When Big Concerts announced the first South African tour by renowned American rockers Guns N’ Roses earlier this year, fans went into a frenzy. For many of us, their iconic songs and catchy riffs formed a key part of the soundtrack to our youth.
Given the split of the classic line-up in the mid 90s, few of us thought we would ever see them live … well not in this lifetime. Once dubbed “the most dangerous band in the world”, they now traverse the globe delivering their rock to millions of adoring fans, so we do get to see them on the Not in This Lifetime Tour.
We had the exclusive opportunity to chat to Slash, Guns N’ Roses’ legendary lead guitarist, ahead of the band’s concert at FNB Stadium in Joburg tonight.
You last visited SA when touring with Kings of Chaos. This time you’re back to rock Mzansi with the mighty Guns N’ Roses.
Yeah, we just arrived and it is great to be back in South Africa! The food here is amazing and what really stood out for us last time with Kings of Chaos was the energetic audience. I really look forward to seeing the crowd’s reaction now that we are playing for the first time as Guns N’ Roses … I think it is just going to be one amazing night!
Being an expert in reptiles and an avid collector of snakes you must love Africa?
Yeah, I am very fond of the snakes found in South Africa and Africa as a whole. I am, in fact, heading into the bush in a couple of days and I look forward to seeing what I can find … and what finds me!
South Africans are delighted that the illness that forced Axl Rose to cut the Abu Dhabi concert short did not result in the first local show being cancelled. In fact, you managed to get through 20 songs, which is more than most bands play in an entire set – well done!
Yeah, Axl really got a serious case of stomach flu that day. There is little you can do when you get it that bad. It was hard on him, and I really felt for him, but we managed to get though as much of the set as we could. He is, however, feeling much better now, so we will be in top form tonight.
Do you realise that tonight, when you walk out into FNB Stadium, you will tick off a bucket list item for a capacity audience who have been waiting three decades to see you live?
Yeah, I really, really have a good feeling about this show!
Your latest solo album with The Conspirators was recently released. How has it been received?
My latest album indeed came out in September and I just did a little tour in the US to support it before coming on this latest leg of the Guns N’ Roses tour. The record is called Living the Dream and it has been really well received so far. We will, in fact, be heading back out on the road with The Conspirators in January 2019.
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