Axl Rose Lets ‘Em Down Easy


For those salivating over the possibility of a Guns N’ Roses reunion at Saturday’s Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony in Cleveland, stop drooling on your record collection. Axl Rose is officially not down.

In an open letter to the establishment released to the Los Angeles Times‘ music blog, Pop & Hiss, the sometimes cornrowed lead vocalist confirmed that he will neither attend the ceremony nor accept his induction. Though hardcore Guns N’ Roses romantics don’t want hear it, this shouldn’t come as much of a surprise: Axl and crew have been at odds since the release of the band’s legendary 1987 debut Appetite for Destruction. Bassist Duff McKagan, the group’s last remaining original member apart from Rose, left in 1997—guitarists Slash and Izzy Stradlin exited with drummer Steven Adler during the early ’90s. Since then, Rose has continued “performing” under the Guns N’ Roses moniker despite being the sole original member. Chinese Democracy, the band’s latest album, came out in 2008. It took 17 years to record.

And while Rose’s disdain for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Slash past band-mates, and the “unscrupulous, irresponsible media types” (sad-face) responsible for propagating Guns’ reunion myths comes through nice and clear, he does offer a few civil words for the induction board:

I won’t be attending The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame Induction 2012 Ceremony and I respectfully decline my induction as a member of Guns N’ Roses to the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame.

I strongly request that I not be inducted in absentia and please know that no one is authorized nor may anyone be permitted to accept any induction for me or speak on my behalf. Neither former members, label representatives nor the Rock and Roll Hall f Fame should imply whether directly, indirectly or by omission that I am included in any purported induction of “Guns N’ Roses.”

This decision is personal. This letter is to help clarify things from my and my camp’s perspective. Neither is meant to offend, attack or condemn. Though unfortunately I’m sure there will be those who take offense (God knows how long I’ll have to contend with the fallout), I certainly don’t intend to disappoint anyone, especially the fans, with this decision.

After a lengthy discussion of, among other things, “revisionism and fantasies out there for the sake of self-promotion and business opportunities,” Rose proposes we all just put it in the past: “So let sleeping dogs lie or lying dogs sleep or whatever. Time to move on.” The man has such a way with words, hair, and—if rumor is to be believed!—Lana Del Rey.