Steven Adler, Guns N’ Roses’ original hard-swinging drummer, will rock the Canyon Santa Clarita stage with a new band and celebrate the 30th-plus anniversary of GN’R’s monumental “Appetite for Destruction” album on Saturday night, Aug. 25.
“I’ve got a new singer, brand-new band that kicks a–, some new songs, a new backdrop – a whole new show,” Adler said last weekend, calling from a mountaintop somewhere way out west.
“My singer is an amazing guy from Buenos Aires named Ari Kamin,” Adler said. “Then we have Michael ‘Mr. T’ Thomas on lead guitar, AJ on rhythm guitar, Tanya O’Callaghan on bass and Steven Adler on drums. Dude, he’s [bleeping] good. I am SO looking forward to seeing him play!”
Adler said the Steven Adler Band will play “some good old-fashioned Guns N’ Roses rock ’n’ roll and a little bit of Adler,” including songs from his latest album,
“Back from the Dead.”
“We’re going to start with ‘Reckless Life’ and play all the way through ‘You Could Be Mine,’ ‘Civil War,’” he said. “And yes, of course we’re going to throw some Adler songs in there, like ‘Habit’ and ‘Good to be Bad,’ because they kick ass. That whole record kicks ass.”
Guns N’ Roses’ notoriety has been well-documented, including Adler’s 2010 autobiography, “My Appetite for Destruction.” But in a nutshell, the classic lineup of Axl Rose (singer), Slash (lead guitar), Izzy Stradlin (rhythm guitar), Duff McKagan (bass) and Adler formed in 1985, signed with Geffen Records in 1986, and released “Appetite for Destruction” in summer 1987. Their debut album topped the U.S. charts and has sold around 30 million copies worldwide.
Adler developed a serious cocaine and heroin addiction and his bandmates fired him on July 11, 1990. He sued and settled out of court in 1993, reportedly receiving a $2.2 million back payment check and 15 percent of royalties for songs he recorded.
It took Adler another 24 years to get sober. “My whole life changed when I stopped drinking and drugs,” he said. “It’s been four years, seven months and six days. A complete 180. And there’s no looking back now.”
Adler’s relationship with GN’R since has been off and on, to understate the obvious, but has improved since he’s cleaned up.
He joined them for GN’R’s Rock ’n’ Roll Hall of Fame induction in 2012, and in 2016 sat in with the band on a few “Not in This Lifetime” tour dates in the States and South America, which is when he connected with his new singer.
“I met Ari at a private show I did when I went to Argentina to play with GN’R, and I’m bringing him up here,” Adler said.
As to what is now the 31st anniversary of “Appetite for Destruction,” recently reissued, “I still practice it every day, not because I have to, because I don’t have to,” he said. “I just love those songs. And 31 years later, [the reissue] is in the Billboard Top 10. I’m couldn’t be more proud of what the five of us did.”
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Find the Canyon Santa Clarita on the ground floor of the Westfield Valencia Town Center. Get tickets at the box office 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday-Saturday, by phone at 888-645-5006, or via TicketMaster.com. For more info, visit www.WheremusicmeetstheSoul.com.
Stephen K. Peeples is a Grammy-nominated record producer and award-winning radio producer and journalist based in the Santa Clarita Valley. He has covered the SCV music scene for local media since 2004. Contact him via stephenkpeeples.com.