HomeSomething from Nothing Documentary Episodes (2019)




Manny Charlton talks about early production of Guns'N'Roses debut

The original Nazareth guitarist Manny Charlton has been credited for his production of Guns'N'Roses' debut album "Appetite for Destruction" in two separate articles in Classic Rock Magazine.

Guns'N'Roses in 1986: Duff McKagan, Slash, Axl Rose, Izzy Stradlin and Steven Adler.


21 June 2022.


Back in June 1986, Manny Charlton was sitting at the control desk at Sound City studios in Los Angeles USA, producing what would eventually become Guns'N'Roses' debut album "Appetite for Destruction". This album would eventually sell over 30 million copies worldwide, becoming one of the best-selling albums of all time.


However, as Nazareth duties was pressing Charlton to go back to Europe (to complete their 1986 "Cinema" album), GNR would eventually hire Mike Clink to complete the album.


Today, over 40 years later, Manny Charlton reveals what it was like to produce the fabled "Sound City" recording.

Guns'N'Roses earliest recordings from LA Sound City did become stuff of legend, as very few people had heard the recording - and then only in extracts on low-grade bootlegs. Thirty-two years down the line, in June 2018, the best-selling debut album of all time was repacked and reissued in a deluxe edition, in which Manny Charlton's fabled Sound City session was finally presented for the first time in full, and in high-definition sound. 


The album revealed a band progressing to their peak with a raw energy, as lead guitarist Slash later put it, “like angry dogs cornered”. 


In a recent interview published by Classic Rock, Manny talks about the recording session at Sound City studios in Los Angeles, where he recorded 25 tracks including early versions of Welcome to the Jungle, Paradise City, November Rain, Rocket Queen and Reckless Life.


Here at Fluffy Jackets HQ, we are very pleased that our mentor, producer and good friend Manny Charlton finally got some recognition for this work, so we would encourage everyone to read the story of Manny Charlton and the birth of Appetite for Destruction and the Story on how Guns'N'Roses' Appetite for Destruction was made.
November Rain / Guns'N'Roses, pre-production version recorded at Sound City studios, LA, produced by Manny Charlton 


Manny Charlton's first reaction to hearing "Novenber Rain"
The article in Classic Rock Magazine tells of Manny's first reaction to hearing Axl sing "November Rain":


“He (Axl Rose) just sat down at a piano when we were having a break,” Charlton says, “and played this song to the band.” 


It was a piece he had written three years earlier, before Guns N’ Roses had formed, and it was unlike anything else in the band’s repertoire – a beautiful, epic love song played out over 10 minutes. As Rose sang it, his voice raw with emotion, Charlton was transfixed. When it was done, Charlton was convinced that November Rain would be the most important song on Guns N’ Roses’ first album.


But the singer was already thinking ahead. “It’s for the second album,” Axl told him. 


And Charlton was right about November Rain. When he heard Axl play it on that day in 1986, he knew it was an important song. Thirty-two years later, the video for November Rain became the first from the 20th century to receive one billion views.


You can read the story about Manny Charlton and the birth of Appetite for Destruction and How Appetite for Destruction was made at Classic Rock Magazine at Classic Rock Online.


The first story was written by the late Malcolm Dome (RIP) and was only published after Manny Charlton passed away. The second story was from an interview by Paul Elliot at Classic Rock Magazine , first published in June 2022.

Update: RIP Manny Charlton, 7 July 2022:
It was with great sadness that we have received the news that Manny Charlton passed away on the 5th of July 2022, at the age of 80. He will be sadly missed. We would like to pass on our sincere condolences to his family and Nazareth fans around the world. Rest in Peace, our dear friend.


© Copyright The Fluffy Jackets 2021 All Rights Reserved.