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Does Axl have stage fright?


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I don't think so. The thing with Axl is there will be no wine till it's time. When he is ready you will get a great show when he is not ready you will get nothing.

Sure, but what makes it such a hassle to hit the stage on time? Someone that isn't afraid of the stage wouldn't do it virtually all the time for 20+ years...I mean just the fact that he has to "work himself up" to hit the stage or he can't do it is a sign that something odd is going on imo.

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I don't think so. The thing with Axl is there will be no wine till it's time. When he is ready you will get a great show when he is not ready you will get nothing.

Sure, but what makes it such a hassle to hit the stage on time? Someone that isn't afraid of the stage wouldn't do it virtually all the time for 20+ years...I mean just the fact that he has to "work himself up" to hit the stage or he can't do it is a sign that something odd is going on imo.

He is late for almost everything he does every day even when he is not on tour.

I don't think so. The thing with Axl is there will be no wine till it's time. When he is ready you will get a great show when he is not ready you will get nothing.

Why did Alan Niven say Axl does have stage fright? Do you think he made it up to get back at Axl for being fired?

“Axl actually wanted to cancel that [Aerosmith's Permanent Vacation summer of 1988] tour. By that time, it was very evident he had a form of stage fright…The guitar players have something in their hands. They’re not naked. The singer is out there naked, and sometimes that’s hard to do. Obviously, Axl still has problems with it because he’s still late.” - Alan Niven in a Metal Sludge interview

I don't know why he didn't want to do that tour but I don't think it was stage fright. Also I don't remember him ever saying that he didn't want to do that tour. He even wanted to hire my wife to help out on the crew for that tour.

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This was always on my mind too. But why is it he can be on time for awards shows, guest spots, or other 'be there or you don't go on' events? Being late for things, it selfish and inconsiderate to those waiting on you. Always a trait I found important in people.

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I've always wondered if by chance the reason why axl was always late, never did many interviews, and hated camras was because he had stage fright. As far as you know, does he?

I remember some blurb from Andrew Dice Clay where he told Axl he was nervous or had stage fright about performing in front of so many people or being surrounded by so many people, something like that and Axl told him he was an idiot and reminded him that he was performing in an open arena and to just look up into the open space if he got nervous. So, maybe Axl was talking from experience.. otherwise how would he know about that technique?

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I've always wondered if by chance the reason why axl was always late, never did many interviews, and hated camras was because he had stage fright. As far as you know, does he?

I remember some blurb from Andrew Dice Clay where he told Axl he was nervous or had stage fright about performing in front of so many people or being surrounded by so many people, something like that and Axl told him he was an idiot and reminded him that he was performing in an open arena and to just look up into the open space if he got nervous. So, maybe Axl was talking from experience.. otherwise how would he know about that technique?

I think I remember about that, but Dice was saying something about how he felt there wasn't enough air or something. Then Axl made the comment. I don't think Axl gets stage fright, he just has to be in the right frame of mind to entertain people so he goes on stage late no matter how annoying it is to the audience.

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"Dice also shared the fact that one W. Axl Rose got him to come back to the stage at one point. “I stopped doing the arena thing because it was claustrophobic,” Dice recalled. “Then Axl called me and said, ‘Dice, I want you to do the Rose Bowl.’ I said, ‘No, I can’t take the crowd around me.’ He told me, ‘Dice, look at the sky. You are going to be outside.’ This is coming from Axl, making sense like that. I did it and I coulda done an hour like that.” Hey, when Axl offers advice, you take it, folks."

http://loudwire.com/that-metal-show-recap-andrew-dice-clay-herman-rarebell-talk-axl-rose-drummers/

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Edited by 77Jesters
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Rolling Stone, 1992:

RS: One thing that has people exasperated is the late show times. Why do you go on so late?

Axl: I pretty much follow my own internal clock, and I perform better later at night. Nothing seems to work out for me until later at night. And it is our show. I don't want to make people sit around and wait – it drives me nuts. That hour-and-a-half or two-hour time period that I'm late going onstage is living hell, because I'm wishing there was any way on earth I could get out of where I am and knowing I'm not going to be able to make it. I'm late to everything. I've always wanted to have it written in my will that when I die, the coffin shows up a half-hour late and says on the side, like in gold, Sorry I'm late.

