Duff McKagan Shares Guns n’ Roses’ “Secret Sauce”

Duff McKagan Shares Guns n’ Roses’ “Secret Sauce” | I Love Classic Rock Videos

Duff McKagan in Joey Diaz's podcast, The Church Of What's Happening Now - Joey Diaz / Youtube

Guns N’ Roses, the iconic rock band that emerged in the late ’80s, achieved massive success with their debut album “Appetite for Destruction.” Duff McKagan, the band’s bassist, recently shared a crucial ‘secret’ that played a pivotal role in Guns N’ Roses’ triumph.

In a revealing interview with Reverb, McKagan emphasized that the band’s success wasn’t solely a result of their notorious rock ‘n’ roll lifestyle.

Instead, it was rooted in their unwavering dedication to their craft. McKagan highlighted a lesser-known aspect of the band’s early days:

“What’s maybe not known totally about early Guns N’ Roses, and still to this day, we rehearsed twice a day. That’s all we fucking did.”

Contrary to the perception of a wild and carefree lifestyle, the band was intensely focused on perfecting their music. McKagan delved into the meticulous planning that went into their debut album:

“Every little piece of ‘Appetite for Destruction’ was super thought out. And then, ‘Just play it and be a rock band.’ But we were prepared.”


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The band’s preparation, consisting of rigorous rehearsals, allowed them to capture the raw and powerful essence of their music.

McKagan emphasized the efficiency that stemmed from their extensive preparation:

“Because we rehearsed so much, we were able to get the first and second takes on ‘Appetite.’ Like, that’s it — why do three? We’re good!”

Beyond the band’s collective dedication, McKagan acknowledged the significant role played by Axl Rose in Guns N’ Roses’ enduring success. Contrary to his early career reputation, Rose’s professionalism and work ethic have evolved over the years.

Slash, the band’s lead guitarist, highlighted Rose’s commitment:

“In all these years that we’ve been apart, he’s become super-f—ing professional. And he’s never missed a beat during this whole time.”

McKagan echoed this sentiment

Emphasizing Rose’s relentless work ethic and commitment to the band’s performances:

“What I’ve observed has really made me work so much harder. His work ethic is…he’s an animal. He’s in the gym. He starts an hour-and-a-half before the show vocal warmups.”

The transformation in Axl Rose’s approach to work has had a profound impact on the band’s dynamic, fostering a synergy that was absent during their initial incarnation. As Guns N’ Roses continues to thrive, McKagan’s insights shed light on the ‘secret’ rule that fueled their enduring success.