RYAN: We always took Wednesday nights off and started late on Thursdays because the band went to a once a week club called The Cathouse. They were big stars there. I reckon Mike knew he wouldn't get much out of them on the morning after a visit to The Cathouse. I didn't see Axl, Slash and Izzy together much during the three months they worked on Appetite at Take One. They were all on completely different schedules; Slash would come in at 11 in the morning to record guitars, then we'd break at 6 until 7:30, for dinner, when Slash would leave and Axl would come in to do vocals until late at night. They only saw each other occasionally as I remember. Izzy spent most of his time listening to a cassette player he had, playing his guitar and waiting for his turn to do overdubs.
ROSE [1987 interview]: We went through so many producers. [Clink] doesn't necessarily go "I think you should change this," but he’ll say, “I don’t know about that one part,” but he’ll fucking cause a scene about it so we totally analyze something, so we show him why it works perfectly the way it is or we come up with a better idea. That’s all they wanted, to make sure we are giving 100 percent. Geffen was really worried, but then they heard it and they think we’re great. Tom [Zutaut] told me if I lost my voice it was okay, I could leave my rough tracks.
NIVEN: There was a moment, however, when I did get concerned. Zooty spent two weeks trying to get a mix outa Mike. Nothing was forthcoming. Tom said, "I am beginning to wonder if Mike even has it on tape." I told him, "Go to Rumbo, select a roll of tape, and send it down to Total Access." Michael Lardie and I were in the middle of Great White overdubs. We stopped. Stripped the board and set up for a mix. The tape arrived and Michael and I took a listen and twisted a couple of knobs. The band were waiting for news in Zoot's office at Geffen. I told them: "Ya better come down.” Only Izzy showed. We played our fast mix of “Brownstone.” By the first chorus, Iz was launched out of the studio sofa and pumping his fists. It was there. Clink had it on tape.
RYAN: One day Izzy stopped me in the breezeway outside of the studio and asked me how many records I thought the album would sell. I considered this and thought "they won’t get any radio play because almost every song has the word f**k in it." So, with an encouraging smile I replied, "Oh, I think you could sell two hundred thousand copies.” Izzy looked disappointed. "I thought we'd sell a couple of million," he said. We were both wrong.
BRIDENTHAL: At the label, we could taste blood in the water and everyone worked their butts off. But I think the key elements were obvious: fabulous music and great leadership at the label. We wore buttons that said "Patience." This was clearly a shift in musical taste; it was no teeny pop band. These guys were dangerous, genuine ROCK STARS. The band could be intimidating for an isolated promo or sales rep in the field.
Appetite for Destruction was the title of a painting done in 1978 by artist/cartoonist Robert Williams. Rose brought the image to the band. After retail blowback as a result of the original artwork, the cover was replaced with a tattoo-style cross with the members’ heads rendered as skulls.
NIVEN: Axl showed it to me and said he was joking. I, however, thought his instinct was brilliant and the pair of us drove way out into The Valley to go to Williams' home to persuade him to let us use it. Tom and I knew it would create a hoo-ha. That’s why we only printed 30,000 units of the original cover and had 30,001, the replacement cover, printed even before the record was released -- we did not lose a beat in transition and we got the attention we wanted -- you can count on people to grab the wrong end of the stick every now and then.