HOME SOUNDcheck GOhear GOview GOread GOplaces DOmore


  » Contact Us
  » Advertise With Us

  » Classifieds
  » Newspaper Ads

Guns N' Roses' Slash talks pinball, touring, new music -- 5 Things to Know

By Gary Graff
ggraff@medianewsgroup.com, @GraffonMusic on Twitte

» See more SOUND CHECK

Guns N' Roses was unable to tour this year, like so many other bands.

But it's created a way for fans to still have a concert experience -- through pinball.

The brainchild of guitarist Slash in partnership with Jersey Jack Pinball, the three Not In This Lifetime machines are over-the-top affairs that feature all sorts of literal bells, whistles and power chords, as well as iconic imagery such as Slash's trademark top hat, 21 songs, live performance video, custom lighting and special effects. It's not cheap -- ranging from $6,750-$12,500 -- but Slash is confident the machines take GNR fans to "Paradise City" and back again...

• Slash (real name Saul Hudson) previously spearheaded a GNR pinball machine in 1994 but was, surprisingly, not a pinball obsessive until he was in his mid-20s. "When I was in junior high and high school, I went to arcades, yeah, I went to arcades but I never really got into pinball or video games. I was totally into guitar and focused on that. But somewhere in the very early 90s I suddenly rediscovered pinball and just got totally obsessed with it. Gilby (Clarke, fellow GNR guitarist) was a pinball player, too, and I remember he was really good at it so I got really turned on to the technique and gameplay and rules and how (stuff) works and levels and so on. In short order I went after doing that first Guns machine."

• Coming a bit later to the party, however, was a plus in terms of how Slash, 55, approached what the machines could do. "I think the reason why technology, for me, is sky's the limit is because I'm not limited to the old pinball machines or any of the limitations they had. I didn't have that much experience. So I just come up with ideas -- 'You can do this, right?' (laughs) As far as I was concerned, everything was possible."

• Working with designer Eric Meunier, Slash envisioned the Not In This Lifetime machines, named after GNR's 2016-19 global reunion tour, as a concert-like experience "that encapsulates the live tour experience. As soon as you plunge the ball there's songs and a light show that's unique to that song. From note one to the last note, everything that's happening during the game, visually, is unique to that song. So it's very much like a concert where you program the lights and certain highlights on the video screen, for that particular song. It's a total immersive experience."

• While his bands -- GNR and Slash & the Conspirators featuring Myles Kennedy -- have been sidelined from touring. the guitarist has been working on new material for both and is confident some of it will be released during 2021. "I'm just not good at slowing down and just sitting around. For the first month of the pandemic, when we were just getting knowledgeable about what we were dealing with, I spent a lot of time just hanging out with the missus and reading and doing stuff outside and just waiting to see what the next thing was that was gonna happen. But that only lasted for so long, and then I was like, 'I've got to get to work...'" Slash adds he's recorded for some other artists' projects and launched a new line of guitars with Gibson.

• Guns N' Roses does have dates booked for next summer in Europe and North America (including July 24 at Detroit's Comerica Park), as well as for the end of the year in Australia. "I know probably as much as anyone else. I would like to think there's enough time between now and then to be able to pull that off. We're hoping it can happen next summer, but it's hard to say. You can’t know for sure until the light at the end of the tunnel really starts shining, so we're just wishful thinking. We'll see what happens."

Guns N' Roses' Not In This Lifetime Pinball machines can be ordered via store.jerseyjackpinball.com.

Web Site: www.jerseyjackpinball.com

Send your thoughts and comments to Gary Graff


GO & DO Michigan, an Entertainment Portal
This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without the written permission of the copyright holder.

© Copyright MediaNews Group, Inc. | Terms of Use | Privacy Policy | Cookie Policy | Arbitration