Before Guns N’ Roses, Slash Failed an Audition for Poison

Slash by Scott Penner (via Wikipedia)
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Most hair metal bands probably knew their days were numbered the minute that Guns N’ Roses stepped onto the streets of LA.

Even though the likes of Winger and Warrant were still big names around the turn of the decade, there was no way you could go from some of the glammiest of the glam when you had songs like “Paradise City” and “Welcome to the Jungle” blasting all over the radio.

GNR was meant to be the antithesis of everything that the LA scene was supposed to be, but that didn’t mean that some of the guys didn’t try their hand at the whole glam thing.

Before the classic lineup of Guns got together, Slash talked about going to a few auditions for glam bands, one of which turned out to be Poison.

After their original guitarist Matt Smith decided to leave his bandmates behind, Slash got referred over, only to really not fit with the rest of the band’s image when he got there.

Recalling the day, Slash said “I showed up to the audition wearing my typical uniform: jeans, T-shirts, and that day a pair of really cool moccasins that I stole from a farmer’s marker…they called me back for a second audition and I remember Bobby Dall asking me ‘So like what do you wear? You don’t wear those shoes onstage, do you?”

Despite apparently playing the songs really well, Slash saw that the writing was on the wall that he wasn’t the guy, saying “I was one of three that they were deciding on, and I saw another guy at the callback that day.

He had platinum blonde hair, a sparkly white leather jacket, and full makeup, complete with frosted pink lipstick. I got one look at him on the way out and knew that he’d get the gig. It was CC {Deville}.”

Slash might have thrown away one of his chances that day, but even he admitted that he was never one to look at the glam thing, saying in a documentary after the fact:

“A lot of those bands didn’t have that much substance and so they would only last for so long. There was definitely a glam influence, but it was more about Marc Bolan than Bay City Rollers. We thought of the LA glam scene as just a bunch of posers.

They just weren’t genuine so we were kind of the antithesis of that.” Slash might have been right in the eye of the storm at the time, but he probably didn’t realize that GNR would become the giant that killed the high heeled beast of hair metal.

You can hear more about how it all went down from Poison frontman Bret Michaels himself below: