Guns N’ Roses’ original members produce memorable side projects

By Martin Popoff

The title of Guns N’ Roses’ 1987 debut album, “Appetite For Destruction” morphed into a sort of self-fulfilling prophecy. By 1996, all the Guns were gone; the only original member still in the outfit was its tempermental frontman, Axl Rose. Just because the original lineup vanished didn’t mean the music did. Here are some of the best efforts.


Izzy Stradlin and The Ju Ju HoundsIZZY STRADLIN AND THE JU JU HOUNDS

IZZY STRADLIN AND THE JU JU HOUNDS
Geffen 1992

The first of many for the reclusive Stradlin, and perennially the most fondly remembered, due to the Stones-y charm of “Shuffle It All,” and much more on this relaxed spread.


DUFF MCKAGAN
Duff McKagan Believe In Me
BELIEVE IN ME
Geffen 1993
The first big post-Guns release, “Believe In Me” was a little punkier than what would come from Slash. But still, many Gunners associated with the big budget project, which also was issued on GN’R’s label, Geffen.


Slash's Snakepit It's Five O'Clock SomewhereSLASH’S SNAKEPIT

IT’S FIVE O’CLOCK SOMEWHERE
Geffen 1995
This big-budget affair featured lots of Guns-connected guests. Produced by Slash and Gunners guy Mike Clink.


SLASH’S SNAKEPIT
Slash's Snakepit Ain't Life Grand
AIN’T LIFE GRAND
Koch, 2000
Roiling, rocking, classic rock album in the tradition of “Appetite For Destruction.” Produced by Jack Douglas, famed for his work with Aerosmith.


Guns N' Roses Chinese DemocracyGUNS N’ ROSES

CHINESE DEMOCRACY
Geffen 2008
No more (or less) legit than anything else on this list, it’s also arguably one of the best albums by any of the Gunners plus hangers-on. Axl Rose reportedly racked up at least $13 million in studio fees during the 14 years the album was under construction. The record debuted at No. 3 on the Billboard 200 when it finally did arrive in 2008. Sure, “Chinese Democracy” got slated, but expectations were impossibly high.

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