HOLLYWOOD — Guitar god Slash has developed a huge online following on social media. Now he's expanding with a series of online videos for ticket seller Fandango.
The former Guns N' Roses guitarist, a member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, has produced a new horror movie, Nothing Left to Fear, which opens Friday. To plug the release, he's co-starring in a series of online shorts, "Slash's Screamings," highlighting upcoming horror films.
We met with Slash (born as Saul Hudson) in a screening room here to talk online video, his massive online presence and favorite apps.
HOUSE OF SCREAMS
For Fandango's scary-movie section, Slash talks about his favorite horror movies, without a Gibson Les Paul in his hand. "Once I put the guitar on, I can't speak to anybody. I get lost in the music. So it's best to not have a guitar in my hands."
He's appealing to fans on PledgeMusic to raise production money for the soundtrack to Nothing Left to Fear (for $20-$150 you can DVDs, CDs or signed movie posters). He doesn't look at it as a handout, but as a way to cover his costs. "It's a great tool to deliver the record to people who are interested. It's more a person-to-person thing. You just hope you can break even and offer a version to your biggest supporters."
TALKING BACK TO FANS
The guitar hero has a large army of fans (10 million on Facebook, 2.7 million on Twitter) who for the first time can communicate directly. In the old days, they'd wait outside the stage entrance hoping to get a glimpse.
Social is "being out there and being able to deal with people on a level that's toe to toe. Guitar players tend to be quiet — being able to write stuff online, you can be a lot more vocal. You can reach people more personally than ever before." It also provides an avenue to sell products directly to fans. On his Slashonline website, he sells CDs, T-shirts, guitar pick holders and candles.
THAT UNIQUE TWITTER SIG
What does iiii}]; )' mean anyway? (It's an emoticon he uses on Twitter.)
Tilt your laptop and a man in a top hat is smiling and winking at you. (For the uninitiated, Slash usually rocks out on stage in a top hat, a Gibson Les Paul slung over his shoulder.) "I felt I needed some sort of signature. It just came to me to do that, and it just stuck."
Why guitarist Slash ditched the iPhone for the Samsung Note; Talking Your Tech.
Samsung Note II: The large "phablet" is bigger than a smartphone and smaller than a tablet. "I migrated from the iPhone two months ago. It's easier to navigate; not everybody on the planet has one, which is an attraction for me; and you can make notes. If somebody sends me a piece of album artwork to approve, I can draw atop of it and say what needs to be done, I can draw in freehand a setlist. I love that."
Guitarist Slash talks about his favorite apps on Talking Your Tech.
As would be expected, he's a huge fan of music apps — Metronome and Guitar Tuner. He also uses dictionary and thesaurus apps. And he reads the Los Angeles Times, New York Times, Fangoria magazine and the Huffington Post on his Note.
For music listening he likes SoundCloud for sharing music with other musicians and TuneIn, an app that brings in 70,000 radio stations from around the globe.
Slash recorded the theme song for Angry Birds Space, which was released earlier this year. "I'm a huge Angry Birds fan. I keep five different versions going at the same time — they're great for endless bus trips and long flights."
Follow Jefferson Graham on Twitter: @jeffersongraham.