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Appetite for Distortion - Ep. 48: Alan Niven


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6 hours ago, downzy said:

Back in 2002-2003 (I think) I was scouring eBay for a LP copy of Live Like a Suicide and whatever novelty items I could find.  I came in contact with someone who was helping Niven sell a huge collection of old GNR stuff he kept in his garage (or somewhere).   I could be wrong, but I believe Niven back then didn't think too fondly of GNR/Axl back then and was happy to clear some space and make a little money on the side.  

The list included tens, if not hundreds, of different awards, albums, and different GNR merch and paraphernalia.  I remember one of the items listed was a Platinum RIAA Award with Izzy's name on it for UYI2.  It was a definitely a treasure trove of collectibles.  At the time, I was only in my early twenties not making a lot of money, I was limited to what I could buy so I "settled" on the RIAA Gold Award for AFD with Niven's name on it.  I wish I still had that email with the list but unfortunately I was using an email account I no longer use or have access to.  

Keep in mind that I think he had a number of these as I believe the RIAA will issue as many copies as an artist wants.  And somebody can correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe the RIAA issues platinum awards for each time an album goes platinum.  

Then again maybe I was bamboozled and both the RIAA award and the LLAS LP I purchased are both fakes.  They did come with a letter from Niven stating that both were real, but who really knows.  Regardless, whether real or not, they're some of my favourite GNR items I own.  Here is a photo from my office where I hang the RIAA award along side my two sealed copies of UYI1 & UYI2 (the UYI albums were purchased elsewhere):

IMG_1449.JPG.c34c5b65488e892a3d425f8c35863695.JPG

Thanks for the info. Sounds like the award is genuine. I appreciate that Niven and GNR fell out and therefore he may not have minded getting rid of some of their stuff. Still, to give away anything that documents that you played a major role in the greatest rock album of all time... 

Sucks that you were too young and broke to buy more at the time! It sounds like an incredible trove of GNR stuff. Think you made a good choice. The sealed albums are great too.

I'm so envious of your GNR office! My GNR treasures (very small collection admittedly) are piled on top of a high shelf to keep them away from my kids!!

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1 minute ago, money honey said:

Thanks for the info. Sounds like the award is genuine. I appreciate that Niven and GNR fell out and therefore he may not have minded getting rid of some of their stuff. Still, to give away anything that documents that you played a major role in the greatest rock album of all time... 

Sucks that you were too young and broke to buy more at the time! It sounds like an incredible trove of GNR stuff. Think you made a good choice. The sealed albums are great too.

I'm so envious of your GNR office! My GNR treasures (very small collection admittedly) are piled on top of a high shelf to keep them away from my kids!!

I remember back in the early 2000s reading that Niven wasn't as nostalgic and fond about his time with GNR than he might be now.  I think there was still some serious ill will with how everything shook out in the early 90s with him personally and then later with Slash and Duff.  

Despite putting a lot up on the auction block, I'm sure he kept on to some of his stuff.  

If I can recall correctly I believe the price tag for the Izzy RIAA award was $1500 USD, which was equivalent to $2300 CAD at the time (I think I was making $300 a week at the time).  Also consider that GNR had lost a lot of its luster by the early 2000s and so the demand for these items wasn't as high as it would be today.  I remember being able to buy a GNR pinball machine back in the early 2000s from $1200 USD and there were several on eBay.  Would have pulled the trigger but the transportation fees were higher than the purchase price.  

Anyway, apologies for coopting the thread with my Niven stories.  

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So Izzy did a sound check but not one GNR nerd /insider talked about it until now? Two years later?  I guess it would have had to be before his "split the loot "comments. Oh well, I guess he and Adler can still be played as a draw years from now if GNR want to sell a few extra tickets and play AFD in full on its 40th anniversary. 

Edited by Subtle Signs
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I thought I remembered some one saying they thought Izzy was going to come out at Nashville and that he had been spotted. I was so excited because I was keeping up with it while I was hanging out before the show. As soon as Alan said it was at a show in the midwest I blew it off. Glad you guys remembered that too.

 

Oh, and @Gambit83, the topic with Izzy just came up in the Rock news during Eddie Trunk a few minutes ago on SiriusXM. They said your name and the AFD Podcast out as the original person who did the interview.

Edited by Tourettes2400
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To each their own, but for me, I think Niven takes R&R a little too seriously.

I've always thought the devil imagery and innuendo was all tongue-and-cheek.  Niven's distaste for this kind of makes me wonder if I'm missing something or if he is.  

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