Duff McKagan Names His Favorite Guns N’ Roses Songs to Play in the ’80s + Today
There have been a few different eras of Guns N' Roses throughout the band's existence, with Duff McKagan being around for the first decade as well as the last few years. Thus, he's named his favorite GN'R songs to play back in the '80s, when he first rejoined in 2016 and now.
McKagan is part of Guns' classic Appetite for Destruction lineup, though he was technically preceded by late bassist Ole Beich, who was in the group for a short time. Aside from Axl Rose, McKagan was the last member of the Appetite lineup to leave the band in 1997, several years after Steven Adler, Izzy Stradlin and Slash all called it quits.
Over the next two decades, the rocker made a couple of appearances onstage with Rose and the different variations of the Chinese Democracy lineup, and he rejoined the group full-time with Slash in 2016. The duo have been back in the band ever since, have toured every year since then (yes, even in 2020) and even released a couple of songs.
So, which of the group's tracks are McKagan's favorite to play? During an interview with AXS TV, he made his picks for his favorite to play back in '87, when he rejoined in 2016 and today.
"My favorite song then [was] 'Rocket Queen,' just because we found this groove and we found all these cool connector parts that put that song together. Axl wrote a really cool lyric for it, and it became this soaring kind of song. Appetite was this little record we made that was gonna be for us and our friends and some rocker people that were into this," McKagan explained. "We were just going in and recording the songs that we wrote for ourselves and that some people in clubs really dug. So 'Rocket Queen' seemed this kind of next step, sort of next-level song, to me."
The bassist chose the epic Use Your Illusion I ballad "November Rain" as his favorite to play around 2016.
"It's just such a moment. Axl gets to sit down and you see all the lighters come out and Slash's solo is such a larger-than-life thing," he said, adding that now, "I do like playing the few new songs we have — 'Hard Skool' and 'Absurd' and 'The General' and 'Perhaps'."
Watch the full interview below.
Guns currently don't have any shows booked for 2024, which means it could be the first year they don't play a concert since the reunion kicked off in 2016. However, McKagan just released his third solo album Lighthouse in October, so there's a chance we could see him take those tracks out on the road.
Duff McKagan Names His Favorite Guns N' Roses Songs to Play in the '80s + Today
Every Song Guns N' Roses Have Played Since They Reunited in 2016
Gallery Credit: Lauryn Schaffner