June 25, 2012 - 8:30 pm
Photo: Travis Shinn
With his top hat, his ferocious riffs and his searing solos, Slash is the ultimate guitar hero and one of the most iconic figures of the last 25 years.
The greatest living guitar player according to Time Magazine, Slash‘s has inspired generations of musicians.
Coming to Byblos with a full band featuring Myles Kennedy on vocals, this rock legend will be performing songs from his latest solo release as well as some the biggest hits of his two previous bands: Velvet Revolver and Guns N’ Roses (“Sweet Child O’ Mine”, “Paradise City”…).
An explosive opening night of dazzling virtuosity and feeling.
Slash was born Saul Hudson on July 23, 1965, in Stoke-on-Trent, England, to artistic parents both involved in the entertainment industry; his mother was a clothing designer who worked on David Bowie’s film The Man Who Fell to Earth, and his father designed album art for such artists as Neil Young and Joni Mitchell. The family eventually moved to Hollywood, where Hudson attended junior high, received his first guitar, and met future Guns N’ Roses drummer, Steven Adler. With Hudson adopting the nickname Slash, given to him by a family friend, the two formed a band called Road Crew; although it proved unsuccessful, it was the vehicle through which they met and eventually joined up with the other members of Guns N’ Roses in 1985: frontman Axl Rose, guitarist Izzy Stradlin and bassist Duff McKagan.
Within three years, their debut, Appetite for Destruction, had gone platinum several times over, establishing GNR as one of the ‘80s most dynamic hard rock groups. A fluid and articulate player, Slash established himself as one hard rock’s finest and most soulful soloists during the late ’80s: his ferocious riffs and searing solos quickly became the band’s signature. He was also an important part of the GNR’s visual image, with a top hat and a mound of shaggy black hair covering his face as he typically staggered around the stage with a cigarette dangling from his mouth.
Guns N’ Roses continued their winning streak with the release of the Use Your Illusion albums in 1991 and the 1993 punk covers album The Spaghetti Incident?, but tension over the band’s musical direction eventually forced Slash to leave in the mid-‘90s.
Photo: Travis Shinn
Around that time, the signs of trouble started brewing within the group, Slash dabbled with a side project called Slash’s Snakepit, which included a few newer members from GNR (guitarist Gilby Clarke, drummer Matt Sorum) and a colleague from Alice in Chains (bassist Mike Inez), as well as vocalist Eric Dover. The band released two albums, 1995’s It’s Five O’Clock Somewhere and 2000’s Ain’t Life Grand (recorded with an entirely different lineup).
While Velvet Revolver auditioned new singers, Slash went to work on a solo album, recruiting different vocalists for separate tracks. On April 6, 2010, Slash hit stores, featuring cameos from Ozzy Osbourne, Fergie (Black Eyed Peas), Chris Cornell (Soundgarden, Audioslave), Adam Levine (Maroon 5), Dave Grohl (Nirvana, Foo Fighters, Them Crooked Vultures), Iggy Pop and many others.
During the nineties, Slash hit the road with a slightly different touring outfit, with Brian Tichy and James LoMenzo signing on as the rhythm section. In 1996, he put together Slash‘s Blues Ball, which was devoted primarily to playing classic blues covers, plus occasional GNR and Snakepit material.
Equally confident working in hard rock and pop, Slash continued to build on his legacy by delivering high-profile guest spots on other people’s albums: Bob Dylan, Alice Cooper, Michael Jackson, Lenny Kravitz, Ray Charles, Stevie Wonder etc…
His next major creative endeavor came with Velvet Revolver, a supergroup that included GNR bandmates McKagan and Sorum, Wasted Youth guitarist Dave Kushner, and Stone Temple Pilots singer Scott Weiland. The band produced two old-school hard rock records, 2004’s Contraband and 2007’s Libertad. Both albums were well received and produced some rock-radio hits, giving Slash a platform to show off the guitar tricks that made Appetite so memorable. But in 2008, tension between Weiland and the rest of the band caused the singer to exit the group, forcing Velvet Revolver to go on hiatus while they searched for a new singer.
In April 2012, Slash was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame for his work with Guns N’ Roses. He was honored alongside other members of the band except for Axl Rose, who declined to be included. He has also received critical recognition as a guitarist, Time Magazine ranking him #2 on its list of the “10 Best Electric Guitar Players of All-Time”.
His latest album, Apocalyptic Love, features Myles Kennedy on vocals and the Conspirators on bass and drums. Released in May 2012, it captures the powerful style that has made him a rock legend and showcases one of the tightest bands he’s had in a while since they’ve been touring together for the last two years. Currently promoting this album around the globe, Slash will stop by the Byblos International Festival on June 25. Revisiting some the biggest hits of his two previous bands (Guns N’ Roses and Velvet Revolver) alongside his newer tracks, he will deliver an explosive opening night, full of dazzling virtuosity and feeling!
With Guns N’ Roses
- 1987 – Appetite for Destruction
- 1988 – G N’ R Lies
- 1991 – Use Your Illusion I
- 1991 – Use Your Illusion II
- 1993 – “The Spaghetti Incident?”
With Slash’s Snakepit
- 1995 – It’s Five O’Clock Somewhere
- 2000 – Ain’t Life Grand
With Velvet Revolver
- 2004 – Contraband
- 2007 – Libertad
- 2010 – Slash
- 2012 – Apocalyptic Love