Adler – Back from the Dead With A Purpose
By: Kenneth Gallant
My wife and I got into watching Celebrity Rehab with Dr Drew every Sunday night. I’m not sure what brought me to enjoy viewing the downward spiral of others, but I must profess I found some of the human drama quite engrossing. In 2011, former Guns ‘N Roses drummer Steven Adler found himself set adrift on the show in an attempt to regain some sense of purpose in his life. I could remember shaking my head plenty of times while watching him stumbling around like a fool that he was fighting to not become.
Ultimately, that was the past and amazingly, Adler found a way to pick himself up, shake off the shackles of his addiction and form a new band. With the help of Lonny Paul [guitars] and Jacob Bunton [vocals], the band Adler was born and seemingly returned Adler to the forefront of the rock world with a new album and new band mates. This trio truly brought the goods to their debut release and yours truly had the opportunity to sit down with Paul to talk about his involvement with the band and see how Adler has been coping with his new-found success…
Blistering.com: I wanted to start things off by asking you how you got involved with Steven and his new band?
Lonny Paul: Two weeks before his last tour with Adler’s Appetite they needed another guitar player and I came down and played one song and then Steven said he wanted me in his band. Another two weeks after that, I was on the road with him and we did two months on a bus and we became best friends. Over that time we talked about how he was tired of playing these clubs and he wanted something bigger and better. When we got back into town he let everybody go but me, and we started the new band Adler.
After that, I was at the Key Club one night and ran into Jay Ruston who ended up mixing our record and he had referred us to Jacob Bunton who of course, was our singer and as soon as we got him involved, we were looking for different avenues to record. I was at Jeff Pilson’s house and asked him if he would be interested in playing bass on a couple tracks because we didn’t have a bass player, so Jeff ended up producing the whole record and Jay Ruston mixed it. After the record was done, we brought in Johnny Marks who was an old friend of mine to play bass.
Blistering.com: So how much involvement did you have on the writing side of things?
Paul: Well in the early stages Jacob and I were writing all the songs and he lives in Alabama and I live in LA, so we would write songs and literally send them back and forth. We set up a drop box account and we would write songs every day, but oddly enough there were only a handful of those songs that we wrote by ourselves that made the record. A lot of the songs were written while Jacob was in town and he stayed in my guest house and we would generally go to the studio around noon to Jeff’s place. We would wake up six am and either I or Jacob would have an idea to record at a mini studio at my office here and we would get together in the morning to work on stuff. We would then pick up Steven and on the way to the studio we would play Steven the stuff we recorded and if he liked it then we would go ahead and play it for Jeff who was on board then, so we would literally record it the following day.
Blistering.com: So how is your relationship with Steven?
Paul: Oh he’s my best friend. He’s extremely easy to get along with and the first time anybody meets him he will give you a hug and he will give you the shirt off his back. He’s the nicest, kindest guy I ever met.
Blistering.com: I am curious to know how much involvement Jeff Pilson played in the recording of the album, can you elaborate a bit?
Paul: It started out with him just playing bass on a couple of tracks and by the time we were getting ready to record he asked us to come over here and check out his house. He’s got this huge-ass room and he just made us comfortable, and on the first song we did we felt it was the right place to record the whole record. It just kind of started all from there and Jeff was realty excited to work with [us] and that’s how it all happened.
Blistering.com: What are your touring plans with Adler?
Paul: I know our manager is putting stuff together as we speak. The thing that is actually booked that I can mention is that we’re playing in Tokyo, Japan with Duff [McKagen] in March.
Blistering.com: Now going back to the album, do you have a favorite track on it that you can tell us about?
Paul: I know its clichéd but I like all the songs. I supposed one of my favorites and it’s a tough question, but I really like “Own Worst Enemy” because it had some groove. The day I heard “Rocket Queen” on Appetite for Destruction I said one day I would like to write a song as groovy as that, so when you think about “Rocket Queen” you hear the similarities because the groove is real similar. Fortunately for me I got to play with the drummer who actually played on that track!