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Stacey Blades left LA Guns (Phil version)?


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Didn't see any thread about this but this happened back in December. He was replaced by ex-Sea Hags guitarist Frankie Wilsey, who didn't end up working out, They have a new guitarist in Michael Grant.

 

from Blabbermouth:

 

Guitarist STACEY BLADES Quits L.A. GUNS - Dec. 10, 2012

 

Guitarist Stacey Blades has announced his departure from L.A. GUNS. His official statement reads as follows:

 

"This isn't an easy announcement, but as of this month, I will no longer be playing guitar for L.A. GUNS. I dearly wish Phil [Lewis, vocals], Scotty [Griffin, bass] and Steve [Riley, drums] much continued success.

 

"It's been a crazy ten-year ride filled with some amazing tours, albums and memories to last a lifetime!

 

"Due to extenuating circumstances and musical differences, I have decided not to continue with the band.

 

"L.A. GUNS was a dream come true, but life is full of new beginnings and journeys.

 

"I will be taking some time off and have some different things lined up that I will share with you in the near future.

 

"I would like to first and foremost thank the fans for allowing me into your hearts! You guys rule!! Hope to see you all soon!"

 

Blades played on four L.A. GUNS albums: "Rips The Covers Off" (2004), "Tales Trom The Strip" (2005), "Loud And Dangerous: Live From Hollywood" (2006) and "Hollywood Forever" (2012). He also authored a book, "Confessions Of A Replacement Rockstar", which was published in 2009.

 

In an April 2012 interview with Geeks Of Doom, L.A. GUNS frontman Phil Lewis stated about Blades, "He's brilliant; he really is. He's just [an] amazing guitarist. I've seen him develop; first thing he did when he came in was work on a cover record that we did and he was good then but he's just knocked it out the park as far as I'm concerned. He's just such a brilliant guitar player, in fact if anything he needs to pull back because he's starting to touch on the [Joe] Satriani kind of style! He's really motivated, he knows that he's going to be compared to a very iconic guitarist and a lot of people love the old guy, so Stacey knows he's got his work cut out replacing a bit of an icon and he's rose to the challenge. He sounds great, he's playing great. Brought in some good songs. He's got the title track of the [the latest L.A. GUNS album, "Hollywood Forever"] so that's pretty good for someone that hasn't had a great deal of recording experience. Certainly not as much as me and Steve, so he aced that. He aced the opening title track so good for him."

 

Here's a recent interview with Phil Lewis regarding Blades departure and the new guitarist:

 

 

RMS: It seemed like after that performance and then with the release of your incredible record, “Hollywood Forever,” that line-up has some serious momentum going. But, then early this year, your guitarist Stacey Blades left the band. Why did he decide to leave, especially at this point?

 

PL: Well, you would have to ask Stacey. He wasn’t let go or fired or anything. He was in the band for almost ten years, and sometimes being on the road, you can have good days and bad days. And sometimes, you just have to roll with the punches. And he was just getting burned out by it. He wanted to do something that didn’t involve all of the travel. You could just see it. When someone is unhappy on the road, it’s impossible to hide that. But, he graciously agreed to finish the shows that we had booked until the end of last year. And we knew that the first thing that we had to do this year was to get someone to replace him, which we did. It was amazingly lucky; we got Michael Grant from Endeverafter. He sounds great and looks great. He has a great sense of humor, and you need that on the road. And I’m looking forward to working with him. We have done a couple of shows, and people really, really dig it. And we are doing a couple shows now to get warmed up for all of our upcoming summer shows.

 

RMS: Well, before Michael, joined the band you had another guitarist, Frankie Wilsey from the Seahags and the Stephen Pearcy band. He only lasted a few days, what happened with him.

 

PL: …Well, I think he didn’t realize how much work was going to be involved. But, I don’t know, it was just one of those things. You can rehearse hundreds of times, and it doesn’t show, but then you do a live performance and it makes sense. During rehearsals he was great, but during the shows, he seemed a bit distracted. It wasn’t the same Frankie that we were rehearsing with. But, it’s no big deal, no hard feelings. He’s still a friend and is a great player. It just didn’t work out.

