AEROSMITH frontman Steven Tyler says that he was one of several people who have tried to get Axl Rose to reunite GUNS N’ ROSES with guitarist Slash and bassist Duff McKagan.
“I’m sure I’m not solely [responsible for them getting back together], but I did meet Axl in a couple of clubs a year ago and two years ago and three years ago,” Tyler said on Howard Stern’s SiriusXM radio show (hear audio below). “I bumped into him, and I had that talk… I said, ‘You need to get fucking back together again soon, because we all miss you.’ Same thing someone said to me when Joe [Perry, AEROSMITH guitarist] and I were fighting. ‘You’ve gotta get back together. What are you, crazy?’ In fact, it was Jon Bon Jovi. I’m in rehab. He calls me up and goes, ‘What the fuck are you in rehab? The world needs you. We’re out here ripping it up, and everybody’s asking for AEROSMITH. You need to get out of here, because people in the world need you.'”
He continued: “So I’d say to Axl, ‘You’ve gotta get together. There’s a place and time where if you don’t, you’re gonna miss it.’ And in another four or five years, no one’s gonna even know who they were or care if they’re on tour, and that’s Steven Tyler’s opinion. And also, I’m the lead singer of another great band, so I have a right to feel that way. I have such a huge ego about keeping the fire and the music together. Because if people come up to me and say, ‘Dude, I got laid to your music,’ or a woman comes up to me and says, ‘We got married to your songs.’ You had something to do with the fabric of people. GUNS N’ ROSES had something to do with the fabric of humans on this planet, so I get fucking pissed.”
Asked if he thinks the GUNS N’ ROSES reunion will last, Tyler said: “The point is they’re talking to each other. They got an offer for something, and at least they’re going out. I think the world needs to hear their music. End of story.”
He added: “I can only hope that Axl sees that the greater picture is to not be angry at Duff or Slash, for Axl to understand that he’s the lead singer in a great band and the world wants to see Axl with the original band. They love him alone too. He’s the shit alone. He’s fucking great. Axl’s great.”
Slash, Axl and McKagan, along with a lineup that may or may not include original or recent members of GUNS N’ ROSES, are reuniting for four confirmed shows so far: two in Las Vegas in early April, and two headlining slots at California’s Coachella Music And Arts Festival later that month.
The last time that Slash, Axl and Duff all performed live together was in 1994, although Duff has done a few shows with the latest GUNS iteration in recent years.
Speculation about a GUNS reunion exploded last summer when Slash revealed that he and Axl had repaired their estranged relationship, which prevented them from speaking for the better part of two decades.
GN’R is reportedly negotiating with promoters to play as many as 25 stadiums in North America this summer. The band is said to be asking as much as $3 million per show, with tickets topping out in the $250 to $275 range.