Guns N‘ Roses: Axl Rose und sein offener Brief an die Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

Es sei eine "No Win"-Situation, in der er nur verlieren könne: Aus diesem Grund wird Axl Rose nicht bei der Aufnahme von Guns N' Roses in die Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame am 14. April anwesend sein. In einem offenen Brief, den man hier lesen kann, erklärt er seine Beweggründe.

Slash hatte sich ja schon kürzlich bei uns zur Aufnahme von Guns N‘ Roses in die Rock and Roll Hall of Fame geäußert. Er sagte: „Jeder hat mich gefragt, was passieren wird, aber sie wissen genauso wenig wie ich. Meinem Empfinden nach, ist es eine Pflicht dort anwesend zu sein, und ja, verdammt, ich würde auch spielen wollen. Aber das wird nicht passieren – aus welchem Grund auch immer.“

Nun meldete sich endlich Axl Roses zu dem Thema – und er tat das mit großem Aufschlag und einem offenen Brief in der L.A. Times, den er an die Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, die Guns N‘ Roses-Fans und „Whom It May Concern“ adressierte – was ja soviel heißt, wie: wen es sonst noch angeht. „Ich bitte mit aller Entschiedenheit darum, zur Kenntnis zu nehmen, dass ich nicht in Abwesenheit in die Hall Of Fame aufgenommen werden möchte und dass niemand autorisiert ist, die Ehrung an meiner Statt anzunehmen oder für mich zu sprechen. Weder ehemalige Bandmitglieder, noch Labelvertreter oder die Repräsentanten der Rock and Roll Hall of Fame sollen in Zukunft behaupten, weder indirekt noch direkt, dass meine Person in die Aufnahme von Guns N‘ Roses involviert ist.“

Harte Worte, die jedoch nichts daran ändern, dass man Axl Roses Argumentation durchaus verstehen kann. So sagt Rose, die Zeremonie habe ihn in eine schwierige Position gebracht: „Ich möchte niemanden enttäuschen mit dieser Entscheidung, schon gar nicht die Fans. Seit der Bekanntgabe der Nominierung haben wir über eine Lösung nachgedacht für dieses Problem, das für mich eine klare No-Win-Situation ist, ein ‚Damned if I do, damned if I don’t‘-Szenario.“

Rose weiter: „Ich möchte niemanden damit verletzen, aber mir scheint die Aufnahmezeremonie kein Ort zu sein, an dem ich erwünscht oder respektiert werde. Und, für das Protokoll: Ich werde keinem der Guns übelnehmen, wenn sie diese Auszeichnung annehmen oder wertschätzen. Aber weder ich, noch jemand aus meinem Team hat jemals Anfragen oder Forderungen an die Hall of Fame gestellt. Es ist ihre Show – nicht meine.“

Obwohl der Brief in einem für Rose erstaunlich diplomatischen Tonfall gehalten ist, steht Axl Rose klar zu seiner Position, dass Guns N‘ Roses nun mal das aktuelle Line-up um seine Person seien – und somit die Rufe nach einer Reunion der „alten“ Guns N‘ Roses „irreführende Versuche sind, die Bemühungen des aktuellen Line-ups in Verruf zu bringen – also mich, Dizzy Reed, Tommy Stinson, Frank Ferrer, Richard Fortus, Chris Pitman, Ron ‚Bumblefoot‘ Thal und DJ Ashba.“

Hier der vollständige Brief im originalen Wortlaut:

To: The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame, Guns N‘ Roses Fans and Whom It May Concern,

When the nominations for the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame were first announced I had mixed emotions but, in an effort to be positive, wanting to make the most of things for the fans and with their enthusiasm, I was honored, excited and hoped that somehow this would be a good thing. Of course I realized as things stood, if Guns N‘ Roses were to be inducted it’d be somewhat of a complicated or awkward situation.

Since then we’ve listened to fans, talked with members of the board of the Hall Of Fame, communicated with and read various public comments and jabs from former members of Guns N‘ Roses, had discussions with the president of the Hall Of Fame, read various press (some legit, some contrived) and read other artists‘ comments weighing in publicly on Guns and the Hall with their thoughts.

