Robert Collins of The Jewish Chronicle recently conducted an interview with former GUNS N' ROSES and current ADLER'S APPETITE drummer Steven Adler. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.
On his two-decade-long heroin and crack cocaine addiction:
Adler: "I tried killing myself. It is not easy! A human body can put up with a lot. I had a stroke, a mild heart attack and I was in a coma for four days - all at once. My doctor said I would be brain dead or lose the left side of my body. I was blessed because I can still play drums and I didn't lose my brain. Not completely anyway. I lost a lot of my speech. I'm 46 now. Most of the people I knew when I was growing up didn't make it past their 20s. I beat myself up for 30 years and I came out of it semi-OK, so at least I've got that going for me."
On GUNS N' ROSES' success and his subsequent dismissal from the band in July 1990 due to his excessive drug use:
Adler: "I always knew I was going to be successful. And I never doubted we were going to be huge. I wasn't expecting to get kicked out of the band. I was just doing the same drugs that the other guys were doing. Growing up, you didn't read about the throwing up blood, the ODs, the not being able to get on stage. Taking drugs was what I thought I was supposed to do, and that's what I wanted to do."
On his 2010 autobiography, "My Appetite For Destruction: Sex & Drugs & Guns N' Roses":
Adler: "Writing the book was emotionally, physically, mentally and spiritually healing. I got to put everything in my life on paper. At the beginning of the book I talked about hanging out in nightclubs as a teenager and getting sexually abused by older men. I thought that if I said those words out loud I would feel worse and people would think bad of me. It was the complete opposite. It was like a huge weight was lifted off of me. Now the setbacks are behind me and it's my opportunity to move forward."
On his new band, ADLER'S APPETITE, which plays old favorites from GUNS N' ROSES' heyday, paired with a few new tracks:
Adler: "When I'm on stage playing with my new band it totally reminds me of back in the day playing clubs on Sunset Strip. And the new songs go over just as great as the GN'R songs. Every night we think, 'God help whoever has to open up for us.' We don't care if we play for two or 2,000 or 200,000 people, you're going to get the same thing."
On being moved when people tell him how his old band changed their lives:
Adler: "Why do you think we were so successful? Because it was the five of us. We had something special. We had a bond. No matter how much bullshit there's been all these years, there's one thing that Axl [Rose] and his lawyers can never take away, and that's that we were five brothers who achieved the goals we had since before we were teenagers. And what do brothers do best? They fight with each other! I don't hate them now. My wounds are healed. It's a shame that Axl and Slash won't talk. Every day they don't talk is a day that magic isn't being created. Even if we just did one tour, one record, one song together, the gods want to hear it."
On why he thinks a reunion of GUNS N' ROSES' classic lineup should happen:
Adler: "There's all the love I receive around the world. I have heard 'Appetite For Destruction' is the soundtrack to my life' in so many languages. And there's the money we could make. The whole thing could make billions of dollars. All we have to do is get on stage with each other for 90 minutes. And I want to finish what I started. Thank God for putting these jackasses in my life."
Read the entire interview from The Jewish Chronicle.