Steven Adler Reveals How Guns N’ Roses Ruined Band: ‘It’s Not The Same’


Former Guns N’ Roses drummer Steven Adler was recently interviewed by Ugly Phil of Australia’s Triple M radio. Blabbermouth transcribed his comments, including why Guns N’ Roses aren’t ‘winners’ without himself and Izzy Stradlin in the band.

Steven Adler Reveals Why Guns N’ Roses Are No Longer ‘Winners’

On appearing on the reality television program “Celebrity Rehab With Dr. Drew”:

Steven: “Dr. Drew is the most fabulous people I’ve ever met in my life. The show was so great. Everybody that he has had on that show, he gave us all an opportunity to turn our lives around. Doing a TV show — and this goes for [anyone] that has friends that are alcoholics or addicts — when you see yourself on film being full of shit and lying and being in denial, unless you see yourself and hear yourself doing that, you believe yourself. When I saw myself on TV when I was bullshitting and being in denial, it opens your eyes. My wife, before I quit drinking, four years, three months, three days ago, she videotaped me drunk, and I would do stupid things that I wouldn’t remember. Then she would tell me the next day, and I would go, ‘You’re crazy — I didn’t do any of that.’ This time, she goes, ‘Really? Let me show you what you did.’ She showed me that, and it opens your eyes and it opens your brain. It’s like, ‘Wow — this is really what I’m doing and how I’m acting.'”

On the aftermath of writing his autobiography, “My Appetite For Destruction: Sex & Drugs & Guns N’ Roses”:

Steven: “When my book came out, I read it, and I built a fire in my fireplace, and I tossed it in there. I said, ‘That was that chapter of my life.’ Now it’s time to move on to another one.’ Then I got sober off of alcohol for four years, and now I’m doing a third chapter of my life. If I was drinking, I wouldn’t even be talking to you right now. I’m just so happy to be able to be living again, and so proud.”

On his upcoming performances with Adler’s Appetite:

Steven: “We’re basically going to start off with ‘Reckless Life’ and end with ‘Paradise City’, and everything else and then some. I love playing these songs. I wish I would have been able to play these songs with the guys I wrote them with, but it didn’t work out that way. I still love playing them, and fans love them… The songs, they mean so much to me, and I’m so proud of the five of us that we created that. We had something that was magic, that only a handful of bands through the decades have had, and I love playing these songs so much. I have friends from the ’80s and ’90s that made big records, and I [ask], ‘Dude, do you ever listen to your records?’ They’re all, ‘Hell, no!’ I’m all, ‘Really? They’re such great records. I listen to my record all the time. I practice to it.’ I’m a fan — I’m a fan of my own band!”

On his memories of meeting Axl Rose:

Steven: “Me and Slash were walking down Sunset Boulevard one night, and there’s fliers all over the sidewalk, because back then, all the bands would pass out fliers. We just noticed this one flier, and we picked it up and looked at it, and we said, ‘These guys look really cool.’ So, we went to go see them, and there was Axl and Izzy and two other guys. I told Slash, ‘If we get that singer and that guitar player and Duff [McKagan], we’re going to have the biggest, greatest fucking rock n’ roll band ever.’ And the next day, I met Izzy, and then I was leaving Izzy’s place and going over to this girl’s apartment that we all used to hang out at, and Axl is walking across the street. I stopped him in the middle of the street and said, ‘Dude, aren’t you that singer that played last night at Gazzarri’s? You were so great. I’ve got this guitar player and bass player that I want to introduce you to.’ As soon as we got together, it was magic. It just was perfect.”

On whether he thinks Axl did him a “favor” by firing him:

Steven: “Broke my heart, dude. No, he didn’t do me a favor. It did nothing but break my heart, and break millions of our fans’ hearts. That’s all it did. Then they drove Izzy out… This is the way I look at Guns N’ Roses with the five of us. We baked the pie for five years. Every year, we would enter a different pie in a pie contest, and every year, we would win. Then on the sixth year, they decided to put a different ingredient in, and then they didn’t win first prize. It’s the five of us that made the ingredients that made us winners. You take one of those out, and it’s just not the same. If you listen to ‘Use Your Illusion’, I played on ‘Civil War’. [It’s] the last song I recorded with them, and it’s undeniable that once ‘Civil War’ is over and the next song starts, it’s a completely different band. It broke my heart, because me and Slash grew up together. We’ve known each other since we were 12, 13 years old, and this was our dream. I don’t have resentment anymore, because if I had resentment toward them, I would still be drinking and drugging. I learned to not take things personal; to not make assumptions; to just do my best, no more, no less; and be impeccable with my word. I’m trying to do my best. I love them, and I’m so thankful that I got to do what I got to do. The great Freddie Mercury once said, ‘One year of love is better than a lifetime alone.’ At least I got to be a part of that magic. In the ’80s, there was a million bands, but I was in the one band that was the cool kids in school. We were the band that every other musician wanted to be in.”