Update: Guns N' Riot - Axl Blames Promoter For Cancelled Show.

11-10-02 antiGUY
click here for the update

You can give him a new band but you can�t teach an old Axl new tricks. 

Perhaps Axl Rose has some deep subconscious animosity towards the GM Place in Vancouver? Back in 1993 Guns N� Roses cancelled their planned concert at the venue. Now almost 10 years later the new Guns N� Roses featuring Axl Rose were set to kick off their North American Tour at the Vancouver facility but Axl never showed up. 

Fans erupted after the planned Guns N� Roses concert was cancelled Thursday night (11/7) when Axl Rose failed to show up.  Thousands of angry fans waiting for the doors to open at the venue began rioting once it was announced that the return of Guns N� Roses wasn�t going to happen that night. Angry fans reportedly began smashing windows at the venue and police had to use pepper spray once a fan shot a roman candle at the officers. At the end of the night twelve people were arrested. 

Why Axl was a no-show still remains a mystery. Depending on who you ask, it could be that Axl�s chartered plane had some problems, or weather kept the original GNR frontman from reaching the Canadian city, or Axl was in town and was seen at a soundcheck but cancelled at the last minute for unknown reasons. At press time, the Associated press is quoting �a band spokesman� explaining that bad weather in Los Angeles held up Rose's flight to Vancouver and the band practiced without him Wednesday. (Since we are based about 30 miles south of LAX, antiMUSIC can report that the weather on the 7th and 8th was a bit overcast but it didn�t begin raining, and then only lightly, until the morning of the 9th, at least where we are located at.) The �band spokesperson� did tell AP that tonight�s show (11/8) at the Tacoma Dome in Washington state is still supposed to go on like planned. There are also press reports that the Vancouver show is supposed to be rescheduled, but promoters for that show, Clear Channel, have yet to issue a statement. 

Update: Axl Blames Promoter.

We have a little bit more info on the cancellation of last week�s GNR show. The story out of the GNR camp keeps changing but Axl called into a radio station on Friday to give his excuse for the show cancellation and he puts the blame entirely on the promoters shoulders. 

Here is what we were able to piece together from various reports on this story. 

Thousands of fans arrived at the venue that was supposed to open its doors at 6:30. However, it appears that the promoter or facility manager (depends on who is telling the story) held off on opening the doors because it looked like Axl was going to be a no show and that might have led to fans trashing the inside of the GM Palace when they found out that GNR wasn�t going to perform. 

The rest of the band was backstage at the venue the entire time waiting for their frontman to arrive. They had arrived in Vancouver in the days previous to the show but Axl decided to wait until the last minute to fly in for the performance. Then there was some kind of delay with Axl�s last minute plane flight and the promoter and/or facility manager didn�t know what was going on except that it didn�t look like Axl was going to show up for the gig. Axl claims that the facility manager said he wasn�t going to let fans into the venue until he had word that Axl was in the air and on his way but various reports state that the promoter was told at 7:30 that Axl�s plane had not left the ground in L.A., an hour after the doors were scheduled to open. Given Axl�s history of last minute cancellations and that fact that there was no hope of Axl arriving at the venue in time to take the stage at the planned 9:30 curtain call, if at all, at approximately 7:40 the promoter and/or facility manager decided at that time to officially pull the plug on the show instead of letting fans into the venue to wait for a show that might not happen. The cancellation was announced over the PA system and some angry fans reacted by rioting.  Axl claims that the rioting began before the announcement was made, but the Associated Press and other media outlets have reported that the rioting began after the announcement. So there is a lot of finger pointing going on with the promoter and or facility manager claiming that he was forced to pull the plug because it looked like Axl was a no show and Axl claiming that he was on the way and the show was cancelled prematurely. 

Where was Axl? 

Here is where things get a little murky. In various press reports, people from the GNR camp have stated that Axl was a no show for various reasons including mechanical problems with his chartered airplane or weather in Los Angeles. It all depends on who is saying what.  However, Axl did address the cancellation in his first radio interview in over 10 years. The GNR frontman surprised Ditch, the afternoon DJ at Seattle�s KISW, on Friday when he called into the station out of the blue in order to conduct an online interview. 

Here is part of the interview:

Q: Do you wanna address [what happened] last night [in Vancouver] at all?

Axl Rose: Sure. We were going to play a show and the plug got pulled on us. We were fully able to meet our commitments and we don't really understand what happened right now, why the show was pulled. We have a legal team looking into it, to get to the bottom of it, and then I'll have to sort out things about the people that bought tickets and things like that. But basically, the building manager just decided � in all of our opinion, prematurely � that the show was just cancelled. And he didn't discuss it with anyone. He just announced it over� We found out� My guys found out over the public address system.

Q: I had read that you were stuck in L.A. or something�

Axl Rose: I was in the air, I was in a plane on the way to the show. It gets complicated. The manager of the building said that the doors wouldn't open 'till he had confirmation that we were wheels up, that the plane was in the air. And as soon as he had that confirmation, he cancelled the show without telling anybody. And not only did he cancel the show, he cancelled the show and before this � I don't know if it was a riot or a disturbance, whatever � started, they had police at the airport trying to find out what was going on with me. So, it's all kind of screwy.

Who is to blame? 

That�s left up to the fans to decide. Some will blame the promoter for pulling the plug prematurely. Others will place the blame on Axl for waiting until the last minute to fly to the gig and forcing the promoter to pull the plug when it looked like he would pull one of his famous last minute cancellations or not show up at all. 

We know which side Axl loyalist are taking (read comments below) but less biased observers are asking, �Can you really blame the promoter for pulling the plug given Axl�s history and the screwed up circumstances surrounding this show and the ever changing story from the GNR camp?�  

The whole story may never be known, but with this story we do know that Axl is back and is continuing the controversial legacy of GNR! 

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