Ron Thal - The Guns N' Roses Era (Part Two)


With only a few days to go until Guns N' Roses hit the stage in Asia and about five weeks until the boys head down the Canadian highways to play their first concerts since releasing the number one album Chinese Democracy, fans have been craving for a few words from the hard rock legends. GNR guitarist Ron "Bumblefoot Thal took about an hour to chat with RockStar Weekly about his studio, guitars, solo career and his life since joining GNR - the first part of this interview centered on Bumblefoot's solo career, recording studio and life in general, while this part concentrates on GNR and guitars.

GNR has officially entered the Canadian rock radio charts with Street Of Dreams, the new single from the Chinese Democracy CD. The song debuted on the Canadian Active Rock Charts at number 44, ahead of debuts from Canadian rockers Default and Seattle rockers Alice In Chains. Street Of Dreams follows Better, which reached Top 15 and Chinese Democracy, which made it to number 3.

Additionally, according to Neilsen/Soundscan, GNR's Greatest Hits is currently at number 19 on the Canadian Rock Album Charts. The album has been on the charts for 297 weeks and has risen one point over the past two weeks. Chinese Democracy topped the charts in its first week of release in 2008, selling 70,000 copies in Canada. The last time G N' R topped the charts prior to that was in 1991 with Use Your Illusion II.

The band is off to Asia this week for a couple concerts and then embarks on the 13-date Canadian tour starting in Winnipeg on January 13.

Chinese Democracy Touring Band:

Axl Rose – lead vocals, piano, keyboards (1985–present)
Richard Fortus – lead guitar, backing vocals (2002–present)
Ron "Bumblefoot" Thal – lead guitar (2006–present)
DJ Ashba – lead guitar (2009–present)
Tommy Stinson – bass, backing vocals (1998–present)
Frank Ferrer – drums (2006–present)
Dizzy Reed – keyboards, piano (1990–present)
Chris Pitman – keyboards, backing vocals (1998–present)


How did the GNR rehearsals go earlier this month?

Can you tell us where you rehearsed?

Why aren’t you coming to Vancouver on your Canadian tour?

Was it the Olympics that effected why you’re not coming to Vancouver?

The upcoming shows in Asia and Canada will be the first GNR shows since Chinese Democracy has come out. Are you excited?

How did you end up getting the GNR gig in the first place?

How did Don’t Cry end up as part of your guitar solo on your first GNR tour?

Do you enjoy playing the old GNR stuff?

Do you have a favourite GNR song?

Did you have creative input while working with GNR on Chinese Democracy?

The production of Chinese Democracy is top notch. What was that experience like?

Was it challenging to work on the GNR album and release your own at almost the same time?

Fans seem to be obsessed with your guitar collection. What is your favorite guitar to play?

Do you have a different guitar you prefer to play in concerts?

Do you have your own guitar room?

Have you picked out the guitars you’ll bring on tour with you when you come to Canada with GNR?

How will you, DJ Ashba and Fortus share the guitar parts?

Can you tell us at all what the shows going to be like – can you give us a teaser?

Interview by Avril Savoie

RockStar Weekly

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