Tag Archive | "Adler’s Appetite"

Jacob Bunton Discusses The Creation of Adler’s Ass Kicking Debut Album!

Jacob Bunton Discusses The Creation of Adler’s Ass Kicking Debut Album!

ADLER-band-2012-2

Jacob Bunton is a lot like you and me. He grew up with posters of some of rock’s biggest names plastered to his bedroom wall and had hopes of one day making his rock ‘n’ roll dreams a reality. However, what sets Jacob apart from the crowd is an incredible drive and an amazing voice that oozes rock ‘n’ roll! Little In 2012, this small town kid from Alabama would find himself in the studio with some of the rock legends he had looked up to as a kid and fronting an outstanding new rock outfit called ADLER. Comprised of frontman Jacob Bunton (Lynam, Mars Electric), guitarist Lonny Paul (Adler’s Appetite), and Johnny Martin (Chelsea Smiles), the band has just unleashed their impressive debut album, ‘Back From The Dead,’ which is best classified as a “no holds barred, balls to the walls, rock ‘n’ roll thrill ride!” At it’s core, the album is a perfect storm of musical collaborations between its members. Serving as icing on the cake, the album also features guest performances from Steven Adler’s childhood friend and former Guns N’ Roses bandmate Slash, as well as Rob Zombie/Ex-Marilyn Manson guitarist John 5. Jason Price of the mighty Icon Vs. Icon recently caught up with Jacob Bunton to discuss his roots in rock music, his intriguing new band, the making of their debut album and much more!

It is great to finally catch up with you, Jacob. Thank you so much for taking time out to talk with us!

Hey man! Thank you so much for doing this! Thank you for your support, it means more than you know!

Takes us back a few years if you would. How did music first come into your life and what are some of your earliest memories?

Music first came into my life when I was a little bitty kid. For as long as I can remember, music has been a part of my life. I have always been obsessed with it. A lot of parents put their babies in a playpen or whatever but when I was a kid, there was an old piano at my grandfather’s house that my mother would sit me at. I would sit there and although I couldn’t pay anything, I would bang away on it and I loved it! I would sit there as long as she would let me! Eventually, she noticed that I would start picking out little melody lines from commercials playing in the background. Like I said, I have always been obsessed with it. I grew up in Birmingham, Alabama and there wasn’t a whole lot to do than listen to music and play guitar. When I was a kid, all of the rockstars you would see on MTV looked like superheroes. Motley Crue, Poison, KISS or any of those people looked like they sprung straight from the pages of a comic book! It was very appealing and I really gravitated towards that. I bought my first guitar by mowing grass and doing lawn care when I was eleven years old. I saved up 60 bucks and I went to the local music store, a place called Highland Music in Birmingham, Alabama. The owner, a guy named Don Murdoch, sold me a guitar. It was called a Memphis guitar and it had a broken head stock that was broken during shipping. He had super glued it back together. He sold that guitar to me for 60 bucks and that was my first guitar! I learned how to play on that guitar. That is all I did was sit in my room and play music from there on out!

Who would you cite as your biggest influences as a musician? Are there some that might be surprising?

My biggest influences growing up were definitely the 80s rock bands that you would see on MTV’s Headbanger’s Ball. My favorite record of all-time is “Appetite For Destruction” by Guns N’ Roses. That is the thing that is so surreal about the project I am involved with now, ADLER. Slash came in and played on the record and Steven [Adler] is playing drums! These were guys whose photos were hanging on my wall when I was a kid! I would put on “Appetite For Destruction” back then and try to play along. I learned a lot about playing guitar and singing from spending time with that record. My favorite bands were KISS, Poison, Motley Crue and Cinderella. My favorite guitar player of all-time is definitely Steve Vai. I also love John Petrucci from Dream Theater. I guess as far as the bands I love that might surprise people is Duran Duran. I think they are amazing! I also love bluegrass music and stuff from Ricky Skaggs. I love country music, like Brad Paisley. I am all over the place musically!

What was the catalyst that made you pursue music as a career instead of taking a different route?

A lot of people when they are young sit there and they don’t really know what they want to do for a living. I have never had that moment where I was like “Hummm. What should I do?” I just kinda always knew this was my path because I always played music. I never came to a conscious decision where I thought “Ya know what? I’m going to try and make it in music!” It was never even a question. I always just had the drive and I knew that I would do it. I just had to play music!

As you mentioned, your latest project is ADLER. What is your first recollection of meeting Steven Adler?

Jacob Bunton

Jacob Bunton

The first time I ever met Steven was, I believe, in 2008 at Rocklahoma. It was very briefly. It was Dario Loreno, who is the guitar player for Lizzy Borden, and myself. We both spotted him and wanted to get a picture taken with him. We walked right up to him and he was just the sweetest guy in the world. He gave both of us big hugs and posed for a picture. That was that! That was the first time I ever met Steven. Fast forward to a few years later. I was very close friends with Janie Lane from Warrant. We would write songs together. He would fly out to my house or I would visit him out in California. When he passed away, not only did I lose a friend but the music world lost an incredible talent. I went out to Los Angeles last August for his memorial. Lonny Paul, the guitarist for Adler’s Appetite was there. We were introduced by a mutual friend, producer Jay Ruston. Jay told me that they we looking to start a new band and were in need of a singer. Lonny started talking to me and explained that Steven had been doing Adler’s Appetite for ten years, doing the Guns N’ Roses songs for the fans. SO many fans wanted to see him play those songs and he did it well. I was tried of that and really wanted to do an original project of his own stuff. Lonny and I hit it off and then the next day, he and Steven came to my hotel room. That was the first time I really had a chance to talk to Steven at length. Once again, he was the sweetest guy in the world and we hit it off immediately. We sat and talked music forever! He has such a vas knowledge of music. Where my influences we people like Guns N’ Roses and Motley Crue, his influences were more like Queen, Aerosmith and bands like that. We sat and talked forever that day and immediately knew we had a great chemistry. From there, Lonny and I started writing and working on songs.

