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| 17 April 2015 | Reply

Guns ‘N’ Hoses, the 2014 Best Tribute Band, as named by NY’s Village Voice, will bust their cherry in Detroit on May 1, 2015 at The Magic Bag.  In preparation for this killer show and Detroit’s introduction to the Vajungle, I was able to pin down front woman Erin (Axl Hose), guitarist Emmy (Lizzy Stradlin), and drummer Gee (Stephanie Adler) to discuss everything from GNR to their personal music collection and must have road items…

10903770_388684748003021_1405430791_nToddstar: First of all, let me say, it’s truly an honor and a pleasure and I really appreciate all of you taking time out of your busy schedules for us today. Let’s get right down to business – you have a show coming up on May 1 at The Magic Bag in Ferndale just outside of Detroit.  How do you feel coming into a real Rock City like Detroit to thrown down with a killer rock show?

Erin (Axl Hose): I have badly wanted to go to Detroit since I was a kid. The Detroit Red Wings are my favorite hockey team. I used to have a framed picture of Steve Yzerman next to my bed. And I used to worship Chris Osgood. I was a field hockey goalie and felt he might be a kindred spirit. I also saw him score a goal on the Hartford Whalers when my dad took me and my siblings to a game when we were kids. I was in AWE! Also – can we just mention the amazing music history of Detroit – the birthplace of Techno, the home of Motown records! Plus it was the cradle of the American auto industry!  Detroit has a beautiful intricately woven history that has played a huge part in the development and identification of American culture. We have been working our asses off to thrown down HARD and give this beautiful city an incredible show!!!

Emmy (Lizzy Stradlin): I am so excited! This will be my first time in Detroit – a real rock city – after a lifetime of playing music! It’s so awesome to be able to see more parts of the U.S. and other parts of the world because of this band.

Gee (Stephanie Adler): Right back atcha Todd.  Thank you so much for doing this interview with us!  As far as coming out there, I feel great about it and cannot wait.  Detroit does have such an inspiring musical history and we are all excited to come visit and kill it on stage!

Toddstar: Tribute bands are in abundance these days, but few are able to actually tour from state to state.  What is it about Guns ‘N’ Hoses that sets you guys apart and gives you the ability to get out on the road and spread the GNR love?

Emmy (Lizzy Stradlin): GNH is known for it’s wild live show. We are constantly striving to take the audience on a ride and it’s our fans love of the show that keep us in demand. Most of the cities we have been touring have been by request of club owners.

Gee (Stephanie Adler): I think what sets any band apart from any others is talent and work ethic.  Anyone in a band whether it’s tribute or not knows that getting out there and playing is the best way to get people to know you.  Social media nowadays is HUGE also and another way if you want people to come see you play and support you.  It’s hard work, but not if you really love it.  And who doesn’t love to spread love!??!

Erin (Axl Hose): We are all friends and we love to spend time together. So when we have the opportunity to play out of state – we jump at it! We also love seeing new places and it’s been a great excuse to travel around to parts of our country we might not have otherwise had the opportunity to get to, such as Alaska. We were just there in March and had an amazing time!  Plus, as Guns N’ Roses are such a widely recognized band there is a huge demand for us to play these incredible songs. We do our best to pull out A+ musicianship and pair it with A+ showmanship. We just love having fun on stage playing these songs. And I think that joy translates directly to the audience. In my mind that’s been a huge part of our popularity.

Toddstar:  On that note, what are your thoughts to being named the Best Tribute Band in NY 2014 by the Village Voice?  How are you stepping up your game to hold onto that title again in 2015?

Gee (Stephanie Adler): It was pretty awesome!  There’s a lot of talented tribute bands in the city so it really was mad cool.  We just continue to get out there to as many different areas as we can – we recently got flown to Alaska to play 2 shows and it was FUCKING AWESOME!!

