs his familiar dance moves, which is a version of the serpentine he sings about in “Welcome to the Jungle,” the occasional cross-stage sprint and the mini-Twist routine in which it seems his feet are locked by unseen manacles.

But attire and choreography can only carry a frontman so far, and Rose pushed his voice to its limits throughout the show. He sounded fine on “Rocket Queen” and “It’s So Easy,” but croaked out during songs fans were fairly dying to hear, like “Welcome to the Jungle” and “Sweet Child O’ Mine.” The results were often uneven. The cover of AC/DC’s “Whole Lotta Rosie” was great, but the vocals were overwhelmed by “Mr. Brownstone.”

But experiencing the band live is to have you mind tricked -- you know these songs so well, your brain hears Rose’s original vocals rather than what is being produced onstage. The power of the band frequently cascaded over the vocals anyway, as the three-headed monster of Ron “Bumblefoot” Thal, DJ Ashba and Richard Fortus supplanting Slash as the band’s guitar hero.


I couldn't lift my arms and didn't know if I'd ever be able to wear a guitar again. So I started producing more, while going to physical therapy for months. I was not ready to start touring last year. It was the most difficult time in my life, I did whatever possible to get through shows, combining drugs and alcohol, to be well enough to play and numb enough to withstand the constant pain. It was brutal. This European tour is the first time since the accident that I'm on stage without poisoning myself to be physically able to. Before the tour began, I had steroids injected into my spine. Not fun. But I'm able to endure the pain and get through shows without drugs. It was a year of suffering like I never imagined, and it's not over. It almost killed me, for real. But it didn't, I'm a fighter. I'm fighting for what I love.

And then when I had the car accident (in 2011, ed.), and I was drugged up for a good year, loaded with steroids and pain pills and alcohol and every combination you can come up with. I was in constant pain and a little damaged from the concussion, and I really wasn't myself. I was very sick and I was very angry and very resentful that I had to tour and kinda keep the band together when I needed to heal. Because they couldn't - wouldn't - do it without me, all of it.

Being asked if he had been forced to tour:

Well, it's not that I was forced. I had to make the decision of either keeping Guns N' Roses going or taking care of my body. And I have nerve damage in both arms, and I'm gonna be in pain for the rest of my life... But I kept Guns N' Roses alive. And that was the trade-off.

Zakk Wylde, who had been opening for Guns N' Roses for some shows in 2011, would reminisce in 2014:

Yeah, I mean, we went out with them not too long ago. We would get up and jam on Whole Lotta Rosie with the guys every night so it was a good time.

Also in 2014, when talking about how labels, attorneys and A&R men have tried to steer the band towards a reunion, would mention how the tour in 2011 wasn't what he considered "a legitimate U.S. tour":

I think there were things we could have done better, and I feel the labels and the attorneys and the A&R men all knew that. But they wanted the band to be set up in a way where they could attempt to manipulate it. And that didn't really work out for anybody. Including them. You know, we still have not done what I consider a legitimate U.S. tour [with the current lineup] because of prior managers and agents attempting to manipulate it so that it wouldn't be as successful as it could be. In order to try to steer me toward wanting a reunion [of the original lineup]. [...] I feel there's people in the industry who feel that they can make some money off that. So that's what they want. Even our last U.S. arena tour, that was put together by yet another manager and agent, who we eventually let go and took the tour over. But at the time of taking it over, most of it was already in place. So then we made it work for us, but had it been set up the way we feel it should have been from the beginning it could have been more successful than it was.

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Post by Soulmonster Wed Mar 30, 2022 12:30 pm


With Katsis having been dismissed at some point in December [see previous chapter], Beta Lebeis and her two children, Fernando and Vanessa, took over managerial duties [Los Angeles Times, December 21, 2011] aided by Axl's business manager, booking agent, and lawyer [Wall Street Journal, March 24, 2016]. Beta Lebeis had worked as Axl's personal assistant for many years and been deeply involved in the affairs of the band [see previous chapter].

We decided, 'No more managers'. Between me and Fernando and my daughter, we're dealing with the management. [...] I told [Rose] if he hires another manager, I quit.

Vanessa would explain her role:

I'm the one who prepares [Axl] for... for the show.
Globo TV, September 4, 2016; translated from Portuguese

By 2016, Fernando was the sole manager:

Today I'm the manager, but the success of it is really the family. And as I was saying, the trust, right? Axl's confidence in us, to do what we have to do to make the show.
Globo TV, September 4, 2016; translated from Portuguese

In 2015, Frank would talk about how the management helps to arrange their transportation to wherever they want to go after touring legs:

So, you know, at the end of the tour everybody's at the airport flying out in different directions. And they treat us really well, Guns always treats the band really well. So yeah, we do fly comfortably and they always make sure, you know, "Hey, some of us aren't going to go straight home, we're gonna go here and stay there," and they always make all the arrangements. So it's pretty dope, pretty awesome.