When you found yourselves at the start of this project, what were your expectations for the album?

It is really weird. I really didn’t have any expectations because it was s surreal being part of a project with guys I always respected growing up. My desire was to create a kick ass rock ‘n’ roll record and I feel like we did that! Steven definitely had expectations and goals for this band, more than the rest of us, because this was the first full length record that he has played on and done since “Appetite for Destruction”. He had a lot to prove. Now that the record is out, he said the other day, he accomplished. He wanted the fans, the media and the critics to accept it. Everybody is giving it great reviews. All the fans have been very receptive to it and really seem to like the record. That is all he wanted, so he is super happy. I am just glad to be a part of it and I feel really honored.

What can you tell us about the songwriting process for this record and how it all came together?

I live in Birmingham and those guys live in Los Angeles, so Lonny and I started sending ideas back and forth on email. Lonny would burn CDs and take them to Steven. Steven would say yes to stuff he liked and no to stuff he didn’t. Steven definitely chose all the songs for the record. There were songs that both Lonny and I wrote that we really liked and were really proud that weren’t chosen. One of the thing we said the day we first met when we first met that day in the hotel was that we would leave ego aside and be honest with each other about songs and wouldn’t have to worry about hurting the other persons feelings. It a song could be better, we would say it. If a song wasn’t good, we’d say it. Everybody agreed to make changes and not to get to attached to an idea. If something could be better, we were all for making it better. Once we had a few songs, in January of 2012, we started recording the record. Lonny and I sat down in his office and the first song we wrote together in the same room was “The One That You Hated”. We wrote that song in about ten minutes and like I said, we had really great chemistry. That was pretty much the way the songwriting went. I brought a bunch of songs to the table, as did Lonny. We collaborated on stuff and it was a very easy and natural process.

ADLER-band-2012-1

You can definitely hear song of the band’s collective influences in there but the music has a sound of it’s own. Was it a difficult process to find the sound you were looking for with this band?

It wasn’t had to develop the sound at all because once we all got together, all of our different influences and styles came out. What you hear, literally, is all of our own styles coming out in the music. Like I said, all we wanted to do is write kick ass rock songs. With Steven on the drums, Lonny on guitar, Jeff [Pilson] on bass and my singing, it just blended together perfectly into what you hear on the album.

What was the biggest challenge you encounter in putting this album together?

It seems so crazy to say this but we didn’t encounter a big challenge. We were all really, really happy going into it and had that common goal. I guess the biggest challenge was trying to pick which songs would end up on the record because we had lots of songs. Narrowing down those songs was challenging. Everything else was very easy and almost painless.

At points during the recording process, you find yourself in the studio with Steven, Slash and Jeff, who have all made a big impact on you in your youth. What did you take away from that experience?

Jacob Bunton

Jacob Bunton

The biggest thing as far as the recording aspect goes is today when bands record, they use computers, ProTools and very few of them play live as a band anymore. It all gets recorded in different parts. That is why a lot of things you hear on the radio all start to sound exactly the same and almost like robots. A lot of today’s music is missing that live feel. When you are dealing with guys who were making records a long time ago like they were, they like that organic feel, the vibe of the live stuff and they like the mistakes. When we where recording, if there was a mistake, instead of fixing it, they were like “Ahh, just leave it!” It adds character to the record. Steven can point out a million different mistakes on “Appetite For Destruction” that I never realized were mistakes! The main thing I learned was to never lose that human element because it is those little nuances and little mistakes that can make those masterpieces. People feel an attachment to something that is human and feel detached from something that is perfect, computerized and sounds like a robot! The other thing I have learned is that if you want to do something and put your mind to it, you really can do it! like I said, I am just some redneck from Alabama! [laughs] Despite that fact, I am getting to play with people that I respect and am able to take part in this really cool project! It is kinda like the thing from “The Rocky Horror Picture Show,” where they said “If you can dream it, you can be it!” It’s true!

You are still a young guy and things have really taken off for you in 2012. How do you feel you have evolved as an artist since your early years?

As with anything, the more you do it, the more comfortable you become. You definitely get better with years of experience under your belt. I feel that I am constantly growing as an artist and as a person. Ya know, since the time I first started recording, you can definitely hear that the songwriting has grown, from the very first record I made to the newest stuff. The more that you do something, the better you get and I think the same holds true with me.

We are catching you late in 2012. You just released the album and 2013 will be here before we know it. What is on the horizon for Adler in the year to come?

Lots of plans! Lots of touring! We are going to Japan with Duff [McKagan] in March. There is also talk of us going to South America and Europe and of course, we are going to play all over The States! We will probably be extremely busy in 2013!

That is really great to hear. What about videos? Any movement on that front?

We have plans to do a video for “Good To Be Bad”. Right now we are trying to coordinate with John 5’s schedule because that is the song he is on. He wants to be in the video and we definitely want him in the video! Right now are trying to coordinate everyone’s schedule!

Is there anything you would like to say to the fans out there?

Yeah! Thank you for your support! Everybody can check out our website at www.adlerrocks.com. Our Twitter is www.twitter.com/adlerrocks and our Facebook page is www.facebook.com/adlermusic. We would love to have everyone check out the record for sure!

I can safely say they won’t be disappointed, Jacob! I really think it is a terrific record and your voice is kickass! I am really looking forward to catching you guys live in 2013!

I really appreciate that, man! Thank you so much for taking time to do this interview!

The pleasure is all mine! Take care and know we will be spreading the word!

Thank you, man! It means a lot! See you later!

