I thought I would never see Guns N’ Roses in concert and today I am ecstatic to say that I thought wrong.
Thursday night, or more accurately, early yesterday’s morning, there was rock & roll, fire, detonations, and LOTS of great music.
Axl Rose finished his “South America” Tour here in Puerto Rico in his second presentation following the pre-Chinese Democracy Tour in 2006. He came with guitarists Ron “Bumblefoot” Thal, DJ Ashba and Richard Fortus, bassist and backing vocalist Tommy Stinson, drummer Frank Ferrer and keyboardists and backing vocalists Dizzy Reed and Chris Pitman to rock the Puerto Rican audience. To formally open the concert Sebastian Bach came out to wake people up from the slomber we had after waiting four hours and having heard a local band, Puya, that most of the public didn’t care about given the diference in music genres between them and the main band. What was anyone thinking when they chose them, I have no idea, but I’m not ashamed to say I yelled that I wanted them gone from my presence. Preferebly forever.
The concert began late. Very late. Too late, one might say, but for someone like me who 1) has waited for this concert forever and 2) knew that they had been delayed in every single concert in the tour, it was irrational to be surprised. Instead I dedicated myself to be anxious and too exited about being so close to the stage, oh, because I was CLOSE to the stage, I mean, when the fire in the stage lit up, I felt the warmth. When DJ Ashba (the man that I wanted to give my children to for the length of the concert) had his cigarete lit up I smelled it, when he spit up (well, what did you expect from a rock star?) it almost reached us. Almost. I didn’t had the experience of being touched by rock star spit, I don’t know if this is the way I’m gonna tell it to my grandkids.
Anyway, I was so anxious that I had to go pee three times. I had never, in my life, used a dirty bathroom that many times in the same place. It wasn’t horribly dirty but it was dirty enough that I wished I had stuck the concert shirt I bought outside (which by the way is a sign of how much I wanted to be in this concert, I NEVER buy the shirt) inside my purse so I could change into fresh clothes.
After Sebastian waved his fabulous hair in every direction possible there was a break in which I got dizzy and felt short of breath as if I was going to sing, but it was because my brain worked on every crazy theory for possible reasons why I was not going to see Axl Rose singing, the number one being that he was not there but in some beach drinking mojitos and someone was going to come out and say this any second.
But then the lights when out, we heard the first sounds of a guitar and almost immediately there was a huge explosion and lights, I almost fell and was blinded for a milisecond and there they were, all of them with their tatooed magic. Axl Rose was there.
This is the set list of the concert:
(how freaking clever is that website? Thank you setlistfm!), number 19, as in the day I was born, Don’t Cry was obviously sung for me and me alone, and so Rose sang most of it right in front of me.
Live and Let Die, November Rain, Street of Dreams, Patience, Welcome to the Jungle, Knocking on Heaven’s Door and OF COURSE Sweet Child O’ Mine were particularly fantastic but that’s no surprise given that the musicians in that band are amazing. All the solos were spectacular, I am partial to DJ Ashba’s because he came out with a stunningly beautiful guitar (covered in what I assume are black swarovskis) and I think that by then his shirt was off. I kid! The dude is a guitar genious. I would say this even if he had been covered from head to toe and I couldn’t see his sexy. I almost died when he began Sweet Child O’ Mine, that songs ranks top three in my favorite list.
I loved Bumblefoot’s solo, he begun with the Pink Panther’s iconic melody, it was awesome. And Rose had his moment, in front of precious piano (also covered in some sort of diamond-like stones) he serenaded us for a while before doing November Rain.
Frank Ferrer kissed the stage’s floor and Puerto Rico gave him the loudest cheer when he did that. He had played Robi Draco Rosa’s concert here, we remember our drummers with love.
During the concert (and the waiting) I changed places to sit three times, two of them exchanging my chair for the floor and that’s where I saw most of the concert. I said hi to the guy that ended up beside me and he said hi back and then we added each other to our facebooks. Because by the way, that’s what people did during the concert, update their facebook’s status and twitter and upload videos and photos to websites. Freaking internet has corrupted our lives! Forever! I was very happy when I saw about five lighters in the crowd lighted up in the slow songs, it was nostalgic and nice.
Too soon the show was over, not before Rose and Bach thanked ALL THE CREWS for the whole tour’s work, and us for sharing the final night with them. I walked back to my car, took off my boots and collapsed in the steering wheel screaming.
That concert was amazing.