Thursday, 17 July 2008

34. Anonymous A&R Man (Name Withheld Upon Request)

You gotta understand, LA in the mid 80s was nothing, man.
MTV ruled the airwaves and shit like Go-Go was the big thing.

Everyone dressing up like Molly Ringwald, or dressing down
like that spoiled little asshole Darby Crash. Reaganomics reigned.

Then you had the surf jocks coming in from the coastal towns or the
preppie Bret Easton Ellis kids or streets brats like the Chili Peppers.

But really they were all poseurs. Same with classic rock. It was
dead dead dead - or as good as. It needed young blood, new danger.

Fifty gigs in, Gunners were that band, but no-one would touch them.
Labels never like to sign junkies and they were, like, at least 60% addicted

and 100% unwashed. Axl has these yellow teeth, Slash spent his days
drooling behind that fringe, Izzy was a cadaver…and the smell. Hoo-wee!

The smell when all five members were in the same room was something
else – like skunk spray or a tramp’s butt-hole or a week-old Big Mac.

It’s because they never washed man, they just kept piling on the hair-spray
and the hippie juice. One time I saw Adler splash whisky behind his ears.

It’s all good and well, but how can you do business with a band who make
you wretch, who would – and did – steal the last dollar from your wallet?

Fuck, I loved those guys though. You really had a sense that it was death
or glory (or maybe death row glory?) for all five of them, like they knew

that this was it, their one shot, their one hope. And you have to give them
credit. They took it and ran with it, all the fucking way man, all the way.

As for me, my bosses couldn’t see it. They wanted the next Springsteen,
the next Cyndi Lauper. I quit in disgust. Set up a label. Got high. Went bust.

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