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Back From The Dead: Steven Adler Discusses His New Band’s Impressive Debut

Back From The Dead: Steven Adler Discusses His New Band’s Impressive Debut

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Over the past decade, we have watched legendary drummer Steven Adler go from a near rock ‘n’ roll statistic to earning his rightful place in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as part of Guns N’ Roses. Armed with a clear head, heartwarming smile and the drum skills that helped to change the world, Steven Adler is out to do it all over again! 2012 marks a new beginning for the legendary drummer as he has joined forces with some of rock’s greatest talents to form an outstanding new rock outfit called ADLER. Comprised of frontman Jacob Bunton (Lynam, Mars Electric), guitarist Lonny Paul (Adler’s Appetite), and Johnny Martin (Chelsea Smiles), the band has just unleashed their impressive debut album, ‘Back From The Dead,’ which is best classified as a “no holds barred, balls to the walls, rock ‘n’ roll thrill ride!” At it’s core, the album is a perfect storm of musical collaborations between its members. Serving as icing on the cake, the album also features guest performances from Steven Adler’s childhood friend and former Guns N’ Roses bandmate Slash, as well as Rob Zombie/Ex-Marilyn Manson guitarist John 5. Jason Price of the mighty Icon Vs. Icon recently caught up with Steven Adler for a rapid-fire Q&A about this intriguing new band, the making of their debut album and much more!

The Legendary Steven Adler

The Legendary Steven Adler

First, I want to thank you for taking time out to talk with us once again. We caught up with a few years back, right around the time of your book release. We are super excited about Adler and all the hard work you all are putting in. We are looking forward to spreading the word!

Thank you for all your support!

I wanted to go back to the beginning and have you tell us a little about your first memories of music and how it came into your life?  

Believe it or not, when I was younger, I wanted to be a professional football player.  Then one day I saw KISS perform during their filming of “KISS Meets The Phantom Of The Park”, and I decided right then, that I wanted to be a rock star.

As an artist, what do you find inspiring you the most these days?

I wake up every morning inspired by my new band and the opportunity to prove myself again.  I think we made a great record and I can’t wait for the whole world to hear it.

Your latest project is Alder’s ‘Back From The Dead’. What can you tell us about the decision to make the jump from Adler’s Appetite to Adler?

Well, “Adler’s Appetite” was more of a tribute to my Guns N’ Roses days.  We played mostly GNR tunes.  I guess it was simply time to move on and become relevant again.

Did you have any reservations about taking this challenge?  

It’s amazing how much confidence you have when you surround yourself with the right people.  I have an incredible team and feel like there is nothing we can’t do.

Adler: Back From The Dead

Adler: Back From The Dead

What can you tell us about how you brought this impressive lineup together?

To be honest, once Lonny came into my life, it all came together.  He was the one who did all the foot work to put this band together.  He even brought in Jeff Pilson, who produced our record and Jay Ruston, who mixed it.  I feel blessed to have met such a great person, friend and band mate.  I feel the same about everyone involved.

What do each of these guys bring to the table for the project?

They are all well crafted at the instruments they play.  Jacob and Lonny are great song writers, and Johnny is my rhythm brother… he knows what I’m going to do before I do.  Jacob is the perfect front man… killer, original voice, looks, and performer… he’s the whole package.  A band of superstars and I feel lucky to play with all of them.

When you first starting out to make this record, what were your expectations?

I expected greatness, because I knew I had a great band.  I couldn’t be happier with the out come.  I absolutely love our record and can’t stop listening to it.

Was it a difficult process to find and give Adler a unique sound?

No, our sound came together naturally.  We just concentrated on writing and recording great songs.  Our “sound” just happened in the process… as it should be.  If you have to search for your sound, how genuine is it going to be?

Can you tell us a little about the songwriting process for this record and how you guys brought it to life?

Jacob and Lonny are the main song writers in the band.  They would bring songs to Jeff and me, then we would make changes, additions, or whatever we felt necessary to make them better.  Everyone is real open minded when it comes to the creative process, which is why I think the record came out so well.

ADLER-band-2012-1

Jeff Pilson produced the record. What was the most intriguing part of working with him in that capacity?

Jeff was a God send!  What a talented producer, engineer, bass player, singer, and songwriter.  We consider him a fifth member of the band.

We had the opportunity to speak with Jacob last week. He is an amazing talent and a super nice guy. Do you remember the first time you encountered him as a singer and what made you think he was the perfect fit for the frontman role?  

Of course, I remember the first time I met Jacob.  He’s not the kind of person you forget.  I loved him from the start and knew he was the right singer to lead us to victory!

From start to finish, what was the biggest challenge in making ‘Back From The Dead’?

The only thing challenging was going home every night… we didn’t want to leave.  We had the times of our lives, and Jeff made the whole process effortless and enjoyable.

Did anything come up along the way that you might not have been expecting?

I didn’t expect to be so impressed with everyone.  I have an incredible team of superstars.

Steven Adler

Steven Adler

Slash came into the studio at one point to play guitar on “Just Don’t Ask.” How does working with him now differ from the early years in GNR?

When we first started in GNR, we were just kids and took things for granted.  Now I can appreciate how talented he is, and am fortunate to have someone who I admire still in my life after all these years.

The album album is solid all the way around and really rocks. What are your personal favorites from this album and why at this moment in time?  

Thank you.  I wish I could tell you what songs I like best, but the truth is, I absolutely love the whole record.  Each song compliments the next.  We didn’t just try to record “singles” we wanted a record people would want to listen to from start to finish… like a record should be.

What was the biggest lesson you learned as an artist from the process of working with this band and creating this new album?  

If you choose the right people to work with, everything falls into place.

You seem to be in a terrific place in the creative sense. What are your hopes for the future of the very promising band?