And when the interviewer asked who the managers were:

It's Fernando Lebeis and Beta Lebeis, are pretty much the managers now.

In 2016, Tom Zutaut would discuss Beta Lebeis:

But the woman [Beta] was Stephanie Seymour’s housekeeper and nanny… As to how someone grows a career from that to managing the biggest rock’n’roll band in the world, that’s something we could speculate upon. The only guess I can make is that she’s the type of person Axl needs in his life. When someone like Axl Rose walks the fine line between genius and insanity, she must facilitate that. A lot of great artists, such as Jimmy Page, Steven Tyler and Brain Wilson, had that type of interesting character in their lives.

In 2016, Axl would talk more about Beta and her family:

I met Beta like in '91 and her family. And then we've been together in ways since then. And that has been a big with everything behind the scenes with Guns N' Roses and her family has been very supportive. Fernando has worked his way up in this business, doing all kinds of things with Guns N' Roses, but also with other companies and things, been everything from doing baggage and wardrobe to being tour manager and stuff. And doing the jobs well. And he's also worked with all the managers that I've worked with and learned from them, you know, so it's also how to communicate with them. So it seems to be something that they, you know, like being involved with and... It helps everything, plus they're a big family and I like the family environment. It helps keep things kind of insular.

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Post by Soulmonster Wed Mar 30, 2022 12:34 pm


In connection with his discussion on previous managers and how they had tried to make Axl reunite in his interview with Los Angeles Times in December 2011 [see previous chapter], Axl would mention that only a reunion with Slash and Duff made sense but quickly talk about the current lineup and how hard each current band member is working and how long they have been in the band:

Because, really, you can get guys from the "Illusion" thing, but the only thing that would make it would be Duff and Slash, really. It’s nothing against Izzy and it’s nothing against Steven, or anything like that. Steven may want it, but these guys I’m working with right now, they work really hard and it’s hard work. I’ve toured with the other guys and I’ve also seen what they’ve done since, and I just know the difficulties.

I don’t have an excitement to work with people that joined in the "Illusion" time. There’s behind the scenes that was really, really difficult there with different ones. So it’s not really even a full reunion. And these guys have been here a long time, whether the public knows it or not because we haven’t done the media like that. Tommy’s been on 14 years, Richard’s going on 11. That’s as long as Duff was in the band. Chris has been in going on 11, Dizzy’s on since "Illusion," Frank’s going on six, and so’s Bumble. These guys have been here. And DJ’s going on three.

Plus, we can have our differences, and everybody in the band can be like, ‘I don’t understand that guy’ and point at one of us, you know? But at the same time, we get along. I don’t have to tell these guys what to do onstage. I can suggest something at times, but that’s very little.

Around the same time, Slash would talk about the conflict between him and Axl:

The split between Axl and I was a quiet one. But because there was so much attention on the breakup — and are we going to get back together? — it got built up into this monster that led to a kind of animosity that wasn't the focus for me. Neither one of us wants to be down each other's throats for no reason. At this point, I'm trying to put it to rest. So I try to avoid the subject.

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Post by Soulmonster Fri Aug 12, 2022 7:02 pm


Guns N' Roses have been named the 2011 Tour of the Year winner in the first annual Ultimate Classic Rock Awards. Axl Rose and company beat out Rush and Motley Crue in one of the most highly contested of our ten categories.

Almost one-third (32%, specifically) of the voters chose GNR's three-hour marathon concerts over Motley Crue's drum rollercoaster-filled smmer trek (24%) and Rush's 'Time Machine' tour (22%), with Journey, Alice Cooper and Kiss rounding out the field.

We were lucky enough to catch a show on Guns N' Roses tour a few weeks back, and if we haven't taken the time to file a report about how awesome it was yet, well, there's two good reasons. It's partially because the holiday rush overtook us but mostly because, to paraphrase Cartman, the show "warped our fragile little minds."

Rose, Dizzy Reed and the rest of the Gunners treated the crowd to an energetic (and nearly exhaustive) tour through the band's entire history, hitting all the "gotta be there" moments while still keeping things lively and not canned. 'Chinese Democracy' songs like 'Sorry' proved they belong in the band's impressive canon, and GNR proved they still have great taste in covers by busting out some old AC/DC tunes.

All told, over 230,000 people voted in the 2011 Ultimate Classic Rock Awards.

2011 Tour of the Year poll results
Ultimate Classic Guitar, January 2, 2012


It wasn't just the audiences that have loved the tour, the band members themselves would talk about how good it had been:

I must say that the last GNR tour was a lot of fun. The camaraderie was the best it's been in all my 14 years and I think we all went home inspired by the possibilities. I want to say thank you to all of you who came out to the shows, especially those who came to more than one. It means a lot to us.

That this lineup was enjoying themselves is also evident from previous chapters.
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