Slash – Guitar God Profile

By on 09/26/2014
  • Born: July 23, 1965
  • The world may know the former Guns N’ Roses Guitar God as Slash, but he was born with the unassuming name of Saul Hudson, a London-born, critically-acclaimed and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee who’s worked with the top names in music like Michael Jackson. He’s also founded bands of his own and released three solo albums so far, making him one of the most prolific musicians in rock.
  • Originally, Slash started out as a bass player because his friend Steven Adler took up lead guitarist duties. It was the Rolling Stones song “Brown Sugar” which ultimately set him on the path to being who he is now, after hearing his teacher Robert Wolin play it at school. Slash was into BMX biking at the time, but he traded that to take up guitar full-time, thanks to bands like Cream and Led Zeppelin. He cites Jimmy Page as one of his greatest inspirations.
  • By the 80s, Slash was playing with Tiuds Sloan and then moved on to another group called Road Crew with Adler (as a drummer this time). Soon enough, he recruited Duff McKagan while Adler eventually left the group. After that, the remnants of Slash’s unrealized band would form the other half what would become Guns N’ Roses just a few years later. At the time, Axl Rose and Izzy Stradlin were playing with a band called Hollywod Rose which Slash briefly joined before doing a stint with the group Black Sheep.
  • Eventually, Slash, Rose, Stradlin, McKagan and Adler became the legendary hard rock band that dominated the 80s and 90s, with “Welcome to the Jungle,” “Sweet Child o’ Mine,”, and “Paradise City,” bringing a sense of chaos and decadence to the music scene.
  • However, this proved to be a troubled time for Slash as he was heavily involved with drug use even before they released Appetite for Destruction, one of the band’s best-selling album that generated more than 28 million copies around the world.
  • By the mid-90s, Slash released the album It’s Five O’Clock Somewhere with his new band, Slash’s Snakepit. They were active between 1994-1996, then again from 1999-2002. Former members included Gilby Clarke, Eric Dover, Mike Inez, Matt Sorum, James LoMenzo, Brian Tichy, Johnny Griparic, Rod Jackson, Matt Laug, Ryan Roxie and Keri Kelli.
  • By 1996, Slash had officially left Guns N’ Roses, but eventually teamed up with Duff McKagan and Matt Sorum in 2002 to form another group. After several months of screening for other members, they came across Scott Weiland who was previously with the Stone Temple Pilots. This band came to be known as Velvet Revolver.
  • Slash came out with a self-titled solo effort in 2010 which featured a high-profile lineup made up of Ozzy Osbourne, Fergie of The Black Eyed Peas, Adam Levine of Maroon 5, M. Shadows of Avenged Sevenfold, Lemmy Kilmister of Motörhead, Dave Grohl, Chris Cornell and Iggy Pop.
  • He’s also worked extensively with the King of Pop, Michael Jackson, specifically with recording guitar tracks on his albums and live performances. The albums he’s worked on includes Dangerous, HIStory: Past, Present and Future, Book I, Blood on the Dance Floor: History in the Mix and Invincible. Here’s a clip of Slash having fun at a concert with Jackson. There’s a scripted but funny moment where security tries to kick him off for “hogging” the stage:

  • Although Slash has over several dozen guitars in his musical arsenal, he’s most associated with his beloved Gibson Les Paul, making him a major ambassador for the guitar brand in the 80s and 90s. While he used a 1988 Gibson Les Paul Standard for concerts, Slash’s go-to guitar for recording sessions (both Guns N’ Roses and Velvet Revolver) was his 1959 Gibson Les Paul Standard replica, which goes all the way back to the Appetite for Destruction days.
  • Slash has also released over a dozen signature Gibson guitars under his name. One of the most notable models was the Slash “Snakepit” Les Paul Standard, featuring a transparent cranberry red finish over a flame maple top, a relief carving of the smoking snake image taken from the cover art of Slash’s Snakepit’s debut album.
  • Slash’s most recent collaboration with Gibson was the signature Les Paul with a “Rosso Corsa” (racing red) finish on a carved solid Grade-AAA figured maple top, which also featured Seymour Duncan Alnico pickups and has Slash’s graphic on the headstock. This was released in 2013 with just over a thousand units produced.
  • As far as amplifiers go, Slash is an advocate of the Marshall “Silver Jubilee” JCM 2555 model, which was what he often used during live performances. Other models he’s used include the Vox AC30 amp and small Fender tube amps, Marshall “Vintage Modern” 2466 amp, Marshall JCM 800 and the well-known Marshall AFD100 amp.
  • Here’s a rundown of Slash’s setup in 2011:
  • Guitars:

– Gibson Slash Appetite Les Paul Relic Prototype #1
– Gibson Slash Appetite Les Paul
– Gibson Custom Shop “Inspired by Slash” (#1)
– Gibson Axcess Les Paul With Floyd Rose

  • Pedals and Effects:

– Dunlop Cry Baby SW-95 Slash
– MXR M135 Smart Gate
– Dunlop QZ-1 Cry Baby Q Zone
– Dunlop Cry Baby SW-95 Slash Wah
– MXR Phase 90 Script
– MXR Slash Octa/Fuzz Prototype
– MXR CAE MC-401 Boost Line Driver
– MXR M134 Stereo Chorus
– MXR M159 Stereo Tremolo
– BOSS DD-3 Digital Delay
– Whirlwind Selector Active A/B Switcher Box

  • Amps and Other Equipment:

– Marshall AFD100 Slash Signature Heads with custom 1960 AV/BV Marshall Stacks loaded with Celestion Vintage 30s
– Marshall AFD100 Slash Signature Head
– Marshall 2555 Silver Jubilee Head



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