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Slash Shares Songwriting Stories Behind ‘Appetite for Destruction’ Cuts

Slash
Michael Loccisano, Getty Images

During a longer conversation about song and lyric writing, Slash told a few stories about how songs like ‘Paradise City’ and ‘Welcome to the Jungle’ came to be. The guitarist tells Metro Lyrics that the well-known Guns N’ Roses hits were pretty spontaneous.

“I remember writing it in the van on the way from San Francisco to L.A. for a gig,” he says of ‘Paradise City,’ “and coming up with the chords and the chorus. I think it’s one of the few melodies I made up for vocals with Guns N’ Roses, and that turned into where Axl (Rose) started writing lyrics for it.”

Many of the songs from his newest solo album (‘Apocalyptic Love,’ due May 22) also began with a riff or maybe a melody. That’s how ‘Welcome to the Jungle’ started, although Rose had some lyrics in mind. “‘Sweet Child O’ Mine’ started with a riff, and I hadn’t even really expected anything to come of it. Izzy (Stradlin) started playing some guitar chords underneath it and it just all of a sudden blossomed into a song.”

Slash says he’s not comfortable writing lyrics although he did write about 70 percent of the lyrics on his previous solo album, and 30-40 percent on the new one. Myles Kennedy filled in many of the gaps.

“You know, it’s really not something I enjoy doing,” Slash says. “It’s for personal reasons. I don’t like singing, I’m not verbally expressive, I don’t like to pour my heart out or write my thoughts on paper or write poems. I find that I express myself much better just using music by itself.”

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