Duff McKagan Says Humanity Will Overcome … and Then Party
Duff McKagan said that the human race would “overcome” the current global political situation, and predicted a “party” era like the one at the end of the ‘70s would arrive.
The Guns N’ Roses bassist relied on his experience of meeting people all round the world to present a positive message beneath the serious topics covered on his new solo album, Tenderness.
Discussing his song “Chip Away,” McKagan told Classic Rock it was about “watching the news and thinking, 'Oh yeah, they're gonna try all that shit again.' Like with trickle-down economics, which might sound familiar to you. With Reagan and Thatcher, it was trickle-down economics: Drop taxes on the very rich, and the money will trickle down. But it doesn't really work. We've seen this all before. In the song it says, 'This too shall pass, if we keep our heads on.' And again, it's about us coming together.”
He added that he knows "humanity will overcome. There's always a backlash. We've had to be serious since 9/11, and I think there's going to be a point like when punk rock and disco both came out at the same time. People were done with the Vietnam War and with the recessive ‘70s and gas lines and union strikes, and at some point people just said, 'Fuck this. Let's party! Bring it on!'"
McKagan recalled how he’d become addicted to news reports and social media, but decided to quit as Guns N’ Roses toured the world over the past three years. “I got out, and I talked to people," he said. "And I stopped watching the fucking news. And the quality of my life got a lot better. The news will make you think we're all divided, and that everyone hates each other, and if you turn on Twitter it'll magnify that. … I had a realization about going out and meeting people on tour, turning off the TV, shutting the screen down and going out to talk to your fellow man. And I think if enough of us do that, things will change.”
He said the album’s closing track, “Don’t Look Behind You,” was the “most hopeful” of the collection. “It kind of sums up the record, with the last stop being, 'You know what? We're gonna get through this together,'" he noted. "Just don't look behind you, don't dwell on the past. Just look forward, and we're gonna be okay."