RS: What goes on before you take the stage? What actually makes you late?

Axl: The chiropractor we work with on the road tapes my ankles professionally. I kept twisting my ankles during shows, and it still happens now and then. I have weak ankles, always have. I used to run cross-country, and that was one of the things that got in the way of that. So I work with a chiropractor. I work with a massage therapist, because I put a lot of stress in my lower back, and with what I do onstage, there's a lot of rebuilding that has to be done. There's operatic voice exercises. And I started therapy in February [1991] and, Jesus, I'm right in the middle of stuff. I mean, if a heavy emotional issue surfaces and you've got a show in four hours, you have to figure out how to get that sorted out really quick before you get onstage so that you're not in the middle of "Jungle" and have a breakdown. The pressure of having to do the show when whatever else is going on in my life is hard to get past. We did a show in Finland where I just couldn't understand why I was doing what I was doing. I sat down while I was singing "Civil War," and I was kind of looking at my lips while I was singing and looking at the microphone and looking at the roadies, and everything just shut off. Well, that doesn't make for a very good show. We're out there to win at what we do. And if that means going on two hours late and doing a good show, I'm gonna do it. I take what I do very seriously.

Eddie Trunk interview, 2006:

Bach: Nassau Coliseum, 1991, we're on stage, Doug Goldstein...we do our all set...

Trunk: Doug Goldstein is the manager, just for people listening right now.

Axl: At the time.

Bach: So I turn around, I'm ready to leave, we've done our set and he goes: "Keep going!", I go: "Whaaat? What do you mean keep going?". So we do a couple of Aerosmith songs,and we do "Youth Gone Wild" again, we actually did it twice in the set, I swear! And I go: "What is going oooon?" So, we come off stage finally, and then...

Axl: That was a mess. But that is another night that WASP saved the day. All these things went really bad and all of a sudden I put WASP on, I got fired up and stuff, starting jumping over all the furniture, and I went through the show...

Bach: (laughs) Are you serious?

Axl: Absolutely. I kinda got set up to got things go wrong. And so, the person that was involved in that was staring at me when I discovered the WASP, like: "How did he...And why...And certainly why is he turning around and he's now fired up when before he was suicidal, and he was exactly where I wanted him to be, and now HE'S PULLING OUT OF IT! AND NOW HE'S GONNA DO THE SHOW! HOW IS THAT POSSIBLE??" And I'm like: "YEEEES!!" And then I went onstage and blamed it all on Tom Zutaut. It didn't really have to do with Tom I guess, but...

Bach: The definition of cool, alright. The definition of cool. Everybody's FREAKING OUT backstage, like the whole arena is imploding, all the fans are screaming...

Axl: I find that very hard to believe. That's very unusual.

Bach: It was like midnight. So anyways. Everybody's freaking out, and me and Mariah are walking down, we see all this commotion down on the hallway, right. Like, people jumping around, just going...I go: "What is going on?" So I walked down the hallway, and it's you surrounded by a maelstrom of people, jumping and freaking out...

Axl: I was afraid with the maelstrom (male-strom), I wasn't sure where that was going...

Jericho: Male love!

Bach: So you got Stephanie on your hand, and you looked like bored, you were like whatever. And I go: "Dude! Where were you?" And you go like this, you go "I was taking a shower..." (laughs)

Axl: I don't know, man.

Bach: Yeah that's what you said! You said: "I was taking a shower"! It's like, right on dude!

This was the show where Axl told the audience that Rolling Stone caused the delay, and to steal the magazine.

I think it's just about motivation on his part to get out on stage that night, and some nights he's not feeling into it. That's not stage fright, but from time to time, he prob. has nightmares of going on stage and his vocal chords freeze up. I think Niven was speculating why, because it's something other singers have gone through, but even in Duff, Steven and Slash's books, they didn't comprehend it, except write it off to Lead Singer Disease. To me, a handful of people understand the lateness thing, and to me, it would be the people who've known him the longest and/or been with Axl the nights he was late for shows.

