Use Your Illusion Tour
|Use Your Illusion Tour|
|World tour by Guns N' Roses|
|Location||America, Europe, Australia, Asia|
|Associated album||Use Your Illusion I
Use Your Illusion II
|Start date||January 20, 1991|
|End date||July 17, 1993|
|Guns N' Roses concert chronology|
The Use Your Illusion Tour was a concert tour by the rock band Guns N' Roses which ran from January 20, 1991 to July 17, 1993. It was not only the band's longest tour, but one of the longest concert tours in rock history, consisting of 194 shows in 31 countries. It was also a source of much infamy for the band, due to riots, late starts, cancellations and outspoken rantings by Axl Rose.
The Use Your Illusion Tour was a promotional tour for the albums Use Your Illusion I and Use Your Illusion II. The tour started on May 24, 1991, approximately when the long-awaited follow-up to G N' R Lies was to be released, and ended over two years later. The release date of the album, or albums, since there were now two of them, was pushed back to September but the tour began as originally scheduled. The tour marked a high point in the popularity of Guns N' Roses, with a total of over 7 million fans attending, and accompanied by high worldwide album sales.
Live recordings from the tour would later be issued as a two video/DVD set, Use Your Illusion I and II, featuring footage from a 1992 concert in Tokyo, Japan and would also provide content for the 2-disc set Live Era: '87-'93. The tour also provided a large volume of footage for music videos, including "Dead Horse" and their popular cover of Paul McCartney's "Live and Let Die". Also, at one time, footage of much of the tour was to be released as a documentary, titled The Perfect Crime. The footage consisted of Guns N' Roses' time on the road, concert footage, and information about the riots and other major events of the tour. It was never released and never spoken about after the tour. Slash mentioned in his biography that Axl is in control of the footage, and that Slash would be interested in viewing it, as he thought it captured some "killer moments" from the tour.
The conduct of the band, and particularly Axl Rose, during the Use Your Illusion Tour generated negative press, notably from the magazines Spin, Kerrang!, Circus, and Hit Parader. These magazines were mentioned in the song "Get in the Ring" where Axl Rose attacked writers who had written negative articles dealing with Rose's attitude.
The shows were all varied, as a set list was never chosen by the band. They did, however, usually open with "Welcome to the Jungle", "It's So Easy", "Nightrain", "Right Next Door to Hell" or "Perfect Crime" and would shortly after one another play "Mr. Brownstone" or "Live and Let Die", and closed with "Paradise City". Each show featured many guitar solos from Slash and a drum solo from drummer Matt Sorum, usually 6 minutes in length.
The Use Your Illusion Tour was massive not just in the number and size of performances, but also in its technical aspects and the size of the crew. A total of 80 working personnel traveled with the band during the tour. The trade magazine Performance named the tour crew "Crew of the Year" for 1991.
At the June 10, 1991 show, at Saratoga Performing Arts Center, Axl requested that the crowd shout "Get In The Ring!" over and over again, as it was being recorded for the new album. This chanting was used in the song by the same name on Use Your Illusion II.
On June 13, 1991, during the show in Philadelphia, Axl Rose erupted after a fan had gotten into a fight with Guns N' Roses' photographer Robert John when the fan kicked the camera out of his hands. Axl cursed out the fan, and challenged him to a fight. After the fan was ejected from the concert, the show continued.
On Tuesday, July 2, 1991, at a show at the Riverport Amphitheatre in Maryland Heights, Missouri, Axl spotted a spectator recording the concert with a video camera, and jumped into the audience after him when concert security failed to respond to Rose's request to apprehend the man. After returning to the stage, Axl replied: "Well, thanks to the lame ass security, I'm going home!" then slammed the mic on the stage, sparking the infamous Riverport riot. Axl then stormed off the stage; some people thought when he slammed the mic, because of the noise, that he shot someone. Slash told them, "He just slammed his mic on the floor. We're outta here." He then proceeded to flip off the crowd and follow Axl. The band followed. The band was looking to come back out and finish the show, but as the police and security were trying to calm down the audience, a riot broke out. The footage was captured by Robert John who was documenting the entire tour. Sixty fans were injured. The band lost most of their equipment and Axl was charged with inciting a riot. He was acquitted due to lack of evidence.
On November 7, 1991, rhythm guitarist Izzy Stradlin quit the band after the release of Use Your Illusion I and Use Your Illusion II, his last show was on August 31, 1991 at Wembley Stadium, on December 5 replacement rhythm guitarist Gilby Clarke made his debut in Worcester, it was the first show after the release of Use Your Illusion I and Use Your Illusion II.
