What It’s All About

In a word, Axl Rose (ok, that’s two words). More specifically, the point of this blog is to serve as a sort of Snopes fact-checker about Axl Rose. All new posts will be on the Lose Your Illusions page (link on the right), but if you’re new here, read this first.

Why bother?
For starters, I hate it when people spread false information about anything. I’m the person who will reply to all 200 recipients of that stupid email forward just to squash the lies and misinformation. Life’s too short to be ignorant, peeps. And there’s definitely no sense in damaging someone else’s life because of your ignorance and propensity to gossip. So knock it off. Axl is a negative press magnet. Some of it he brings upon himself, a lot of it is hearsay, sensationalism, and biased reporting looking for an easy scapegoat to villainize. But despite (or because of) all his quirks and faults, he is still human and just because he’s famous doesn’t make defamation cool.

Why choose Axl?
On a November 2011 interview with VH1’s “That Metal Show,” Eddie Trunk asks Axl if there are any misconceptions about himself that he’d like to address. With a weary sigh he answers, “There’s too many things. There’s too many things that… it’s like two decades of people talking.” There are plenty of people out there ready to rag on Axl, but there aren’t too many who are willing to give him a fair shake. So I decided I would. Everybody needs a champion, even the flawed people (and really, aren’t we all?).

How did it come about?
I was in junior high/early high school when Guns n’ Roses were in their heyday. I was aware of them and of Axl, but I didn’t listen to their music (I was listening to CCR and Three Dog Night). One of my best friends had her bedroom plastered with heavy metal band posters but the only two that I still remember were the Motley Crue one — because the umlauts bugged me, and one of a sultry Axl Rose staring defiantly out from under his blue bandana. I heard about him at school and I heard about him on the news and developed the impression that most people tend to have of him: He’s an angry, violent jerk. And that was the impression I carried of him for years. Whenever his name came up, inevitably linked to trouble of some kind, I’d roll my eyes and declare him a baby like everybody else.

I didn’t really care a thing about Guns n’ Roses’ music until a couple years ago when a song would come on the radio and I’d go, “Huh. I kind of like that.” I would watch the occasional music video on youtube, but I still held my same impression of Axl.

Until about six weeks ago (late April/early May 2012). My four-year old daughter has a strange fashion sense; we aren’t even sure where it comes from, especially since it inevitably reverts to the ’80s. One day in late April, she came to me with a blue bandana and asked me to tie it on her head. I put it on her, kerchief-style, and she immediately pulled it down low on her forehead. The resemblance to Axl’s iconic look amused me and we started teasing her. I asked her if she was headed to Paradise City and my husband called her Sweet Child O’ Mine. How could we not? She began to get grumpy about it, but still insisted on wearing the bandana everyday. She even slept in it. Finally, I decided to show her what all the fuss was about and found the “Sweet Child” video on YouTube and let her watch, saying, “Look, that’s Axl Rose; he likes to wear bandanas like you.”

She was smitten. “Sweet Child” led to “Paradise City” which led to “Welcome to the Jungle” until we were watching pretty much the whole catalog (well, all that are fit for a 4 year old). I noticed one of YouTube’s suggested videos was an early interview with Axl and Slash and I was curious what his speaking voice was like, so I clicked it. Twenty minutes later, I was finding that my impressions were beginning to change. Over the next couple of weeks, I ended up watching hours of interviews, concert footage, news reports, Axl’s famous onstage rants and raves, not to mention reading every print interview, transcript, article and review I could find of him. When something takes my interest, I want to understand it thoroughly. Once I dug deeper, it became apparent that Axl is not the 2-dimensional villain that he is always portrayed to be. My husband suggested this blog as a way to return some humanity to him.

What’s the goal?
On a small scale, it’s to make the case that there is more to Axl Rose than what makes the press. On a larger scale, I hope it will open your eyes to the way media can distort our perceptions without us even realizing it. Be discerning, check the facts.

Disclaimer

  • I am not affiliated with Guns n’ Roses (old or new) or Axl Rose in any way. I’ve never met the man; he is unaware of my existence; I’ve never been to a GNR concert and, in fact, I’m not sure Axl and I have ever even been in the same state at the same time.
  • I fully understand that Axl is not a saint and my aim is not to defend his every action, but to present as fair and accurate a picture as possible.
  • I am not a journalist nor a psychologist, but I can be a vicious editor (of both facts and grammar) and I feel that I do have an aptitude for understanding where people are coming from.
  • Comments and discussion are welcome, but I will not tolerate profanity or flamers. If all you want to do is tell me “Axl sucks!” then you can go hang out with the other trolls on YouTube. They eat it up.

34 thoughts on “What It’s All About

  1. mkesling63 says:

    More just like you needed in all public arenas!!!!

    • Lesley says:

      @mkesling63: You said it! Especially lately. Axl’s been getting a ration of crap (and on his Birthday, no less!) regarding what I interpreted as his satirical slam at “The Superbowl Incident?” I would love to see a blog on this. I’m actually hoping Flea or some other band member in the Red Hot Chili Peppers responds with: “Kudos to Axl for having a sense of humor and everyone else, please lighten the ____ up!” B|

      • grenouille78 says:

        Once again, I think it’s a case of Axl’s humor not translating well across the board. It’s wry, it’s quirky, and some people just can’t tap into it. His sense of humor tends to be a lot like mine, so of course, I thought his little essay was funny. I’ll try to get a post up (thanks, Axl, for giving me a topic!).

