Sunday, October 9, 2011

Guns N’ Roses: Axl Rose plans on being late for shows

This is what happens when someone has too much money, because money equals power, and power is so easy to abuse.

A new statement by Guns N’ Roses confirms what most of us have either been saying, or thinking, for some time: Axl Rose doesn’t give a s**t about the fans that continue to make him rich.

In a sign of complete disrespect for the value of the artist/fan relationship, the band (ok, let’s just say it’s Axl, since you can’t imagine the other guys having a say on this) – so, make that Axl - plans on being late to the stage for all shows moving forward.

Here’s Axl’s statement, as posted on the GNR Facebook page:

"Love it Hate it Accept it Debate it — You want 8 o'clock shows go find F-R-I-E-N-D-S or hit a cinema somewhere…or you wanna be informed go catch the 10-o'clock news.. this is Rock N' Roll! Treat yourself don't cheat yourself thinking you're gonna go to school or work or whatever you 'normally' do the next day. Oh and remember before you get high and never want to come down. 'you can have anything you want but you better not take it from me!' This is Guns N’ Roses and when the time is right the stage will ignite. Looking forward to sharing that with rockers soon!"


There’s nothing remotely “rock n’ roll” about treating your paying fans with such disrespect, nor is the quality of an artist’s fans based, in any way, on the responsibilities they face in their lives outside of a concert.

This is simply childish, ego-driven, controlling, age-old macho bulls**t posturing by a guy who has so much money that no one will challenge, or question, his stance on the stage timing issue.

Well, almost no one.

Axl can show up on stage when he “has to,” it appears: following the release of the ill-fated “Chinese Democracy,” GNR played four shows in Asia at the end of 2009, and the band hit the stage for each show at pretty reasonable times, as follows:

Dec 11/09 – Taipei County Stadium – Tapei, Taiwan – START @ 8:35 pm
Dec 13/09 – Olympic Arena – Seoul, South Korea – START @ 9:25 pm
Dec 16/09 – Osaka Dome – Osaka, Japan – START @ 9:00 pm
Dec 19/09 – Tokyo Dome – Tokyo, Japan – START @ 6:40 pm

So, why is that all shows since the Asian leg have started ridiculously late? What is it about doing business with the Asian promoters - Taiwanese company Brokers Brothers Herald, Ltd. (BBH), Korea’s All Access Entertainment, and Japanese business Hayashi International Promotion Co. Ltd. (H.I.P.) - that made Axl get on stage well before midnight local time, when he doesn’t do it for anyone else?

Let’s call Axl’s long-running position on concert start times what it really is: unprofessional.

And, by extension, the band members who make up GNR these days, and the promoters who do business with Axl, are guilty by association.

If Live Nation – headed by former GNR manager Irving Azoff - can’t get a contract together with Axl for the upcoming US tour that includes strict guidelines for reasonable start times, and/or heavy financial penalties for not following them, then they, too, should be held responsible to the fans.

But they won’t.

There’s no rocking the boat when everyone involved continues to ride the financial gravy train.

I saw GNR in Toronto in January of 2010; many fans were forced to walk out of the arena around 1:00 a.m. to catch the last bus/subway/train home so they could get to school/work, etc. the next morning. There were no refunds for fans getting an incomplete show because they were responsible people who were forced to leave at a time when the concert should have already been finished; in Toronto’s case, that was around 2:00 a.m. There was almost a 3-hour wait between the last opening band and Axl’s 11:25 p.m. start time…that’s way past absurd.

Since the current tour started, it’s safe to say that more GNR headlines have been about Axl’s disrespect for fans than about the actual quality of the show. Dublin. Reading. Leeds. Remember the reports out of Townsville, Australia last December? The Daily Telegraph attributed the 2-hour “delay” to Axl enjoying a “cool movie in his hotel room and he was digging it.”

And who pays for Rose’s actions? Fans. People who have to get up and go to work, or school, the next day, because that’s what REAL LIFE is all about.

When will the madness stop? Only when fans stop buying tickets to this circus.

While Axl continues living in his fantasy world (does he really think “Friends” is still on at 8:00 p.m.???), there are no penalties for his selfishness, and when people are on Axl’s payroll, you have to believe no one is allowed to question his absurd stance on issues like this one.

In other words, there’s no democracy in Axl’s Chinese Democracy.

Guns Guns N' Roses

Guns N’ Roses – Street of Dreams
Reading Festival – Reading, UK – August 27, 2010

See also:

Guns N’ Roses reunion: Gilby Clarke is in if Slash is
VIDEO: Duff McKagan on Lou Dobbs Tonight
VIDEO: Duff McKagan’s NYC book signing
Duff McKagan ponders Guns N’ Roses Rock Hall nomination
Guns N’ Roses lead 2012 Rock Hall nominations
VIDEO: Watch full Guns N’ Roses set from Rock In Rio 4
VIDEO: Guns N’ Roses close out Rock In Rio 4
Guns N’ Roses top the hennemusic Hot 10
Guns N’ Roses confirm fall US tour
Guns N’ Roses: Four more US dates announced
Guns N’ Roses: Slash talks Use Your Illusion on its 20th anniversary
Preview Duff McKagan’s autobiography
Guns N’ Roses: More US dates announced
Guns N’ Roses to play Kansas City in November
Guns N’ Roses to play Orlando in October
Rock In Rio festival to be webcast via YouTube
Guns N’ Roses bassist releases solo album today
Guns N’ Roses to play Miami in October