Thank you.  I hope to take this band to the Rock N Roll Hall Of Fame 25 years from now.

We are catching you late in the year, so I am sure you are excited for the new year to kick off! What’s in store for us in 2013?

We plan to do a lot of touring, and if there is any time, we’ll be back in the recording studio.

Steven Adler

Steven Adler

It was recently announced that you would be auctioning off two plaques for Fur & Feather Animal Sanctuary. What can you tell us about that and how you got involved with the cause?

I’ve always been a big advocate of protecting animals.  So I’ll always be there when I can to help!

Your autobiography was a great read. Have you given any thought to possibly doing another book of some sort in the future?

Thank you.  I don’t have any immediate plans to write another book, but you never know what tomorrow will bring!

What is the best part of being Steven Adler these days?  

I have a great new band and group of positive people in my life.  No one has any drug addictions or any kind of substance abuse problems.  It’s a wonderful new environment, and I have a reason to wake up every morning.

Anything you would like to say to the fans before I let you go?

Thank you for all the love and support, and for not giving up on me.

For all the latest music, news and tour dates for ADLER, visit the band’s official site at www.adlerrocks.com.

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My Appetite For Destruction: Steven Adler Discusses His Past, Present and Future!

My Appetite For Destruction: Steven Adler Discusses His Past, Present and Future!

Call it luck, call it fate, call it whatever you wish but in the early eighties, a perfect storm of musical forces began to align in Hollywood, CA that would  give birth to the world’s most notorious rock ‘n’ roll band. Boasting an amazing mix of larger than life personalities, an undeniably powerful sound and a heaping helping of attitude, Guns N’ Roses wasted no time carving their own niche into Los Angeles’ highly competitive music scene. When Guns N’ Roses released their legendary album, Appetite for Destruction, it would change the music scene for ever. It is one of the rare, iconic albums that would come along to a generation and serve as a benchmark for all albums to follow. Not only would the music effect people around the world, it would also take many who were at ground zero of the phenomenon on a roller coaster ride to superstardom. The members of this extraordinary band are living proof that some people merely listen to rock n’ roll and some have it coursing through their veins. Such is the case with drummer Steven Adler. As part of Guns N’ Roses, he provided the crushing backbeat to one of music’s landmark albums, rose to the heights that most people can only dream of and became the poster boy for rock ‘n’ roll excess. Today, after twenty-eight overdoses, three botched suicides, two heart attacks, a couple of jail stints, and a debilitating stroke, Steven Adler is sober, standing tall and ready to share his story with the world. Steve Johnson of Icon Vs. Icon sat down with the infamous drummer with the infectious smile to discuss his shocking new autobiography ‘My Appetite for Destruction: Sex, and Drugs, and Guns N’ Roses’, the future of Adler’s Appetite, his love for W. Axl Rose and much more!

How did music first come into your life?

I’ve been a fan of music since the age of 4 when I heard my first album, which was Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons.  The song was “Working My Way Back to You.”  There was something that clicked in my heart and in my soul.  The sound of the guitar, and the groove of the drums, and Frankie’s voice.  My grandma used to tell me that when we were driving around I would turn the radio up pretty loud and I’d just be dancing and singing in the back seat.  How’s that for how times have changed!  I wore no seat belt!  I was 4 or 5 years old jumping around in the back seat of a car that was driving around!  How’s that?  Times have definitely changed! [laughs]

Your work has inspired so many. Who do you cite as some of your influences?

Musically … Roger Meddows-Taylor from Queen.  Everyone from KISS.  Boston.  John Bonham.  Keith Moon.  A lot of English drummers.  I was really attracted to the style of the English drummers.  They were jazz schooled players, but went into rock.  The drums weren’t just basic AC/DC.  One, two, three, four … IIt had a shuffle.  It had a groove.  I like that!

How do you think you have evolved as an artist (drummer) since you first started out?

When I first started out … I hadn’t taken a lesson up until five months ago.  Throughout my whole career in music I had never taken a drum lesson.  So five months ago I started taking lessons.  I started cleaning myself up and getting my life together, and I wanted to be a better player.  So I started taking lessons.  It’s the best thing I have ever done.  It’s helped my show.  It’s amazing how it has helped me.  It’s made playing so much easier and so much more fun.  Having a clue of what I am actually doing, instead of just doing it because it feels right.  Now it feels right and I know what I am doing.  It’s even a bigger high performing live and recording.

What has kept you inspired through the years?

I wasn’t inspired for the last 20 years.  After two years of working with Dr. Drew I got satisfaction to be a part of my life again.  I really wasn’t inspired by anything.  I didn’t want to do anything.  It took me 20 years to admit and realize that I blamed Slash, Duff, Izzy, and Axl for my downfall with the band and all the drug abuse I went through after that.  I blamed them.  When I started working with Dr. Drew … I realized that I thought they let me down, but it wasn’t them who let me down, it was me who let them down.  Being able to face that … if you read my book “My Appetite for Destruction,” in the beginning of it I talk about the sexual abuse that I went through when I was a young teenager.  That happened with an older teenager and an older man.  At the time that it happened, how do you tell your grandparents or your friends?  You can’t tell somebody that happened to you.  When I was 12 years old … so with working with Dr. Drew I realized that if I don’t get this out of my system and keep stuffing it down, I am going to keep relapsing and I’m not going to be able to move forward in my life.  I finally was able to have a discussion with people who understood and people I could relate to.  I thought if I said those words out loud for other peoples’ ears to hear I would feel even worse and that they would batter me.  It was the complete opposite.  When I said it, it was like this big weight off my body and my chest.  It was just like, WHEW!  Doing this book has been mentally, spiritually, and emotionally healing for me.  Dr. Drew has been a huge help and a mentor to me.  I watched the show after I was on the show.  The season before and the season after.  Everybody has the same opportunity that I had to get the most out of it.  I needed to get these feelings that I just described to you out.  Before I started “Celebrity Rehab,” I told them I don’t think I could do it to the best of my ability and get the most out of it if I don’t get to talk to Slash.  Like I said, I blamed them.  I thought they let me down.  So we had a meeting.  No cameras.  Nothing … I got to apologize to Slash and he apologized to me.  I said, it was really me who let him down.  Just being able to apologize … the next morning when I woke up my whole body was so sore.  Like when you work out too much.  I was so sore from the weight, pressure, and pain I let off my body by apologizing to him.

