Setlist History: Guns N' Roses Shoot "Paradise City" on Tour

Guns N' Roses was opening for Aerosmith on the Permanent Vacation Tour in August 1988 when their debut album Appetite for Destruction went #1, more than a year after its release.

Nowadays the album is considered one of the greatest in history and it's sold over 30 million copies. So what took it so long to get to the top of the charts in the '80s?

Wise as their album boss David Geffen was, whoever decided the first single should be "It's So Easy," hopefully was sent packing.

The cover of the single of "Paradise City"

It wasn't until months later that "Welcome to the Jungle" was released but MTV was hesitant to air it. When it did, it was a smash, peaking at #7. But it would take six months until "Sweet Child O'Mine" was sent out into the world, which became the band's first and only #1 US single.

While "Sweet Child" was peaking, they decided to make a video for what would be the fourth single off the album, "Paradise City."

The video for "Paradise City" currently has 785 million views on YouTube

On August 16, 1988 on a bill Guns shared with both Deep Purple and Aerosmith at Giants Stadium in New Jersey, Axl told the crowd to allow the cameras to do their thing because they were shooting a video for their next single.

This bootleg of the 8/16/88 show begins with Axl explaining why the camera crew is shooting them.

The crowd cheered in approval and Slash played and extended jam which led into the song.

The video shows the band rocking out to the tune in front of a mostly full football stadium and later it shows them playing to over 100,000 for Monsters of Rock at Donington Castle on the 20th.

A shot of Axl Rose at the Monsters of Rock in Donington in August of 1988.

At Giants Stadium, unlike at Donington, Guns did "Paradise City" twice so they could get enough shots for the video.

But the Monsters of Rock set had a tragic uniqueness of its own. During the opening number a rush of fans surged, inadvertently stampeding two fans to death.

Even though now it's a staple in their set, the Appetite For Destruction Tour saw "Paradise City" become just the seventh most played song in the set. "Out Ta Get Me" was even played more.

"When we wrote it we were in a van on the way back from a gig in San Francisco to Los Angeles," Slash said, noting it's one of his favorite songs of the band.

"It's heavy and it's nasty but it's up tempo and sort of positive," the guitarist noted. "It's not all dark and Dungeons & Dragons."

The tune is usually the final song the band plays in their set.

Guns is currently on tour around the US playing to baseball and basketball stadiums. Depending on the city you might get lucky and have The Pretenders or Alice in Chains open for them. And in October they play the opening night of the Power Trip weekend. Tickets available on the Guns N' Roses website.

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