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

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

Registering is free and easy.

Cheers!
SoulMonster

2018.05.05 - Weekend Australian - Son of a Gun (Steven)

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2018.05.05 - Weekend Australian - Son of a Gun (Steven) Empty 2018.05.05 - Weekend Australian - Son of a Gun (Steven)

Post by Blackstar Sun 7 Jan 2024 - 3:16

SON of a GUN

There'll be no drugs and drink, just decaf tea, as former Guns N' Roses wild man Steven Adler takes to the stage in Melbourne

By Shelley Hadfield

HE was the wild drummer with the most dangerous band in the world. And now Steven Adler is about to go on tour again — this time with his mum.

Adler was famously fired from Guns N’ Roses in 1990 as he struggled with a serious addiction to heroin and cocaine.
This month, Adler will play all of Appetite for Destruction, plus a few tracks from the Use Your Illusion albums, with his band Adler’s Appetite in a series of shows around Australia.

American Idol finalist Constantine Maroulis will be on vocals. The shows will include Q & A sessions with Adler’s mum Deanna, who has written the book Sweet Child Of Mine about her son’s descent into drug addiction, which led to a mild stroke, and his time with the rock band.

And Adler, 53, promises nothing will be off-limits. He might still have that trademark wild hair, but this is a different Adler to the one who spent almost 25 years slowly killing himself with drugs and alcohol as he harboured “stupid, poisonous resentment” over being fired from GNR. He says by phone from his Los Angeles home that he’s been sober for four years, three months and 13 days — not that he’s counting — and he hasn’t touched drugs since 2008.

“The whole time I’m thinking about them, not for one instant of a second are they thinking about me,” Adler says of his former bandmates. I wasted all this negative energy.”

Adler says he can’t live a happy, sober life, while he’s carrying “poison energy”.

“I finally enjoy waking up, watching the sun come up. I used to come to every morning and go, ‘Goddamn, I’m still f---ing alive.’ ”

And he has no bad words to say about the man who fired him, GNR frontman Axl Rose.

“I don’t know Axl. I have not known Axl for 26 years. All I can say about Axl is I love him dearly. I wish I was a part of his life.”

But that doesn’t mean Adler doesn’t have regrets. There were the drugs and alcohol, of course, and a few girls in his 20s he wishes he wasn’t involved with (“goddamn cocaine”).

“When you are doing drugs and drinking, it’s like getting in the ring with Mike Tyson — your brain is mush, your body is mush.”

He now makes his own endorphins by jogging and walking, saying he’s addicted to the treadmill and decaf tea.

In a 1992 interview, GNR rhythm guitarist Izzy Stradlin said Adler’s departure had a big impact on the band’s sound. Adler says GNR would have been a different band had he remained drummer.

“We would have been bigger than the Rolling Stones. We had the perfect ingredients and once you take one of those ingredients out and you put something else in, it’s not the same,” he says. “I have to say I’m just thankful that I got to be a part of it. It’s better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all.”

Adler still practises all the songs from Appetite, regarded by many as one of the greatest rock albums of all time, but Rocket Queen has a special place in his heart.

To be able to put a rock band together, especially with childhood mate Slash, and create such a widely loved album was a dream, Adler says. So he was devastated not to be part of the reunion tour in 2016.

He’d been practising 23 songs twice a day for 18 months when he pinched a nerve in his back during rehearsal. He had a small procedure, after which he was told the band would not use him because he’d missed too much rehearsal.

“I was planning on being able to get back together and finish the magic we started and give the fans what they love and they want,” he says. “I was so hurt they didn’t let me do it.”

Deanna says if anything was going to make Adler slide back into drug addiction, it was the hurt from not being involved in the reunion tour. But he resisted.

She tells of going to see five shows when GNR opened for the Rolling Stones at the LA Coliseum. But it turned to dismay when Deanna did not see her son at all, as he ran off after each show to do drugs.

People say, ‘Would you like to relive those years’ and I say, ‘Absolutely not’,” she says.

Deanna began writing her book in 1984 after the family saw Adler perform at the famed Troubadour in Hollywood.

“We walked out and I couldn’t hear for two hours. I couldn’t go to sleep, I was so wired,” she says. “We had never been to see a rock show before, we were like the Brady Bunch.”

Every time she went to a show, Deanna would write her memories down until finally her son Jamie urged her to put a book together.

Among the experiences she documents is finding Adler naked on the bathroom floor soaked in a pool of blood and mucus.
“His face was smashed beyond recognition, his mouth and chin looked completely caved in,” Deanna writes. “I reached for my son and almost slipped on some pebbles strewn across the tile. Then I realised they were Steven’s teeth.”

After reading that on the back of the book, Adler couldn’t read any more.

Deanna says Adler is now “the greatest man you ever want to meet, really, everybody falls in love with him”.

She never saw her son as a rock star.

“I saw him as my son and he was sick, he had a disease,” she says. “I want other mothers and fathers out there to know they are not alone.”

But Deanna has never wished that GNR was not a part of her boy’s life. She recalls picking him up after his first rock concert to see KISS when he was 12.

“He got in the car. He was 12 years old. The first thing he says to me is, ‘Ma, I’m going to be the biggest rock star in the world. I’m going to be in the biggest band and I’m going to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’.”

She says he achieved his dream to be in the biggest band in the world and was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2012.

Adler admits his trip with his mum will be a far cry from the two he did with GNR.

“This is going to be the greatest time. Three is a charm,” he says. “I love it. I’m going on tour with the most dangerous mum right now.”

Slash’s son London Hudson’s band Classless Act will open for Adler at a warm-up show at the renowned Whisky A Go Go on May 10 before Adler heads to Australia.

He wants fans to take records and photos for him to sign. And he’ll be dispensing hugs freely.
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