Under the circumstances I feel we’ve been polite, courteous, and open to an amicable solution in our efforts to work something out. Taking into consideration the history of Guns N‘ Roses, those who plan to attend along with those the Hall for reasons of their own, have chosen to include in „our“ induction (that for the record are decisions I don’t agree with, support or feel the Hall has any right to make), and how (albeit no easy task) those involved with the Hall have handled things… no offense meant to anyone but the Hall Of Fame Induction Ceremony doesn’t appear to be somewhere I’m actually wanted or respected.

For the record, I would not begrudge anyone from Guns their accomplishments or recognition for such. Neither I or anyone in my camp has made any requests or demands of the Hall Of Fame. It’s their show not mine.

That said, I won’t be attending The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame Induction 2012 Ceremony and I respectfully decline my induction as a member of Guns N‘ Roses to the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame.

I strongly request that I not be inducted in absentia and please know that no one is authorized nor may anyone be permitted to accept any induction for me or speak on my behalf. Neither former members, label representatives nor the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame should imply whether directly, indirectly or by omission that I am included in any purported induction of „Guns N‘ Roses“.

This decision is personal. This letter is to help clarify things from my and my camp’s perspective. Neither is meant to offend, attack or condemn. Though unfortunately I’m sure there will be those who take offense (God knows how long I’ll have to contend with the fallout), I certainly don’t intend to disappoint anyone, especially the fans, with this decision. Since the announcement of the nomination we’ve actively sought out a solution to what, with all things considered, appears to be a no win, at least for me, „damned if I do, damned if I don’t“ scenario all the way around.

In regard to a reunion of any kind of either the Appetite or Illusion lineups, I’ve publicly made myself more than clear. Nothing’s changed.

The only reason, at this point, under the circumstances, in my opinion whether under the guise of „for the fans“ or whatever justification of the moment, for anyone to continue to ask, suggest or demand a reunion are misguided attempts to distract from our efforts with our current lineup of myself, Dizzy Reed, Tommy Stinson, Frank Ferrer, Richard Fortus, Chris Pitman, Ron „Bumblefoot“ Thal and DJ Ashba. 

Izzy came out with us a few times back in ’06 and I invited him to join us at our LA Forum show last year. Steven was at our show at the Hard Rock, later in ’06 in Las Vegas, where I invited him to our after-party and was rewarded with his subsequent interviews filled with reunion lies. Lesson learned. Duff joined us in 2010 and again in ’11 along with his band, Loaded, opening in Seattle and Vancouver. For me, with the exception of Izzy or Duff joining us on stage if they were so inclined somewhere in the future for a song or two, that’s enough.

There’s a seemingly endless amount of revisionism and fantasies out there for the sake of self-promotion and business opportunities masking the actual realities. Until every single one of those generating from or originating with the earlier lineups has been brought out in the light, there isn’t room to consider a conversation let alone a reunion.

Maybe if it were you it’d be different. Maybe you’d do it for this reason or that. Peace, whatever. I love our band now. We’re there for each other when the going get’s rough. We love our fans and work to give them every ounce of energy and heart we can.

So let sleeping dogs lie or lying dogs sleep or whatever. Time to move on. People get divorced. Life doesn’t owe you your own personal happy ending especially at another’s, or in this case several others‘, expense.

But hey if ya gotta then maybe we can get the „no show, grandstanding, publicity stunt, disrespectful, he doesn’t care about the fans“ crap out of the way as quickly as we can and let’s move on. No one’s taking the ball and going home. Don’t get it twisted. For more than a decade and a half we’ve endured the double standards, the greed of this industry and the ever present seemingly limitless supply of wannabes and unscrupulous, irresponsible media types. Not to imply anything in this particular circumstance, but from my perspective in regard to both the Hall and a reunion, the ball’s never been in our court.

In closing, regardless of this decision and as hard to believe or as ironic as it may seem, I’d like to sincerely thank the board for their nomination and their votes for Guns‘ induction. More importantly I’d like to thank the fans for being there over the years, making any success we’ve had possible and for enjoying and supporting Guns N‘ Roses music.

I wish the Hall a great show, congratulations to all the other artists being inducted and to our fans we look forward to seeing you on tour!!


Axl Rose

P.S. RIP Armand, Long Live ABC III

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