How the hell he never wound up getting nodules or polyps on his vocal chords is remarkable - or maybe he did and never talked about it in interviews.

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"I've been an after midnight type since I was sneakin' out of my house in Jr. High. With old Guns we preferred 12am or so. When we moved to theaters etc

obviously that changes but it's never changed inside me. Doesn't matter what I do so generally that's when I'm more myself. This isn't to mess with anyone

that has an early schedule to keep it's just personal preference. And in regard to the size venues I'm on record as preferring what ever venues allow for our

schedule but management and promoters can do a lot in their own interests behind the scenes that can rarely be avoided and their greed or whatever leads

to a lot of double talk and ugly behind nonsense that generally eventually ruins things for everyone. Translated once a tour is scheduled however it's like parting

the seas to change. As far as being late, I've been that way my whole life. It drove Izzy crazy but he would check himself and freely admit I was generally actually

doing something that had to get done rather than watching basketball etc." ~ Axl Rose Chats Dec. 12 2008

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  • 3 years later...
On 8/29/2012 at 9:31 PM, recklessroad said:

I don't think so. The thing with Axl is there will be no wine till it's time. When he is ready you will get a great show when he is not ready you will get nothing.

just imagining Axl looking like Gene Wilder in the dressing room 

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Edited by -W.A.R-
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On 8/30/2012 at 3:11 PM, dalsh327 said:

Rolling Stone, 1992:

RS: One thing that has people exasperated is the late show times. Why do you go on so late?

Axl: I pretty much follow my own internal clock, and I perform better later at night. Nothing seems to work out for me until later at night. And it is our show. I don't want to make people sit around and wait – it drives me nuts. That hour-and-a-half or two-hour time period that I'm late going onstage is living hell, because I'm wishing there was any way on earth I could get out of where I am and knowing I'm not going to be able to make it. I'm late to everything. I've always wanted to have it written in my will that when I die, the coffin shows up a half-hour late and says on the side, like in gold, Sorry I'm late.

RS: What goes on before you take the stage? What actually makes you late?

Axl: The chiropractor we work with on the road tapes my ankles professionally. I kept twisting my ankles during shows, and it still happens now and then. I have weak ankles, always have. I used to run cross-country, and that was one of the things that got in the way of that. So I work with a chiropractor. I work with a massage therapist, because I put a lot of stress in my lower back, and with what I do onstage, there's a lot of rebuilding that has to be done. There's operatic voice exercises. And I started therapy in February [1991] and, Jesus, I'm right in the middle of stuff. I mean, if a heavy emotional issue surfaces and you've got a show in four hours, you have to figure out how to get that sorted out really quick before you get onstage so that you're not in the middle of "Jungle" and have a breakdown. The pressure of having to do the show when whatever else is going on in my life is hard to get past. We did a show in Finland where I just couldn't understand why I was doing what I was doing. I sat down while I was singing "Civil War," and I was kind of looking at my lips while I was singing and looking at the microphone and looking at the roadies, and everything just shut off. Well, that doesn't make for a very good show. We're out there to win at what we do. And if that means going on two hours late and doing a good show, I'm gonna do it. I take what I do very seriously.

 

Thanks for sharing these, I've never seen them before (and I've read a LOT of old interviews with Axl!). It actually kind of puts a different take on it for me. As someone who also has a VERY specific / strong internal body clock (but the other way around) that has had quite a big effect on my life, I can kinda empathise with where he's coming from. I always thought it was more of a "fuck everyone else, I don't care" attitude (and I'm sure there is still an element of that... I mean this is Axl :lol:) but at least he acknowledges there is an issue and what causes it. Everyone else is completely right of course.... it does still show total disrespect for others to turn up late to EVERYTHING and would drive me insane.... but I get how if you're a total night owl forcing yourself to be early and switch on this amazing performance, that could sometimes be hard.

Edited by Gilla999
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