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Author Topic: On this day in 1991, GN'R started the Use Your Illusion tour  (Read 1797 times)
jarmo
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« on: May 24, 2021, 08:27:21 AM »

May 24th, 1991 - GN'R kicked off their first ever world tour as headliners in East Troy, WI. Skid Row opened the summer shows.


Today, it's thirty years since the Use Your Illusion tour kicked off.

What are your memories of that tour? Did you see any show(s)? Any favorite merchandise/memorabilia?

Favorite opening act(s)? Any opening act(s) you weren't familiar with but became a fan of? 





/jarmo


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« Reply #1 on: May 24, 2021, 01:00:24 PM »

June 13, 1991, I saw a show at the Philadelphia Spectrum, and it was one of the greatest weeks of my life.

no philly date had been announced initially, and i was dying to see them. my older brother woke me up at 1AM Sunday night and said WMMR just announced GnR in Philly, this coming Thursday. less than 4 days away!! i thought he was messing with me. finally he convinced me. tickets went on sale at 4PM Monday afternoon.

I had final exams that morning, rushed home from school around noon, stopped at my buddy's house to let him know, and took a bus to Roosevelt Mall in NE philly, and then ran a few blocks to get in line at West Coast Video, which was selling tix at the time. the line stretched around the building and far down the street. i was sweating my ass off - i remember it being hot as hell that day - and i thought i was screwed. but i waited in line for a while and eventually got 4 tix. there was an energy i can't even describe just standing in line. everyone was super pumped they had announced the show. and this was completely unorthodox to have it announced sunday and take place only 4 days later.   

the day of the show was the last day of school. the official kick-off to summer. i ran into various people in my neighborhood having house parties in the afternoon, drinking beer and cranking GnR as they pre-gamed for the show.

Skid Row opened up and absolutely killed it. they were incredible. Slave to the Grind came out that Tuesday (again, bus ride to Roosevelt Mall right after school to go to Sam Goody and buy the CD). i listened to the full album a couple times, and i probably listened to the first 2 songs about 8-10 times in those 2 days before the show. they opened with STTG and then Piece of Me - 2 of their heaviest songs. awesome opening set. tough act to follow.

Then GnR came out and gave me the greatest concert of my life. They were on fire. high energy and sounded incredible. professional, but still had a raw feeling. loud.

the crowd was so fired up. the energy in the building that night was like nothing i've ever experienced. Axl commented that "this is like the biggest kegger" he had ever seen.

Axl and the band fed off of the energy of the crowd, and vice versa.

half way though WTTJ, he stops the band and dives into the crowd. crazy, exciting, "oh shit" moment. thought it could be a disaster, but then he says start it over. so we actually got to hear a good portion of it twice.

all my friends that were at this show still say its the best concert they have ever been to, even the ones that are not big GnR fans.

it was like a 4-day kegger for me!
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jarmo
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« Reply #2 on: May 24, 2021, 02:13:10 PM »

June 13, 1991, I saw a show at the Philadelphia Spectrum, and it was one of the greatest weeks of my life.

no philly date had been announced initially, and i was dying to see them. my older brother woke me up at 1AM Sunday night and said WMMR just announced GnR in Philly, this coming Thursday. less than 4 days away!! i thought he was messing with me. finally he convinced me. tickets went on sale at 4PM Monday afternoon.


So the backstory is that they were supposed to play in  at the Pocono Downs in Wilkes-Barre, PA but the show was moved to Philadelphia.

https://www.mcall.com/news/mc-xpm-1991-06-07-2795524-story.html

 GUNS N' ROSES SHOW CANCELED AT POCONO DOWNS
LEN RIGHI, The Morning CallTHE MORNING CALL

The Guns N' Roses show slated for Thursday at Pocono Downs Racetrack has been canceled because of what the promoter is calling "unforeseen technical difficulties." The show with Skid Row was one of the largest outdoor concerts scheduled in the Lehigh Valley area this summer.

The difficulties "involve the construction of the stage and the amount of equipment being used by the band," according to Wendy Lawrence, spokeswoman for the show's promoter, Northeast Concerts of Rocky Hill, Conn. "There wouldn't have been enough time to break down the stage and still accommodate the (horse) racing schedule at Pocono Downs."

Lawrence said she was not at liberty to say how many tickets had been sold for the date, which was announced about two months ago. The promoter expected to sell 25,000 tickets.

The concert was canceled late Wednesday "by mutual agreement between Pocono Downs, Guns N' Roses management and Northeast Concerts," Lawrence said.

However, Bryn Bridenthal, a spokeswoman for Guns N' Roses' label, Geffen Records, said yesterday afternoon that she had not been informed of the cancellation. "I heard a rumor about it (Wednesday), but that's all." Late yesterday, Bridenthal said she was unable to reach the band's management. Guns N' Roses was en route to Toronto by airplane and could not be reached for comment, she added. Susan Swan, a spokeswoman for Skid Row's label, Atlantic Records, said she had been informed of the cancellation, but didn't know the reason for it.