Erin (Axl Hose): It was an absolute honor and surprise to be named the Best Tribute Band of 2014 by the Village Voice in their Best of New York issue.  New York is a city with a plethora of talented musicians and tribute bands, so it felt really special to be recognized. We are stepping up our game for 2015 by adding even more songs from the GNR catalogue and just continuing to have a blast on stage and off! We love to play shows and we love the fans who come out! We work hard to make sure every show is better than the last and that attitude will continue to always propel us forward.

Emmy (Lizzy Stradlin): We were so honored to be named the best tribute band. The Village Voice has always routed for us. We are always stepping up our game by trying to expand our catalogue (which has tripled since we became a band), play to more people, bigger clubs and strive to make the show memorable.


Toddstar: Other than the musical aspect, how is it that you best identify with your particular counterpart in Guns ‘N’ Roses?

Erin (Axl Hose): This is a tough question. How do I relate to Axl Rose? He is a man who did not do interviews for years. In many ways, as a person, he’s a total enigma. Perhaps it’s because he likes his privacy. Or maybe he’s a little shy. I’m shy, too.  Of course, I do not know anything about him personally.  This is all conjecture. The little I have learned about him is from the memoirs of old band mates and friends. And there were many accounts of him being a great friend to the people he cared about. Of course there are the many tales of him flying off the handle. Yet, I’m not going to judge his behavior. I have no idea what he was going through. Haven’t we all acted irrationally at times? Perhaps I defend him because of my innate affection for him.  I view Axl as a musician who takes his craft and art very seriously and is incredibly talented based on the music he’s created. He’s also one of the most gifted singers and front people in rock history. Now how do I identify with him? Do I have the fervor for complete perfection that he does? I don’t know. Do I love tight pants and to look super-hot at all times? Yes. I can definitely say we both have a passion for fashion.  And a deep love of being the center of attention.

Emmy (Lizzy Stradlin): I think Izzy was a bit of an underdog in the band. I’ve always been a bit of an underdog musically and socially.

Gee (Stephanie Adler): Well luckily I am not a heroin addict and don’t plan on being one.  I would say aside from the musical aspect both Steven Adler and Matt Sorum are very driven people and seem like they just want to do what they love and have fun, which I totally identify with.  Steven went through hell with his addictions and he came out of it, that’s very inspiring in general and I’m glad it seems he’s doing well nowadays. I got to meet Matt Sorum when us Hoses were in L.A. 2 years ago and he was real cool dude.

Toddstar: Which characteristic or attribute of your respective band member do you feel you best portray once you hit the stage?  What about off-stage?

Emmy (Lizzy Stradlin): Izzy was a rocker. He was high energy and all over the stage. I’d like to think I match that energy. Maybe I head bang a little more!

Gee (Stephanie Adler): ON STAGE Steven was a huge influence on my playing from the start of my career so I know I duplicate his parts pretty darn good!  Of course I throw a taste of my own style in there but it’s not that far off from his.  Matt’s drumming is a different style but still along the same lines of that in your face, hard hitting rock groove drumming.  I love playing those songs he was on too and they challenged me a little more.  OFF STAGE: I can drink a good amount of alcohol!!!

Erin (Axl Hose): Axl’s swagger, his “I don’t give a fuck if you like it or not, I’m here to put on a fucking show” attitude, and his cool sexy appeal, are all things I try to pull forward on stage.  Off stage I’m a total well-mannered nerd. So…

Toddstar:  What exactly does it mean to be in the Vajungle???

Gee (Stephanie Adler): Oh Todd….come on now, you’re a grown man!  Do we really have to explain it?? 😉

Erin (Axl Hose): The Vajungle is a magical place where we all get together at every show where you get to see women who dress like the men who dressed like women (it was the late 80’s/early 90’s, dude) play fucking awesome music and melt faces. The Vajungle is a place you can also get to when you realize everyone is a human being and deserves to be treated with respect and do whatever the fuck they want to, to have as much fucking fun as they want, in any way they fucking want to. There are no unicorns in the Vajungle, but there are a lot of short skirts, brown liquor, and dirty jokes.

