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Can the GNR Brand be saved with just an album?


Kaneda

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My biggest concern with GNR as a brand is the constant re-inventing of the group will make the brand suffer...anyone that's studied why successful brands work, it comes down to a simple feeling of belonging. Fans feel as if they belong to the brand, there's a sense of community...It's the reason why people choose Starbucks over other coffee houses, not because it's better, but because they feel comfortable with that brand, that brands identity, that brands history, the leadership and the icons, these all play a role in why someone goes into Starbucks and not Dunkin Donuts...

Now lot's of things go into making a brand strong, one of them being "words" that people assoicate with a brand. For many years GNR was associated with words like Axl, Slash, Izzy, Drugs, Booze...you get the point. But now the language of GNR continues to change, words that once meant Guns N Roses do not anymore...so what has developed is the WORST thing a Brand can ever experience - CONFUSION.

Confused people are impossible to motivate and even harder to persuade. As a GNR fan we are always in a constant state of confusion. We don't even know who's officially in the band, we don't know who's worked on the album...we dont' know a lot. All of this confusion, all of this doubt has really destroyed the GNR brand over the past 15 years, and it's not going to return magically with just an album. The reason why is while we are all GNR fans, we have spread our confusion and doubt to everyone we've come in contact with...how can we convince people the album is going to be amazing when deep down inside, how many of us actually believe that? We are in a holding pattern of uncertainty.

When you really look long and hard at GNR as a BRAND and not just a band, you realize that Axl and Co have fucked up so many of the essential elements that make a BRAND succeed...Not even Axl and all of his abilities can overcome the damage he has done to his own brand. Constantly switching musicians, always showing up late, never releasing an album, remaining silent for years...the BRAND is weak, and if the half-empty arenas on this tour didn't prove that, I don't know what else people need.

By having 7 different itterations of GNR, it becomes impossible to love GNR because GNR doesn't mean anything anymore...there is no common language, nothing to binds all of us together except for the confusion and doubt we experience as fans...and these are weak links, not strong ties that elevate the brand. I really think Axl is going to be in for a rude awaken when he tries to release the album expecting legions to follow...it's not going to happen for the reaons I stated.

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why do you care about gn'r as a brand?

can't you just give this thing a chance?

if YOU are still making posts like this, it proves that this guns n' roses are strong enough and interesting

enough for you to post...

and while I agree with you on some level...you're credebilty are not very strong 'cause even when things

are good in the gn'r camp, usully you wine...

be a fan, not a critic...

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The guy's got a very good point actually. It's for this reason that we constantly argue over new vs old (Finck vs Slash) and new vs new (Bucket/Ron vs Finck) etc because we all identify with the band in different ways.

I for example, see the band as refreshing and musically intellectual by recruiting the likes of Bucket and Ron, whereas others want the old Appetite styled GnR musically. We seem to be confused and argue over what this band actually is and what it stands for. Truth is, they actually don't have a set identity and for me this is because they're called Guns N' Roses. This is where all the brand confusion stems from.

Not saying they shouldn't be, but if this was Axl's solo project none of this would happen and we would see it as a separate identity to Guns and therefore would not have this brand ambiguity. Is it true GnR? Is it something different? etc etc.. we'd just see it as Axl exploring musically and trying to make the best album he can, irrespective of past glories, which is what it really is.

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I guess I could be considered an Axl-lite as mentioned in Kaneda's post, but I have to agree with this one. I think Axl would have had greater success if he would have not used the GNR name for this project. Although we don't know if the album will sound anything close to traditional GNR, the leaks are a good indication that it will be significantly different and by using the GNR name it will always be compared to AFD and UYI. I think the traditional GNR fans will support the album by buying it, but I'm not sure they will stand behind it and propell it into a classic like AFD. I would compare this project to the one Chris Cornell did a few years back with Audioslave. Auidioslave had huge success, mainly because they attracted a new fan base with the new sound. Had that project been with Soundgarden, I don't think it would have been nearly as successful. I for one love the new GNR sound and believe that this will be a successful album, but I'm not sure how much the current fan base will grow since Axl is still using the GNR name. I guess we will know once the Ides of March are upon us.

