By Fiona Hurrell, Senior Contributing Reporter
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – Renowned rock musician and songwriter Saul Hudson, better known by his stage name Slash of Guns N’ Roses, begins the South American leg of his world tour with a performance in Rio on Friday, November 2nd. The artist will be showcasing material from his latest solo album Apocalyptic Love at Lapa’s Fundição Progresso.
Apocalyptic Love is the name of Slash’s second solo album following on from the success of his self-named debut album, Slash. Unlike his first album, which features a number of popular musicians including Ozzy Osborne, Fergie of The Black eyed Peas and Adam Levine, Apocalyptic Love is predominantly a collaboration with singer/songwriter Myles Kennedy.
The material has been described as ‘heavy’ with a deep meaning behind the lyrics referring to Kennedy’s past battles with drug addiction. The album was proclaimed a hit by radio stations in America and Canada on its release in May of this year, reinforcing Slash as a successful solo artist; a far cry from his humble beginnings in England.
Saul Hudson was born in London to an Afro-American mother and British father. When he was five years old, he and his father joined his mother in L.A. where she was working as a costume designer for musicians such as David Bowie. Her profession allowed the young Slash unbarred access into the world of stardom.
After several unsuccessful attempts at cracking the music industry, Slash eventually found fame with rock band Guns N’ Roses who are responsible for a number of hit songs including “Welcome to the Jungle” and “Sweet Child O Mine”.
Slash’s guitar solo in “Sweet Child O’ Mine” won him international recognition and he was credited as Time magazine’s runner up out of a survey of the Top 10 best guitar players in the world. Australian expatriate and guitar enthusiast in Rio, Mike Emery, is a fan of Slash, stating, “Slash is a street smart, riff master who has it all; sound, image, talent and a great hat! He’s the last of the big stadium rock guitar icons in America. He can still burn up a guitar solo and has the attitude and looks to deliver a genuine dose of rock & roll”
Having established himself as an Eighties and Nineties Rock icon, along with fellow Guns N’ Roses front-man Axl Rose, Slash eventually left the band amidst rumors of a tumultuous relationship with Rose.
Mary Byker, a British expatriate living in Rio and owner of Mekong restaurant – as well as front-man for the band Pop Will Eat Itself – felt the decision to leave the band was the right one. “Slash is a great guitarist, no nonsense rock and roll, stayed true to his game. [He] sensibly bailed out of Guns & Roses because Axl Rose’s ego spiraled out of control.”
Following his departure, Slash committed himself to his lesser known band Slash’s Snakepit for whom he wrote material originally intended for Guns N’ Roses.
In 2002, Slash and other ex-members of Gun’s N’ Roses formed a new band after reconnecting at a tribute concert. They named themselves Velvet Revolver and went on to perform several concerts later releasing a hit single “Set me Free”.
The band was eventually put on hiatus in 2008 after a series of unsuccessful attempts at finding a suitable lead singer. In the meantime Slash has established himself as a respected solo artist and with his current world tour already a roaring success, his career looks bound to rocket.
With Rio being the first location on his list of South American shows, the Fundição Progresso provides the perfect venue. Having previously hosted performances by Marilyn Manson and Franz Ferdinand the renovated factory building, complete with Iron objects from the 1970s, lends the right atmosphere to modern music shows.
Doors open at 9:30 PM at Fundição Progresso on Rua dos Arcos in Lapa. Tickets can be purchased at www.ticketbrasil.com.br/show/slash-rj or from the box office kiosk at Fundição Progresso.