If you are Guns N’ Roses fan, you would know their only number US single Sweet Child O’ Mine. The song appeared in their debut album Appetite for Destruction but was initially released as a single in June 1988. But did you know what the lyrics at the end of the song meant?
The lyrics at the end of “Sweet Child O’ Mine” were actually literal. When Axl Rose and his producer were discussing how to end it, Rose said, “Where do we go? Where do we go now?”. The producer loved it and suggested singing it at the end of the song.
Who is Axl Rose?
In Lafayette, Indiana, W. Axl Rose or William Bruce Rose Jr. was born on February 6, 1962. He grew up in a religious home but chose to follow his biological father’s delinquent behavior. At 17, he found out about his father’s existence, and he unofficially re-adopted his birth name. He did modify it a bit since he did not want to share his first name with his biological father. He preferred to be called W. Rose, instead. By the time he found out about his true family, he had begun to behave oddly. He was arrested over twenty times in Lafayette for public intoxication, battery, and more. He served three months in jail, and the authorities threatened to charge him as a habitual criminal. Because of this, Rose moved to Los Angeles in December 1982.
By the time he reached Los Angeles, he was so involved with his band that he named AXL. His friends suggested that he call himself Axl Rose because of this. By March 1986, he legally changed his name to W. Axl Rose before signing a contract with Geffen Records. (Source: Rolling Stone)
How Did Guns N’ Roses Start?
The Guns N’ Roses band started in 1985. Izzy Stradlin was living with Tracii Guns member LA Guns. When Guns’ band needed a new vocalist, Stradlin suggested Axl Rose. The duo started their Guns N’ Roses band by March after Rose was fired from LA Guns.
Axl got into an argument with our manager and our manager fired Axl but we all lived together so it was all really weird. So, that same night he got fired we started Guns N’ Roses and I called Izzy the next day and said ‘Hey, we are gonna start this new band called Guns N’ Roses, do you want in?Tracii Guns
(Source: Classic Rock World)
The Making of Sweet Child O’ Mine
The song was made during a jam session at the band’s home on Sunset Strip. Steven Adler and Saul “Slash” Hudson were warming up to play. Stradlin caught the tune and asked Slash to play it again. Moments later, Stradlin came up with the chords. Duff McKagan made the bass line, and just within an hour, they had something going. At the time, Axl Rose was downstairs listening to his bandmates play. After hearing the tune, he was inspired to write the lyrics. The next afternoon, the song was made. Sweet Child O’ Mine is based on Rose’s girlfriend, Erin Everly.
When the band recorded the demos, Spencer Proffer recommended adding a breakdown at the end of the song. The band agreed, but they were not sure what to add. While listening to the demo for the nth time, Rose started saying; Where do we go, where do we go now? It was a lightbulb moment for Proffer. He suggested singing those words, and the song was finally complete. (Source: Here Today Gone)