Emmy (Lizzy Stradlin): I think you know what it means, Todd:)

Toddstar: What is your favorite road/tour story as a member of Guns ‘N’ Hoses?  Feel free to name names!!!

Erin (Axl Hose): Probably when we rehearsed in LA across the hall from Kings of Chaos and then got to meet the band! Slash, Duff, Matt Sorum, and Steve Stevens.  They were all such super guys. Was amazing! Next day we played ‘Good Morning LA’ and then later the Viper Room.  I’m sure the other gals are going to tell longer versions of this story. After we met Slash he tweeted about us and it got retweeted by Juliette Lewis.  And that was super rad, too!

Emmy (Lizzy Stradlin): Definitely the time we were rehearsing in L.A. for our performance in Good Day L.A. and Slash and Duff walked in the room! Later that day Slash tweeted us and we gained 1000 more fans on FB!

Gee (Stephanie Adler): The show we had to play on a boat was pretty crazy for me considering I have a serious fear of boats and drowning.  I don’t know how to swim (yet I love being near the water… I’m weird)  I figured I’d try to face my fear again that I was older and I tried to be a trooper as much as could but I took so much Dramamine and alcohol to get me through the experience that I was on another planet.  As we were playing I saw the girls at a few times almost fall because of the rocking of the boat.  It wasn’t horrible, but enough to throw us off balance.   I don’t remember anything else because I was not sober.   There will be better stories to come…


Toddstar: Guns ‘N’ Roses doesn’t have a huge catalog, but of the tracks available, are there any obscure songs you have been dying to get into your live show?  On the other side pf the coin, are there any songs that you have had just about enough of and would drop from the set list in favor of something less often played?  Do you pull tracks from all incarnations of the band for your live set, or do you stick to the classics?

Gee (Stephanie Adler): I wouldn’t say it’s too obscure, but I’ve been dying to do “Used To Love Her” off of LIES which we will be doing soon!  I’m personally cool with all the material we currently do and we are working on adding songs all the time so we will mix things up.  Right now we do material from Appetite, Lies and both Illusion albums.  As we all know the Illusion albums are quite long and we will be working on getting more of those songs into our sets.

Erin (Axl Hose): We focus a lot on Appetite For Destruction and Use Your Illusion I & II.

Toddstar: There is constantly chatter of Guns ‘N’ Roses reuniting.  If they were to get back together, who should they bring on board and why?

Emmy (Lizzy Stradlin): All the OG’s. Man, it’s just not better than the original line-up. Definitely IZZY! Steven!!! Matt rules too:)

Gee (Stephanie Adler): I would Say Izzy just because I personally always think of the original lineup as GNR.  Not to put anyone else down or say they don’t count, I just always think of that lineup as GNR because that was such a huge influence on my drumming when I was first learning how to play.  That stuff stays with you! This is a tough one for me being the drummer because both of the guys are awesome but if I *had* to pick , I’d go with Adler.

Erin (Axl Hose): I would love it if the original line up would get back together. That would mean Izzy and Steven. But I think that will probably never happen for a HUGE list of reasons.  In my mind it’s like saying “yeah – I would LOVE to see Babe Ruth play baseball! Where’s the time machine?”  I’m not saying it couldn’t happen – I’m just saying the probability is extremely low.

Toddstar: Let’s talk about you individually for a moment.  What or whom in your life created the want or need to get on stage and be a rock star for a living?  Can you remember a single moment or influence?

Erin (Axl Hose): This question is a bit hard because I cannot really remember a time in my life when I did not have the deepest desire to get on stage and be a performer.  I think part of it might have come from the fact that there is a certain element of “pretend” one is allowed to do onstage.  In real life you might be a bit socially anxious – but on stage, you are completely in control. You are steering the ship. So all of that melts away. When you feel unseen for a long time in your real life, the stage guarantees you will get noticed. When I was a kid my family moved around a lot in a short period of time and I went to 4 different schools in a period of 5 years. I was very hesitant and shy as a kid. I experienced a level of social anxiety and fear, which created me physical and emotional pain that took me years to change. It made me fearful to open up and I would always remain just a bit distant. As I grew up the act of performance, the act of allowing myself to dive deeper into my heart as a writer, singer, and actor – took me out of all that.  The arts helped me to access my own vulnerability and grow as a person and an artist. And reading about other artists, musicians, singers, comedians, athletes, etc. helped me to realize the world is a big and beautiful place full of adventure. All you need is a bus ticket and to get the fuck out of your hometown.

