Axl Rose Has an Onstage Joke Button, Richard Fortus Reveals
Guns N’ Roses guitarist Richard Fortus revealed that singer Axl Rose cuts off his microphone from the public address system to tell jokes to bandmates during shows.
In a recent interview with KSHE 95, Fortus explained that the button was also used for a more serious purpose: to decide what the band will play next.
Asked about what fans could expect from GNR’s upcoming shows, Fortus said, “Hopefully we’ll shake things up a bit and switch around songs and stuff like that. … A lot of times every night is different, because we don't have set lists.”
That led to a query about how they knew which song was coming up. “Our singer, Axl, he’s got a button he can push that cuts off the mic,” Fortus replied. “Which usually is used to tell jokes! ... But he’ll just say, ‘What do you guys wanna do?’ And somebody else will say something, or he'll say, ‘Let’s do this.’ There’s blocks of songs that we’ll do together. And sometimes it's a real surprise. … And we’re well rehearsed. We sound check for at least an hour every day.”
You can listen to the interview below.
Fortus also said he played guitar daily, regardless of whether or not he was working. “There are definitely days when I play a lot more than other days,” he explained. “My wife is so incredibly tolerant of my noodling! At the end of the day, if we’re sitting down to watch a show or a movie or something, I’ll sit and noodle. … I have a little amp in the living room.”
Guns N’ Roses start their next world tour on June 5 in Israel, with North American dates following from August through October.