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Exclusive Interview

Slash Talks Aerosmith Tour & The Importance of Playing Intimate Venues

The guitar god shares his latest experiences on the road

Slash never seems to slow down, huh? The rock and roll icon recently scored a terrifying soundtrack for a clown maze (you can't make this stuff up) and just finished a massive tour with  Aerosmith. "They have, as five guys, this really sort of unique grove and guitar sounds and the way that they play. That's really what's so entertaining about them, just seeing a band that's really got their own thing together. I've never really concentrated on it before but I really saw it on this last tour," he explained of the band. "I was very much influenced by Aerosmith when I was a kid, so the music that I do is sort of along the same sort of line. It was great to be part of a really sort of no bells and whistles straight-ahead rock and roll tour. The crowds were great, it was just a lot of fun."

That's not all: Slash was able to play new tracks off his forthcoming record and judge the audience's reaction in a really authentic way. "We introduced World On Fire and two other songs, 'Stone Blind' and 'Thirty Years To Life,'" he recalled. "Nobody's ever heard those songs before and they went over f-cking great. In my career, I've invariably had to do new material in front of an audience that's never heard it before and I always love that sort of unpredictability and just sort of taking that chance. As the tour goes on all through next year, by the end of the tour, we'll have played every single song on the record. I'm sure."

Even after a successful arena tour, Slash understands the importance of playing smaller spaces. "I learned a long time ago, I think it was in 1995, doing a Snakepit [tour], which was one of my solo-type deals, after playing stadiums for so long, I need to get back to a sort more roots-y, down-to-earth kind of environment. Now at this point in my career it's great if you can achieve the status or the success to be able to play an arena or whatever...if you do that then you have to break it up and keep playing in small places. I think it's really crucial to me, personally. What I do find is that when you're playing in a smaller place you have less room to sort of...there's less room to run around in, to do this that and the other. You tend to really focus on just playing well. You have nowhere else to go so you just concentrate on your instrument."

Too true! Watch the exclusive interview above.

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