The publicist for GUNS N’ ROSES has released the following official statement to BLABBERMOUTH.NET regarding the reports that the band was two hours late in taking the stage at this year’s Rock In Rio festival on October 2 in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil:
“GUNS N’ ROSES would like to set the record straight on Rock In Rio. The festival’s inadequate production and the downpour of rain delayed the event. Anyone who was there knows that SYSTEM OF A DOWN did not leave the stage until close to 1:15 in the morning. SYSTEM‘s extensive stage production did not finish coming offstage until 1:45 a.m. GN’R‘s production was up and ready to go at 2:15 a.m. Axl [Rose, GUNS N’ ROSES lead singer] got to the venue before 1 a.m. and he came ready to go onstage. The inadequate cover of the Rock In Rio stage caused a further delay when the soundboard went down due to water damage and was replaced as quick as possible. GN’R walked onstage at 2:40 a.m. and played for two-and-a-half hours in the pouring rain. GN’R would never seek to intentionally disrespect anyone, especially their fans.”
GUNS N’ ROSES‘ official statement comes a day after Rock In Rio festival organizer Roberto Medina told Globo.com‘s Extra that Axl Rose‘s behavior at this year’s event exhibited a “lack of commitment” and “respect for the public.”
GUNS N’ ROSES‘ 2001 show at Rock In Rio also saw the band 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 2010, organizers of the Reading festival in England pulled the plug on GUNS N’ ROSES‘ 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.
In 2002 fans in Vancouver, Canada and Philadelphia in the U.S. rioted when shows were canceled on the day.