Duff McKagan Blames Lawyers for Original Guns N’ Roses Split
It’s been over 15 years since the original Guns N’ Roses lineup parted ways. While a lot of fans put blame on too many egos in one room, bassist Duff McKagan reveals that it was actually the most non-rock n’ roll part of the band that did them in: their lawyers.
McKagan told AV Club (via Rock AAA) that the suits were hungry for money and caused the cracks in Guns N’ Roses’ foundation.
“I never had a personal beef with Axl, truth be told,” said McKagan. “Lawyers and stuff in that instance, it was kind of treacherous. They make money and try to create enemies between clients. I wish they’d teach that course. If there was a rock ’n’ roll textbook, I could add some s___ to it, real valuable s___. We were torn apart by people who weren’t in the band, and that’s really what always happens.”
McKagan compares the situation to his other band, Velvet Revolver, and their dismissal of original singer Scott Weiland.
“Same thing, in a way, that happened with Velvet Revolver. When you gotta have managers and agents, you can’t protect everyone from addiction. And it’s addiction, you know? It’s a modern world we live in, with everything at our fingertips, and if it’s not at our fingertips, you can dot-com anything.”
Added McKagan: “Scott’s thing was substance-related, and I’m not throwing him under the bus. It’s pretty well-documented. It wasn’t like, ‘You’re a f_____ dick.’ Scott and I especially went through a lot of stuff in that band together. I went up to the mountains with him in Washington and we did martial arts and did some soul-searching together, just him and me. He didn’t let me down. I’m fine, you know? I still care for him very much, and always will.”
“We’re bros when it comes down to it, and that’s it. We were having a hell of a hard time working together at the end. It wouldn’t come to blows, but it was just difficult when certain elements came back into the picture, but we’re all good.”
That story seems to differ slightly from the one Weiland recalled in his latest book, Not Dead & Not For Sale. In the autobiography, Weiland states that when he told the rest of Velvet Revolver that he had to miss a couple of gigs for treatment, they allegedly told the singer he would have to pay them back in full for the missed shows.
It’s funny how different people can have significantly different views on the same subject.