By Chesney Hearst, Senior Contributing Reporter
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – Legendary hard rock band Guns N’ Roses returns to Rio this week to play Barra da Tijuca’s HSBC Arena on Thursday, March 20th. Going for almost three decades, with six studio album releases that have sold over a hundred million copies worldwide, they are one of the highest selling bands of all time.
Currently touring Latin America for their South American Tour 2014, Guns N’ Roses will perform in Bolivia, Paraguay, Argentina and a total of nine cities in Brazil.
Rio is now the first stop on the tour after the recent cancellation of a show in Mexico City, Mexico on March 16th as part of that city’s “Hell & Heaven” festival.
Remaining shows in Brazil will include the cities of Belo Horizonte, Brasília, São Paulo, Curitiba, Florianópolis, Porto Alegre, Recife and Fortaleza.
Guns N’ Roses first came to Rio in 1991 as headliners for two nights of the Rock in Rio II festival. Those shows included early performances from the albums “Use Your Illusion I and II” which were released later that year and would go on to be certified multi-platinum (shipping over two million copies) by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) and nominated for a Grammy Award the following year.
The band returned to headline one night during Rock in Rio during 2001 and again in 2011 for Rock in Rio where they closed out that year’s festival as the last headliner of the seven-day music festival. Their last Rock in Rio performance generated complaints from some fans, who were left standing in the rain for an hour and a half waiting for Axl and company to take the stage after the weather delay.
Most seemed to warm back up to the band when they played their hits; “Welcome to the jungle”, “Mr. Brownstone” and “It’s So Easy”. All three are from their 1987 debut album Appetite for Destruction, a release that some consider to be among the best debut albums of all time. The album sold over eighteen million units and also included the hit songs “Sweet Child o’ Mine” and “Paradise City.”
Guns N’ Roses was formed in 1985 in Los Angeles, California, US with the famous Axl Rose as lead singer, Izzy Stradlin on rhythm guitar, Tracii Guns as lead guitarist, Ole Beich on bass, and Rob Gardner of L.A. Guns on drums. Before they were signed to Geffen Records in March of 1986, the bands lineup had changed to Rose, Stradlin and legendary guitarist Slash on lead, Duff McKagan on bass, and Steven Adler on drums.
Currently frontman Axl Rose is the only remaining Guns N’ Roses member from the original lineup. The other musicians on the current tour include; keyboardist Dizzy Reed, who joined the group in 1990; co-lead guitarists DJ Ashba and Ron “Bumblefoot” Thal, bassist Tommy Stinson, rhythm guitarist Richard Fortus, keyboardist Chris Pitman, and drummer Frank Ferrer.
With additional hits including: “Don’t Cry”,”November Rain” and famous covers including “Live and Let Die” originally by Paul McCartney & Wings and “Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door” originally by Bob Dylan, Thursday night’s show should be promising for the large Guns N’ Roses fanbase in the city.
What: Guns N’ Roses
When: Thursday, March 20th. Gates open at 8PM and show scheduled to begin at 10PM.
Where: HSBC Arena, Avenida Embaixador Abelardo Bueno, 3401 – Barra da Tijuca
Entrance: R$95-R$520. Available online; through the call center (21) 4003 1212; at the FNAC store in Barra; and at the HSBC box office.