On April 13 and 14, 1992, two concerts had to be canceled when a warrant was issued for Axl's arrest due to the St. Louis show.
On April 20, 1992, the band performed at the Freddie Mercury Tribute Concert, an effort for AIDS Awareness in London. Guns N' Roses were a controversial addition to the lineup, as many in the gay community were still angry over Axl using a gay slur in the song "One in a Million." The band opened with "Paradise City" and closed with "Knockin' on Heaven's Door." During the famous "Paradise City" opening, Axl pointed at a group of protesters in the audience and yelled "SHOVE IT!"[clarification needed] He had planned to address the controversy between songs, but was asked not to by the band as it would pull the spotlight from Queen and Freddie Mercury. As Slash concluded a short cover of Alice Cooper's "Only Women Bleed," bassist Duff McKagan kept an eye on Axl, who approached the front of the stage. When Slash finished the song, then strummed the beginning of "Knockin' on Heaven's Door," Duff walked over to Axl and shook his hand as an act of appreciation. Later in the show, Slash joined Joe Elliott of Def Leppard and the surviving members of Queen for "Tie Your Mother Down." Axl sang "We Will Rock You" and finished "Bohemian Rhapsody" with Elton John and Queen. The show was broadcast live around the world via satellite, gathering the largest audience for a music concert in history.
On August 8, 1992, in Montreal, Quebec during the famously troubled GNR-Metallica Stadium Tour portion, Metallica frontman/guitarist James Hetfield's left arm was badly burned due to misunderstanding about some new pyrotechnics added to Metallica's stage setup. Metallica was forced to end their set early. However, the band was not present at the arena to begin before the scheduled time leaving fans to wait several hours before Guns N' Roses finally took the stage. A few songs into the very late Guns N' Roses' set, audio problems resulted in the band not being able to hear themselves play and Axl stormed off stage due to vocal issues, sparking a huge riot that spilled into the streets.
On November 25, 1992, the band performed in Caracas, Venezuela, in front of a crowd of 45,000. Just two days later, the Venezuela Air Force launched a failed military coup, making it impossible for half of the band's crew and all of their equipment to leave the country.
On November 30, 1992, the band performed for the first time in Bogotá, Colombia. When they started to play "November Rain", a soft rain fell over the city and stopped right after they finished the song. Axl later stated this was a special moment for him because "November Rain" was #1 in Colombia for 60 weeks. Axl stated that the band were at risk of electrocution and must stop to dry the stage. The band moved backstage and returned to finish with "Don't Cry" and "Paradise City."
On December 2, 1992, the band performed in Santiago, Chile at Estadio Nacional in front of 85,535 people, breaking an attendance record in the stadium. At their arriving at Chile Axl attacked some graphic reporters and a camera man was injured. Before the concert, Axl got drunk and arrived at the stadium two hours later. While the band performed "Civil War" some people threw bottles to the stage, and Axl stopped the show for four minutes. The concert ended with 50 people arrested outside the stadium, and a teenage fan with several injuries, dying two days later.
On July 17, 1993, the band performed in Buenos Aires, Argentina at River Plate Stadium in front of 80,000 people. It was their last show with most of the Use Your Illusion-era lineup (Axl Rose, Slash, Duff McKagan, Matt Sorum, Dizzy Reed and Gilby Clarke). The tour was renamed the "Skin N' Bones Tour" for the last couple of legs and was a variation of the Use Your Illusion Tour, which included an unplugged performance in a living room set. A highlight of the night was Cozy Powell dressed as a Domino's Pizza delivery boy playing drums with Sorum.