 

RMS: So was it your decision to let him go?

 

PL: I think it was mutual. We were looking for someone a bit more focused and dedicated.

 

RMS: Was there ever a though to maybe bring Tracii Guns back into the line-up?

 

PL: Oh no, of course not. That would be completely out of the question. Tracii has said some very terrible things, and he has done some really terrible things to the name of LA Guns. He put his own version of L.A. Guns together, after the Brides of Destruction failed, because there was nothing else for him to do. And nobody wanted to play with him. So we had two bands with the name L.A. Guns out there. In the few years he had the other band, he had four different singers, and one was a chick. How can you have a chick sing “I Wanna be You Man.?” (Laughs) It was just really insulting to the band and most importantly to the fans of the band. It would be very hypocritical for us to bring him back. Things ended pretty badly with us and Tracii. He left us high and dry when he left the band. He told us he was leaving the band right before “Waking the Dead” came out. He told us during a photo shoot for the record that he was leaving the band. He doesn’t really have a good reputation in the business either. So, I don’t want all that baggage that he has accumulated over the years to be brought onto this band now anyways.

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A lot of blah blah for me. The last GREAT album was Vicious Circle. I haven't cared for them since even though there have been some decent releases.

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Nope, they have done some fantastic albums since their reformation.

Stacey is still friends with Phil, so what he is saying is pretty much how it is.

 

Just to add fuel to the fire though, Tracii recently mentioned that Phil sent him a really nice letter recently suggesting they bury the hatchet and be friends again.

Not saying that Tracii will be back, but it will certainly make things easier if they decide to go that route. Not sure about Steve though, as the animosity between him and Tracii was a lot worse.

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A lot of blah blah for me. The last GREAT album was Vicious Circle. I haven't cared for them since even though there have been some decent releases.

 

I didn't get that at all. They're just typed words, but from that I get the sense of a really genuine, stand up guy. I always liked Phil Lewis because of his work with LA Guns and his attitude on all those answers only seem to reflect what a good chap I assume he is.

 

It's sad news about Blades leaving the band and even sadder news about Michael Grant joining the band. I guess that means that Endeverafter is well and truly over, as a one album project? Really sad news as he is a great singer, songwriter and guitarist. I have no doubt he will do great things with LA Guns, but it's sad he won't man his own band. :(

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Score card... get your score card. Can't keep track of who's in L.A. Guns this week without a score card!!

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Nope, they have done some fantastic albums since their reformation.

Stacey is still friends with Phil, so what he is saying is pretty much how it is.

 

Just to add fuel to the fire though, Tracii recently mentioned that Phil sent him a really nice letter recently suggesting they bury the hatchet and be friends again.

Not saying that Tracii will be back, but it will certainly make things easier if they decide to go that route. Not sure about Steve though, as the animosity between him and Tracii was a lot worse.

 

I haven't heard a fantastic album since 1994-1995...

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Nope, they have done some fantastic albums since their reformation.

Stacey is still friends with Phil, so what he is saying is pretty much how it is.

 

Just to add fuel to the fire though, Tracii recently mentioned that Phil sent him a really nice letter recently suggesting they bury the hatchet and be friends again.

Not saying that Tracii will be back, but it will certainly make things easier if they decide to go that route. Not sure about Steve though, as the animosity between him and Tracii was a lot worse.

 

I haven't heard a fantastic album since 1994-1995...

 

'Waking the dead' and 'Tales from the strip' are definitely at least as good as 'Vicious Circle,' if not a little better. IMO.

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It's sad news about Blades leaving the band and even sadder news about Michael Grant joining the band. I guess that means that Endeverafter is well and truly over, as a one album project? Really sad news as he is a great singer, songwriter and guitarist. I have no doubt he will do great things with LA Guns, but it's sad he won't man his own band. :(

They split some time ago now. Sad fact as that album was brilliant.

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Nope, they have done some fantastic albums since their reformation.

Stacey is still friends with Phil, so what he is saying is pretty much how it is.

