Re: LA Weekly Izzy article
No interview with him, just long article..
Re: LA Weekly Izzy article
That's a really interesting article, as the writer nicely illustrates how Izzy has quietly ascended into an almost Bill Murray-ish level of unbothered stardom. I like how he characterizes is as "The Man in Black" of his own generation.
On May 13, 1986, at Raji’s, a rock club in Hollywood, Circle Jerks singer Keith Morris saw both firsthand: “My friend’s girlfriend was drunk at the front of the stage, heckling Axl. So he clocked her over with a mic stand. Which is when my friends decided to jump the stage and tear into members of the band.” Morris remembers Izzy ducking out of the room, just as Axl was kicking someone. “Izzy saw the train coming and quietly left.”
You're Crazy was premiered at that show, apparently.
And think about it - Axl hits an audience member with a mic stand, punters climb up and he ends up kicking people. What happened in St. Louis five years later was tame in comparison, only the aftermath was bigger.
The article also goes to say Izzy had a bigger part to play in the early days than what is generally acknowledged, even among the hardcores.
When it came to songwriting, the early dynamic was as follows: Izzy would write the basic structure of the song. Axl would add lyrics and vocal melodies (he'd also write on the piano). Duff and Adler added the backbone. Slash, the best musician out of the five, would add the finger-licking guitar parts. Not always in that order, but that’s how they did it prior to the fractured recording process of Use Your Illusion.
According ex-Hollywood Rose bassist Steve Darrow, Izzy was even the band’s stylist: “He had us meet up at his place, then fix up everybody’s hair and makeup before anyone left the room. Axl, too.” His entrepreneurial bent was the backbone of GNR. Then Axl turned the small business into a multinational corporation.
“Izzy was the mastermind. In the beginning, it was all him,” says Chris Weber. “Axl assumed that role later on.”
“It just got to the point that Axl, he was going to run the show," Izzy told the Lafayette Journal & Courier in 1993. "He was going to run Guns N’ Roses. I just decided I wasn’t going to be a part of it.”
To those who know him — or knew him, since they haven't seen him in years — Izzy's rejection of the GNR reunion is a very public way for him to reclaim his legacy, while at the same time, maintaining an unscheduled life. Izzy was once the band's Godfather, and he wants fans to remember him that way, not as the hired hand he became in later years.
Add in the fact that Axl and Izzy were Bill and Jeffrey, high school chums in Lafayette. They even attended the same arts class. Their erstwhile teacher remembers a particular day when the boys had trouble keeping with the programme.
“They were combing opposing elements into a beautiful whole,” she tells me over the phone. “The whole, it’s funny now that I think about it, was a skull-like figure with guns and roses.”
Following their art class collaboration, the two boys began silkscreening their design onto plain white T-shirts, a logo for some future punk band.
Roots run deep in Lafayette.