- Guns N' Roses
- W. Axl Rose – lead vocals, piano, whistle, whistling, acoustic guitar, tambourine, backing vocals
- Slash – lead guitar, acoustic guitar, backing vocals, talkbox, slide guitar
- Izzy Stradlin – rhythm guitar, backing vocals, acoustic guitar, lead vocals (1991; 1993 - five shows)
- Duff McKagan – bass, backing vocals, lead vocals, drum
- Matt Sorum – drums, percussion, backing vocals, drum
- Dizzy Reed – keyboards, piano, backing vocals, percussion, organ, tambourine
- Gilby Clarke – rhythm guitar, backing vocals, drum (1991–1993)
- Touring musicians
- Teddy Andreadis – keyboards, backing vocals, harmonica, tambourine (1992–1993)
- Roberta Freeman – backing vocals, tambourine (1992–1993)
- Traci Amos – backing vocals, tambourine (1992–1993)
- Diane Jones – backing vocals (1992 - nine shows)
- Cece Worrall – horns (1992–1993)
- Anne King – horns (1992–1993)
- Lisa Maxwell – horns (1992–1993)
- Additional musicians
- Shannon Hoon
- Sebastian Bach
- Lenny Kravitz (June 6, 1992)
- Steven Tyler (June 6, 1992)
- Joe Perry (June 6, 1992)
- Brian May (June 13, 1992)
- Ronnie Wood (January 15, 1993)
- Michael Monroe (May 30, 1993)
- Tyranny of Time
- Raging Slab
- Faith No More
- Skid Row
- Smashing Pumpkins
- My Little Funhouse
- Blind Melon
- El Conde del Guacharo
- Estadio El Campín
- Nine Inch Nails
- Brian May (some shows with his band)
- Body Count
- Pearls & Swine
- Rose Tattoo
- The Cult
- Soul Asylum
- Suicidal Tendencies
- Red Fun
From Appetite for Destruction:
- "Welcome to the Jungle"
- "It's So Easy"
- "Out ta Get Me"
- "Mr. Brownstone"
- "Paradise City"
- "My Michelle"
- "Sweet Child o' Mine"
- "You're Crazy"
- "Rocket Queen"
From G N' R Lies:
- "Reckless Life"
- "Nice Boys"
- "Move to the City"
- "Mama Kin/Train Kept A-Rollin'" (with Steven Tyler and Joe Perry of Aerosmith)
- "Used to Love Her"
- "You're Crazy" (Acoustic)
From Use Your Illusion I:
- "Right Next Door To Hell"
- "Dust N' Bones"
- "Live and Let Die"
- "Don't Cry" (Original)
- "Perfect Crime"
- "You Ain't the First"
- "Bad Obsession"
- "Back Off Bitch"
- "Double Talkin' Jive"
- "November Rain"
- "The Garden"
- "Garden Of Eden"
- "Bad Apples"
- "Dead Horse"
From Use Your Illusion II:
- "Civil War"
- "14 Years"
- "Knockin' on Heaven's Door"
- "Get in the Ring" (Chant only)
- "Pretty Tied Up"
- "So Fine"
- "You Could Be Mine"
- "Don't Cry" (Alt. Lyrics)
- "Since I Don't Have You" (Intro)
Other commonly performed songs:
- "It's Alright" (Black Sabbath cover)
- "Wild Horses" (The Rolling Stones cover)
- "Dead Flowers" (The Rolling Stones cover)
- "Always on the Run" (Lenny Kravitz cover) (with Lenny Kravitz)
- "Theme From the Godfather" (Nino Rota cover) (Guitar Solo)
- "Imagine" (John Lennon cover) (Intro)
- "Dust In The Wind" (Todd Rundgren cover) (Intro)
- "It Tastes Good, Don't It?" (Unreleased original) (played during Rocket Queen)
- "I Was Only Joking" (Rod Stewart cover) (Intro)
- "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds" (The Beatles cover) (Intro)
- "Only Women Bleed" (Alice Cooper cover) (Intro)
- "Mother" (Pink Floyd cover) (Intro)
- "Pinball Wizard" (The Who cover) (Intro)
- "The One" (Elton John cover) (Intro)
- "One" (U2 cover) (Intro)
- "Sail Away Sweet Sister" (Queen cover) (Intro)
- "Bad Time" (Grand Funk Railroad cover) (Intro)
- "Let It Be" (The Beatles cover) (Guitar Solo)
- "Guns N' Roses on SlashParadise". www.slashparadise.com. February 12, 2013.
- Bozza, Anthony, & Slash (2007). Slash. Harper Entertainment: New York. p. 372
- Bozza, Anthony, & Slash (2007). Slash. Harper Entertainment: New York. p. 342
- "Guns N' Roses Tour 1991-1992 on SlashParadise". www.slashparadise.com. November 26, 2012.
- "Guns N' Roses Tour 1993 on SlashParadise". www.slashparadise.com. November 26, 2012.
- 03/17/93 Boston, MA
- 06/07/91 CNE Grandstand, Toronto, Canada http://www.gnrontour.com/setlistalm91.htm
- In depth info and tour diary
- Causes and the riot itself
- Review of Riot Concert Bootleg DVD