GUNS N' ROSES singer Axl Rose — who is notorious for his late arrivals onstage — has reportedly agreed to pay a fine if his band shows up later than scheduled for its headlining appearance at this year's Rock In Rio festival, on Sunday, October 2 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
When GUNS N' ROSES last performed at Rock In Rio in 2001, the band turned up almost two hours late. Luckily, the crowd patiently waited for their idol to come on stage and didn't create any problems for the festival organizers.
Rock in Rio's vice president Roberta Medina tells Época, Globo's weekly news magazine, that GUNS N' ROSES' appearance at the 2011 event was "the hardest to arrange in the history of the festival." She admitted that no other artists performing at the festival have had a "late" clause included in their contracts. "Bands are usually on time, but GUNS is a different case," she said. "Latenesses like the one in 2001 one can make the audience feel uncomfortable and cause them to possibly start a riot."
In an August 2010 radio interview, former SKID ROW singer Sebastian Bach, a close personal friend of Axl Rose, offered an explanation for why the GUNS N' ROSES frontman is persistently late going on stage.
"Everybody has all these theories as to why he acts the way he acts, and there's no big mystery," Bach said. "He tells me the source of all of the insanity — it's his voice. It's his job to sing like that, and sometimes that sound is hard for him. And a lot of singers, you know... To sing in that range is just not an easy thing to do. And he does what he can, and it takes him 45 more minutes to warm up his pipes so he can sing 'Sweet Child O'Mine'."
In the band's only U.S. appearance of 2010, at the Sturgis Bike Rally in South Dakota, GUNS N' ROSES missed its 11:00 p.m. start time by nearly two hours — leading many attendees to either leave or throw things at the stage. A festival official later explained that the delay was apparently due to a technical issue and not Axl Rose's well-known tendency to start shows hours behind schedule.