Guns N' Roses

Interview: Guns N’ Roses – Dizzy Reed

Obviously the dynamic of the band has changed throughout the years and I know I’m going way back here for this question but when Chris [Pitman] joined in 1998, how did things change for you personally then?

I don’t think there was ever a situation where we said that we needed another keyboard player so let’s try out guys and hold some auditions. Chris had been around for the creative process and he added what he added to the music and it didn’t feel right going out without him there. Because he is who he is and I am who I am, that’s why we have two keyboard players in the band. My place was never threatened.

So how happy and secure is this current line-up? Are things as strong as they appear to be?

I think there is more strength in this line-up. I know happiness is relevant but we do still have our mix of good days and bad days but I love this new line-up. Well it’s not new so I love our current line-up, probably more than any of the other line-ups that we’ve had and I’m totally into it and hope that we can stay together for a long time, knock on wood.

When I was talking to DJ Ashba before, the future is something that he is really looking forward to with Guns N’ Roses. The key thing for him is to record a new album because he is of course performing guitar parts as written by someone else and he wants to put his own personal stamp on the band’s music. He mentioned that you have all, as a band, spoken about the future and also a future release so what’s your current position on the future and progressing with Guns N’ Roses?

Well between the six or seven or eight of us, we all live in different cities so it is really hard for us just to sit down and get to work [laughs] but now that we’re altogether out here for a couple of months then that is something that will come up hopefully. I’m always into trying out new material and recording new stuff. I’ve worked with DJ a little bit in the studio off and on here and there and I’m always recording stuff, ready to play it for people to get their take and their spin on it. I know everyone else is the same boat, I think we all have something set aside or maybe everything set aside for Guns N’ Roses so when it happens it will happen.

So new music isn’t the band’s number one priority right now for the future?

I think our priority right now is the tour and giving people the best, most kick ass show they can get every night.

On your mention that you’re always recording and have some things aside, you are working on your solo album.

Yes that is true. It’s actually something I started tracking probably four years ago, so before it gets into ‘Chinese Democracy’ sort of territory I’ve got ten years [laughs]. Just between touring constantly with Guns N’ Roses and when I’m not touring with Guns N’ Roses I’ve done some other things and I’ve actually been out playing the songs that I’ve recorded around America. Right now the whole process is at the stage where I want to get some good mixes of the songs. Once I have a good solid month or two off that’s going to happen and then it will be done for everyone to hear. It will be about twelve songs.

Will it be a rock record or will you be doing something different?

It’s definitely a rock record. All the guys who are in Guns now have at least performed on one song and Richard Fortus, my dear friend, played on a lot of songs.

Dizzy Reed PictureAnd you have actually written a song with Ricky Warwick is that correct?

Yes, one of the songs was co-written by Ricky Warwick who of course sings for Thin Lizzy now. He co-wrote one song with Del James and myself and then he played on another song. There are just all kinds of great musicians from all around LA who appear on it. It’s really exciting. I just can’t wait to get into the studio and work on the proper mix now and then get it out.

What’s your release date hopes for it?

This year would be great but I hate to set deadlines for myself and as you know, some records can take a really long time to come out [laughs]. Just happens for some reason in my life, I don’t know why that is [laughs].

Are you doing all of the lead vocals on the record or is that being handled by someone else?

I do all of the lead vocals. It’s just something that I wanted to do and get out of my hair basically. It has been something that has been sitting around for a long time and a lot of people have heard the demos of what I have done and they all told me that I should record it for real and put it out there so I am. Del James came to me with an opportunity and we found a studio and everything just seemed right with that as we were able to get some great performances. I went in there and sang my heart out as they say.

What actually happened to your cover band Hookers N’ Blow as I know you had been doing that for quite a number of years?

Well I started Hookers N’ Blow in about 2003 after some guys had come up to me with some opportunities to go do some shows in the East Coast of America. They wanted to call it The Dizzy Reed Band and I said I’ll do it but it has to be fun, I don’t want it to be a real band so let’s just call it Hookers N’ Blow and it just started off like that. So many people were in and out of that band because it was all built around whoever was available but we were never a real band. It got to the point that we just tried to see what the fuck we could get away with and we were really great at getting away with a whole lot [laughs] but still putting on a good show. We would play frat parties and then we would play clubs in between, it was that kind of environment. I mean I was on the back lawn of a frat house in Princeton University doing beer bongs and I’m thinking ‘my god I’m forty years old, this is ridiculous’ but it was fun and we did it. Eventually some of the guys started to take it too seriously so I had to disband it before it self-destructed. There were guys who were quitting a band that wasn’t a band, you can’t quit when it’s not a real band and something that doesn’t exist [laughs]. I had a bunch of girls claiming that they broke up the band but they couldn’t break us up because we were never a band. It just got out of hand. Last year a friend of mine, a promoter in LA, asked if Hookers N’ Blow would play at his wedding [laughs], just kind of out there. So they had a big wedding reception at a club called Brixton at Redondo Beach and we got back together just for that and we called it our reunion break-up show. That was definitely the last Hookers N’ Blow show that there will ever be but we still have some t-shirts available which are great, I came up with the design myself and it’s cocaine font and you can’t get them anywhere except the website (website is no longer online).

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Guns N’ Roses are two dates into their UK tour with five remaining. Be sure to check out the band on the following dates:

23 May Newcastle Metro
25 May Glasgow SECC
26 May Birmingham LG Arena
29 May Manchester Arena
31 May London The O2

Tickets are available from AEG Live.

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Michael is the owner and creator of EspyRock. He is your general all round geek; sports fan; TV show fanatic. You can find him sharing his thoughts on his personal Twitter account. Contact Michael on Twitter or via Email.

2 Responses to “Interview: Guns N’ Roses – Dizzy Reed”

  1. What an amazing post…

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