|Michael Monroe (ex Hanoi Rocks) talks about Axl in an interview with KNAC.com.
III. Packin' Heat With Guns N' Roses
KNAC.COM: You did some work with Guns N' Roses in the past. First, their label Uzi Suicide, through Geffen Records, re-released the Hanoi Rocks back catalog here in the States and then you played on their Use Your Illusion albums and sang on The Spaghetti Incident. How did you hook up with them?
MM: Um, when I was doing the video for "Dead, Jail Or Rock 'N' Roll" in uptown New York at Alphabet City and there was supposed to be a stage and everything but then it started pouring down rain and there was no plan B, even though all week I said, "What if it starts raining?" And it was like, "Oh no, it's not gonna rain," and it was the worse downpour in years. So then we went up top to SIR, a rehearsal space there, and got some police cars and Axl was hanging out there on the corner buying a sandwich and asked, "What's goin' on here?" They were like, "Oh, it's Michael Monroe's video shoot, so he was like, "Oh wow," and excused himself and went over to our bus. But he had a bunch of people with him so I didn't let him in. (laughs) "Nice to meet you, I'll see ya later!" But then we were doing the song and he was digging it and I saw that, so I asked him if he wanted to come up to do it a few times and he was like, "Yeah, sure why not?" He had heard my record and he was really into it so we did a few takes with him and he was like a cameo in the video. Then we got to talking and he was even more impressed when I said that "Not Fakin' It" was a song by Nazareth originally and he didn't know that. He said, "Oh wow, it's great and now I like it even more." I said even though its a Nazareth song I made it my own. He said he was a big Nazareth fan and he used to lock himself in the bathroom and listen to them when he was a kid 'cause his parents wouldn't let him listen to rock n' roll; heavy, heavy, heavy childhood. Must be crazy. He seems to have effects of it still. It must be hard and getting so fucking famous so fucking fast, no wonder.
But I'm glad that Guns paid tribute to Hanoi by re-releasing our records and paid some respect and didn't hide like Poison or some weaklings like that who didn't have enough of their own thing so they acted like us. "Hanoi who?? What?? Never heard of them." That's bullshit. GnR had enough of their own thing and were secure enough to acknowledge Hanoi and pay tribute to us. I also did things with Slash, like our cover of "Magic Carpet Ride," for the Coneheads soundtrack.
KNAC.COM: Do you still talk to Axl?
MM: I haven't talked to him for quite a few years now. They invited me to do some stuff, like a show at the RIP party. I did "Heartbreak Hotel" with Guns onstage and that's when Axl was wearing a kilt (laughs). I was like are you sure you're gonna wear that? But, uh, he was cute, I guess. They were preparing for the shows opening up for the Rolling Stones. That's where I met Alice Cooper. I just did "Heartbreak Hotel" with Guns and then someone said that Alice was there and he wanted to see me. We had a nice chat and he was so fuckin' super nice that, uh, it wasn't disappointing because I knew he was a nice guy. But he had that look in his eye, same as Bob Ezrin (famed producer of Cooper, Kiss Pink Floyd and more and KNAC.COM Chairman Of The Board) sometimes. The same demon or something is in there. It's really fucking cool. I saw that the same twinkle in their eye, that connection the legacy or whatever they both had.