On July 21, 1987, Guns N’ Roses released their debut album titled ‘Appetite for Destruction.’ The album debuted at #182 on the Billboard 200 and topped the charts in 1988. It took almost a year for the album to take off, but when it did, the album sold like crazy. 30 million copies of the album were sold worldwide making it one of the most best-selling albums of all time and the best-selling debut album of all time.
Being notorious for their escapades around sex, drugs, and rock n’ roll, Guns N’ Roses wrote about, well, sex, drugs, and rock n’ roll among other things such as moving to L.A., Hollywood, money, living off of girls, and so on.
The original cover of the album was discontinued shortly after the album release for its ghastly depiction. The cover art portrayed a robot rapist, a girl with panties around her ankle, and a metal avenger.
Retailers refused to stock the album due to the graphic nature of the cover art, so Geffen Records, the record label that released the album, released a new album cover consisting of a Celtic cross with 5 skulls representing each band member.
Band Personnel Featured on the Album
- W. Axl Rose – Vocals, percussion, synths on Paradise City
- Slash – Lead guitar
- Izzy Stradlin – Rhythm guitar
- Duff McKagan – Bass
- Steve Adler – Drums
Trivia: Sweet Child O’ Mine
The song Sweet Child O’ Mine started as a joke. During a jam session, Slash was doing some string skipping exercises. Izzy Stradlin asked Slash to repeat the exercises and wrote a chord progression over it. Duff later came up with the iconic bassline followed by Steve adding a beat.
Axl wrote the lyrics the next day, and the band added a bridge and a guitar solo in the next composing session.
When the band was recording demos for the album, the producer suggested Axl add a breakdown at the end of the song. Axl was unsure about what to add and started saying, “Where do we go? Where do we go now?” to himself. The producer asked Axl to go ahead with that, and that’s how the breakdown section of the song came into being.
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Header Image Credits: Kerrang!