Ten Things You Didn't Know About Guns N' Roses

Seeing as Guns N' Roses are gracing the cover of the new Metal Hammer, we thought we'd let you in on a few little-known facts about Axl and co.

  • Slash’s mother was Ola Hudson. She was a clothes designer for such major artists as David Bowie, whom she dated for a while. * The original guitarist in Guns N’ Roses was Tracii Guns. When the band formed in 1985, they took their name from him and Axl Rose. But Guns left after playing just a handful of shows with the band. * Original bassist Ole Beich died in 1991. He was drowned in Copenhagen. His family believed it to be suicide, although this was never proven. Beich played with the band at their first ever gig on 26th March, 1985, at The Troubadour in West Hollywood. * Before settling on the name Guns N’ Roses, the band did consider AIDS and Heads Of Amazon, both of which were rejected. * The Appetite For Destruction line-up of the band made its live debut on 6th June, 1985, at The Troubadour, It was billed as ‘A Rock ‘n’ Roll Bash Where Everyone’s Smashed’. * On 20th July, 1985, the band played yet again at The Troubadour. The significance of this show is that was to be the first time they played Welcome To The Jungle in public. On 10th October at the same venue they debuted_ Paradise City_. * On 25th March, 1986, GN’R signed to Geffen Records. By August, they had Alan Niven as their manager. He had to be persuaded to take on the job, as many believed them to be unmanageable. * On 23rd October, 1986, GN’R supported Alice Cooper a the Arlington Theater in Santa Barbara, but they have to play without Axl. The reason? He was refused entry, as his name wasn’t on the artist list! * On 1st and 2nd August, 1987, GN’R shot the video for Welcome To The Jungle. It was at Park Plaza & 450 S. La Brea, Hollywood. * On 2nd September, 1987,_ Appetite For Destruction_ made the Top 100 in the Billboard chart. Guns N’ Roses found out at the Warfield Theater in San Francisco, where they were opening for The Cult. “We’ve made it!” Slash cried out backstage. “Made what? We’ve done nothing yet!” replied Axl.

Read the full story of the early days of Guns N’ Roses in the new issue of Metal Hammer and on TeamRock+.

Malcolm Dome

Malcolm Dome had an illustrious and celebrated career which stretched back to working for Record Mirror magazine in the late 70s and Metal Fury in the early 80s before joining Kerrang! at its launch in 1981. His first book, Encyclopedia Metallica, published in 1981, may have been the inspiration for the name of a certain band formed that same year. Dome is also credited with inventing the term "thrash metal" while writing about the Anthrax song Metal Thrashing Mad in 1984. With the launch of Classic Rock magazine in 1998 he became involved with that title, sister magazine Metal Hammer, and was a contributor to Prog magazine since its inception in 2009. He died in 2021