Guns ‘N’ Roses’ Axl Rose once killed a bug with a shotgun
We’re dipping into the Far Out Magazine vault to revisit a truly extraordinary tale featuring Guns ‘N’ Roses lead singer, a shotgun and a pesky bug.
The numerous stories of riotous behaviour from one of the foremost monarchs of the rock and roll royalty, Guns ‘N’ Roses’ leading man and the most iconic face of hair metal, Axl Rose are varied and always just a little bit vulgar.
Those stories, all feathered with varying degrees of the truth as they are, often involve the singer being late to shows because he was spending time watching Teenage Mutant Turtles, getting punched by David Bowie after fighting over a girl or just your average run of the mill rock star idiocy of sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll—but this time it involves Axl Rose killing a bug in his house.
Of course, Axl Rose couldn’t just swat the moth away, or try and catch and release it. No, Rose had to kick things up a notch and that meant reaching for his firearm to blast the tiny insect into a new world.
Craig Duswalt, Axl’s former assistant — or one of them, at least — revealed Axl’s need for a bug-free house was less about Raid and more about straight gun-smoking warfare. Rose was at his Malibu home during the Use Your Illusion tour of 1993—one of the longest tours in history—when a moth had the audacity to intrude on his abode.
He instructed Duswalt to “keep an eye” on the moth as the singer ran upstairs. Rose then came back downstairs with “a long gun… a rifle maybe, or even a shotgun.” As the flying insect nestled around the home’s chandelier, Rose instructed his assistant to move the moth into the corner so he didn’t shoot out the light, making sure to keep it in his crosshairs.
Making Duswalt bring the ‘Paradise City’ singer a chair he “positioned himself under the chair, lying on his back” aiming firmly at the multi-eyed invader. As Duswalt made a last valiant attempt to remove the light-lover, he told Axl that he thought he could reach the moth with a flyswatter, his simple reply? “Not going to happen.”
And POW! The moth was no more but we expect there was a large hole in his ceiling. It’s one of the more curious Axl Rose stories you’ll hear and is an insight into the carefree nature he was enjoying at the time. It’s one of many legendary tales of rock star excess and the highs and lows that can be found in Duswalt’s book Welcome To My Jungle as he chronicles the time he spent on tour with the band between 1991 and 1993.
The book captures the final moments of Guns ‘N’ Roses as their implosion came soon after and it was hedonistic acts like this which highlighted the individuals in the band’s slow downfall. Things had gotten out of hand.