Born July 23, 1965, Slash released his first solo album, Slash, in 2010
Guns N’ Roses:
In 1985, Slash hooked up with frontman Axl Rose, guitarist Izzy Stradlin, bassist Duff McKagan and drummer Steven Adler to form Guns N’ Roses. Within three years, their debut, Appetite for Destruction, had gone platinum several times over, establishing GNR as one of the ‘80s most dynamic hard rock groups. Slash’s ferocious riffs and searing solos quickly became the band’s signature, and the group continued their winning streak with the release of the Use Your Illusion albums in 1991. But tension over the band’s direction eventually forced Slash to exit Guns N’ Roses in the mid-‘90s.
Around the time that signs of trouble started brewing within Guns N’ Roses, Slash dabbled with a side project called Slash’s Snakepit, which contained a few newer members from GNR (guitarist Gilby Clarke, drummer Matt Sorum) and a colleague from Alice in Chains (bassist Mike Inez), as well as vocalist Eric Dover.
The band released two albums that failed to come close to matching GNR’s commercial impact, 1995’s It’s Five O’Clock Somewhere and 2000’s Ain’t Life Grand (recorded with an entirely different lineup). The albums weren’t huge hits, but they did demonstrate Slash’s preference for classic arena rock.
Slash’s next major creative endeavor came with Velvet Revolver, a group that included GNR bandmates McKagan and Sorum, Wasted Youth guitarist Dave Kushner, and Stone Temple Pilots singer Scott Weiland. The band produced two old-school hard rock records, 2004’s Contraband and 2007’s Libertad. Both albums were well-received and produced some rock-radio hits, giving Slash a platform to show off the guitar tricks that made Appetite so memorable. But in 2008, tension between Weiland and the rest of the band caused the singer to exit the group, forcing Velvet Revolver to go on hiatus while they searched for a new frontman.
While Velvet Revolver auditioned new singers, Slash went to work on a solo album, recruiting different vocalists for separate tracks. On April 6, 2010, Slash hit stores, featuring cameos from Fergie, Chris Cornell, Ozzy Osbourne, and many, many others.