  2. Jen, your “Axl Rose Experience” mirrors my own so thoroughly it’s erie. I ‘discovered’ him at the same time you did, and did the exact same thing for weeks – research the man behind the rumor. When I sheepishly confessed my obsession to my husband, and told him about my cooking blog idea, he was as supportive as your husband was of your blog. So, here we are, and I can’t WAIT to see what kind of trouble you and I get into!

    • grenouille78 says:

      Something’s going on here, I tell ya! We can join forces as the Axl Rose Awareness Team. lol My husband was supportive, and I think also trying to find me an outlet since I was giving him Axl updates everyday. ha! Well, I enjoyed your blog, too, and want to try out several of your recipes! I think we’ll end up having some fun out here in blog land. 😀

  3. Christina Garcia says:

    Thank you so much for this blog! Do you find yourself reading into any of Guns N’ Roses songs? I particularly find myself analyzing Estranged…

    • grenouille78 says:

      And thank you for reading! I love Estranged — my all-time favorite. Yes, I think a lot of Axl’s lyrics go deeper than what they appear on the surface or that he’s given credit for. Coma is another one…

  4. Susana Canales says:

    Thanks for making this blog. You’re right. Not a lot of people would give him a chance. I try to defend him sometimes, clear up some misunderstandings. But some are too stubborn the keep an open mind.

    Don’t get me wrong though lol I know he’s an ass. I think it’s funny that he admitted it and called himself “King Dick” (sorry for cursing). But that’s all he is ya know

    • grenouille78 says:

      And thanks for reading! Yeah, like I said, I know he’s no angel, and I can’t necessarily defend everything he’s ever done/said, but I feel like I can offer a little insight into why he is the way he is, y’know?

      • Susana Canales says:

        Yup. Although there were a lot of rumors that weren’t cleared up for me before i read this but I never could hate the guy. Cause there were interviews were he just seemed genuinely nice and funny.

      • grenouille78 says:

        He IS really funny and a lot of people who know him personally can testify to that. The anger and such is just one facet of his personality; that’s something else I want to write about.

  5. Susana Canales says:

    I really appreciate this blog. You basically cleared up a lot of stuff about Axl for me. I didn’t believe he did that spray paint mainly cause he doesn’t seem the type. I read comments on an article about that and people were saying Erin only defended him cause she’s scared of him cause he used to beat her, supposedly. I though it was a bit ridiculous cause I don’t think she’d put herself out there for him if she was actually scared of him or did the things people say he did.

    • Susana Canales says:

      Oh and sorry. This is a follow up comment xD I forgot I already commented that I love your blog.

    • grenouille78 says:

      She has no reason to defend him — or to be scared of him anymore — she lives on the other side of the country; it’s not like they cross paths anymore.

      • Susana Canales says:

        Very true. That’s just what people said. Which is why it kinda irritated me. No reason whatsoever but she did. And I commend her for that.

      • Susana.I.C says:

        Lol I’m curious as to what sort of humor Axl has, what types of jokes he makes xD Makes me want to be his friend a bit more. Ooh, can’t wait to read that 🙂 Lol well everyone has certain issues in their personality that they can’t really help.

  6. Sharyln says:

    Finally there’s someone who understands that there’s more to Axl Rose than what people say he is. As a GN’R and Axl Rose fan, I really appreciate this. When I was completely new to Guns n’ Roses and Axl Rose, I’ve been tricked by all the horrible things the media has to say about Axl. I like GN’R and their songs and Axl as they’re so cool but I just can’t believe all that bullshit they say about Axl. He seems a nice guy in interviews. I’m sure he’s not as bad as everyone thinks he is. I know, even though he could be a badass sometimes, he’s got a point in standing up for himself and others. He doesn’t get into fights without reason. He’s actually a good hearted person to fight for justice. Anyway, thanks for this blog, it had truly opened my eyes about Axl. I’m so grateful that there are people who believes in Axl like me and does not criticize him for his ways. We are human after all, and no one is perfect. Axl too. Once again, thank you for your blog. It’s very great !

  7. Lawrence says:

    Congratulations for so good work…I’m really happy I found it!

  8. Serenity says:

    I read all of Your Blog’s article. It’s interesting and makes Me completely lose My illusions about Axl. I love Axl since beginning but sometimes all the story about Him from books, Media interview and any source that I’ve read it makes Me think Is He really like that?
    Btw, I just found an magazine online old article, You probably interested. I didnt read all, just scrolling. But it seems the journalist went to indiana, looking for any info about Axl and interviewing the local People. Here’s the link http://www.gq.com/story/final-comeback-axl-rose

  9. monroemackie says:

    This is such a clever idea.

    It’s funny. I’ve read all of their books. The members of gnr. But axl remains a mystery to me.

  10. mokeworks says:

    A friend posted “what song title would you get tattooed on yourself” on fb a couple months back – and I instantly responded “Patience” which 1) just popped into my head and 2) isn’t a song that I would think about normally.

    There must be a wave in the air – to raise Axl awareness!!

    I’ve been reading & researching & I have my Tattoine all picked out. Yep – I’m going to actually DO IT! came across your blog randomly tonight LMAO!

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