Sunday, 11 December 2016

Guns N' Roses - The Garden

The Not in This Lifetime... tour is an ongoing series of concerts by hard rock band GUNS N' ROSES, featuring classic lineup members Axl Rose, Slash and Duff McKagan, marking the first time since the Use Your Illusion Tour in 1993 that the three performed together.

After their last tour ended in 2014, there was some uncertainty surrounding the band, especially the guitarist situation. Ron "Bumblefoot" Thal had hinted during the last part of the tour that these would be his last shows with GUNS N' ROSES. However, after the tour ended, no official word on the situation was given, neither from GUNS N' ROSES nor Thal himself. During several South American shows on the tour, Duff McKagan had filled in for bassist Tommy Stinson, who fulfilled previous commitments with his other band THE REPLACEMENTS.

Almost a year after the tour ended, on May 7, 2015 Slash revealed in an interview on CBS This Morning that much of the tension that had existed between Axl and himself was gone, saying: "Well, we haven't really talked in a long time. But a lot of the tension that you were talking about has dissipated. We don't have all those issues anymore." When asked specifically about the chances of GUNS N' ROSES reuniting, he said: "I gotta be careful what I say there. I mean, if everybody wanted to do it and do it for the right reasons, you know, I think the fans would love it. I think it might be fun at some point to try and do that, but…it just starts to get into a whole complex thing. But anyway, it's really between the guys in the band." This sparked the start of what would prove to be a long period of speculation on the reunion subject by both the fans and the media.

Suddenly, on July 27, 2015 the news broke that GUNS N' ROSES’ second lead guitarist, DJ Ashba, was leaving the band. He wrote a letter explaining that he was going to focus his work on his other group, SIXX:A.M., which he had formed with bassist Nikki Sixx and vocalist James Michael in 2007. At the same time he thanked Rose for the opportunity he was given by playing with GUNS N' ROSES and it seemed like they had left things on good terms. While this news story was picking up, it was at the same time confirmed by a representative of GUNS N' ROSES that Thal was officially out of the band. The leaving of both Ashba and Thal, combined with Slash’s comments on a reunion only a couple months before, further fueled both the media’s and the fans’ speculation about a reunion being in the works.

Furthermore, on August 22, 2015, Slash stated to the Swedish newspaper Aftonbladet, that Axl and he had spoken recently. This was considered a big news story because it was almost common knowledge that the two of them had not spoken together ever since he left the band in 1996. When asked about the re-connection with Rose, Slash commented "It was probably way overdue". Rumors of a reunited GUNS N' ROSES started to pick up more and more during the fall of 2015. More reports came in claiming to have a confirmation that a reunion would happen, but no official statement was made during this period. One of the questions on people’s minds was if this was going to be a full reunion of the "classic line-up" or if it would be just one or two people from that line-up returning to the band. Steven Adler (the drummer from GUNS N' ROSES "classic line-up") admitted during a radio interview with Eddie Trunk that he had not heard anything from GUNS N' ROSES about a reunion. Classic-era member Izzy Stradlin later confirmed to Rolling Stone that he will have no involvement with the new lineup. Former drummer Matt Sorum stated he was not asked to be part of the reunion, while departed guitarist Ashba claimed he was asked by Rose to be a part of the lineup but had turned it down, citing his commitment to SIXX:A.M. Stradlin explained his absence of the tour stating "they didn't want to split the loot equally".

In late December 2015, the GUNS N' ROSES website was updated, scrapping much of the content and displaying the classic GUNS N' ROSES bullet-logo. The logo had not been used in official promotion since the Use Your Illusion days. Then, on Christmas Day, a teaser trailer debuted before the new Star Wars movie. The 15-second video showed black and white shots of a concert audience with the opening words of "Welcome to the Jungle" played. No additional narration or text accompanied the trailer.

On December 29, 2015, Billboard reported that Slash was set to rejoin the band and a "reunited" lineup would headline Coachella 2016. Rose was set to appear on Jimmy Kimmel Live! the following week to talk about the future of the band, but his appearance was cancelled due to "unforeseen circumstances". GUNS N' ROSES were officially announced as the headliner of Coachella on January 4, 2016, with KROQ reporting Slash and Duff McKagan were rejoining the band. The Coachella festival then confirmed via press release that McKagan and Slash were rejoining. April concerts in Las Vegas and Mexico City were announced subsequently.

The full tour announcement came on April 1, 2016, when the band announced 20 cities as part of a North American leg of the tour dubbed "Not in This Lifetime...". The tour's name is a reference to a 2012 interview in which Rose, when asked about when a potential reunion would happen, responded "not in this lifetime." The reunion was billed as a "regrouping" by the band instead of a full reunion, since Slash and McKagan were filling empty spots in the existing band lineup. Additional dates in Chicago, New England, New York, and Los Angeles were announced on April 25 due to shows selling out. On May 18, ALICE IN CHAINS and LENNY KRAVITZ were announced as openers for select shows of the tour. Two weeks before the tour began, THE CULT, CHRIS STAPLETON, BILLY TALENT and SKRILLEX were announced as additional openers for select shows. On June 30, WOLFMOTHER and TYLER BRYANT & THE SHAKEDOWN were announced for several shows. ZAKK WYLDE was added as an additional opener to the band's August 15 show in Glendale, Arizona.