Emmy (Lizzy Stradlin): My Dad was a musician. I collected vinyl records for as long as I could remember. My Dad would take us the day of new releases to a little vinyl store in Tucson. I fell in love with lip syncing to the songs. Pretending like I was the singer. It was a natural transition. My Dad was a guitar player and he gave me my first lessons at 10. I wrote a song within the first few months. I always wrote songs. Even when I only knew 3 chords. I don’t think there was a defining moment. Just a transition into what came most naturally to me.

Gee (Stephanie Adler): When I was growing up I remember watching MTV back when they actually were a music station and played videos.  I saw a Joan Jett video followed by a Go Go’s video and I kind of just said to myself… ‘I wanna do that!’  Thankfully I had supportive parents.


Toddstar: As we said, you are headed to Detroit for a May 1 show at The Magic Bag.  When it comes to leaving home for a tour, whether it is a one-off show or a multi-show run, what are the items you cannot leave home without?

Emmy (Lizzy Stradlin): Red lip stick, guitar and a curling iron. I don’t leave the hotel room without red lipstick on.

Gee (Stephanie Adler): Jack Daniels and comfy pajamas

Erin (Axl Hose): Deodorant. It’s a social necessity.

Toddstar: If you were to leave your phone or iPod behind at a venue like The Magic Bag, what musical selection(s) might a fan of the band find to be odd on your device?

Gee (Stephanie Adler): I actually still use an MP3 player lol and you would be convinced I had multiple personalities if you found it… you’d find everything from Pantera to Ani Difranco to Black Sabbath to Beth Hart to Slayer to Frank Sinatra to Tool and so on…

Erin (Axl Hose): Pergolesi’s Stabat Mater and a lot of Maria Callas

Emmy (Lizzy Stradlin): Well, they’d probably find demos of song I’ve written in the works. Or maybe music I had to learn for gigs.  But if you’re asking what I listen to? I’ve had Pixies on repeat for the last month.

Toddstar: If you were given the opportunity to go back through the GNR catalog, which track do you wish you could put your stamp on and why would you choose that particular song?

Erin (Axl Hose): I love them all.

Gee (Stephanie Adler): There’s this one really simple/quick drum fill in “Mr. Brownstone” that is SO significant in the song and EVERYONE knows that point in the song.  I wish I came up with that fill!

Toddstar: Use one Guns ‘N’ Roses song name to describe your life.  Why that song?

Emmy (Lizzy Stradlin): “Rocket Queen.” You know why, Todd:)

Gee (Stephanie Adler): Just looking at the TITLE and not the actual lyrics….I’d say “Welcome to the Jungle.”  Being from the NYC area and just living life, it’s hectic! But you try and  make it a  “good” hectic.

Erin (Axl Hose): “Right Next Door to Hell.” I feel like that’s pretty self-explanatory.

Toddstar:  Three members of GNR have written books.  If you wrote a book about your life so far, what would the title be?

Gee (Stephanie Adler): Ha! I’m so bad at stuff like this!  Probably something simple like Live And Learn

Erin (Axl Hose): There’s No Elevator But There’s Still A Shaft

Emmy (Lizzy Stradlin): The Many Lives of Emmy Wildwood


Toddstar: Slash checked out one of your rehearsals before a show at the famed Viper Room in L.A.  He was quite complimentary, stating “You girls sound like our mirror” asnd later tweeting “Sounded pretty tight, I have to say… Cool chicks.” What was it like to get that feedback from Slash?