Speaking of your autobiography, “My Appetite For Destruction,” did you have any reservations about putting that together?

After the months I did in rehab and the two years I’ve been working with Dr. Drew, I felt that it was time for me to do it.  For me, the purpose of the book was to write my answers to all of the people that I have wronged and to myself.  When I get home off tour I am going to build myself a big bonfire and I’m going to throw that book right into the fire.  I want to leave the past behind.  I want to move forward.  I don’t hate anybody.  I don’t bash anybody in my book.  I don’t put anybody down.  I don’t talk bad about anybody.  That’s not what it is about.  I love all the people that were in my life and people that are a part of my life.  No one is getting put down.  I’m laying my heart on my sleeve with this book.  It’s for all of my friends, colleagues, fans, and people that can benefit from my rough history.  I’m here to show the underdogs that you can survive and you can succeed.  My life has been a rollercoaster, I have accepted all of the consequences, and I can move on.  I’m going to live my life one second at a time, one breath at a time.  I’m finally starting to show myself and I’m finally getting recognition for the work that I have done on “Appetite,” “Lies,” and my work with GNR.  I want those guys more than anybody to read my book.  If they read my book, I know they’ll realize that what we have is so special and so rare for that to happen. They’ll realize that we’re all brothers.  The five of us are brothers and what do goofy brothers do?  They fight with each other!  That’s what brothers do!  It’s been 20 years of fighting.  Enough is enough.  Let’s move on.  I know if I could get the five of us in a room together, not even with instruments, just a room … no chairs or even a table.  All we would do is say hi to each other, shed a little tear, and we would start talking about moving on into the future and doing something new.

You are currently on tour with your band, Adler’s Appetite. How did the current lineup shape up?

I’ve been doing Adler’s Appetite for like the last eight years.  There have been different people involved.  Just like Guns ‘n’ Roses, we’ve played with other people throughout the years.  This was a fun lineup that just clicked together.  We have a new single out called “Alive.”  “It’s Good To Be Alive” and it is good to be alive.  If you buy the book, you can download the single for free.  We debuted the single on The Howard Stern Show when we did the show.  We play it live.  Basically the live show … we open up with “Reckless Life” and we end with “Welcome to the Jungle.”  So we do that and everything that’s in between.

As you mentioned, the band’s new single “Alive” is out now. Are there any plans for a full length release from Adler’s Appetite in the future?

Yes!  We have some shows at The Whisky.  We are going to do a video for this song first.  We’re going to film it at The Whisky and at the Sunset Strip Music Festival, which is all right there.  In the middle of September we are going to go back over to Anthony Focx’s studio, where we did the first single.  We’ll have two weeks in L.A., so we’ll probably run through another five songs.  We’ll put it out single by single.  That’s the way the market is now.  You put out a single, people will download a single.  So we have this single that’s out.  In about three or four weeks we’ll have a new single and we’ll go from there.  We’re just belting them out and having a great time doing it.  I love all of the fans I have been meeting at the book signings and at the shows.  I love when they bring their GNR memorabilia.  I love meeting everybody and signing stuff.  Everybody has been so great.  I appreciate all of their prayers and all of their wonderful thoughts.  It’s a really wonderful trip.

You started your career in one of the biggest bands of all time and have a very well documented career. The public eye has been fixed on you from the time you were very young and continues to this day. What do you think is the biggest misconception about Steven Adler?

I’m going to tell you there is no misconception.  If you read my book, nearly everything is right there.  That’s all I have to tell you!  There is no misconception!  My heart and soul are on my sleeve! [laughs]

Steven Adler

It seems, especially in the “rock media,” they tend to focus mainly on soundbites from you that paint Axl Rose in a negative light. Does this ever put you in a bad spot or become a bit of a burden?

No.  Axl is one of the most wonderful people I have had in my life.  He is an amazing singer.  He’s up there as one of the top singers/entertainers.  You have Freddie Mercury.  You have Robert Plant. You have Steven Tyler.  You have Axl Rose. It’s been a blessing being able to work with that guy.  I want him to be a part of my life.  He’s my brother.  Like I said earlier, brothers fight.  Enough with the fighting.  Let’s move on … I want to finish what I started with him and the guys.  I’m pretty sure they feel the same way.  Axl has been nothing but a wonderful influence and a wonderful person to me.  I love him and I want him to be a part of my life more.  I’m thankful I have a history with him.  No bad animosity.  All love and respect.

What do you consider the defining moment of your career so far?

I have to say playing with The Rolling Stones at the L.A. Colosseum.  That was the biggest!  Oh yeah, and Donnington!  I’ve had a few.  We played with Aerosmith and Ozzy Osbourne.  I have to say the main one was the Colosseum with The Rolling Stones.  That was like a dream come true for all of us.

That’s one band I haven’t seen, I would love to go see.

Oh man!  It’s amazing! And they’re still doing it!  I love it!  This is like the 10th time that they’ve said this is the last tour they are doing!

It sounds like KISS!

You’ve got to hand it to them!  You’ve got to give it up!

Being in the music industry as long as you have, are there still surprises?

