Gilby Clarke says that he doesn't really care about the fact that he wasn't inducted into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame with GUNS N' ROSES.
Clarke replaced founding guitarist Izzy Stradlin in the GUNS lineup in 1991, during the "Use Your Illusion" tour, and stayed with the band for three years.
Clarke played with GUNS members Slash, Steven Adler, Matt Sorum and Duff McKagan at the band's Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame induction in April 2012, although he himself was not inducted as part of the group. McKagan, Slash, Adler, Sorum and Clarke performed three "Appetite For Destruction" songs with Myles Kennedy at the event.
Asked in a new interview with the "Appetite For Distortion" podcast if anyone should care about which musicians get inducted into the Rock Hall, Gilby said (hear audio below): "I'll tell you exactly how I feel. No, you shouldn't care about it. You should care about it like you care about going to Denny's. Seriously, there's no validity. And I'm not just saying that, because… You can honestly say — did I get burned? Yeah, I got burned. But it didn't matter to me at that time.
"When it went down, the whole GN'R [Rock Hall induction], I didn't even know about it until it was a done deal," Clarke revealed. "Matt had inside information, so he kind of got in there and got himself included, which, obviously, included Dizzy [Reed, keyboards] too. By the time it got to me, it was a done deal. And I didn't really care.
"Slash and I had a conversation about it. I said, 'Look, when you think of GUNS N' ROSES, you think of the five guys,' and so do I.' That's what it should be. But if you're gonna induct Dizzy and Matt, now I feel left out. I mean, yes, Matt and Dizzy made the '[Use Your] Illusion' records, and I would never take credit where credit wasn't due. But who fucking cares who gets in? It's not like anybody gets a dollar for it or whatever.
"My honest take on it is if you're inducting GUNS N' ROSES as GUNS N' ROSES, put all the guys that were in the band at that time — Bumblefoot and Richard [Fortus]; everybody," he added. "Who cares? It's not like we're getting money for it. But if you're gonna have a ceremony, yeah, maybe have Slash, Duff and a couple of the guys speak. But who cares?
"The thing is they've pretty much proven that they've gotten it wrong every time. I felt bad in the beginning when I found out Matt and Dizzy got inducted and I didn't. I was, like, 'Oh, man, it sucks to be left out.' But then I heard the [RED HOT] CHILI PEPPERS got inducted, but they didn't induct Dave Navarro. Dave Navarro played on some million-selling records. And then they inducted the GRATEFUL DEAD and inducted, like, a hundred people. And when those things happen, then it puts it in perspective. And I don't really give a flying fuck. It's not like I get anything for being in the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame. It's not like suddenly a hundred more people are gonna come to the show. It literally is a line somebody will say when I go do a TV show: 'Gilby Clarke, Rock And Roll Hall…' I don't think there's any real validity in it. I think some people hold it in high regard, but it literally is a select group of people making these decisions. And I don't know how qualified they are. I don't know if any of them have ever been in a van, if any of them have ever gotten paid to play a musical note.
"So, like I said, it's not a big deal to me, and it shouldn't be to everybody else."
After exiting GUNS N' ROSES, Clarke continued as a producer and solo artist, while also playing in ROCK STAR SUPERNOVA, HEART and other acts.
Gilby will release his first solo album in 15 years, "The Gospel Truth", later this year via Golden Robot Records.
Photo credit: Neil Zlozower