McKagan has been toiling away with producer Shooter Jennings on what the GN’R legend considers his creative follow-up to his 2015 book, How To Be a Man (And Other Illusions).
The new tunes were inspired by McKagan’s experience traveling the world on Guns N’ Roses’ epic Not in This Lifetime tour.
“I wrote a couple of articles about historical places I passed through on this last tour, and people kept asking if that was going to be the focus of my next book,” he said in a statement. “But an unseen and irrepressible force guided me to write little vignettes of reflective prose …little instant-reactions.”
He added, “The heartbreak, anger, fear, confusion and divide I have experienced over the last two and a half years of traveling this globe of ours coerced these words into songs that tell my truth, and one that I hope will spread and help us all. I do this for my daughters … I do this for my love of where I grew up …I do this because I truly feel it must be done and said right now.”
Jennings chimed in, “From the first night we sat together at my piano hashing out arrangements of his songs, before going into the studio to record them, I felt it was a really important record that had to be heard. The songs have so much heart and are so musical that I could just hear all the arrangements immediately and I could really feel them.”
McKagan and Jennings have been working at Station House studios in Echo Park, California, since March of this year. The two have been friends for nearly two decades.
“I met Duff right after I moved to Los Angeles nearly 20 years ago,” Jennings said. “I was such a massive Guns N’ Roses fan when I was younger. I’d say that they had a lot to do with me even moving to L.A. But there was some kind of magnetic force, I guess, that kept us orbiting each other over the years. When the idea of collaborating with him on this album came up, I was very eager to get the job as producer.”
“I felt like the music this man made was part of the fabric of my own musical identity and that I would really love building a record with him,” he added. “Once we sat down and started going over the songs he had, I instantly knew that the two of us were going to be a great fit together.”
Guns N’ Roses will wrap up their 2018 tour dates with their first-ever show in Hawaii at Aloha Stadium in Honolulu this Saturday, December 8th.