Touring again with Van Halen has David Lee Roth ruminating on bands that continue on without most of their original members — Guns n’ Roses, in particular. He compares the practice to staging a Broadway revival, in a new talk with Adam Carolla.
While Roth is back on the road with two of the three classic-era members of Van Halen, Rose is the only remaining original in Guns n’ Roses, which continues with keyboardist Dizzy Reed from the Use Your Illusion era and a group of newer additions.
Steven Adler left GnR in 1990, followed by Izzy Stradlin in 1991 and (perhaps most notably) Slash in 1996, and then both Duff McKagen and Matt Sorum in 1997. When the group was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2012, Rose declined to attend, leaving Slash, McKagen, Adler, Sorum and early-1990s member Gilby Clarke to accept the honor.
Roth’s rumination on this turn of events began when Carolla suggests that Eddie Van Halen “seems insane,” to which Roth fires back: “Well, all the best guys are.”
Carolla then asks Dave “who do you think is nuttier — Axl Rose or Eddie Van Halen?”
“Clearly, Axl,” Roth quickly responds. “Clearly. Axl has found a whole new life. I also have questions. When somebody is labeled something and says, ‘well, what is Guns n’ Roses?’, for example. Is that a handful of faces? If you say the Magnificent Seven, don’t you need at least five of those? If you say Guns n’ Roses, well, I hear plural at the end of either one of those words. So I’m going to raise the question. Is it like ‘West Side Story?’”
Van Halen will headline Rock USA at Ford Festival Park, to be held this summer at Oshkosh, Wisconsin. The July event also includes performances by Dokken, Jackyl and Ratt.