 

Just to add fuel to the fire though, Tracii recently mentioned that Phil sent him a really nice letter recently suggesting they bury the hatchet and be friends again.

Not saying that Tracii will be back, but it will certainly make things easier if they decide to go that route. Not sure about Steve though, as the animosity between him and Tracii was a lot worse.

 

I haven't heard a fantastic album since 1994-1995...

 

'Waking the dead' and 'Tales from the strip' are definitely at least as good as 'Vicious Circle,' if not a little better. IMO.

 

They were okay for me. I love the punch of VC but more than anything, the ending two songs are incredible.

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It's sad news about Blades leaving the band and even sadder news about Michael Grant joining the band. I guess that means that Endeverafter is well and truly over, as a one album project? Really sad news as he is a great singer, songwriter and guitarist. I have no doubt he will do great things with LA Guns, but it's sad he won't man his own band. :(

They split some time ago now. Sad fact as that album was brilliant.

 

Yeah, I agree and it seemed they'd only get better. Oh well, I hope he contributes a lot to the song writing in LA Guns and takes them to the next level.

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In that interview, Phil really criticizes their record label at the time for destroying "Hollywood Vampires". He said the label made them bring outside writers in and that he hated how the production sounds on that album. The band wanted "Over The Edge" as the 1st single and just before the release, the label pushed "Kiss My Love Goodbye" (from an outside writer) to be the first single.

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Here's the part I referred to:

 

RMS: I want to end this interview by discussing what you feel contributed to the downfall of the classic 80’s L.A. Guns line-up? In retrospect, it seems that the downward spiral started when “Hollywood Vampires” came out in 1991. I feel that the production on that release was just way too polished.

 

PL: Yes, I had a terrible relationship with the producer, Michael James Jackson. We really didn’t get along at all. It was a really difficult process working with the guy. It was our label that insisted that he was the guy that should produce the record. But it was a miserable time, for the most part. We had some great songs, like “Over the Edge” and “I Found You.” But when we did our prior record, “Cocked and Loaded,” we did it ourselves. It was our songs, our ideas, and it was with people that we wanted to work with. But, when it came time to record “Hollywood Vampires,” the band had become really corporate. Our management and record company were so desperate to have a major hit record that they brought in outside writers. So, we recorded “Over the Edge” and we were very happy with it. We assumed that it would be the first single from the record. But then right at the very end of recording process, our manager at the time Alan Kovac come in, and said that he had this song, “Kiss My Love Goodbye.” He asked if we could just try it and see how it sounds, if we don’t like it, it doesn’t have to go on the record. If it did make the record, it would just be a bonus track. So reluctantly we did it, and wouldn’t you know that the following week, it was announced as our first single. It was out of our control. It wasn’t that I hated the song. It was catchy, but it wasn’t our song, we didn’t write it. But because of that, “Over the Edge” was thrown by the wayside, and our strongest song was ignored.

 

RMS: I can imagine that it must have cost a ton to make that release as well.

 

PL: Oh my God!!! Are you kidding me. We were recording it simultaneously at four of the biggest studios in L.A. It was insane the money that was put into it. Just crazy, it was such a waste.

 

RMS: Do you feel that it contributed to the beginning of the end for the classic line-up?

 

PL: Yeah. It was funny because the record company was telling us to fasten our seatbelts because we were about the hit the big time. We were going to become this mega popular band. But, it never happened. And the music climate was changing around that time as well. So, it was no big deal for the label, we didn’t hit the big time, so they just found another band.

 

RMS: It seemed that all the things that your fans loved about the band were disregarded and changed by your record company.

 

PL: Well, that was the trouble with being on the same record label as Bon Jovi and Cinderella. Yes, we got a gold record with “Cocked and Loaded” but that wasn’t enough. We need to get to 6x platinum with the next one, is what they were thinking. So making money was the main object of the label. But we were doing fine prior to that with our own songs and sound, but it just wasn’t good enough. And like you said, “Hollywood Vampires” was too slick and over produced. It hardly had any grit at all. It was a shiny, over produced, record producer’s wet dream. We had a megalomaniac at the controls, and I hated it.