The surprise is that there is no record industry.  I was lucky enough to catch the ending of what was the entertainment world, where you worked hard, you did shows, you played anywhere, and you sent your tapes in.  You did everything you could and you were a rare breed.  The rare few got signed and got to make a record.  Nowadays everyone is making a record.  They’re doing it in their bedrooms.  Then again, if you look at these bands that are coming out … I don’t know … it used to be you could see someone walking down Sunset Boulevard and tell the difference between a blue collar guy and an entertainer.  People cared about how they looked.  I watch these videos of bands out nowadays and I swear they’re the same guys who I just got a burger from at Burger King.  You know what I mean!  They don’t care about how they look!  Shave your face!  Look good!  Comb your hair!  Do something!  It’s entertainment!  That’s just how I feel.  I was lucky to catch it toward the ending of when it was real.  It wasn’t a costume, it was a performance.  Nowadays there are bands out there playing with tape!  What the hell is that? [laughs]

As far as I am concerned progress peaked at “Appetite For Destruction!”  That album is phenomenal!

It was live!  That was live and that’s the truth!  At the end of the song there was none of this, “Let’s take this part of the song … that sounded better than this part of the song … let’s put it there … ”  We went one, two, three, four.  We played the friggin’ song and how it came out, that’s how it came to be.  After we played every song, we’d go back in the listening booth and we’d listen back to the song we just played.  We just looked at each other and said, “We just made the greatest record ever!”  We achieved what our goal was.  I just want to finish what I started with them.

Lightening up a bit …you have played tons of shows. Ever have a “Spinal Tap Moment” where something totally unexpected happened?

Well, we were playing with The Cult and it was our last show with them.  They came out and started taking my drums away piece by piece.  There have been a couple of those, “Hello Cleveland! Where’s the fucking stage? Oh!  It’s right over here!  Hello Cleveland!”  There have been a few of those!  That and the Motley Crue guys poured flour all over us like it was cocaine falling from the sky.  Trust me, flour and sweat don’t mix well with hair.  I was pulling dough out of my hair for weeks. [laughs]

What is the best piece of advice you could give to those who are just starting out and considering making a career in the music industry?

Practice as many hours a day as you can.  Play with every other performer/musician.  Everyone you can play with … get yourself out there.  Play the bars.  Play the clubs.  Get yourself known.  That’s what we did.  We hung out on the strip.  We played everywhere.  We made sure people knew who we were.  We practiced!  You want to go out there and you want to be great.  We would go into rehearsal two hours before the other guys would get in just so the bass and drums, which is the rhythm section, was good as we could be.

After this tour, what’s next for you?

We are going to do some recording and some videos.  We’re going to Europe. Iceland, Spain, Italy, France, Germany, Australia … we’ve got a world tour ahead of us until this time next year.

Anything that you would like to add or say to the dedicated GNR fans around the world?

Thank you for all of the wonderful prayers and thoughts.  The e-mails, texts, and tweets.  I love meeting all of you.  More than anything I love  giving hugs to everybody.  Be prepared, if you meet me, you’re going to get hugged!  I even hugged a big, stinky, hairy guy in Canada! [laughs]  He had no business wearing a tank top! [laughs]  None!  The store who sold him the tank top had no business selling this guy a tank top!  That’s how hairy this guy was!

Jesus! [laughs]

Exactly! [laughs] Be sure to check out our website at www.adlersappetiteonline.com.  You can check out if we’re coming to your city in the next couple of weeks.  We still have a month of touring in the states.  You check out pictures, videos from the shows, and the book.  Log on and say hi!

Thanks for your time Steven and best of luck!

Thank you for your time!

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Guns N’ Roses To Play First US Show In 4 Years At Rock ‘N Rev Festival

Guns N’ Roses To Play First US Show In 4 Years At Rock ‘N Rev Festival

Legendary Frontman Axl Rose

Making their first U.S. concert appearance in four years, and playing their only U.S. show in 2010, Guns N’ Roses has been officially recruited to join the inaugural Rock ‘N Rev Festival and cement its assault on the legendary Sturgis Rally’s 70th Anniversary celebration in Sturgis, SD, at the newly constructed Rock N’ Rev Amphitheater at Monkey Rock USA.

Guns N’ Roses will headline the fifth and final night of the festival, as it moves to the Brand New Rock ‘N Rev Amphitheater at Monkey Rock USA in Sturgis, adjacent to its original location. L.A.’s notorious rock ‘n’ roll bad boys – one of Q magazine’s “50 Bands to See Before You Die” – have combined forces with HDlogix and DC3 Global for this rare and very special appearance on home soil to bring the “full-out rock ‘n’ roll spectacle” (Spin) of their 2010 “Chinese Democracy World Tour” to Sturgis and finish off the hijacking of the world’s biggest, baddest biker event, Monday, Aug. 9 through Friday, Aug. 13, 2010.

Rock ‘N Rev Festival’s sweltering lineup also includes: Alice in Chains, Stone Temple Pilots, Wolfmother, Creed, Daughtry, 3 Doors Down, Godsmack, Three Days Grace, Cage The Elephant, Rev Theory, Eagles of Death Metal, The Darling Stilettos (featuring former GNR drummer Matt Sorum), and Swayback — just some of the bands making massive music at this colossal biker bash.

Tickets for the Rock ‘N Rev Festival are $45 per day, general admission ($150 for a five-day pass), and on sale now through www.ticketmaster.com and rocknrevfestival.com and at all Ticketmaster locations, or by calling Ticketmaster at (800) 745-3000. Tickets also will be available in person beginning August 5, 2010 on location at the Festival’s on- site box office. For more information on exclusive VIP packages ($150 for a single day, $300 for all five days or $1,000 5 day platinum packages), including backstage access to a VIP area to special, air-conditioned tents with private bars, motorcycle parking, luxury bathroom facilities and more, go to www.rocknrevfestival.com.

