Guns N' Roses' Slash was too drunk to remember his early blues gigs

5 July 2024, 11:00

Slash press image 2024
Slash has discussed his early blues gigs as he heads out on his S.E.R.P.E.N.T Festival tour. Picture: Press

By Jenny Mensah

The Guns N' Roses guitarist admits he can't remember his early blues performances due to them being boozy affairs.

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Slash has no recollection of the gigs in his early blues covers bands due to being addled by alcohol.

The iconic Guns N' Roses guitarist formed the blues cover group Slash's Blues Ball in 1996 with Teddy "Big Bag Zig Zag" Andreadis, Johnny Griparic, Alvino Bennet, Bobby Schneck and Dave McLaurin and though they became the inspiration for what he would later work on, he admits he was too drunk to even remember them.

"It was such a drunken kind of thing, and it was just for the fun of it," the 58-year-old rocker told PEOPLE. "I do not recall any of those gigs."

The Welcome To The Jungle rocker added: "When I first met them, a couple of the guys, they were playing in a band called The Screaming Cocktail Hour, which was a great blues band that used to play at the local Rogie's and Baked Potato and Cozy's and all these small little blues dives around L.A. And I would go and hang out with them and get there 10 or 11pm and jam until two o'clock in the morning."

"I got a couple of other guys," he went on. "And so we started doing the same circuit, but then that turned into an actual tour, and we did it on and off for a couple of years, even managed to make it to Europe."

Their setlists would go on to inspire Slash’s recent blues project, Orgy of the Damned, which he released earlier this year.

Slash will be embarking on touring the S.E.R.P.E.N.T Festival this July, which will see him joined by special guests Warren Haynes Band, Keb’ ‘Mo, Christone “Kingfish” Ingram, Robert Randolph, Samantha Fish, Eric Gales, ZZ Ward, Jackie Venson, and Larkin Poe.

Comparing his new string of dates to those early years years, he said: "I can't remember that much about the Blues Ball, but [S.E.R.P.E.N.T. Festival] is not the same as just a drunken club band that was just touring around for beer."

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Listen to Slash's Orgy Of The Damed - which consists mostly of blues classics and features guest vocalists including the likes of Iggy Pop, Demi Lovato, Chris Stapleton and Aeromsmith's Steve Tyler - below:

Meanwhile, the top-hatted rocker has revealed that Guns N' Roses are still "trying" the write their new album.

Previously quizzed why Axl Rose and The Conspirators collaborator Myles Kennedy don't feature on his new album, the iconic guitarist told the Daily Star Sunday newspaper's Wired column: "It was my own side thing, so I wasn't dragging my own guys in.

"Guns N' Roses are trying to make their own record and I'm working with them in that capacity but this didn't involve anyone else."

December saw GNR release their Perhaps and The General singles. Both songs were recorded in the same era as 2008's Chinese Democracy and followed 2021's releases from the same era Absurd and Hard Skool.

The notorious record, which was delayed for years and held up by legal issues, only included Axl Rose and keyboardist Dizzy Reed as Slash, bassist Duff McKagan and drummer Matt Sorum had quit the group.

Guns N' Roses play Paradise City at BST Hyde Park 2023