Slash is often recognized as one of the greatest guitarists of all time. With Guns N’ Roses, he became a worldwide sensation. With Velvet Revolver and a slew of solo records, Slash has continued to bring his distinctive shredding to the masses.
A new Slash album is due out this month, so it feels natural to look back at everything he’s done up until now. That includes every one-off collaboration, soundtrack contribution, and guest appearance that Slash is credited for in the Discogs Database.
Since his latest album is titled 4, here are four of Slash’s most memorable guitar contributions.
“Under My Wheels”
If you’ve ever seen The Decline of Western Civilization Part II: The Metal Years, you may remember scenes of excess and jaw-dropping accounts of debauchery in the Los Angeles heavy metal scene of the late 1980s. You may also remember the soundtrack with artists like Megadeth, Motörhead, and Alice Cooper all contributing music to the film. At the end of the movie, the classic Alice Cooper song “Under My Wheels” plays as rolling credits, rowdy fans, and interview clips provide the proper send-off. Most Alice Cooper fans will quickly notice that this version is different from the original found on the album Killer. The rendition featured here has Alice Cooper singing, but he is joined by Axl Rose, Izzy Stradlin, and (you guessed it) Slash of Guns N’ Roses. The split vocal duties and wild Slash solos give this classic song an extra shot of adrenaline as the film comes to a close.
“Magic Carpet Ride”
Slash was once again enlisted to punch up a classic song for the Coneheads soundtrack. With Michael Monroe from Hanoi Rocks on vocals, Slash took Steppenwolf’s “Magic Carpet Ride” in a whole new hard rock direction. Thanks to some Hendrix-inspired feedback and a main riff that would make Angus Young proud, the song embodies a completely different feeling as Slash’s guitar twists, turns, and takes the lead. This clip from the UK version of MTV’s Headbangers Ball shows Slash and company recording the cover song and discussing how the project came together. Apparently, Slash was sold on the idea after the producers told him that the song would be used during a growing up montage that leads to Connie Conehead rebelling against her parents and getting her cone pierced (in the final film version, Connie ends up with a tattoo).
When Blink-182 drummer Travis Barker decided to release a solo album in 2011, he was able to collaborate with some of the biggest names in music. Since the album was conceived with no one genre in mind, Barker collaborated with everyone from Snoop Dogg and Lil Wayne to Tom Morello and Slash. The song “Saturday Night” features Travis Barker’s bandmates from the Transplants (Tim Armstrong and Rob Aston) and tasteful guitar provided by Slash. Instead of the Transplants’ usual aggressive punk/hip hop approach, “Saturday Night” has a much more subdued and smooth feel to it. The song sounds like the type of music you’d listen to if you were taking a midnight drive along the coast with your windows down.
Rihanna had her breakthrough moment with the success of her third album Good Girl Gone Bad. Instead of playing it safe and following up with an album that sounded the same, Rihanna decided to move in a new direction. Rated R has a darker atmosphere and is credited as the album where RiRi began to embrace more rock elements in her sound. On “Rockstar 101,” she brought Slash into the mix and his guitar provides some much-needed gritty texture. Due to scheduling conflicts, Slash was not able to perform in the music video. Instead, Rihanna paid tribute to Slash by donning a black top hat and sunglasses, which he found very flattering.
Published in partnership with Gibson Records/BMG.
Photo by Austin Nelson.