GUNS N’ ROSES‘ continual tardiness is making things rough for concert promoters and fans alike, with long waits for Axl Rose just as much a definite at a the band’s concert as hearing “Paradise City” or “Welcome To The Jungle”. At the Rock In Rio concert on October 2, GUNS N’ ROSES came onstage two hours late despite having reportedly agreed to pay a heavy fine for making the audience wait.
GUNS N’ ROSES‘ defended its actions with a brand new post on its Facebook page, stating, “Love it Hate it Accept it Debate it — You want 8 o’clock shows go find F-R-I-E-N-D-S or hit a cinema somewhere.. or you wanna be informed go catch the 10-o’clock news.. this is Rock N’ Roll! Treat yourself don’t cheat yourself thinking you’re gonna go to school or work or whatever you ‘normally’ do the next day. Oh and remember before you get high and never want to come down. ‘you can have anything you want but you better not take it from me!’ This is GUNS N’ ROSES and when the time is right the stage will ignite. Looking forward to sharing that with rockers soon!”
GUNS N’ ROSES‘ 2001 show at Rock In Rio saw them take to the stage two hours late, and while the crowd waited patiently for them on that occasion, this has not been the case at other shows.
In March 2010, fans of the band rioted in São Paolo, Brazil after a private show was canceled at the last minute, and in 2002 fans in Vancouver, Canada and Philadelphia in the U.S. rioted when shows were canceled on the day.
Also in 2010, organizers of the Reading festival in England pulled the plug on the band’s PA, silencing them after they took to the stage an hour late and tried to overrun the event’s curfew time by over half an hour.
GUNS N’ ROSES‘ was reportedly fined $108,000 (£72,000) by officials at London’s O2 Arena in October 2010 after Rose‘s late stage appearance meant he and his bandmates went over the venue’s strict 11 p.m. curfew. The fans were so upset about GUNS N’ ROSES‘ tardiness at the first of the two London shows that they were throwing things at Axl Rose. He told the audience not to be doing that because they could miss him and hit someone at the front of the stage by accident. They wouldn’t want that to happen, he added. The concert organizers allowed them to play for the extra hour over curfew for two gigs.
At GUNS N’ ROSES‘ lone U.S. concert appearance in 2010 in Sturgis, South Dakota, the crowd — composed largely of bikers — was forced to wait the usual two hours before Rose arrived. Rather than rioting, however, those in attendance either littered the stage with debris or simply left.
Former SKID ROW singer Sebastian Bach, a close personal friend of Axl Rose, explained in a September 2010 interview why Axl is persistently late going on stage. Bach said, “Everybody has all these theories as to why he acts the way he acts. And there’s no big mystery: it’s his voice. It’s his job to sing like that, and sometimes that sound is hard for him. To sing in that range is just not an easy thing to do. He does what he can — even if it takes him 45 more minutes to warm up his pipes so he can sing ‘Sweet Child O’ Mine’.”