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Alex Grossi Talks Adler’s Appetite & Paul Reed Smith Road Show

Alex Grossi Talks Adler’s Appetite & Paul Reed Smith Road Show

feature-alex_grossi

Hailing from a musical family in Connecticut, Alex Grossi picked up a guitar at the age of thirteen and never looked back. Almost two decades later, all of his hard work and determination have paid off in spades. At 32 years old, the rock guitarist has accomplished more in his career than many guitarists will accomplish in a lifetime. His musical prowess launched him into the limelight, and along the way he would take the stage with some of the hard rock genre’s biggest names and his boyhood idols. Grossi has kept his musical momentum building through the years by working with Quiet Riot’s Kevin DuBrow, Guns N’ Roses’ Dizzy Reed and most recently, served as a driving force in Adler’s Appetite as he travels the land alongside legendary Guns N’ Roses drummer Steven Adler. Alex Grossi shows no signs of slowing down as he makes his mark on the music scene. Jason Price of Icon Vs. Icon recently had a chance to sit down with Alex Grossi to discuss his current tour with Adler’s Appetite, his upcoming summer trek with the Paul Reed Smith Road Show and all of his upcoming projects.

How did music first come into your life?

I was born into a musical family. My dad was a musician for the Hartford Symphony Orchestra where he was a conductor and my mom owns a dance studio in Connecticut, which is still open for business. It is called the Grossi Dance Academy. Through those things, I was kinda born into it and I started out playing french horn when I was in second grade. It started from there and then I started seeing Motley Crue videos and that seemed like a lot more fun than playing in the Symphony, so I got a guitar and here we are! [laughs]

alexgrossi4What drove you to make music your career?

My Mom dances for a living. She is 60 years old and in better shape than anyone in the band! It keeps her young and she really loves dancing. A wise man once said that “If you love what you do, then you never have to go to work.” I really love playing guitar and I really don’t like going to work. [laughs] I figured that if I could find a way to make a living doing it, move to the right city, meet the right people and be a pro about it, then it would happen. There is a lot of risk involved and there are a lot of people who want to do it professionally. I just thought, “How cool would it be to get paid for doing something that you love?” Thankfully, I have been able to do something that I love as a career!

You mentioned Motley Crue. Who were some of the influences that have helped shape you, the musician, that we know today?

Growing up, it was Guns N’ Roses. ‘Appetite for Destruction’ was my first record. I am a big fan of KISS, Aerosmith and all the bands of that genre. I never really got into the whole guitar virtuoso, shredder thing. I liked bands that had attitude, image and were a little bit dangerous. I also liked the fact that a lot of bands had their own sound. For example, Slash (of Guns N’ Roses). You can hear a solo on a Guns N’ Roses song or him guesting somebody else’s song and you can tell that it is him. Anyone like that has been a big influence on me. I have literally gotten a chance to play with a lot of the guys that I grew up listening to so far in my short professional career. Well, actually I guess it is not so short as I am 32 now, I am starting to get up there! [laughs] It has really been great!

I know you have done some songwriting in the past. Is there a typical songwriting process that you employ or does it vary depending on who you are working with?

Ya know, it is really contingent on what type of band that you are in. If you are hired just to come in and play lead guitar or chord guitar or whatever. In that case you just come in, they hand you the song and you just play over it. For example, I just recently worked on Dizzy Reed’s (Guns N’ Roses) solo album. I went in there and he pretty much had all of the guitar parts mapped out and I would just put my own sorta thing on it, contributing a little bit here and there. With a band like Beautiful Creatures, where I came in as the guitar player, replacing DJ Ashba the main songwriter, I literally had to write from scratch with four other guys, what became ‘Deuce,’ our second record. It really depends on the situation, Adler’s Appetite is planning on going into the studio in late July and we have already started working on some stuff. Chip Z’Nuff, Steven Adler, Michael Thomas and myself will get in a room and just start banging out ideas and roll tape. Hopefully by the end of the year, you will have a new record from us.

Great news! For those how might not know, how did you get involved with Steven Adler and Adler’s Appetite?

I have been working with Steven on and off for about five years now. I initially got contacted by Kevin DuBrow of Quiet Riot, to do some solo show before Quiet Riot reformed in 2004, that turned into the ‘Bad Boys of Metal’ tour. It was a summer package that featured Joe Lesté of Bang Tango, Jani Lane of Warrant, Steven Adler of Guns N’ Roses and Kevin DuBrow, with me playing guitar for all four bands. I was literally on stage for four hours a night. During that time, Steven and I became really good friends and after the tour we kept in touch. I did some solo shows with him and after his stint on ‘Celebrity Rehab with Dr. Drew’, he decided to reform the band and called me. The rest is history!

alexgrossi1Adler’s Appetite parted ways with one singer and now you have brought Rick Stitch in to handle the vocals. What does Rick bring to the table?

It is really, really difficult when you are trying to emulate something that people are so familiar with. ‘Appetite for Destruction’ sold well over 30 million copies worldwide and people know every note from that album. We just played over in Argentina. They don’t speak English but they can even sing the guitar solos! So, we needed someone who can be true to the music but we also don’t want to be a tribute band. The drummer in this band, Steven, wrote a fifth of the music playing on that album. When we made the singer change, a lot of people would contact me or Steven through Myspace. They were wearing the bandanna and one even went so far as to have the fake Axl Rose tattoos put on. That wasn’t what we wanted. We wanted a guy who can hit the notes and do the stuff but at the same time is not a clone. We’re not Steel Dragon, ya know! [laughs] Rick has been great. It is nice to have a guy who is on the same page off stage as he is on stage. What people don’t realize about a touring band that works as hard as we do is that you have to live with these people twenty four hours a day. You may have two straight days off in the middle of God knows where or Iowa and you have to be friends. Certain people get along, certain people don’t but that is the nature of the beast. Instead of being married to one person, try being married to five or six! That’s basically what it is like.

