Slash is back slaying the UK with Myles Kennedy And The Conspirators this month and promising to follow up Apocalyptic Love with another smouldering new record next year!

RUSHONROCK editor Simon Rushworth caught up with the former Guns N Roses guitar hero for an exclusive chat.

And Slash will be kicking off the RUSHONROCKRiffLords series next week – with a slew of fret melting big guns to follow! Watch this space! 


rushonrock: Explain the decision to replace a string of guest vocalists with one singer on Apocalyptic Love

Slash: It wasn’t my initial idea. I had no idea what I was planning on doing after I made the album with all of the guest singers. But I knew that involving so many people on that record would be a one-off. I had no intention of doing a repeat performance of that record.

rushonrock: So how did Myles get the gig full-time?

Slash: On the first solo record I had a couple of songs that I had decided to include but I just couldn’t find anyone right to sing them – or at least any so-called big-name singers. I had heard of Myles Kennedy but never heard him sing. In the end his versions of those songs came out amazing and at that point I asked him if he wanted to do the first tour. I was then introduced to Brent Fitz and he introduced me to the bass player. Suddenly I had this great band and we played some shows on the road. A handful of dates became a year and a half and Myles and the band had become part of the family.

rushonrock: So is Slash Featuring Myles Kennedy And The Conspirators a real band (albeit a far from catchy band name)?

Slash: Definitely. At this point I feel as if more than delivering a solo project I’m part of a band. Each member of the band has an input into the songwriting project and looking towards the next record I don’t see that changing. We’re on the road for a while but I’m in the early stages of recording ideas and logging them for future use.

rushonrock: Anastacia has already become a staple of the Slash set so what’s the story behind that song?

Slash: I can’t really tell you the story behind the lyrics. Myles has sort of explained it to me a couple of times but he’s best placed to pass comment. In terms of the melody it was like this: in the beginning it was just something I stumbled upon during my guitar solos in the live performances. It was all improvised. I just came across the melody and expanded on it every night. Finally I had time to put it together and write the rest of the music. It was simply put together but it worked out well.

rushonrock: How do you, Myles and the other guys operate as a songwriting team?

Slash: I do the music first and then depending on the situation  I record it and send it to Myles. He might come back to me with some more ideas – maybe stuff to make his vocal work. And then whenever we get the chance we sit down together and work on the songs. I come up with a basic bunch of ideas and then spread them around! In the case of the new album we went into the studio after a month of rehearsals and recorded everything live. That’s why it’s such a spontaneous sounding record. There are no set rules on how we write and record – I just come up with some riffs, record some music and see what Myles makes of it!

rushonrock: The current UK headline tour sold out in double quick time – is there not a temptation to play bigger venues?

Slash: I’m pretty happy where I am. We get a fair chance to play all of the bigger venues during the summer festival season. I like to keep the headlining shows where the venues are a little bit more intimate and the rapport with the audience is that little but more immediate. But don’t get me wrong – it’s not that I don’t like playing arenas. As a musician it’s very gratifying!

rushonrock: If you were a kid getting into music now would you still take up the guitar over anything else?

Slash: I took up the guitar because I liked the guitar. It was all about the instrument rather than any consideration of the professional aspect. For me, because of who I am, the guitar would still be as inspirational now as it was back then. I was inspired by the sound of the 60s and 70s guitar music that I’d heard. That exciting break in a rock song when the guitar takes over just hit me. I was brought up in an era where the Yardbirds and the Stones and Hendrix had dominated and the guitar was king. But I had no aspiration to become a guitar player proper until I picked it up as a 15-year-old. I was enjoying playing the guitar without realising or imagining that’s what I was going to do.