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What?!!

It's about the music. What the fuck has this got to do with a brand? GnR isn't the fucking backstreet boys where it has to be a brand.

I think you want GnR to be style over content. I'm so the other way.

I want a fucking great album in Chinese Democracy and if no one buys it but me because the lead guitarist doesn't wear a top-hat then those fuckers have lost out.

Stop comparing GnR to fucking starbucks. What next you want a free Axl doll with your happy meal?!!

I don't know what you think GnR is, but to me they're a band that do things their own way and make fucking great music. A band that hopefully puts art above commercial success. I don't want them to think like "starbucks" and "brands" that's nothing to do with it. It's about music.

I worry about you Kaneda, I think you should like another band.

LP

Edited by Longpig
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I think that although you have written a good piece of blurb about marketing that could be pilfered from any textbook, I would disagree.

The mass market is still pretty unaware of the line-up changes. What they will respond to is the name - whether that be written as Guns N Roses or GNR.

They will respond to the constant mention in the media (TV, Radio etc). They will respond to magazine articles and adverts.

The GNR brand is safe. I was surrounded at MSG by people that didn't even know it was a new line-up when they bought tickets! They all walked out with huge grins on their faces.

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What?!!

It's about the music. What the fuck has this got to do with a brand? GnR isn't the fucking backstreet boys where it has to be a brand.

I think you want GnR to be style over content. I'm so the other way.

I want a fucking great album in Chinese Democracy and if no one buys it but me because the lead guitarist doesn't wear a top-hat then those fuckers have lost out.

Stop comparing GnR to fucking starbucks. What next you want a free Axl doll with your happy meal?!!

I don't know what you think GnR is, but to me they're a band that do things their own way and make fucking great music. A band that hopefully puts art above commercial success. I don't want them to think like "starbucks" and "brands" that's nothing to do with it. It's about music.

I worry about you Kaneda, I think you should like another band.

LP

Kaneda has a point here. GNR is a BRAND. Anything that deals with this amount of money and popularity becomes a BRAND. Whether you like it or not GNR became a BRAND with the success of AFD. UYI I & II furthered the BRAND. This is not to say that the music wasn't important but with that kind of success it is inevitable that a band becomes more than just their music. Axl understood the importance of GNR as a BRAND which is why he had the others sign over the name GNR to him exclusively.

Believing that this band is going to put art before commerce is childish and naive. This is the music BUSINESS. It is about BRAND. As Gene Simmons quoted in Rolling Stone, "You're an artist? Paint my house, bitch!" If it were just about art then there would be no need for touring and making boatloads of cash of off selling records and merchandise.

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Well, this guy should compare G N' R with some sport team, like the Dallas Cowboys, AC Milan or anyone else, like in the cowboys where Aikman or Staubauch are no longer the QB's but a lot of fans still going to the staduim and support the team, not starbucks, it's a different kind of brand, and i think of G N' R when i listen the name Axl, Izzy, Slash, Robin, Tommy...etc.

and yes, the brand will de saved with Chinese Democracy

Edited by jcipriano
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Guest RonMexico82
I don't know what you think GnR is, but to me they're a band that do things their own way and make fucking great music. A band that hopefully puts art above commercial success. I don't want them to think like "starbucks" and "brands" that's nothing to do with it. It's about music.

I worry about you Kaneda, I think you should like another band.

LP

You must be pretty worried seen as this line-up has released nothing.

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Please, I would love to see the Axl-lites repsond to an actualy intelligent observation of the GNR brand...

Face it, brother. Axl letter has made your weekly rant irrelevant.

I supported you when you were venting frustrations we all had. But at this point, it seems like you are a just a guy unwilling to give up the small amount of spotlight he's created for himself.

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