Refunds are available by mailing tickets and a self-addressed stamped envelope to: Metropolitan Entertainment, P.O. Box 9179, Paramus, N.J. 07653. Lawrence said requests should be made within the next two weeks and that it would take "about 30 days" for a refund to be made.

Guns N' Roses performs Tuesday night at HersheyPark Stadium.

-----


They did come back to Philadelphia later in 1991.... Same venue with Soundgarden opening.






/jarmo


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« Reply #3 on: May 24, 2021, 07:24:17 PM »

Cool MTV News clip about this tour opener:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EqAYY-EqgbU
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« Reply #4 on: May 25, 2021, 05:59:19 AM »

My first real concert was GN'R with Skid Row opening at the Globe Arena in Stockholm, Sweden on August 16th, 1991.

Bought the package before the school year ended, must've been May-June, through an ad in the local newspaper. Bus trip to/from Stockholm plus a ticket.

Showed up at the train station on show day, rode the bus to Stockholm. Went inside to find my seat and bought some merch (including a t-shirt that says Here Today... Gone To Hell! GNFNRS" on the back.

Skid Row came on, and I was already familiar with their songs because I had been listening to Slave To The Grind on holidays in Finland.

Then GN'R came on. I remember thinking that it was loud. You Could Be Mine had been released so I knew that one, as well as Civil War. But there were many songs I didn't know. Only recognized some of them a month later when listening to the album.

After the show, took the bus back home. Walked home from the train station at about seven in the morning..... What a day.






/jarmo



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« Reply #5 on: May 25, 2021, 11:55:09 AM »

They were supposed to play Oslo Norway in 91, the whole band minus Axl arrived but he was a no show so it got canceled.

June 93 was my next chance, at Valle Hovin stadium (same spot they played July 2018) and I saw a great version of the band, with Suicidal Tendencies opening. Matt Sorum celebrated his Norwegian family roots and Slash visited a Zoological Museum with Dinosaur bones 😅

Oh, I almost forgot: Axl closed the show with Good night Sweden! 😂
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« Reply #6 on: May 28, 2021, 06:23:59 AM »

That summer of 1991 was a pretty exciting time for a GN'R fans.

Watching MTV News daily to hope to hear some news about the band. I remember they did a news report on the opening night of the tour. Then obviously St Louis....

Hoping this wouldn't affect the upcoming shows in Europe.


Then suddenly there was a new song on the radio, and in record stores.





/jarmo
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« Reply #7 on: May 28, 2021, 05:57:35 PM »

That summer of 1991 was a pretty exciting time for a GN'R fans.

Totally.

I always say when I think of GNR, it's that time period.  1991-92.  Even though I consider AFD superior to UYI, it's the UYI era that is my go to thought about this band.

And, as I have posted on about 40 different YouTube clips : "1992-93 Axl is the best Axl.  Singing, anyway.  Behavior...not so much."

If you ever see some variation of that comment...that's me.
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« Reply #8 on: May 29, 2021, 06:34:54 AM »

I think up until 1990, they were still the "up and coming" band. Even though both AFD and GN'R Lies had sold a bunch and they had hits.

But the media interest went to another level in the early 1990s. I'm thinking it was a combination of the facts that they were touring around the world, the gossip media could always write stories on what the band did/or supposedly had done, plus you had the music....

Axl cutting his hand on the mic stand in Ohio in 1992 was mentioned in the newspaper over here.... So it wasn't just the riots, the postponed shows etc.




/jarmo

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« Reply #9 on: May 30, 2021, 11:16:42 PM »

Totally.

I always say when I think of GNR, it's that time period.  1991-92.  Even though I consider AFD superior to UYI, it's the UYI era that is my go to thought about this band.

And, as I have posted on about 40 different YouTube clips : "1992-93 Axl is the best Axl.  Singing, anyway.  Behavior...not so much."

If you ever see some variation of that comment...that's me.

The whole band, IMO. I feel like a lot of rock fans fetishize sloppy playing as "rawness". Pretty much every member of the band said the Ritz show was a disaster and sounded bad but a lot of people act like that was the "true GNR". As a band, they were never tighter than 1992-1993. Paris '92 and Saskatoon '93 are incredible performances.
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« Reply #10 on: May 31, 2021, 03:16:15 AM »

Totally.

I always say when I think of GNR, it's that time period.  1991-92.  Even though I consider AFD superior to UYI, it's the UYI era that is my go to thought about this band.

And, as I have posted on about 40 different YouTube clips : "1992-93 Axl is the best Axl.  Singing, anyway.  Behavior...not so much."

If you ever see some variation of that comment...that's me.

The whole band, IMO. I feel like a lot of rock fans fetishize sloppy playing as "rawness". Pretty much every member of the band said the Ritz show was a disaster and sounded bad but a lot of people act like that was the "true GNR". As a band, they were never tighter than 1992-1993. Paris '92 and Saskatoon '93 are incredible performances.