Erin (Axl Hose): There is not a word in the English language that could properly describe how blessed and amazing I felt in that moment.  Was just such a present from the Universe. Super cool.

Emmy (Lizzy Stradlin): Amazing! He was so generous. Not all famous people lend a hand that way. But, I’d like to think he wouldnt have done for any old mediocre GNH cover band!

Gee (Stephanie Adler): It was a moment I know all of us will never forget.  It was amazing to hear such positive feedback from him!  He didn’t have to take the time to even say hi to us… but he did and he genuinely liked us.   Such an awesome dude!

Toddstar: If it weren’t for the gig in Guns ‘N’ Hoses, would you still have a career in music?  If so, how do you think you would have made your mark in music?

Emmy (Lizzy Stradlin): I’ve had my own solo career forever. I’m always putting out new music, writing songs for other artist. This is the only way I know how to live.

Gee (Stephanie Adler): Absolutely.  I live by music and nothing makes me happier than being a part of an amazing band and being behind my drums.  I’ve been doing this for a LONG time so if there was any part of me that wanted to give up it would’ve happened already.  I am currently in 3 other full time bands and I take fill in gigs when I can.   This industry is tough and flooded with A LOT of talent and to make your mark requires hard work, practice, and dedication just like any other field.  I practice as much as I can and always learn.   I would love to be able to NOT have a regular day job on top of the other job of playing music and be able to get by financially.  It will happen one day!!

Erin (Axl Hose): Yes – we are all in other bands – many of which we front!

Toddstar: What was the first disc, LP, cassette, 8-track (or whatever mode of music you were into at the time) that you remember owning or purchasing for yourself?

Gee (Stephanie Adler): I don’t remember the first cassettes honestly, but my first 2 CD’s I brought when CD’s first came out were Rev It Up by Vixen and Led Zeppelin IV.

Erin (Axl Hose): Michael Jackson – Bad

Emmy (Lizzy Stradlin): Cyndi Lauper, She’s So Unusual on Vinyl

Toddstar: A final thought from you personally, at this point in your career and life, What are a couple things you are most proud of and want to be remembered for?  How would you like your epitaph to read?

Erin (Axl Hose): I take party jokes and make them real. That’s basically how this band started. I said I wanted to do this – someone said it was impossible – so I IMMEDIATELY knew I had to.  Not sure what they would say on my epitaph. Perhaps, “She loved to laugh & sing.” If you are known for those two things, you probably brought a lot of joy to others and experienced that for yourself, too.

Emmy (Lizzy Stradlin): I am proud of the music I have released as Emmy Wildwood. I am proud that I joined a super strong group of talented girls and we have made this band something people are talking about. And I am proud that I have never compromised my integrity or done anything shameful to get what I have. I’m proud of having worked for and earned my accomplishments. Of course, with a lot of wild fun along the way.

Gee (Stephanie Adler): Musically I just hope that it comes across when I play that I genuinely LOVE what I do.  I love music and being a drummer and a performer.  It’s where I feel at home and I have fun doing it.  Non-musically I’m a pretty nice and fun person.  That’s what I want people to get from me.

Toddstar: Again, thank you for taking time for us – we know you are busy with everything else you have going and we appreciate you giving us a bit of your time.  We can’t wait to say hello, rock the hell out, and enjoy a night of debauchery with Guns ‘N’ Hoses at The Magic Bag in Ferndale, MI on May 1.

Gee (Stephanie Adler): Thank YOU so much Todd and we look forward to hanging with you guys in a few weeks for sure!

Erin (Axl Hose): It’s been a pleasure! Thanks, Todd!






Category: Interviews

About the Author ()

ToddStar - that's me... just a rocking accountant who had dreams of being a rock star. I get to do the next best thing to rocking the globe - I get to take pictures of the lucky ones that do. I love to shoot all genres of music and different types of performers. If it is related to music, I love to photograph it. I get to shoot and hang with not only some of my friends and idols, but some of the coolest people around today.

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