Additional legs of the tour were announced throughout the year, including a Latin American leg and a leg in Asia and Oceania Babymetal was announced as openers for the Japanese shows in 2017. In late November, commercials started airing in the United States with footage from the tour with the tagline "They're back for more in 2017", teasing a return to North America for 2017.

AC/DC guitarist Angus Young jammed with Guns N' Roses during their show at Coachella, while former SKID ROW singer Sebastian Bach joined the band on April 9 in Las Vegas. Former drummer Steven Adler joined the band for two songs at 5 shows of the tour.

Tour Personnel:

Keyboardist Dizzy Reed, drummer Frank Ferrer and guitarist Richard Fortus remain from the 2014 lineup, while keyboardist Melissa Reese joined the band in 2016, replacing Chris Pitman


Axl Rose – lead vocals, piano
Slash – lead guitar, rhythm guitar
Duff McKagan – bass, backing vocals
Dizzy Reed – keyboards, piano, backing vocals, Percussion
Richard Fortus – rhythm guitar, lead guitar, backing vocals
Frank Ferrer – drums, percussion
Melissa Reese – keyboards, synthesizers, backing vocals

Guest appearances

Sebastian Bach (performed "My Michelle" during the April 9 concert.) Angus Young (performed "Whole Lotta Rosie" and "Riff Raff" during the April 16 concert.) Steven Adler (performed "Out Ta Get Me" and/or "My Michelle" during the July 6, July 9, August 19 and November 4 & 5 concerts.)

TAIT Towers was brought in to produce the stage and show itself. They have previously built and designed world tours with artists such as THE ROLLING STONES, TAYLOR SWIFT, U2 and MADONNA. The set was designed by Phil Ealy, previously the light designer on the Use Your Illusion Tour. TAIT built a 71 ft. wide main stage including band risers, LED staircases made with their P9 LED video tiles, LED fascia and amp stacks, and a self-climber piano lift used for Rose’s performance of “November Rain.” Additionally, they developed an 80 ft. automated video track truss system installed with power transmission units to automate Screenworks background video screens. TAIT Navigator, a proprietary automation platform, operated and controlled the self-climber piano lift as well as automated Screenworks’ video screens into variations of three to six columns.

The stage had staircases on each side as well as in the middle, leading up to the drum-kit. There was a walkway extending all the way around the drummer and two keyboardists, with staircases implemented into the riser, allowing the band members to freely move up amongst the keyboardists and the drummer during the show. At the center of the stage, there was a catwalk extending 28 ft. into the audience pit area hosting the self-climber piano lift. This catwalk was not assembled for the first seven shows as a result of Rose’s foot injury and he was subsequently forced to have a seat on the main stage instead. An extensive lighting rig was assembled in the ceiling of the center stage area and each side of the stage had big LED video screens, primarily used to show close-ups of the band during the concert. Roughly 250 professional and local crew members (125 of each) were needed to set up the staging, speakers and video boards. The setup process took three days and more than 20 production trucks to transfer from each city. Additionally there were 3 x 16 steel trucks carrying the skeleton of the stage, making them able to set up the basis of the stage in three different venues at any time.

The intro to the show featured either the classic GUNS N' ROSES bullet-logo made to look like a neon sign, blinking on the big screen on center stage, or an animated bullet-logo with the revolvers firing shots. The "Merrie Melodies" intro tune was heard, and then the whole venue went dark while the theme from The Equalizer was played over the PA system for a few minutes before the band then started the first song of the set. The show ended with a considerable amount of pyrotechnics on stage, and confetti was shot out over the crowd during the ending of "Paradise City". When they played outdoor venues, an extensive fireworks display was added.

Leg 1
North America (warm-up) – April 1, 2016 — April 23, 2016

Leg 2
North America – June 23, 2016 — August 22, 2016

Leg 3
Latin America – October 27, 2016 — November 30, 2016

Leg 4
Asia / Oceania – January 21, 2017 — March 3, 2017

Leg 5
Europe / Israel – May 27, 2017 — July 15, 2017

Leg 6
North America – July 27, 2017 — September 8, 2017

On June 29 they will play in Sweden at Friend Arena, Stockholm

Today's tune "The Garden" is a song by the hard rock band GUNS N' ROSES released in 1991. It appears on the album "Use Your Illusion I" and features alternating lead vocals between Axl Rose and Alice Cooper.

More info @

Official Guns N' Roses Web

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