Well, as a musician I don't like the ritz for the reasons you said, but when I watch that show (and the shows of that period) you can feel they were more "genuine"(a little far from worldwide succes). But i think it's the same for all the bands out there.
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« Reply #11 on: June 01, 2021, 01:53:16 AM »

Well, as a musician I don't like the ritz for the reasons you said, but when I watch that show (and the shows of that period) you can feel they were more "genuine"(a little far from worldwide succes). But i think it's the same for all the bands out there.

Genuine how? Down to earth, maybe, but I don't really see how that would impact a performance. I mean, it's not like the UYI tour was not also an unpredictable train about to fall off the tracks at any moment as well. IDK why people act like they lost all the danger when they went to stadiums. St Louis would disagree!
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jarmo
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« Reply #12 on: June 01, 2021, 05:16:51 AM »

It's like the thinking is that once you're playing bigger places, you can't be the same as you were before you made it to that stage of your band's career.

A band playing arenas can't be as hungry, unpredictable etc as a club band. So GN'R in 1991 couldn't be the same as the band people saw on MTV in 1988...


But GN'R were essentially still a club band playing bigger places. The attitude was the same.



/jarmo
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« Reply #13 on: June 01, 2021, 07:05:38 AM »

It's like the thinking is that once you're playing bigger places, you can't be the same as you were before you made it to that stage of your band's career.

A band playing arenas can't be as hungry, unpredictable etc as a club band. So GN'R in 1991 couldn't be the same as the band people saw on MTV in 1988...


But GN'R were essentially still a club band playing bigger places. The attitude was the same.



/jarmo


Haha agreed. To paraphrase and tweak an expression we have here in the US ... you can take the kid out of the club but you can’t take the club out of the kid. They were the same - just on a (literally) bigger stage.
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« Reply #14 on: June 01, 2021, 11:31:12 PM »

That summer of 1991 was a pretty exciting time for a GN'R fans.

Totally.

I always say when I think of GNR, it's that time period.  1991-92.  Even though I consider AFD superior to UYI, it's the UYI era that is my go to thought about this band.

And, as I have posted on about 40 different YouTube clips : "1992-93 Axl is the best Axl.  Singing, anyway.  Behavior...not so much."

If you ever see some variation of that comment...that's me.

Been a fan for a long time.  First show was '91.  I saw the 2006 show at the Warfield in San Francisco which has about a 2,300 person capacity.  I was in the pit against the barricade.  My opinion is that 2006 Axl is the best Axl.  Saw Sebastian Bach that night too. He absolutely wailed.
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« Reply #15 on: June 01, 2021, 11:36:10 PM »

2006 Warfield shows were amazing.
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« Reply #16 on: June 02, 2021, 12:04:21 AM »

2006 Warfield shows were amazing.

Absolutely.  They started after midnight and played until about 3.  Thank goodness I didn't rely on public transit.
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« Reply #17 on: June 04, 2021, 09:57:00 AM »

My first real concert was GN'R with Skid Row opening at the Globe Arena in Stockholm, Sweden on August 16th, 1991.

Bought the package before the school year ended, must've been May-June, through an ad in the local newspaper. Bus trip to/from Stockholm plus a ticket.

Showed up at the train station on show day, rode the bus to Stockholm. Went inside to find my seat and bought some merch (including a t-shirt that says Here Today... Gone To Hell! GNFNRS" on the back.

Skid Row came on, and I was already familiar with their songs because I had been listening to Slave To The Grind on holidays in Finland.

Then GN'R came on. I remember thinking that it was loud. You Could Be Mine had been released so I knew that one, as well as Civil War. But there were many songs I didn't know. Only recognized some of them a month later when listening to the album.

After the show, took the bus back home. Walked home from the train station at about seven in the morning..... What a day.






/jarmo





Went to the same show in the same fashion, bus straight to and from the show. My friends and I thougt Guns made a big mistake having such a good opener like Skid Row, as they absolutley killed it! But of course, when the lights went out, and then there was a spotlight on Slash and they went in to Nightrain it was insane!!! Come to think of it now, Live and Let Die which I had never heard before at all was really loud and with those strobe lights sent me even further in to frenzy! Legenderay to have seen Guns with Izzy. Lars Winnerbäck and his sister were in my group ofr friends for the trip so great memories all around. Also becasuse of young age etc only gnr concert with out beer
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« Reply #18 on: June 04, 2021, 10:03:04 AM »

It's like the thinking is that once you're playing bigger places, you can't be the same as you were before you made it to that stage of your band's career.

A band playing arenas can't be as hungry, unpredictable etc as a club band. So GN'R in 1991 couldn't be the same as the band people saw on MTV in 1988...


But GN'R were essentially still a club band playing bigger places. The attitude was the same.



/jarmo



I agree it was a club band in arenas/stadiums 91-93, a bit onward it´s a bit more Vegas here n there, not so much new songs, still very pleasant evenings though.
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jarmo
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« Reply #19 on: June 04, 2021, 02:54:22 PM »

Also becasuse of young age etc only gnr concert with out beer


Probably a good thing.

People on the bus trip I was, on drank a lot. I can't imagine they had a lot of memories from the actual show...  hihi





/jarmo
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