Guns N’ Roses: One of the ‘Worst Concerts in Michigan History’
The co-headlining tour with Metallica in '92 should have been incredible, but it lands on the worst in Michigan history because of, you guessed it, Axl Rose.
It's not what you think.
Axl Rose has a storied history of being persnickety (to be polite) at live concerts, but it was an illness that led to this disastrous night at the Pontiac Silverdome. This show was the beginning of the end of the co-headlining tour with Metallica.
Kurt Cobain and Nirvana famously turned down the opening slot on the Stadium Tour with Guns N' Roses and Metallica in 1992. He knew there was trouble brewing. The state of affairs for both bands had never been better as Metallica's self-titled "black" album was climbing the charts and Guns was riding the success of the Use Your Illusion double albums. The tour got off to a shaky start.
Metallica were using more pyro onstage than a Fourth of July fireworks display, and Guns N’ Roses were perfectly happy taking two hours to get their stage set up after Metallica finished their set. Yet, at the time, both groups felt like they could do no wrong.
-Jon Wiederhorn, Loudwire
Wiederhorn goes on to pull back the backstage curtain and reveal, "to say there was a mutual lack of respect of one another’s artistic aesthetics is an understatement." It didn't help when Axl threw up on stage at the Silverdome show. During "You Could Be Mine," Axl vomited and walked offstage. The band quickly segued into a Matt Sorum drum solo, then Slash showed off on guitar before the band played "Speak Softly Love (Theme from the Godfather)" and Axl then returned to the stage, apologized and resumed the show, re-starting "You Could Be Mine."
The July 21 Michigan concert was only the third on the tour, and the rails really came off in Montreal a few weeks later on August 8 when James Hetfield was injured during Metallica's set and, instead of being a hero and saving the day, a petulant Axl Rose delayed the Guns set and then walked off early, prompting a riot.
Maybe the Michigan show wasn't so bad after all (unless you were on the Silverdome cleaning crew).
Keep scrolling to see Axl Rose memorabilia on display at the Hard Rock Casino in his home state of Indiana.
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