Real Rock – Other Stuff – 6th January 2000:
Somebody on The Axl Rose list posted this from GNR’s manager Doug Goldstein – it’s a “corrected” slice of GNR history and makes interesting reading:
From: Doug Goldstein
Big Fd Ent. (Manager Guns N' Roses)
While I appreciate the review in your latest issue entitled, "Oh My God! Axl's Back!”, I would like to point out some factual inaccuracies. Beginning with the termination of Steven Adler in 1990, the band had spent hundreds of thousands of dollars trying to record basic tracks (trying to get the drums and bass recorded). Steven had a number of drug issues that I personally was trying to help him with. After numerous failed attempts at rehabilitation, the band's producer, and their former manager, convinced Slash and Duff to fire Steven. Axl was the last person to sign Steven's termination document. He sat with it for over a week until the then manager convinced him that it was the right decision.
After recording "Use Your Illusions" the band embarked on a worldwide tour to support the records. Sometime in 1991, during a break in touring, Izzy Stradlin called me to inform me that he wanted to leave the project. He thought the whole thing was insanity. The rampant drug and alcohol abuse by the rest of the band (with the exception of Axl), and being in a different city everyday was too tough for him to maintain his own sobriety. He informed me that he "just wanted to be in one of the biggest club bands in the world, not one of the biggest bands in the world". We respected his decision, but needed to quickly find a replacement for the impending dates. We were able to find Gilby Clarke. Gilby toured with us to complete the "Illusions" tour. Shortly thereafter Axl and Gilby spoke about what Axl wanted to try next.
After Izzy's departure Axl felt Guns could use a little help in the writing department. Axl thought the addition of another guitar player (#3) would help the situation. Unhappy with this, Gilby stated "I don't want to be in Molly Hatchet" and quit.
In 1996, Slash decided to walk away from Guns N' Roses. He wanted to pursue his Solo career and musically he had gone in a different direction from the other band members. He was not fired, point of fact we made every effort to keep the band intact. He brought in a completed album, and no one in the band thought it was a viable way to work. Historically the band has always collaborated on material, and this wasn't done with Slash's music. He left with his music and recorded it as Slash's Snakepit. With hopes of success, he failed to convey these events to the public.
In 1998, Duff had been working on the project for a few years and called myself and Axl to dinner. It was at this time that he informed us that he didn't want to pursue music anymore, he had just had a daughter, and wanted to concentrate on being a good father and go to college. Again, he was not terminated, he CHOSE to walk away.
Prior to that, Matt Sorum came into the studio and announced to those working that night, "Watch..I'm going to get myself fired tonight".
I view the attack on Axl to be irresponsible journalism. I clearly am available for anyone to fact check. I spoke to Slash's manager last night just to make sure they remembered Slash's departure the same and he confirmed that Slash had indeed walked away from this project. Yes it has been a long time, that hasn't been Axl's doing. He would have collaborated and in fact, is doing exactly that now. He fights for the right song. It doesn't matter who wrote it, as long as it works. The song reviewed is a classic example of this fact. Paul H. Tobias, Dizzy Reed, and Axl wrote it. To give the public the view that he "fired all his bandmates in a huff" is incorrect, as well as irresponsible, and should be retracted.
Big FD Entertainment
Laguna Beach, Ca.
Thanks to Biojaz@Axl Rose Mission MB