In a new interview with SiriusXM’s “Trunk Nation With Eddie Trunk”, Sixx: A.M. lead guitarist DJ Ashba once again spoke about his decision to leave Guns N’ Roses more than six years ago when the band agreed to a Slash and Duff McKagan reunion at Coachella 2016. Guns N’ Roses recently dropped a cryptic bombshell over a new album.
DJ Ashba on leaving Guns N’ Roses
“I’m a huge GN’R fan. The only reason I joined the band is because I grew up on the music, I have a ton of respect for the guys who wrote the music.”
He recalled that he filled the spot of legendary Slash for three and a half years. He also revealed that he was ready to step aside if Slash would ever come back. He said: “I can happily step out. Because it’s kind of the best of both worlds — I can go be in the band I helped create with [Nikki] Sixx and [James] Michael and go back to what I’m really good at doing, and that’s Sixx:A.M.”
“I’ve never been great at playing other people’s stuff; it’s never been my thing,” Ashba added. “But if Slash was coming back, that was like the best of both worlds. It’s, like, f**k, we get most of the band back, and I can go do what I wanna do too. So it worked out great. I backed out — bowed out, I should say — and I think Richard [Fortus] was the guy for that slot anyway. That was more the Richard role, I think. He fits that way better than I would have.”
Ashba, who joined Guns N’ Roses in March 2009 following the departure of Robin Finck, issued a statement in July 2015 saying that he was leaving Guns N’ Roses “to dedicate myself to my band Sixx:A.M., my adoring wife and family, and to the many new adventures that the future holds for me.” He later claimed that he was approached about being part of GN’R’s “Not In This Lifetime” tour, but that he declined, citing his desire to pursue Sixx:A.M. full time.
Ashba recently released a new single “Bella Ciao”, a modern-day EDM-driven makeover of the Italian folk classic fueled. The song marked Ashba’s first release of 2021 and followed a series of tracks that were released in late 2020 through Edgeout Records/UMG/UMe, including “Hypnotic”, “Let’s Dance” and “A Christmas Storm“.