Music Aficionado recently interviewed former Guns N’ Roses bassist Tommy Stinson, and he discussed his love of his former bandmate Axl Rose.
“People ask me all the time, ‘Is he really an asshole?’ No, he wasn’t, he’s actually a pal of mine. We had a good working relationship. It wasn’t always easy, but neither is a marriage, or any other relationship you have that’s long lasting. There are things going on, bumps and all that. But for the most part, he was great to me. All the stories you heard are completely blown out of proportion, as far as I’m concerned. His reputation was a little more mythological than actual reality.”
He also was asked if he believes fans gave the Chinese Democracy era Guns N’ Roses a fair shake.
“I do. You have to look at what we were selling them, and that was the main voice of Guns N’ Roses and an entirely different lineup, and a lineup that changed a few times. To be perfectly honest with you, they came out in droves to see Axl Rose. He’s the man who was the front guy of the whole thing. I think the fans were more than ingratiating to us. I still get people Facebooking me and saying, ‘Oh man, we really loved you in the band. Thank you for keeping it going for all those years.'”
He also discussed recording Chinese Democracy, “After a while it got to be a little arduous, with so many record company people coming and going. It kind of made it hard to focus on how to finish the damn thing. And Jimmy Iovine would throw people at us. It got to be kind of screwy. To my mind, that record company part of it was the reason it took so long. We didn’t get the help we needed from the top.”