This summer you will be taking part in the Paul Reed Smith Road Show, how did you first join up with Paul Reed Smith and what has that experience been like for you?

I got my first Paul Reed Smith when I was fifteen years old. I started playing when I was thirteen and I progressed pretty quickly to the point where I got a job at a music store that sold Paul Reed Smith, and as soon as I had fifteen hundred dollars in my pocket, I bought one! I have been playing them since then. When I was nineteen years old, I joined a band called Angry Sal while I was attending Berklee College of Music in Boston. We got a record deal and the first thing that I though was “Well shit, I want to get an endorsement.” So, I wrote a letter to Paul Reed Smith and said “Can I play your guitar exclusively?” and they invited me out to the factory. I went down there and I have been with them ever since. Every band that I have been in, they have always hooked me up with the right guitar for it and Paul has been great. The thing about Paul is that he is probably the only guitar manufacturer that puts out a really good product that you can get anywhere, that is consistent. I could have all my gear stolen, walk into a Guitar Center wherever I may be in the world and have it sound like the one that I have been playing on stage. I really mean that. As a company, they have always taken care of me at the NAMM shows. They are not like Gibson or Fender that are these huge corporate conglomerations, they are still very much a family run business. I am really looking forward to doing the clinics with him. I believe that it is July 14th in Manchester, Connecticut at their Guitar Center location. It’s funny because Paul will be taking about all these different types of exotic woods and my job is to show up and tell stories about playing with all of these crazy rock stars! It should be really cool! I am really happy to have been with them through the years and I really don’t ever see myself playing another guitar.

You mentioned recording guitars for Dizzy Reed’s solo debut and I know Del James is serving as producer on that release. What can you tell us about this project and any idea on when it may hit stores?

alexgrossi2 I have no idea about it’s release date. I know that they are mixing it right now. Once ‘Chinese Democracy’ came out, I am sure it took a little bit of a back burner. Working with Del was great. For a guy who doesn’t really play an instrument he has a really great ear. He will walk into the room and say “No, no! Do it more like…” and then throw out some crazy analogy that ends up making perfect sense at the end of the day! It was really great working with those guys. As a Guns N’ Roses fan, and I am sure not too many people will be a fan of me saying this, but it is cool to work on every end of the spectrum. By that I mean, I am working with a guy who was there at the very beginning, Steven Adler, all the way up to the guys who are in the band now. Whether that ties the two things together, I can tell you 100% that it does not, but it is really cool to hear the stories and the history of the band. If you think about it, as far as I am concerned, they are the band of my generation. You had The Who, Led Zeppelin and The Beatles for previous generations. As far as rock bands and anyone that is in their early thirties to forties, our band is Guns N’ Roses or Nirvana but definitely one of the two.

You have worked with so many icons from the industry in your career. What is the best piece of advice someone has given you along the way?

The best piece of advice was given to me by Kevin DuBrow, and it was to always go out and play your show as if it were your last. He didn’t say it in exactly in those words but I have seen Kevin play in front of forty thousand people and I have seen him play in front of forty people. He would go out there because he genuinely enjoyed doing it. The day it stops being fun for you is the same day that it stops being fun for the audience. When you are up there, no matter how big the crowd is, no matter how good the sound is, no matter how bad the sound is, if you are having fun it is infectious. It goes back to the audience and right back to you and everyone has a good time. People pay their hard earned money to get in to see you. I won’t mention any names but there are guys in that particular genre that just show up and are only doing it for a paycheck, not because they love playing. You can tell when people care and when they don’t. That was the thing about Kevin, he always cared. I will never forget that. Even right up until our last show. It was November 4th, 2007 at a small club and he still played it as if he would have been playing Madison Square Garden. He still brought it every night! A lot of guys from that genre don’t do that anymore.

alexgrossi3Have you had a ‘Spinal Tap Moment’ on stage?

[laughs] This entire tour has been a ‘Spinal Tap Moment’! [laughs] The most recent one was about a week and a half ago. We played a show called ‘Cornstock’. It was held in a huge corn field. Big, big show! Tons of people, great show! However, when we got there the promoter came onto the bus and said “Fellas we have a little bit of a problem here. See that there inflatable beer can?” because it was sponsored by Budweiser and they had one of those giant fifty foot beer cans. They had to tear down the entire stage and move it around this beer can. All I could think about was Stonehenge! It was what Stonehenge should have been if it were a can of beer! We had to wait four hours in the sun due to a giant inflatable beer can, so that was very Spinal Tap. Whoever wrote that movie must have been in a band or followed a band around because they were dead on. They actually predicted the future in a lot of ways. They always say watch ‘Spinal Tap’ and then go on tour for ten years and then watch it again, you will be laughing so hard your ribs hurt! [laughs]

What should we be on the lookout for from you in the coming months?

Definitely the new Adler’s Appetite record! Right now, I have a song out in the new Sandra Bullock movie ‘The Proposal’, so if you feel like hearing a song by Beautiful Creatures in a Walt Disney picture, a family movie, that was written by a very un-family band, check that out! [laughs] It is pretty cool! Also look out for possibly some more Paul Reed Smith Road Show dates and a ton more of Adler’s Appetite dates, that’s for sure!

We will be on the lookout for you!

Thanks!

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Want more of Alex Grossi and Adler’s Appetite?

Check out all the latest happenings with Alex Grossi by visiting his official site at www.alexgrossi.com or on Myspace at www.myspace.com/alexgrossi.

Check out the official Myspace page for Adler’s Appetite at www.myspace.com/stevenadlersite.

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