Myles Kennedy discussed replacing Axl Rose in Guns N’ Roses at the 2012 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony in a new Appetite for Distortion interview.
“It was interesting because it had been brought up and initially it seemed like that was the gravity, the situation was a little too hard for me to comprehend. So when they first brought it up with me the idea of it possibly happening, I didn’t jump at the chance, it was kind of like – I needed to really give that a lot of thought because there was just a really unique set of circumstances.
So after I thought about it for a while, and it seemed like they really wanted to play, I thought, ‘Well, OK. let’s give this a shot. This is an important moment for them so if I can help facilitate it, great.’ But honestly, in the back of my mind, I really did think that the entire band would show up. I thought everyone was going to be there, I thought Axl [Rose] would show up at the last minute.
One of the things I remember maybe more than being on stage was – I was in the backstage area, and they were accepting their award and talking, and then I heard applause, and I see them start to head to grab their instruments. And I remember I kept looking at one of the doors thinking that Axl would walk in and they would perform together. I honestly thought that was going to happen. I looked one last time, the door didn’t open, and I remember telling myself, ‘You’re gonna have to go out and do this now.’
Essentially, ‘Don’t fuck it up.’ It’s weird. I don’t remember much because it was such a heavy moment. I remember looking back at [drummer] Steven Adler and he was grinning from ear to ear, and that was a really special moment. And that was when I realized that, as I keep saying, the gravity of the situation. It’s not that I wasn’t honored to be asked to help them, be the guy that just kind of stands in and sings those songs.
But seeing how happy they were really made that any stress or any fears or misgivings I might have had worth it. Because I was like, ‘Hey, these guys are doing what they want to do, and this is a really important day for them. Awesome!’ I’m glad they got to do it.”