Guns N’ Roses’ Duff McKagan Hopes for ‘Grace in Acceptance’ at Rock Hall Induction
So now we know Axl Rose won’t be in attendance when Guns N’ Roses are inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame this weekend, thus scuttling our dreams of a one-night-only reunion of the band’s classic lineup. All that’s left now is to wait for the ceremony — oh, and read a couple of Duff McKagan editorials about the whole thing.
Duff’s been pretty busy at the old word processor lately; in fact, this weekend he’s scheduled to be in Cleveland to promote the paperback release of his bestselling memoir, the curiously colon-ed ‘It’s So Easy: And Other Lies.’ Of course, he’ll also be in attendance at the Hall of Fame ceremony — also in Cleveland, natch — and in a pair of new editorials for Reverb and ESPN, he recently reflected on his past with the band, as well as all the drama surrounding its induction.
“There has been some muddy water that has gone underneath the bridge,” observed McKagan in his ESPN article. “But water, muddy or otherwise, does indeed flow past and forever away, and I have nothing but the best of memories and highest level of love and admiration and feelings of brotherhood with all of those dudes.”
While admitting that “Music is not like sports, and hence, a Hall of Fame in music is almost a false pedestal to sit upon,” McKagan said he’s going to the ceremony because of everyone who ever bought a copy of ‘Appetite for Destruction.’
“I am going because I have realized how important this is all to those many, many fans that supported us and believed in us, and showed up for us in droves,” he insisted, sadly noting that while “the rock-and-roll world would be set ablaze once again” if the old lineup were able to take the stage on Saturday, “Alas, I am only responsible for me, and can only speak for me…Part of me growing has been to realize I am powerless over others.”
That’s an impressively mature observation from one of the best-known hedonists of the ’80s, but McKagan wasn’t finished — he concluded his ESPN editorial by writing, “I do hope we can achieve some grace in our acceptance. And I hope this grace, is enough, in the end, for the best rock and roll fans in the world.”
Meanwhile, over at Reverb, McKagan reflected on GNR’s lasting impact, suggesting that the band’s own high-profile troubles may have helped other people pull through their own difficulties. “Adversity has followed this band since its inception. I get it. That seems to be my sort of ‘lot’ in life,” he wrote, adding, “I think that maybe through this whole sort of rub and honesty that GN’R portrayed in a very real way in those early records indeed may have helped countless others overcome varying adversities in their own lives.”
Finally shrugging off all the months of rumors and reports surrounding the band’s induction, McKagan observed, “In the end, it’s not about who does or doesn’t show up from the original band, and I back whatever reason this guy or that has for not coming. It’s all good. The songs are the important bit here… and the message they most certainly still must carry.”