Photo credit: Jani Karmu Kormugraphy

Celebrating his latest studio album Slash is confident that next year will be all about Guns N’ Roses

Author Benedetta Baldin - 19.6.2024

On Monday, June 17th, Slash appeared with Chuck Armstrong on Loudwire Nights to commemorate the release of his most recent solo album, “Orgy of the Damned”. Apart from talking about that record, he also shared his story of how he initially became enamoured with rock music and the guitar.

It was when I turned 15, because I picked up the guitar on my birthday. It was that summer. I had been going to music festivals, I was really into a lot of records and a lot of music. At that time it was all a huge new discovery thing for me. All these new bands and all these records that I hadn’t heard before and there was a lot of cool stuff coming out … That moment I picked up the guitar, everything else fell away. At the time I was actually racing BMX and I just turned pro and that was, you know, I was going to do that. I was going to become an actual motocross racer. I forgot about all of that. Then school took a dive, too.

In order to make a connection to the myth of Robert Johnson selling his soul to the devil in exchange for a life and career in music, Slash was thinking back on his own past. It didn’t seem too far-fetched for Slash to end up in a similar situation to the renowned Delta blues guitarist since he performed a Johnson original on “Orgy of the Damned”, “Crossroads,” which was later made famous by Cream.

When you get into music, you give up everything else. Nothing else is as important and nothing else matters except for what you’re going to do musically and all you need is what is going to help support that … Your brain changes and nothing else is of any significance except for your instrument and going out and doing whatever you’re going to do with it.

It was a natural progression from discussing the decades-long, supernatural dedication he and others had given to music to discussing the guitar’s otherworldly power. However, even for Slash, some guitars have power that is nearly too great.

When it comes to guitars, I’ve been turned onto a lot of what you call legacy guitars, guitars that were owned by very famous musicians. Like Rory Gallagher’s guitar, I remember seeing that in Ireland at one point. There’s one of Jimi Hendrix’s Strats that somebody brought to me one time and there’s a couple other B.B. King guitars, [but] I actually never really feel like I want to own them.

Slash said to the Loudwire Nights crowd that although he likes holding these guitars in person, they feel like they could never truly belong to him because of their long history with another musician. There was one instrument, though, that he might have made an exception for to add to his collection if he had known it was for sale.

Slash grinned and remarked, “I’m actually very jealous of Kirk [Hammett],” thinking of the fabled “Greeny” guitar, a ’59 Les Paul owned by Fleetwood Mac, another band he had covered on “Orgy of the Damned”.

It’s just got a great legacy to it, but Kirk’s awesome. If there’s anybody that should have it, it’s him.

A Les Paul that had once belonged to Aerosmith‘s Joe Perry was another instrument that Slash considered wanting but ultimately decided against.

I ended up with it and I had it and it had that sort of feel of being somebody else’s instrument. I only used it a few times and I kept it in the case and didn’t really do much with it. I had it for years and then finally gave it back to Joe because I think it felt like that’s who it really, rightfully belonged to…I’m not out looking for other people’s guitars.

As his time on Loudwire Nights came to a conclusion, Slash offered the audience a quick update on his plans once “Orgy of the Damned” was released and his summer solo tour in support of that record.

I’m going into the studio with the Conspirators, getting a new record done and then after that, 2025 is all about Guns N’ Roses. We’re trying to get some things going with that. I think there’s a small tour in the summertime next year. I heard a rumor about that anyway, so that’s going to be focused on that. But prior to that, it’s the S.E.R.P.E.N.T. tour, and then the Conspirators. I’m always looking to stay busy. It keeps me out of trouble, as they say.