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What's funny is that Tracii bitches about the production in Cocked and Loaded Rock Candy reissue.

 

I like MJJ's production on Hollywood Vampires. Kiss My Love Goodbye got a ton of play on MTV so that wasnt a bad idea imo. I really thought Its Over Now should have been huge but it was just moderately successful.

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Funny thing is that there was a lot of hype about Hollywood Vampires in the UK, and even remember an interview with the band on Noisy Mothers (or was it Raw Power?) where the band said it was the most successful album they had ever had here.

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Hollywood Vampires production or choice of singles wasn't the problem, it was that the songs sucked (a lot of them anyway). Now Cocked & Loaded's 1st press had GREAT songs but the production was shitty. Of course, the S/T is pure brilliance and perfect in every way. I think there were maybe 5 songs I liked on HV and that's about it but the production was great.

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Hollywood Vampire songs sucked? That album was fucking brilliant.

I'll grant ya, nothing they have done has matched Cocked and loaded for me, but nothing about Vampires sucked thats for sure.

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Hollywood Vampire songs sucked? That album was fucking brilliant.

I'll grant ya, nothing they have done has matched Cocked and loaded for me, but nothing about Vampires sucked thats for sure.

 

And don't forget the part where he said 'Cocked and Loaded' was poorly produced? WTF? Jarred, you're a wild man. I guess you must have bought this the same time as you bought Trixter's 'Hear!' and got the only copies of each disc in the entire world that weren't well produced? ;)

 

I like most of 'Hollywood Vampires' too and certainly never thought it was overproduced. Just more mellow. Some great songs there, though.

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Hollywood Vampire songs sucked? That album was fucking brilliant.

I'll grant ya, nothing they have done has matched Cocked and loaded for me, but nothing about Vampires sucked thats for sure.

 

And don't forget the part where he said 'Cocked and Loaded' was poorly produced? WTF? Jarred, you're a wild man. I guess you must have bought this the same time as you bought Trixter's 'Hear!' and got the only copies of each disc in the entire world that weren't well produced? ;)

 

I like most of 'Hollywood Vampires' too and certainly never thought it was overproduced. Just more mellow. Some great songs there, though.

 

Cocked and Loaded doesn't sound near as bad as Hear. I guess I came off harsh with how I worded it. Just like a lot of stuff from back then, it sounds "soft" today. A little thin I guess. Love the album though. Not as good as the debut but GREAT either way.

 

As for HV, I stand by what I said. Most of it sucked ass minus a handful of songs. Compared to their first four full length albums, it's easily dead last in my book.

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I still dont understand the whole Hear has poor production thing, and I certainly dont get how Cocked and loaded has poor production either. Hell, I would say the debut has a weaker production than Cocked and loaded, and there is nothing wrong with that either.

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I still dont understand the whole Hear has poor production thing, and I certainly dont get how Cocked and loaded has poor production either. Hell, I would say the debut has a weaker production than Cocked and loaded, and there is nothing wrong with that either.

 

Who knows mate? 99% of music fans agree with us. ;)

 

I agree that 'Cocked and Loaded' sounds better than the debut, both in songs and sonically / production-wise.

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I still dont understand the whole Hear has poor production thing, and I certainly dont get how Cocked and loaded has poor production either. Hell, I would say the debut has a weaker production than Cocked and loaded, and there is nothing wrong with that either.

 

Who knows mate? 99% of music fans agree with us. ;)

 

I agree that 'Cocked and Loaded' sounds better than the debut, both in songs and sonically / production-wise.

 

I love both but the debut is my fav but Cocked and Loaded has better production. Both of the Rock Candy reissues sound great though.

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I loved the street feel of the 1st album. Think I like it just a tad more than Cocked & Loaded.

 

My thoughts exactly. Both are great regardless.

 

I'm not getting in to the Hear production. It sounds too loud, the highs are way to high( see Damn Good) and it was several steps behind the debut ( see Play Rough).

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