The caring side of Axl Rose

Axl Rose's former personal assistant during Guns N' Roses' heyday has painted a picture of the singer as a caring and compassionate friend.

While Rose is often the subject of criticism for his difficult personality and backstage tantrums, his ex-PA Craig Duswalt tells a different story in his book Welcome To My Jungle, out on Monday, May 12. It covers the 1991-1993 Use Your Illusion period when the band were the biggest rock act on the planet.

Duswalt, who has stayed in touch with his former boss all through the band’s line-up changes, tells MyGNRforum: “Axl was very good to me and my family. I last saw GNR at Universal Amphitheater in 2006, and the show was amazing. After the concert, my friends and I were invited backstage to Axl’s dressing room.

“Usually my wife Natasha would have come, but she had been diagnosed with cancer and was going through chemo and didn’t have the strength to go to the show. I go back to Axl’s personal area and Axl gives me a hug, and the first thing out of his mouth was ‘how’s Natasha?’ That is exactly who Axl Rose is.”

Duswalt adds that Rose described the moment he felt he had “made it” as an artist – after a performance at the massive Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California.

He says: “When I was on the road with him, one of the biggest concerts we played was the Rose Bowl in Pasadena. I remember him saying, after he walked off the stage, that he felt he had ‘made it.’ His dream was always to play the Rose Bowl.”

Duswalt insists that his book is not a tell-ale tale and won’t dish any dirt on Rose or the band.

Stef wrote close to 5,000 stories during his time as assistant online news editor and later as online news editor between 2014-2016. An accomplished reporter and journalist, Stef has written extensively for a number of UK newspapers and also played bass with UK rock favourites Logan. His favourite bands are Pixies and Clap Your Hands Say Yeah. Stef left the world of rock'n'roll news behind when he moved to his beloved Canada in 2016, but he started on his next 5000 stories in 2022.