So this happened.
Axl Rose and Slash performed together for Guns 'n' Roses — a sight fans never thought they would witness again... on 1 April 2016, and no, it wasn't a Fool's Day prank.
The long-awaited Guns 'n' Roses reunion got off to a surprise early start on Friday, with the band playing a show at a small Los Angeles club where the rock legends were first noticed.
Before a lucky 500 fans packed into the Troubadour in West Hollywood, singer Axl Rose and guitarist Slash performed for the first time together in public for more than two decades.
According to a report by Rolling Stones, cameras and video – including cell phones – were banned from the venue. But some of the lucky fans in attendance managed to capture the performance and posted videos and photos on social media.
Videos posted online showed the 54-year-old Rose -- still with flowing blond hair but without his once constant bandana -- singing alongside Slash in his trademark top-hat over his black curls.
"You know where you are?" Rose yelled in his soaring voice in the signature line of Welcome to the Jungle, according to one segment shot by a fan -- a technology that did not exist in the band's glory days.
Social media posts said that Guns 'n' Roses started the show with It's So Easy, an energetic song with a bad-boy attitude that has frequently been the band's opener.
Years of rumors of a Guns 'n'Roses reunion came to fruition earlier this year when the band was announced as headliners for the Coachella festival, which will take place later his month in the California desert.
The band has since announced a full tour at arenas but had suspiciously left off any date in their native Los Angeles.
Here is the big moment, captured in full glory thanks to smartphones and social media
// AGAIN // 23 YEARS #gnr #GnFnR #gunsandroses #doyouknowwherethefuckyouare A video posted by JOSH WEINER // LOS ANGELES (@joshweiner) on
#GnFnR A photo posted by Troubadour (@thetroubadour) on
Mad scramble for tickets
Guns 'n' Roses early Friday announced the show for the evening. Some fans online initially thought that it could be an April Fools' Day prank, but the band soon confirmed that tickets would be available -- only in person and one each -- at a "retro" price of $10.
A long crowd of fans, some wearing Guns 'n' Roses T-shirts, quickly converged for a chance to buy tickets near the Troubadour at the designated sale site in the building of defunct Tower Records, now a store of guitar maker Gibson.
The strategy appeared to hinder scalpers, whose inflated prices have long infuriated artists.
Dozens of fans who could not score a ticket waited outside the venue late at night hoping to still hearing the music.
The Troubadour's calendar had previously listed, cryptically, "Girl Rock (school) -- showcase," as its attraction for Friday, with a sketch of a student playing a guitar.
The Troubadour, with a capacity of 500, is legendary in music history as it helped launch the careers of artists ranging from Elton John to James Taylor. Members of The Eagles met for the first time at its bar.
Hollywood in the 1980s became the epicenter of heavy metal, and Guns 'n' Roses landed a contract with Geffen Records after a show at the Troubadour.
The result of that deal, 1987's "Appetite for Destruction," remains the best-selling debut album ever, with fans drawn to Rose's range and raw anger coupled with Slash's intricate guitar playing.
Lucrative tour years in making
But Guns 'n' Roses, notorious for their antics on the road and the tension between Rose and Slash, last played together in 1993 in Buenos Aires.
Rose later continued Guns 'n'Roses with other lineups, all the while receiving lucrative offers to reunite.
The band on Friday also announced details of the North American tour, which will all be in stadiums -- a far cry from the intimate Troubadour.
The main leg of the "Not in This Lifetime Tour" will begin on 23 June at Ford Field in Detroit, home to the National Football League's Detroit Lions, and run until 22 August in San Diego.
Guns 'n' Roses have only announced three shows outside the United States -- 19 and 20 April in Mexico City and 16 July in Toronto.
In the band's heyday, Guns 'n' Roses played to raucous welcomes around much of the world including Europe and Japan.
With inputs from agencies
First Published On : Apr 2, 2016 15:20 IST