Slash Says Cutting ‘One in a Million’ From Guns N’ Roses Box Was Easy
“One in a Million” appeared on the 1988 EP G N’ R Lies and was reportedly about Axl Rose’s experiences after moving to Los Angeles from his small Indiana town. The song drew accusations of racism and homophobia for its language and content, and Slash said after recording it that he told Rose he “didn’t think it was very cool,” but he didn’t regret releasing it. The track wasn’t referenced at any point in the publicity material surrounding the re-releases.
“We collectively decided that it just didn’t have any place in that box set,” the guitarist told Rolling Stone in a new interview. “It didn’t take long. There wasn’t a big roundtable thing over it.” The question led on to a discussion of Slash being half-black. “It’s never been part of my makeup, to be able to differentiate myself from anybody else because of color,” he said.
“I never really cared to have to identify one way or another. ... I think racial injustice, across the board, is just ugly and sad. I can totally relate to the black side of it, because I do remember a lot of that from when I was a little kid. And also how I was raised, there was a certain fear of racial prejudice in my family. When I watch what other people are still going through, it’s sad that we’re still fucking dealing with this thing. Especially right now, this is an ugly little period. Hopefully it’s gonna end soon.”
Elsewhere in the interview, he presented an image of the notoriously dysfunctional band as a happy and hard-working unit these days.
Slash will release Living the Dream, a new album with Myles Kennedy and the Conspirators, in September, and said he wanted to keep both of his main musical projects going. Asked if he was officially a member of GNR now, he replied, “Oh, that’s an interesting question. From the moment we started playing together and embarking on this journey, I would consider it being in Guns N’ Roses, not just being hired to play Guns N’ Roses songs. I’m in the band — there is no contractual anything at this point. So however you want to look at it. … We work really well together, and we’ve worked really hard since we’ve gotten this thing going. We put a lot of heart and soul into it. We’re not just phoning it in.”
He also shot down rumors that his 2015 divorce had led to a reconciliation with Rose. "It had nothing to do with — neither one had anything to do with the other," he said. "At least on my end.”