Taking Dawn frontman Babbitt tells how Rose refused to start concert until ex-drummer Steven was ejected from Los Angeles venue

Chris Babbitt

Hard eject: Babbitt

Taking Dawn frontman Chris Babbitt has told how he was forced to kick former Guns n’Roses drummer Steven Adler out of an LA venue because Axl Rose refused to perform until he’d gone.

The fiery singer was playing in the Hard Rock Hotel in September 2006 with a new lineup. Adler had bought tickets and was just another member of the crowd, but when Rose saw him in the audience he ordered security to remove him.

And Babbitt was one of the venue staff who gave the sacked drummer his marching orders.

The Taking Dawn man tells RockAAA: “Axl picked him out of the crowd and came off stage saying, ‘I’m not playing unless you get that guy out of here’.

“A couple of us were asking if we really had to do it, but we did it. Adler just said, ‘Okay, that’s a shame. If he feels uncomfortable I don’t want to ruin his show. Can I get a refund?’ He didn’t put up a fight or talk any shit – we just gave him his refund and there was no problem.

“I don’t get why Axl did that, but that’s personal between them. I think it’s just cool to knock Axl for being a dickhead, but plenty of people are dickheads. He is who he is and doesn’t make excuses.”

Taking Dawn haven’t worked with GnR but they have toured with ex guitarist Slash. Babbitt says: “He was the best dude on the planet. He didn’t even have to talk to us but he was so nice.

“I like the new Guns n’Roses. The record has a lot of good songs and some killer solos. But Slash is the real deal – when he’s gone I don’t know will be rock’n'roll any more.”

Babbitt’s band recently gained attention for a high-octane cover of Fleetwood Mac classic The Chain. But the frontman says it wasn’t their first choice for a cover version.

“We were going to do Fuck Like A Beast by WASP,” he explains, “But our producer felt we should aim high and act with big aspirations for the record. So we considered Def Leppard’s Mirror Mirror. But we’d been talking about how heavy Fleetwood Mac’s Rhiannon is, how dark it is and how a lot of their old stuff is big and powerful.

“We realised The Chain had all those slams in it. We’re all about impact and drama, so we did The Chain.”

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