By JOHN DALY – Guns N Roses kicked off their “Not In This Lifetime” reunion tour with a rockin’ show at The Troubadour, the place where it all began.
Guns N Roses will play 24 cities over four months for a tour dubbed the “Not In This Lifetime” tour — mainly because it was believed the band would never get together again — Guns N Roses had barely endured many rifts all along.
But diehard fans — who have been “bandless” since 1993 when GNR broke up — finally got a chance to see the group together. Well almost.
GNR was missing a few players, notably Izzy Stradlin and Steve Adler, but it didn’t seem to make a a lot difference to fans who sardine-packed West Hollywood’s Troubadour, the place where the guys got their first break so long ago.
Those who attended said the show was an amazing feat, just the fact that Axl and Slash were back together again was good enough for most. Axl may look a little heavier and his trademark long red locks are gone, but he still has the vocal power as evidenced by the videos posted.
There’s plenty of opportunity to see Guns N Roses on their upcoming tour. The band stops in 20 cities over the next two months and there’s plenty of merch to go around.
Gibson Brands Tower Records
While it may have been “once-in-a-lifetime experience” even to stand in line at Gibson Brand’s Tower Records on Sunset to try your hand at getting a ticket, it was a relatively joyless experience for most, except for a limited few.
Those who put in the efforts, getting to the Gibson Brands Tower Records building by midnight or earlier the night before and staying overnight til 10 am the next morning, were rewarded with a place in the audience at the Troubadour. But for every person who did get in, there were at least nine who did not, according to rough calculations on the scene among those waiting in line.
“The line is up the hill and almost around the block, I just don’t think I’m going to get in,” said John Blalock, who was about halfway up Horn Ave. “I really wanted to go but found out too late.”
Carla, though, who arrived the night before to wait in line, was one of the lucky ones — she was admitted to buy the sought-after green wristband that would lead to a ticket to the show.
“I can’t believe it,” she said. “This is unbelievable! I can’t believe it! I’ve been a fan since the beginning,” she said. Her friend echoed the sentiment. “She can’t believe she’s really going and either do I!”
After the tickets were sold out — word of which took about 30 minutes to reach the end of the line up Horn Ave. — about half of the estimated 1200 or so people in line dispersed. Others remained to buy commemorative merch. But as promised, free food was on hand provided by Dogtown Dogs and Border Grill.
It was a challenge to even buy a T-shirt or a poster in the parking lot, the crowds were four and five-people deep surrounding the merch tent set up in the Gibson Brand’s Tower Records parking lot. Free food on hand, provided by Dogtown Dogs and Border Grill made the bad news more tolerable.
Fans had been kicked to the curb but got satisfaction April 1 when their broken hearts were mended. Since Guns N Roses broke up in 1993, not much had been heard about the band, though Slash has been active, playing gigs around Los Angeles.
But not all the fans who were ready to go to the show were so optimistic.
“I’ll believe it when I see it tonight,” said Eddie, who was lucky enough to get a ticket to the Troubadour. “Axl tends to walk off stage when he’s pissed so we’ll see how much of tonight — or the rest of the tour — he can put up with.”
Video courtesy of Ross the bassist: